Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Since When Did I Stop Caring......

if my kids were not perfect according to society?

that my kids may not be the best in their class?

if I ever got my empty nest?

about what others thought?

when I received emails like this?
"The major issue is, does the child have a ventriculo peritoneal shunt? Hydrocephalus is typically the major issue. Most of these children do OK, but the majority do not go on to live independent, employed lives. You need to be prepared for chronic medical problems, requiring multidisciplinary care."

Just like for Dennis, I have already started contacting doctors about Alexsey's medical issues. Four years ago, an email like this would have freaked me out on so many levels. I can honestly say, I would have undoubtedly said no to adopting a child with special needs. But that wasn't God's plan, and He has since changed my heart----- big time.

I just don't care about stuff like this---- I have experienced first hand how amazing all these children are, and I have so much hope that I don't have room to be filled with fear. Let me take that back---- I do have fear. I fear that I will miss out on one of God's biggest blessings by not adopting Alexsey. I have faith that God has huge plans for Alexsey's life....... which do not include deteriorating in an institution.

Not too long ago, I met up with a woman at one of Dennis' post-operative check-ups. She had two precious children with her--- one was in a wheelchair and one had a permanent tracheotomy. We got to talking and I found out that she was fostering the boy in the wheel chair and she had adopted from foster care the other little boy. As I talked with her and got a sense of how big her heart was and how much hope she had for these children--- I had a total change of heart towards all children with special needs. And I can't tell you how freeing it was. Things like a tracheotomy or a G-tube, or anything else just doesn't freak me out anymore. In the grand scheme of things--- I have realized that God will never give me more than I can handle---- ever.

And that means that if God does entrust Alexsey in our care by allowing us to adopt him, He will equip us with all we need to parent him...... and I am excited at the thought.

27 comments:

Amy said...

Welcome to the SWEET LIFE! I know your life is already sweet but it is about to get even SWEETER!
God Bless!!
Amy

FayeJ said...

Amen!

Anonymous said...

I believe that when God clearly tells you, "this is your child" then He also gives you an unexplainable peace in the face of all of the unknown medical issues. I experienced that with Xander when we had no idea what the outcome would be with his feet(and still don't). People asked me all the time, "Aren't you worried?", "Have you thought about ____?", "What are you going to do if ___?" and my answer was always that I didn't know but that what I did know was that God was going to be there and He would walk with us through whatever happened. I still believe that today and I have experienced first hand the absolute JOY that comes as a result of that obedience to God's will for our family. That peace is hard to describe to a lot of people, but it's there. Sounds like that's where you are now too :)
Shelley
(who can't leave comments under her google account for some reason???)

Stephanie said...

Love your heart! I sometimes have to remind people (my mom!) that I no longer make decisions based on fear. It is a freer way to live.

Stephanie said...

P.S. - may I borrow your "theme?"

The Monroe 6 said...

Gosh, you must feel FREE as a bird!!!
God has granted you the freedom to love Alexsey like he needs to be loved.
I find that incredibley beautiful.

Kathy said...

You go girl!

gypsy@Hebrews11:13 said...

I don't know if you remember me or not, but I emailed you about Aleksey back before Christmas. Please, if you have any questions about Spina Bifida, don't hesitate to ask. We have a five year old with SB and all the things that we were told would be issues...well, they haven't been nearly the issues that we were told they would be:) Wishing you all the best and praying for you daily! Our family had been praying that Aleksey would find a loving CHRISTIAN family for several months- so glad you committed!!

Kristen said...

Beautifully said. Thank you.

Martha said...

I love you guys!

My own mom was born with a rare type of spinabifida. The hole in her spine is high, between her shoulder blades, and her spinal cord stayed intact. It gives her a special connection to children who are affected by the condition.

Here in town is a wonderful girl named Kim. She went to school at the public school, graduated, and has a job working in town. She walked with crutches or a walker and was one of the most beautiful children. She never let her disability slow her down. She is still beautiful.

Leah said...

Ugh! Stuff like that drives me crazy. It's the same kind of thing that doctors tell us new parents when we have a baby with DS. Immediately setting LIMITS to what we should expect our kids to do. There is NO LIMIT to what my child, nor Aleksey, can do. Nobody can predict where he'll be 10 or 15 years from now. I had doctors tell me my daughter would never walk, would never talk, and would be forever gtube fed. Those "experts" couldn't have been more wrong. I'd love to send all of them videos of her running agility trials with our dogs, or of her horseback riding lessons (not adaptive, by the way, just regular lessons.) or diving off he race platform in the swimming pool, and swimming races!!!! That's why God chose YOUR family for Aleksey, because you know how the meaning of "The sky is the limit"!!!!

