Life or Something Like It

To Conform or Not to Conform

To Conform or Not to Conform.  I have struggled my entire life with self-esteem issues.  Honestly, I really do not know why because I had parents that loved me. Also, I had people that were vested in my life.  Looking back, I had my parents, my other parents, my granny, Becky Kelly, Edith Wallace, and so many more.  Now I see how loved I have been, but hindsight is 20/20.  Back then, I did not see that.  I just saw myself as the girl in the “stupid kid class” who struggled with adding, multiplication, telling time, or what a freaking adverb is.  Sadly, I was stared at and made fun of, daily, by my peers.  It was such a difficult time.

How Many Legs Does a Dog Have?

Clearly, I remember in Kindergarten, the teachers wanting to hold me back.  The reason was on a test, I was asked how many legs a dog had.  I said 3.  Again, I clearly remember my mother flying in my classroom.  She said something to the effect of “she is not stupid, she has just never seen a 4 legged dog.”  Seriously people.  I.  Had.  Never.  Seen.  A.  4.  Legged.  Dog.  Let that soak in for a moment.  I was 6.  Wow.

6th Grade Drama

In sixth grade, where there were hot guys, pegged jeans and jean jackets.  It really didn’t matter what I did or said, I was never one to have friends, even back then.  When I entered into sixth grade, I remember being put in the “stupid” class.  I remember walking in line and having my peers stare at me and laugh.  My mother ensured that I did not stay in there long, not sure what she said, but I was put back in the mainstream classes.

Always Different

I just always felt different.  Never really did I fit in with anyone or anywhere.  There were points when I tried to do my hair like the other girls.  Oh, and my makeup (Tera, remember the school picture you dolled me up for and the mounds of blue eyeshadow…good grief!).  I tried to dress the way other people dressed and have the “in style” clothes. Stupidly, I would say things that I thought would make me fit in.  When in reality, I just looked like an idiot and I was further isolated from my peers.

Wearing my Mask

I would put on the face to suit whoever I was in contact with.  If I was in school, I would put on the “I don’t care that I have no friends and cannot understand my homework” face. If I were at church, I would put on my “sanctified holier than thou face.”  If I were at home, I put on the “sullen no one understands me” face.  I had several faces that I would take on and off, depending on my situation.

Reed in a Hurricane Syndrome

That “reed in the hurricane” mentality set me up for not so good things to happen in my life.  There was abuse, anorexia, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, and depression.  My deep need to fit in led me down a scary path that, though I am sad because of the things that did happen, I praise my Father for protecting me from any further harm.

Coming to Peace

Over the years, I have transformed into a person that I think I can finally be at peace with.  The exhaustion of being more than one person depending on the setting became too much for me.  I no longer cared what anyone thought or felt about me.  What is important is that I know who I am and WHOSE I am.

What Has Been Said About Me

I have been told that I cannot be a submission, honoring wife because I am too bold and outspoken.  Also, I have been told that I control my husband and will not let him make any decisions in our family. There have been people who have said that I love my husband when he does things for me. Oh, wait, and I have been told that homeschooling is detrimental to my children because I am not smart enough to teach them.  They will lag behind.

I have been told that I am perceived as an adulterous person because I chose to pray with a man over his marriage.  Then there was the time I will never be taken seriously, I am not perceived as intelligent.  Blah Blah Blah.  My feelings have been hurt more than once because all these statements make me question who I really am.  Then, I stop and I remember WHOSE I am.  I am a child of the King.

He Knows Me

Psalm 139:13-16  “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.  Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.  Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

Truths About Me

For those of you who might want to know who I am or what I stand for….I love my Lord with all my heart and all my soul.  Caring for the needy or destitute is what I do.  I want to help the ones that no one wants to be near. Please know that I love my husband and my children.  My Lord comes first and my husband comes second and children come third.  Everyone after that will have to take a number.

