Tuesday, August 4, 2009

A Red Thread Kind of Day

Today was the day that it happened. The red thread loosened some of its tangles.

No, the Lord God opened up the doors for my baby to know something He already knew a long time ago.

PandaGirl has known from the get-go that she is "adopted" from China. Whatever adopted means to a toddler, preschooler and six year old. We have glamorized that country and capitalized on all the cuteness of the unique foods, dress, architecture, marketed toys, the whole adoption "world". All of it. That was so our sweet baby girl would know how excited we are about her being from China. Building part of her self-esteem, if you will.

We never told her the truth about their government, the persecution of Christians, the horrid mistreatment of children and women and lower class men. Never mentioned the extreme poverty versus the facades put up to "look" like they have it all together. No--that is information not suited for a child. She needed to know the good things about her birthplace. About the people there who loved her so much.

Last week PG and I were giggling over belly-buttons.

Yes, they are funny, ya know. ; )

We recently kept a toddler who had an "out-ie". Here's some TMI, but PP, myself and PG all have "in-ies". She'd never seen an out-ie and asked why it was sticking out. I just laughed it off saying that all people are different. Last week, however, she caught me off guard with a balloon.

We were tossing the balloon and she noticed that the tied part was protruding like an "out-ie" and so we laughed some more. Then she asked why we have belly-buttons. The teacher in me just started explaining to her that that's where a baby gets it food....from the umbilical cord that is connected to the---------

World stops and all is slowly spinning about my head while I'm thinking of a response in the nano-seconds following.

"Ummm...the...ummm...the doctor cuts it off." said the wide-eyed mother.

PG then got all grossed out by that and was giggly about all the yuckiness of that.

Whew. Close call on that one.

As I was giving the scientific explanation for the umbilical cord, it was dawning on me right in the moment that I'd have to finish the statement with...."connected to the mother." As I scrambled to recover, I was glad that I didn't have to have THAT talk just then. PP wasn't home, I was worried that it was too much info. right about now with this whole adoption thing we're doing (another post later about that) and I just wasn't ready to tell my six year old that she was born to a woman in China. Period.

Fast forward to this morning. She and I were hanging out in PP's office at church and noticed a Chairman**Mao watch on his desk that we'd gotten off the street for a buck while in China over five years ago. There's a pic of him on the face and his arm clicks kind of like Hit*lers followers. I hadn't seen it in FOREVER and there it was clicking away on PP's desk. PG noticed it and for the first time ever PP and I started talking about how that man was not a good man and how he did things in that country that hurt people.

A few minutes later---and I have no recollection as to what even brought this up---PG said to me, "Well, you were born in someone's tummy."

ME: "What? What do you mean?"
PG: "You were born in Grandma's tummy and I wasn't."
ME: starting to sweat..."Where do you think you were born?"
PG: "In my nanny's tummy." That would be "the nannies" that took care of her in the orphanage that we have told her about numerous times.
ME: "Oh my. Let's have a conversation that we haven't had with you before now."

...and so started the discussion that I knew full well would have to come "one day". I truly felt the peace that passes understanding and the anointing of the Lord who gave me the words to say as our sweet six year old baby girl sat on her daddy's lap while she made the connection for the first time that there was/is another woman (and man) in China who had her first. She was in that woman's tummy.

I instantaneously remembered that PP had a copy of I Love You Like Crazy Cakes on one of his shelves. I grabbed it and reminded PG that I hadn't read that book to her in a couple of years, but that it would explain almost exactly our journey to get her.

Through the next fifteen minutes we would tell PG how that the man on the watch was part of a group of people that were not nice and made rules saying that a family couldn't keep a baby if they already had one and that the babies needed families who would love them. Of course, there were lots more in-depth words spoken. Spoken on her level of understanding and not too much information. Enough to make her tear up when she made the connections. We were all three choked up with red eyes brimmed.

We didn't make up any false answers that might have sounded good. We told her the truth. We told her we don't know what happened, but God does and He knew that we needed a baby girl and she needed a mommy & daddy.

We were able to remind her that all her Chinese friends have similar stories and I saw in her eyes that THAT was a revelation to her as well. I could see her brain working on this info. We were also able to bring in the reality that the little brother that she will have needs a mommy, daddy and a big sister who will love him and keep him safe, because the mom or dad he had hurt him badly. (Again, another post will explain all about that part of our life.)

I can't explain how thankful I was for the balloon and the belly-button incident last week prepping us. The watch on the desk. All three of us were together. The book was on the shelf. The reality of how our family has come together and is still coming together. I had the words to say.