Shari said...

Christine: You go girl! I know that God has chosen your family for Aleksey. Praise the Lord! A word of encouragement. A LOT of children born with spina bifida now escape the shunt. We have friends who have a child with Spina Bifida and he is 23 years old. He graduated with a degree in education from University of Oregon and is working on his masters. He walks with crutches and sometimes uses a wheelchair and teaches 6th grade. Who said they are unemployable? That's not true. That would be saying my 6-year-old with brain damage can never have a job. I don't believe that! Daniel is a living miracle with all he's been through and is a happy, employed adult with a fiance. Sheesh!

Shari said...

I forgot something. Let me add that Daniel is INDEPENDENT and lives on his OWN and is preparing to buy a HOUSE for him and his new wife.

Carey and Norman said...

I agree that God will guide you and give you the resources, strength, and encouragement to help Alexsey. And, God has big plans for Alexsey and what a blessing for you and your family to be a part of God's journey and blessings for him!

Michelle said...

i have a VP (ventriculoperitoneal) shunt... if Alexsey ends up with one, please get in touch with me - most bloggers you'll be in touch with would have KIDS with them, but i'm different in that I MYSELF have one.

in fact, i spent yesterday in the hospital with another complication.

so i can walk you through the surgery, recovery, potential complications, and what life's like after. i just got mine in december, most get them as little kids... so it's all still fresh. ;-)

i've been too sick to get that card to mail to you & julia - but i promise i'll do it as soon as i can!!!

- michelle

June Berger said...

AMEN sister ;o)

Kelli said...

my son Kyler has had lots of special needs and it has changed me and made me who I am. AND once when I wanted a door to door salesman (back when they did that more than now) that gtube was a big help to get the door closed. hehe, drip drip

Mike and Gail said...

I have a sister who has SB, She is an amazing young lady. She is so sweet and caring. She will finish my sentence and know excately what I was going to say. She does live in a care home. She walks well. I keep telling myself she must not have SB. I just love her. She has been a wondeful addition to our family. Your little guy will be so blessed by your love.

living4him5 said...

Amen Sister! We were told Linzhi would not live an independent life from us and that is the farthest from the truth! She amazes us everyday and may the Lord help the person who tries to stop her!!! Alexsey will be whatever the Lord wants him to be and what a blessing you, John and the kids will have to watch this precious boy blossom!! Can't wait to see it for myself.

God bless!
Amy

Julie said...

You just said EVERYTHING that I have been attempting to say to everyone that continues to tell us that adopting Daisy is a "mistake" and how we are only going to hurt ourselves and our other children.

I just remind people how it could happen to ANYONE at ANYTIME. There are so many people who are healthy and then in the blink of an eye, an auto accident or something wrose takes that away from them. Just becasue we are blessed with "normal" children, doesn't mean we will be able to keep them that way.

MamaPoRuski said...

Great post! I always answer that these are CHILDREN first and foremost, they just happen to have a medical condition. When we can se others as created in God's image the rest is easier to take. These children will have these disabilities whether or not we adopt them. There lives will be difficult even with a family that loves them, the alternative is unthinkable.
HUGS from Ukraine!
PS: Where you going to do any fundraising? I think I can bring back a basket or two of assorted chocolates to raffle...

Anonymous said...

Dear Christine, it's not only you who had a total change of heart towards children with special needs. Through following your blogs for the last year or more I myself have changed so much and I think many other people who follow them. Thank you for that so much, It really is freeing.
I don't know if you have ever talked about this anywhere on your other blog but could you please tell us in one of your posts how do you think when it comes to that question that worries me so much-what would happen with my special need child when I die? Who is going to take care of him/her if he/she is unable to take care of themselves and live independently?
-Nina-

Annie said...

Beautiful!

sylsumida said...

Your post was beautiful and made me cry. I would not have understood it a few years ago but having a special needs child changed everything. My son has taught me so much and enriched my life in ways I could have never imagined. I think your children...those with you and those yet to come are blessed to have parents who have so much love and devotion to give. You are truly an inspiration.

Mama Sarah said...

If god brings this child to you, he will bring you through it. I live it everyday. I thank you for being there for them too.

Kristen said...

This is just one of the many things I like about you, Christine. You are so awesome!

Anonymous said...

Some (adoptive or bio) parents do have trouble coming to terms with their child's special needs and become depressed and resentful. I think it makes sense to educate yourself on the possibilities, but you will do well with an open heart and willingness to follow where ever the path leads. Alexsey is showing a lot of good developmental signs- including that fact that he grabbed your heart and refused to let go. Smart boy:)