I have hot pink hair most of the time.  To a detriment, I am honest.  I hold those I love very close to my heart.  Trust does not come easy for me.  I can read people very well.  My jam is to sit and watch.  I love to feed people.  There are also moments when I love to share my past hurts in order to help someone else.  I use humor to hide my hurts.  Friendships do not come easy for me.  I have a brain.  Forgiving is hard for me to do, but I do it.  I can say I am wrong and apologize.  Lying is not tolerated.

Be Kind

If you don’t like me or assume something about me…that is fine.  If you want to know something, ask.  For the love of all that is good…never look at a person and make a snap judgment call.  Get to know them.  Put your feet under their table and see how they operate.  Learn their story.  Be mindful of your speech.

Different Does Not Mean Bad

I am different.  Remember, I will NEVER walk the walk you are walking.  Also, I will never talk the talk you are talking.  I will not be the person who matches (though I like to think I try).  Honestly, I will never be the one who is super smart.  I will never be the one who will fudge the truth in order to make someone happy.  Furthermore, I will always tell you how I feel.  If you make me mad or hurt my feelings, I will let you know.  I hate to cry.  My job is not to please people.  My command is to love God and love my neighbor.  That is what I do.

Salt and Light

You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.  Matthew 5:13-16

I will not hide my light.  Also, I will stand out and I will be noticed.  I will be myself and I will encourage, feed and love you.  Regardless if you like it or not.  Salt and Light, people….salt and light.  My hot pink light will shine up on that hill until the return of Christ.  Enjoy it, embrace it, or walk away….your choice.

 

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Life or Something Like It

Cute Pair of Pants vs The Fat Roll

**This is a repost of Cute Pair of Pants vs The Fat Roll.  I made a couple of years ago…I giggled reading it again**

Here is my story of Cute Pair of Pants vs The Fat Roll.  Okay, so I have a 20% discount at work (YAY ME) and that coupled with a 30% off coupon and clearance items equals a huge YAY YAY YAY.

Finding Clothes on Clearance

So, on my lunch break, I decide to shop.  I randomly walk around the store thinking “where are all those cute things that I sell that is $1.97?”  Eventually, throughout my time, I find a cute pair of pants.  They are khaki pants that can either be rolled down or used as capris.  Cute.  I buy the size I normally wear (gasp) and don’t try them on.  Sadly, I loathe trying on clothes and I refuse to buy a size bigger.

All excited, I get home and try them on….they fit, but I can’t breathe or sit.  It has a snap closure, so when I do try to breathe, my snap pops 🙁

Quest for Cuteness

In the quest for cuteness, I decide this morning, that I will wear those pants.  I anxiously rip the tags off and contemplate how I’m going to function for the next 8 hrs in these too tight pants.  I chose a shirt that covers my gut and so if the snap blows, then I can discreetly snap them back (if you count sucking it up and turning blue to get them to snap).

Fake Spanx

I’m so excited, though, because I remembered I had fake Spanx, deep down in my drawer.  Here lies the answer.  I lay on the bed and shimmy them up, thinking I’m gonna die and there will be no way I will be able to go to the bathroom.  I pull them all the way up and then I proceed to put on my new pants.  They fit, comfortably!  Yippee!  I think I look quite stylin’ as I load up the kids and head to work.

Oh My Word

Throughout the day, I bend, lift and move…a lot…fake Spanx aren’t quite built for that and at one point, I notice the back of my Spanx (I walked past a mirrored column at work) and there was a HUGE fat roll on the back because the back of my Spanx was rolling south.  I thought I was still safe because the front was still up….then…I squatted.  Big mistake.  In one instant, my fake spanks rolled under my fat roll and there was no easy way to “lift” them back up without going to the bathroom (which I couldn’t do because I was training a new kid and he can’t be left alone) or hide in the stock room.

Houston, We Have a Problem

I thought I’d be okay.  Even though it was incredibly uncomfortable for me.  Then, I realized that my pants were starting to give way.  I quickly got someone to cover me and rushed to the bathroom.  It took an Act.Of.Congress to get out of the Spanx and then to roll them back up over my fat roll.  I got everything back up and headed back out to the floor.  I felt pretty good cause the back roll was gone and the front was way up over my fat roll.