Thank you, Lord, for our daughter. What a privilege to be "barren" physically in my own womb for I'd never know PandaGirl if not for that brokenness. If not for her own brokenness, she'd not have us. I was reminded today that what the Enemy means for bad, YOU, God can turn to good. How blessed we are. Thank you, in Jesus Name, Amen.

We prayed, went our ways, had lunch a bit later. Life went on. You find out major information in your little life and yet the world still moves on. Six is a young age to find out that the world doesn't stop for your struggles.

I could tell that PG was carrying the information learned earlier. Though we have prayed with and for her to be filled with peace--I could see the heaviness weighing on her little soul.

I know, because I KNOW her. I'm her mother.


  1. Whew. What a post. This is why I love my adoptive Mommies...especially those Mommies who are having monumental life-changing conversations about adoption with their daughters. It's so nice to be able to learn from your experiences. With Josie just turning three, we're a few years away and it's nice to have the experts around. Love ya!

  2. Wow. That is a wonderful story of sharing with her! I always knew I was adopted but don't remember any true conversations about it...Thank you for sharing that!

  3. I, too am "choked up with red eyes brimmed". Isn't amazing how God works...to put into place "things" to lead up to this conversation with PG. Ya'll are so blessed with this little girl!! I am blessed to know you! Thanks for sharing this. I continue to pray for ya'll in your future adoption. I can't wait to see what you have to post about that!! :)

  4. ::sob:: You are such a blessing! It is amazing to see how God orchestrates every detail of circumstances we have given to Him. None of that is an coincidence--the belly button, the balloon, the book, the watch--God was preparing you and her in His time, and I know that it was not an accident that PG was ready to hear that story that day. Much love to your sweet family ;)

  5. I am sitting at my desk in tears! Anyone can be a Parent, but it takes an Special person to be a Mommy or Daddy.
    I was adopted at 30 by my Step-Dad. I remember when I was about 12 yrs old I was crying b/c I realized my Biological Father did not care for me. My StepDad said "You are not biologically mine, but YOU ARE STILL MY Child & I LOVE you very much!" WOW, it was a HUGE impact on my life. God knew I needed an incredible man to be my Daddy & God provided! God is Good ALL THE TIME.
    Thanks for sharing your story!

  6. I love your heart, your open-ness to the gentle teaching of God, your beauty as a Mother. Nothing happens by chance, He knows all, and in His time, everything comes to pass in His great plan. He brought your family together. A very beautiful family that I am blessed to know and watch grow. Thank you for sharing your heart and your story. I will keep your family in my prayers, as always, and ask that your sweet little girl will carry peace in her heart knowing that she is exactly where she belongs and that how she got there is just a testament to God's glory and blessings.

  7. A little White Swan, in saddness and poverty, flew across a giant ocean...
    ... and across depths of a horrific raging sea,

    Today...because of you, she wears a tiny 'Red Thread' reflecting Jesus Christ...
    .......just as God meant it to be.

    So...Hold tight to the moment,
    For even greater things are in store.
    These moments aren't just coincidences....
    they are "God incidences" to help us SEE HIM... even more!!!

    (so happy that He sent you PEACE and words beyond understanding...this was a big step and a 'job well done'.)

  8. oh sister thank you so much for sending me here ... the tears are streaming as I know I will have this conversation twice in the near future ... What a privilege to be a child of the King and what an honor to be chosen to be adoptive parents .... You handled it like a pro and I know the years to come will hold more questions, but when God is at the center of it you have to have peace ...

    thanks for sharing ... love ya

  9. I think we will be facing this discussion sooner than 6. Eli knows Sophia's story and talks about her Mom in China, so I imagine that we'll have to talk with her when she has a stronger grasp of English.

  10. What a sweet story. I was adopted by my grandparents because of the parents I had. I always knew that my grandma was my "real" mom because she loved me as a mom did and KNEW me. God is so good! love you and can't wait to hear about your new adventure!

  11. Oh my goodness! We have been having the belly button conversation too. But, you know when Emily asks me the "makes your head spin and your pits sweat" questions? When we're in the car! Not a safe thing to do, child! Seriously though. I am so thankful that God provides us with just the right words and wisdom to share the facts with our children. Both girls have known for about a year about the people in China who made her, but the belly button connection is a new one that they're processing. Emily did ask how the baby gets out of the mommy's belly and I had to tell her that we would talk about those details when she's a little old. She wants an exact age, of course!

  12. Oh my! I just visited your blog(s) after your comment on mine. I'd love to hear more about your plans through CK. Whew... you've got a fun ride ahead, girl!! Please do e-mail me. I'd love to chat! Laura