For Life: When Exhaustion Meets Glory

May 19, 2017 Katie, May 2017 Feature - For Life, undiagnosed SN 2 Comments

Are you one of the Mamas who thought that the orphanage delays would relent? You thought a year later you would stand on mountain tops and shout of the greatness and miracles of our God? And a year came and went and then another. And suddenly you wake up feeling like you are living your own version of the movie, Groundhog Day.

Grab a cup of your favorite morning brew and have a seat with me.

Let’s talk about the pain. This hurts doesn’t it? In every way this hurts. We came crashing into this life and adoption with dreams and if we are honest, probably a few dreams of grandeur. The years came and ran away from you and left you sitting here with me not even knowing what to really say.

But I see the way your shoulders are bent forward under an invisible weight. I see the muscles in your face refusing to frown but just too tired to smile. And your eyes. Some would guess they are brimming with tears, but I see their vacancy. Because you can’t even pinpoint one thought to really deal with today. You would probably cry over lost dreams, but you are so far removed from them you can’t remember what they were.

Day in and day out you wake up and do the same small tasks that each day demands of you. You steal quiet moments when and wherever you can. The car, the bathroom, the parking lot have all become synonymous with tears as you finally let yourself sit and breakdown. And then you wipe off your tears and return to your family.

If your child attends a school then you have IEP meetings that leave you wilted and defeated. It’s almost as if, on most days, you can forget and just focus on your kiddo. And then you attend a meeting with a dozen professionals showing you that the deficits are enormous.

Do you ever leave an IEP feeling angry with your child? Because sometimes I do. I am not really angry at them but rather at the unfairness of life and the world. I want someone, somewhere to hold me up and remind me that what they accomplish means nothing compared to who they are. And can I have a moment of unveiled truth? I would love for educators to see the harm their words do to parents! I would love for them to stand up and presume competence and find utter joy in our children and their differences. But that’s another blog post.

Where do we go from here? We’ve prayed for healing. We’ve prayed for miracles. And God asked us to bear the weight of His answering “No.”

I’ll tell you what we can’t do. We can’t get stuck here in this space of grief.

Let grief have her day, years and choose to pack it away for now. She will cycle back in her own time. And we will thank her for the release that she brings us, but now is not the time for grief.

I’ll tell you what we do now. We get up and we change diapers on older children, brush their teeth, spoon feed them their food. We struggle to understand the words that come out as screams and growls. We rise to the challenge. There is not another option. Exhausted though we be, we rise to the challenge.

We do it because we know who they are. We know that in subtle ways their differences have become our biggest blessings. We know what their nonverbal cues mean. We know the touch of their hand on our head as we pull up their clothing yet again. We know the difference between the angry cry and the hurt one. We know who they are. Beneath our exhaustion lies a love that is growing into the fiercest force the world has ever known.

God requires things of us that we never dreamed would be our future. And I believe we need to arrive at a new place of healing. It’s time. It’s time to rise again and know that here in the middle of our daily repetition there is a different type of glory and new miracles.

My prayer has evolved from fixing this to living abundantly here in this my reality. My prayer is to see His glory here, to see His mark of perfection in these differences. And I see it. Do you? Do you see His finger tracing His glory through our daily tasks?

He is showing off, Friends. He is proving that humanity is His most glorious creation. He is throwing our preconceived ideas for a wild ride by creating differences and making them stunningly beautiful.



What if instead of dreading the day, we were able to wake up with wonder. What glory would we see today? Here in the middle of my chaos and in my little home I see the glory of God. What an amazing gift.

As a personal note, God knew, He knew, that I needed my Ellie. People have it all wrong when they say she is blessed to have us. No. No. She is everything we never knew we needed. And I cannot imagine a day in my life without her. He matched us and bonded us and our family never knew what it was missing until Ellie entered it.

Thank God, He knew.



2 responses to “For Life: When Exhaustion Meets Glory”

  1. Kimberly Schildbach says:

    Katie – you have done it again! Touched my heart and articulated everything I feel about Ani. We call her our “zen master” because Ani just IS. She is content, happy, loved, safe, and joyful! But when we have interactions with helping professionals the questions center around her achievements – leaving me feeling deflated and lost. She is teaching us to be thankful for family, love, warm beds, yummy food and LIFE. His gift to us is LIFE and His gift to us is Ani. She is a treasure.

  2. Lynn Marie Portanova says:

    She is everything we never knew we needed. Yes!!!! Yes!!! And yes again!!! And love is why! ❤️

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