Once it Stretches, It Never Goes Back

Did you know once you “stretch” out elastic, it is never the same?  I didn’t.  It was then that I quickly learned that fact.  Within 10 minutes, my fake Spanx was headin’ south.  Then, there was a POP and out came the fat roll.  I was very thankful to be clocking out and heading home.  Amazingly enough, I can handle anything for 40 minutes.

Big Daddy to the Rescue

I rush in, grab my sweet Big Daddy and tell him I need him upstairs.  It sparks an interest in him and he rushes upstairs.  By the time I got there, I was standing in the bedroom with my fake spanks sucking the life out of me and sticking to my person.  I beg him to help me get out of this contraption.

I felt like Miss Scarlett, in Gone With the Wind, when Mammie is tightening her corset (although I’d make 4 of Miss Scarlett).  He got so tickled because it was *so* hard to peel off my body.  By the time it was over, I rushed to the bathroom.  Big Daddy asked why I was in such a hurry and I tried to explain to him that I hadn’t had the privilege of using the bathroom because of my need to wear cute pants.

I guess it is time to do the Fat Smash diet again or to simply eat better.  I don’t want to be skinny, I just want to be able to breathe in cute, incredibly cheap, pants.

Tomorrow, I’m wearing elastic.

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School

DIY Slime Recipe

DIY Slime Recipe.  This could be the coolest thing…you know…ever.  It has lasted for a month.  We keep it in a tupperware bowl with a lid (or a plastic baggie).  The kids have played with this for hours and they were completely bummed when it *finally* dried out.

This homemade slime far surpasses silly putty or playdoh…hands down.  Plus, when I’m stressed, I get a big ol wad and squish it in my hands to relieve tension.  It does not stick to you, your clothes, furniture….love it!

DIY Slime Recipe

water

white glue (like Elmer’s™)

borax

food coloring (unless you want uncolored white slime)

Mix 1 teaspoon borax in 1 cup of water. Stir until the borax is dissolved.  n a separate container, mix 1/2 cup (4 oz) white glue with 1/2 cup water. Add food coloring, if desired.

After you have dissolved the borax and diluted the glue, you are ready to combine the two solutions. Stir one slime solution into the other. Your slime will begin to polymerize immediately.

The slime will become hard to stir after you mix the borax and glue solutions. Try to mix it up as much as you can, then remove it from the bowl and finish mixing it by hand. It’s okay if there is some colored water remaining in the bowl.

DIY Slime RecipeDIY Slime RecipeDIY Slime Recipe

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Vacation

Lessons Learned from Camping

These are the Lessons Learned from Camping.  Please, heed and enjoy!

  • Pee, it happens and not where it should.  It could happen on the bed or behind a utility shed.  If you can’t see people, while you are peeing, they can’t see you.
  • Spandex and fat people do not mix.  Please refrain or buy a larger sized shirt.
  • Tattoos and hair are in inappropriate places on men and women :/
  • If you find monkey panties on the picnic table, do not assume that they are one of your children’s.  Do not touch.
  • Cotton can fall from the sky like manna…pretty cool.
  • Parades can consist of 2 people.
  • Kazoos are not edible.
  • If you don’t pay attention, your children will go and set on the steps of strange people’s camper steps and make conversation.
  • When the magician asks the CHILDREN if they know what a “shot glass” is and then proceeds to explain…take your children and walk away.
  • When you find a beer bottle, in the woods, it is not smart to put your mouth on it and making “tooting” sounds.
  • Poop, it can shoot up.  WARNING:  keep your mouth closed! (Think of the movie RV with Robin Williams….totally happened).
  • If you lose your black water tank top down the dump station, please tell someone immediately, as it will most likely cause a flood-o-poop.
  • When asked if you want a $1000 fine for dumping said crap, always say no.
  • When someone looks like the Fonz, don’t mention it to him cause he thinks he is hot.
  • Bugs can make awesome necklaces.
  • Camper toilets are a necessity.
  • Not everyone gets goosebumps when they pee.
  • Kids will cry.
  • Scrapes will happen.
  • Food will be totally consumed.
  • When the little girl at the Golden Corral says “you have too many kids,” just smile and nod.
  • ALWAYS accompany your, almost 9 yr old, at the buffet.  He tends to pick up sausage and then sling it back in the warmer with his hands.
  • If a random child gets hurt and you offer to cut off their leg to stop the pain, don’t be surprised if they do not return to your camper.
  • Bedtimes and Showers are not mandatory.
  • There is no shame in licking the cheese off the doritos and then putting them back in the bag for your children (or husband) to eat.
  • It is always polite to leave the cream filling of the oreo, for your husband.
  • When your child says “be back in 10 minutes,” they really mean “I’ll be back in a few hours, gonna go.”
  • Tarp Man, he is scary.  Always carry your pistol when he is close.
  • Camping and baseball produces extra saliva in your son’s mouth.  They will spit any and everywhere.
  • Camping……….its fun 🙂
Kids

