Sunday, August 18, 2013


Our lives are filled with joyous moments, aggravating moments, love, joy, pain, laughter, fatigue, and so on.  In other words, we are just like every other family.  One way that we are perhaps a bit different is in the number of poignant moments we experience.  For example, yesterday.  Lexi was in the room while I was loading the dishwasher.  She said, "Dad, have we had enough special needs?  Cuz I'm tired of blind."  What do you say to that?

I was thinking the other day.  We have gone through a lot off stress in our lives lately.  I've heard people say that moving is one of the more stressful things that can happen to a person.  I googled a list of the most stressful life events.  It had 43 items on it.  Marriage, death of a loved one, marital issues, adding a family member, getting laid off.  Lots of things that are most definitely challenging.  But as I perused that list, "leaving everything and everyone you've ever known to travel across the globe with people who look, smell and talk funny and trying to acclimate to a completely different culture with food that is awful and in a place where almost nobody understands you and fit into a family you had no say in choosing" isn't even mentioned.  So I hereby request that future lists of this type include, "being adopted into a foreign country" as one of the top stressors a person can experience.

I am so proud of Cali.  Despite the massive amount of change she has dealt with in her life, she remains strong, upbeat and resilient.  For the most part she is a ray of sunshine in our home.  But from time to time she gets down.  It may be a misunderstanding with a sibling.  It may be one too many times she looks down at an American meal she can't stand the taste of.  The language barrier used to really be difficult on her, but that is improving dramatically.  

A couple of months ago I heard her crying softly to herself.  I helped her into my room and sat her on my lap.  I cradled her in my arms and tried to see if I could help with anything.  I think there were a variety of issues she was dealing with, but I couldn't get her to open up about anything.  I kept asking, "What do you want, Cali?"  Finally she answered.  In her soft, broken English, she said, 

"I want to stand up."

I look forward to the day that I better understand why some people must deal with such outsized hardships.  Why do some of the purest among us suffer so much pain?  Or perhaps, does dealing with these special needs actually help to purify a person?  There are certainly few people more sweet or innocent than Cali, Lexi and Sophi.  I don't know the answers, but I do have faith in a loving Father who does know.  I have faith that when the time is right, I will understand.  And when the time is right, all will be healed and whole.  In the meantime, I will endeavor to be more patient and willing to deal with my own struggles, which pale in comparison to the struggles of so many in this world.

Thank you Cali, Lexi, Sophi, Xander, Elli, Graci, Jessica, Taylor and Parker for your tremendous examples to me.



  1. I have a "list" - an actual written list of things that I want to "discuss" with our Father in the fullness of time - I just added a couple items to it - but I Believe that someday we will be granted the understanding that we need...I can't believe that we just aren't seeing the big picture...not that this matters a whit to our kids that are living with these needs on a day to day basis...

    love you guys - aus and co.

  2. Beautiful thoughts. Thank you for letting us be lifted and touched by sharing them.

  3. WOW. Thanks for this post! It's beautiful.


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