Today's post is the second in a two-part series in which Angela Lewis shares about how she handles her son's thoughts and questions about adoption. Not only are these thoughts helpful for other parents, but they encourage us all to think about what it means to be adopted by God. Every night the kids and I spend some time writing in our journals together, all sprawled in the middle of their bedroom floor— writing silently. Each person writes their prayers and if anyone wants to share their prayer out loud, we do that. This is one of my favorite parts of the day; I learn so much each evening. I see God working in their hearts, I am reminded of answered prayers, I am encouraged by their faith and their expectancy of the Lord's answers. I hear their pleas, their honest confessions, I share mine, we get pretty vulnerable and amazing conversations come as a result.
Every night my son's prayer sounds something like this:
"Lord, thank you for you a house and a bed and for clothes and most importantly for a family to love me."
Or, "Lord I am grateful to you for brothers and sisters and a mom and a dad who love me forever."
Or, "God, thank you for older sisters and for two brothers. Nathaniel is funny. I thank you for giving me a family."
I know my son loves our family. I also know that he has struggled to fully understand that we love him forever and without strings attached. He used to think if he did something bad enough, we would send him back. He used to think that we love the others more. Slowly, he is owning the fact that we are his and he is ours and we are forever.
But, he still struggles.
About a week ago, my 6 year old told me he had a bad dream. (A week prior, we had conversations about him questioning if we had stolen him and that is how he ended up with us. I explained to him that the state came and took him from his birth mom because she wasn't able to take care of him.)
So, this little child stood before me and whispered his bad dream: "The state came and got me again and took me away from you guys."
My heart broke. I pulled him into my lap, looked him in his eyes and told him that he wasn't going anywhere, ever, that he would always be in our family. I prayed and asked the Lord for wisdom. That day, I picked him up from school at lunch and just he and I went and had some cheese pizza and salad. We talked. I explained his adoption story. I let him know that adoption is final and forever. I shared with him what a blessing he is and how much I have grown and learned and how much I have gained through him becoming my son.
He didn't say much, just smiled and then gave me a big hug, and said he wanted to go home and cuddle.
The following Friday, my son was invited on a play date. I asked if he wanted to go and the answer was yes. That morning he asked if he would see me that night. Yes, I answered, not comprehending the meaning behind the question. When the friend's mom came to walk Brayden home for the play date from school, my son was paralyzed with fear and didn't want to go.
I praise God for his teacher, whom I had made aware of what he was working through. She knelt down and told him, "This is a play date, your mom and dad will always be your mom and dad, you will be home before supper to eat with your family—this is just a time to go and play with a friend for a bit." He decided to go, but the first words out of his mouth when I called to check on him were, "Will I see you tonight?"
I am still navigating these adoption waters and realizing there are hidden currents and sinkholes that no one could prepare me for. I am seeing that in revealing truths to my son, I am uncovering some amazing truths of the Lord's adoption of me into His family. Forever, always, final, fully... even if I question it, it is still true.