Look Closely

Look CloselyFunniest Picture Ever

This is one of my FAVORITE pictures.  Look Closely.  Little Man had been home for about 5 mths.  The boys were teaching him the ropes of swimming.  Then, they decided to “layout” for a tan 🙂  Honestly, I get tickled every time I look at this picture.

Adoption:  Swimming:  Brothers

Check out Little Man’s hand.  Funny enough, he must’ve been having some sort of issues.

 

Kids

Let Us Pretend for a Moment

Let Us Pretend for a Moment that you were a mom of an elementary school aged boy.  You get all excited because it is a local church’s Bible School and this boy wants to go.  Let’s say you forgot about VBS, so no one went on Monday, yet you remember on Tuesday and all goes well.  Let’s say again, that you took said boy on Wednesday and when you went to pick said boy up, you quietly observe his interaction with his teacher, whom you do not know.

Again, pretending.

As you quietly observe, you see your son “flip” his teacher the bird.  Not once, not twice, but three times.

Possibly, because we are pretending here, you feel your blood pressure rising and you *try* to get to your son as quickly as possible….all the while, you are feeling like you are in the Matrix and you are moving in slow motion.  As you are moving, your eyes are on his “bird” finger and it, in slow motion, continues to move up and down at the teacher while the other children look on in horror.  HORROR.

As your slow-motion body gets to your child, you see that “look” on the teacher’s face.  That look that says “oh, my, goodness….this kid is driving me nuts and I have to put a happy face on because this child’s mother is standing before me and I have to seem like I am enjoying his presence when I really just want her to take this child home and never return.”  Seriously, anyone who has worked with kids knows that look because we have all given it.  Now, the tables are turned and it is *your* child (pretending…glorified mind).

Once home, you ask said child why they would continually stick out their middle finger when the teacher told them that that was not appropriate behaviour and that he really must stop.

Child’s answer?  “I don’t know.”

What would you do?

What would I do, you ask?  I would call my mama and ask her advice. Then, I would drink a large coke.

Kids

Boo are you Kidding Me

Boo are you Kidding Me? This is a typical day in our home.  I cannot believe I even deal with this kind of stuff.  Raising boys versus raising girls is like night and day.

Boo:  “Mom, I found another snake!”

Me:  “You are NOT keeping it in your room.”

Boo:  “Why?  It isn’t poisonous, I think it is a rat snake.”

Me: “Where was it?”

Boo:  “Trying to slither away from me in the woods.”

Me:  “Put it back, it could be poisonous, it is big and it doesn’t look like anything you’ve caught before.”

Boo: “Mom, its eyes are round, not slits.  Oh, and its tail is a turd, not blunt.  Also, it’s head is like a pencil, not triangular.  Just look.  Look at its anal plate, mom.  It is NOT poisonous!”

Me:  “Boo, I am not looking at that snake’s anal plate.”

