Monday, March 22, 2010

Silas is Home: Sunday, Day 1

We are all back home, safe and snug under one roof.

We are in full-on survival mode.

I find myself recalling the bliss that is sleep with a certain far-away wistfulness.

I knew to expect the sleep deprivation. We're no spring chickens. What I was not precisely prepared for was the Everything Else.

I did my best to be prepared. I read the books and took them seriously, yet I hoped that they were worst-case-scenario books. I hoped that we would somehow rise above the fray, that we would be one of those families who talked about how much easier it was than they had imagined. It seemed to me that the real life people had smooth, seamless transitions while only those who wrote the books were war-scarred enough to actually write it all down.

Still, I remember pushing down increasing feelings of nervousness in the days leading up to our trip. While everyone around me buzzed with curiosity and anticipation, I did my best to ignore the kernel of dread in my tummy.

Yes, I knew that this was God's plan for our family, His plan for our newest son.

Of course I was day-dreamy over holding him for the first time.

I knew every good thing that was heading our way. And I knew that the good I saw coming wasn't even the half of it.

But I also knew in my heart that this would be the hardest one yet.

And still, as much as I tried to steel my nerves and clear my head of unrealistic assumptions, I was blind-sided by the magnitude of grief an 18 month old is capable of feeling. I never considered that he would cling to Cory and shove me away.

With two previous adoptions under my belt, I knew enough to know that there were plenty of difficult days ahead, but I was as shocked as anyone to find myself crying my shrively, exhausted eyes out in the middle of the night, wondering if we had thrown our peaceful family so off course that it might never regain its place.

In the early hours of the morning, or the miserably late hours of the night (whichever you prefer), that familiar intruder called fear creeps in, cloaks my mind in heavy grey, terrifies my heart. I know what I know, but I also know that someone has to be the exception. Someone has to be the one who writes the books. Why not us? What if God has mistaken our easy-going nature as one which can handle the unimaginable? What if it stays this way?

I listen to my new son cry his eyes out, I feel him shrug me away. I watch him try so desperately to put his little shoes on - I know where he's headed once he gets them on.

I whisper tear-soaked worries to Cory in the dark, then later, feeling like I might suffocate in the what-ifs, I make a middle-of-the-night call to my Mama.

She prays with me and listens to me cry and her voice remains calm and strong for me.

I close my eyes for the first time at 6:15 a.m. and I fall quickly into dark, peaceful rest. My second-to-last thought is that song from my childhood, "He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it." My last thought is the prayer I prayed so often in college - Lord please, let this next hour of sleep feel like eight.