Joy and pain being ever present at any given time. Of course, when I think about things for any length of time, I tend to see them in view of adoption.
There is no moment in life that I can think of where joy and grief are more present (in an all-out battle, if you will) than during an adoption.
Adoption is born out of loss.
Joy out of pain.
Continued joy out of continued pain.
The gift that keeps on giving.
There is so much pain in placing a child for adoption. There is so much joy in adopting a child. Those are the big stigmas.
But I’m willing to bet that if you talk to an adoptive mom about her adoption journey, she is going to talk to you about the grief involved. Maybe her grief is about her own infertility (if that is relevant). Maybe, if she is really lovely, it’s about her sadness over her child’s birthmother’s loss. Maybe it’s about the paperwork, the process, the waiting, the agency, the lawyer or even God.
You may be surprised by that. You may wonder, “But she has the baby! She should be happy!” This is where the joy/grief thing comes in again. She is joyful. She loves her child, but there are moments in this journey that just hurt. Period.
Looking at the birthmother you may think she lives in grief for the rest of her life, but I have to tell you, with Jesus, I have moved from grief to celebration.
I chose life! That’s a win.
My son is alive and well and thriving. Oh, and friends, in every picture I have of him, he is so handsome! I just adore him. Simply, positively adore that boy. Even with the distance and lack of communication, a piece of my heart is his, and I am fond of him.
You may think, “How can you be happy? You aren’t raising him! How can you get over something like that? How do you live with yourself?” Joy/grief. I rejoice in my child, and I feel the loss. You find me on March 10th of any year, and as hard as I try, I’m a mess. My poor family…
In any given moment during the journey of adoption, joy and pain are present. And I think that both are important. Most of us run wildly away from pain, but I want to encourage you, the way I encouraged a young client during labor a couple of weeks ago…
You need to rework your thinking. Change your mind. The pain is good. It tells us life is here with us, inside us, working its way out of us. Embrace it, work your way through it and in the end, you’ll have unfathomable joy. In the end, you will behold new life.
Suffering ultimately leads to hope, and hope does not disappoint us. Friends, this promise is for you. Whatever you are struggling through today, press on, Beloved. In the end, you will behold new life.