Boo:  “But mom, if you would just LOOK at the anal plate.  You would know that it isn’t poisonous.  Oh, it did try to bite me though.”

Now, we have Larry the Ring-Neck snake.  He lives on my porch.  For.  The.  Love.

I can’t make this stuff up.  Really, I can’t.  There was one morning, at the crack of dawn, that he came upstairs.  I heard him whisper in my ear:  “Mom?”

I rolled over and opened my eyes.  Boo was standing by my bed with 4 snakes, on each hand.  He had a giant smile on his face.

Me:  “Boo, are those snakes?”

Boo:  “Yes, ma’am.  Ring-Neck.”

Me:  “Where do we keep snakes in our house?”

Boo:  “On the dining room table.”

Me:  “Do we bring them to my bedroom?”

Boo:  “No, ma’am.  I just wanted to show you.”

Me:  “Where do you think you need to have those snakes at this moment?”

Boo:  “On the kitchen table waiting for you to see them.”

Yes, he took them out of my room and onto the table.  It’s moments like this when I do not question why I color my gray hairs.

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Life or Something Like It

Lesson Learned in a Moment

Here is my Lesson Learned in a Moment that I will not soon forget.  Never assume.  Never guess.  Use your sense.  Think before you eat!

Fresh out of bed, run to grab a shower, come out ready to start my day (forgetting to put on the all important pair of glasses)….I look down and I think “why are there chocolate bits in my floor?” I reach down to pick it up and try to see it more clearly and I realize I’ve picked up bits of dried dog crap.

Ah, the start to my morning.

Lesson Learned in a Moment.

Don’t assume anything….ever.

Kids

Raising Boys and Raising Girls

Here are my random thoughts on Raising Boys and Raising Girls.

Raising Boys

Raising Boys and Raising Girls

They are cute.  Yet, they smell like beef and cheese or candy.  Honestly, they give great hugs.

Their toy collection consists of cars and guns.  They can run through the house and touch all the light fixtures.  Oh, and they can swing on the closet bar, like Tarzan, and put holes through the wall.  Yet fix it with duct tape.

In an 8×10 room, they can play full tackle football, complete with injuries.  They eat fast and love hard.  When they fall, they get right back up.  Truth be told, they can fall from a tree, bruising kidneys and backs.  Then, climb back up it the next day.

They run horses will yelling “YEEHAW” like a cowboy.  Also, they like to play cowboys and Indians with a “live horse.” This is done while shooting cap guns behind the said horse.  Honestly, this is not wise, friends…not wise.  It is justified where boogers can be lunch.  Also, any kind of food, on a stick, is appealing.

Bushes will never survive boys.

RAISING GIRLS

Raising Boys and Raising Girls

They cry and then they laugh.  There is a lot of hair flipping and then they cry.  Once that is done, they laugh again and flip their hair again.

The End.

