My mother has been bothering me for years to write a blog. Every year I have the same answer… “What would I have to say that people would want to read?” I tell her when I have an answer for that question, I will write a blog. I seriously don’t know how people have time to write them. I don’t even have time to take a shower. Literally. It’s a problem. I don’t know how all these women out there write blogs. Not only are they writing blogs, they are writing blogs about all the crafts and food they make. How are they finding time for that? And most of them have more than one child. I only have one, and I need a shower, badly.
Now, I have something to write about. It’s been a long time coming and I stay up at nights thinking about it. I have been waiting for the perfect time, and I realized, there is no perfect time. I have to stop wasting time and do it …now. Four years ago, I went to Africa. Four years ago I made promises to people there that I would not forget them, that I would tell their stories. Four years ago. What have I done in four years?
My mom thought of the title “Before and Africa” and I actually love it. There are a lot of things my mom and I agree on, but usually when she has an idea “for” me, I politely turn her down. But this title struck a chord in me. I thought about all the blogs out there about style and fashion and craftiness and I thought about how my blog would probably be the antithesis of that. Maybe I do always buy the same long sleeved shirts at the GAP every three years when the old ones get holes in them. Maybe I do still have the same tennis shoes I bought for 30 bucks 6 years ago. Maybe I do only get my hair cut once a year. Maybe I am in desperate need of a style makeover, but I think this blog is more of a before and after of my soul. My soul before and now my soul (after) Africa…
So thanks mom, for the title and for recognizing there has been a change in me and that even though I have a hard time finding the words, it’s time to start trying.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Number 2

For one year and six months I have been a mother.   
This has come with a series of failures and triumphs. 

The beauty of seeing my son learn how to roll over…triumph.  
Watching him roll out of his stroller after forgetting to strap him in…failure.  
Teaching him to use a spoon and watching amazed as he feeds himself….triumph.  
Getting a spoon full of sweet potatoes whipped at my face…failure.  
Seeing him look at books and master words and sounds….triumph.   
Watching him bang his head against a wall when I take something away from him….failure.   
Celebrating with him when he’s done something right….triumph.  
Losing my patience when he’s done something wrong…failure. 

One thing about motherhood that I didn’t expect; the ironic twist of becoming a child all over again.  You think becoming a mother turns you into more of an adult…quite the opposite.  Singing silly songs,  discovering the sheer joy of sliding down a slide, laughing ALL the time,  I get to re-enter and re-live some of my childhood through him.  I see things the way he does and it’s a beautiful thing. 

He’s so busy…we run around all day but then we have those poignant moments when I feel like time stops … I know it will be over soon and he will be onto the next thing.  

Like when he says “I…!” because he can’t say love yet…

...or when he is laughing so hard he can’t breathe.  

...or when he wraps his arms around my back because he wants me to take him for a ride around the room 

...or when he kisses me goodnight and makes the sound effect to go with it                     

...or when he is so sleepy that he all he wants to do is snuggle me.  

*Sigh*  There cannot be anything in life like the feeling I get in those moments.  Nothing can compare to that.   Being a mother to Max has really shown me the Great Love the Father has for us.  I want to be a representation of that love to my children.  There are so many motherless children, and I wish every single one of them could feel my love…  I have so much of it to give.  But more than this, I want them to feel the love of the God that created them.   God has been awakening this passion for the motherless even more now that Max has come along. 
We started our adoption journey before we even knew about Max, but it was put on hold because of Max, and now we are ready to continue that journey.  I feel like it can only be more special now that we will be welcoming a little one into our family of three.  Not only will this baby have two parents that love him/her beyond belief, but they will also have a big brother with a sweet heart that will love them too.  So it’s official…it’s on the blog. Tony and I are adopting and we can’t wait to share with you how it all unfolds.  The biggest lesson we have learned about life with Max is; you can't plan for or predict just pack a small (or ridiculously large) bag and jump on board the crazy train.  Baby number we come!  

“Religion that God our father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”  James 1:27