Adoption

International Adoption Africa Bound

International Adoption Africa Bound.  The Lord remembered my passion and my love and He blessed us with the opportunity to adopt from Africa.  The paperwork was, again, a nightmare.  It would’ve been a semi-short process (from February beginning and bringing him home that December) to a long, painful process.
Starting our International Adoption Process
We started our process in Feb 2010, with minor paperwork snags (to be expected), we got our referral on our anniversary in June, we traveled in October and met him….there are no other experiences, that I have had, that could’ve prepared me for the awe, love and deep fulfillment as when I stepped off the plane onto the soil of a country I loved so very much.  It was like I was home.  Bizarre feeling beings I had never been there before.  It was instant.
The Feeling of Home in Ethiopia
When we were International Adoption Africa Bound, I heard the noise, the smells, the sights, the people.  It was overwhelming.  It was a smoggy piece of heaven.  Then, to drive up, see the orphanage and these giant iron gates open and to see the faces of all these children………..words can not describe.  We were instantly surrounded by children (there were 83, in all)….all who wanted a hug, a hand, to play ball, candy, bubbles, they all wanted to be loved.
My Dream Becomes a Reality
I scanned the crowd, and my eyes landed on this sweet little boy, sitting by himself with his soccer ball, not paying attention to anyone.  I touched my husband’s arm and said: “there he is.”  My heart leaped, I couldn’t move, I couldn’t find my words…my body moved without my knowledge.  It was almost like I was floating to him.  I squatted down, beside him and made eye contact.
It was then, I saw my husband looking back at me.  He looked so much like my husband it took my breath away.  My heart stopped, all the worries of the world went away, and I thought to myself “I have found you…in this far away place, you have been waiting for me, and I have been waiting for you.”
Bonding with my Son
It was a joyous time.  Playing with Jude, learning this language, his culture and the sweet women (and some men) who took care of him.  We met with the judge, heard the blessed words “he is yours,” and from that day forward, he was mine.  A mere glimpse in my eye when I was a child was a reality.
Mini Tour of Ethiopia
We were blessed to do a “mini” tour of his country.  They allowed us to visit museums, churches, the local market and ate glorious food.  Also, we swatted mosquitoes the size of my head and slept to the music being played next door.  Blessed.  Humbling.  Wishing my kids were all there to see it with me.
Heading Home Without My Son
Sadly, in the blink of an eye, we had to head back to the US to wait for our Embassy appointment.  In our blur of a visit, we were told it was to be 6 weeks before returning to get our son forever.  Sadly, that 6 weeks turned into over a year.
The First Wave Crashed
We got home, and the day after we returned home, still on a high, we received a letter from OUR government stating that we would not be able to bring him to the US.  We had 6 weeks to get more income in, or we would be denied, not by Africa, but by America.  It stated that we didn’t make enough money and that no matter what we said or did, he would not be in our arms.  I remember feeling my legs go out from under me and a wave of sadness and despair flooded me.  There were no words to speak and I couldn’t function.  That depression I went through years ago, emerged.
Fighting the Government
I called the government and asked what I could do. They said I could go back to work, up our income, reapply and then we would see.  I called our home study agency, both of our adoption agencies….they said that we would win, there would be a few phone calls made, letters typed, money borrowed and it would be okay.  6 weeks later, between my birthday and Thanksgiving, we were officially denied.  In ET, he was ours.  In America, he wasn’t.
Depression Settling In
My heart broke, in half.  I was told just to let it go, what are they gonna do, take me to court for not going to get him?  People told me that I should think of my other children and let it go.  Finally, I was told that we could fight, but the chance of winning against immigration was slim.  Every person we spoke too had an opinion.  I tried to explain to them that I had held him, rocked him, wiped his nose, fed him and loved him….when he is just a picture, that people see, it is different than touching him.  He was my son, and I would move Heaven and earth to get him in my arms.
Moving to Africa
We had decided to sell everything and the children, and I was simply going to move to ET for 2 yrs, while Big Daddy stayed here to work.  We had a place to live, we knew people there, and I could have all my children under one roof…without the glue that holds our family together…Big Daddy.  Then, we were all going to move.  We were going to do what it took to reunite our family.
Large Family Adoption Preparation
We tried one last ditch effort to change things.  The decision to hire the best adoption immigration attorney around was made.  Also, we got a new home study agency.  Next, we lit fires under our adoption agencies.  Then, we put all the kids in public school (after homeschooling for close to 12 years).  Finally, I went back to work, full time.  Our lives turned upside down.  I got a job at a department store, and I worked my butt off.  Those working moms, out there, hats off to you all!  We worked for a year…we sacrificed.  We almost gave up because the longer we waited, the more our knowledge grew that he would become “unadoptable” because of his age and gender.
Miracles
The Lord worked miracles.  He provided the funds, through family, friends, yard sales, wreath sales, etc. to pay for our adoption, not once but twice.  In three days, we raised $3000 with a YARD SALE!  Tell me that isn’t MY God showing up!!!!!!!!!!!!  It was enough to pay for our attorney, visas, fingerprinting…..so many things in 3 days (remember who rose in 3 days, just sayin’).
New Home Study Agency
I remember meeting our new social worker with the new home study agency.  We sat in a restaurant, eating.  I was being skeptical and not so nice.  We had been down this road before.  I wasn’t up for more disappointment.  Then she said these magical words “you did it.  You made enough money for your family, and you are going to bring your son home.”  The world stopped spinning.  I couldn’t eat, I just sat there with my head on Big Daddy’s shoulders weeping because I never thought I’d hear those words.  We still had a long way to go, but this was a HUGE step.
Fight Fight Fight
More fighting, more paperwork, more money, more more more.  Again, the Lord showed up big because Jude had been transferred to the “Transition House.”  There, he was loved by thirty nannies, and his next-door neighbors were our good friends.  My friend, Betty, came almost daily, to love on my son and have her children play with him.  She was me.  She was the mommy he needed in a time of uncertainty and pain for him and for us.  We are SO incredibly grateful to Woudneh Mulugeta and Betty Mamo and their children.
The Call
I got a call, one day, and it was our immigration worker.  I was told not to talk to them because the last worker was nasty and she denied our case.  This officer was different, she heard my plea for my son, and she worked with us and for us.  She kept saying, “I need this paper or I need that paper.”  I would fax it and then call to confirm she received it.  During one of those faxing/calling moments, I was sitting in the closet talking to her, and I heard these words “you are approved.”  I sat there.  Silence.  She repeated it.  I sat there.  Finally, I asked her to repeat herself at least 5 times.  Then I burst tears thanking her, blessing her, praising God and shaking like there was no tomorrow.  I couldn’t keep it together.  On my knees, on my face, praising our God.  She kept saying “please don’t cry, get your stuff together and go get your son….you deserve him, and he deserves you.”
The Tears Flowed
I stood at my bedroom door and screamed for my girls, and I told them, through tears and praises.  We all stood and cried.  I threw on my shoes.  We went to where Big Daddy works.  I flew in, and I couldn’t even get the words out.  I finally muttered, “I need to see my husband, it is an emergency.”  The lady didn’t ask, didn’t flinch, she just escorted me to a room because, I’m assuming, she thought I was nuts.  Moments later and he walks into the room.  It was, again, like slow motion…I ran into his arms crying saying “we did it, we are bringing home our baby, we did it.”  We both sat, with tears in our eyes.  A blessed moment.
Over a Year Later
We flew out a year to the date that he “should have” been home.  God’s timing is perfect ya know, and He has a sense of humor.  I remember stepping off that plane and seeing sweet Woudneh in the crowd and his smile…that radiant smile of his.  He escorted us to his car.  I sat, frightened and thought “will he remember me, will he be “institutionalized,” will he have RAD, will he hate us, what will I say, what will I do?”  We pulled up to the transition house, and the giant gate opened.  My first thought was “where are all the kids?”  There was NO ONE in the courtyard.  He told us to stay in the car because he wanted to capture all of this on camera and video.  I remember thinking “he is nuts…I’m not staying  in this car LOL.”
Seeing My Son
We parked under the tree, and I looked around, and I saw a group of nannies walking towards us, and in the center of these beautiful women, there he was….my son….decked out in his best whites and holding a bouquet of flowers.  I was speechless.  I no more squatted down to see if he would remember me or want to hug me and he started running towards me and hugged me as I’ve never been hugged before.  We laughed, I cried, Big Daddy cried….he just patted my face.  I kept saying to him “I told you I would be back to get you.  I told you I would never leave you here or forget you.”  He couldn’t understand my words, but he knew.
A New Chapter
Our story didn’t end there, it began.  Jude has been pure joy.  He is full of life and love.  Also, he is smart, athletic, loving and he is a joy.  Simply exudes joy.  He laughs, all the time, he is humble and forgiving, and he eats and eats.
Is our story finished?  Your guess is as good as mine.
All I know is…
The Lord remembered.

International Adoption Africa Bound

International Adoption Africa Bound

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