I am really struggling.

This is going to be a very open and honest post. One that I have wanted to write for a while but have hesitated for fear of backlash and judgment.

I’ve never hesitated to share what is on my mind in the past, so why start now?

I am really struggling.

I have been fearful to say that because, after all, this blog began when I was a barren woman desperately desiring motherhood, not knowing if I would ever get the privilege of having a baby in my arms to call my own.

And now I have three children. And I am miserable.

This has nothing to do with me being ungrateful for the blessings God has given me and instead has EVERYTHING to do with me being mad that MY PLANS were interrupted.

I can’t tell you how many times people have said something along the lines of “You are a saint for adopting these drug babies.”

It makes me want to scream.

I DID NOT SIGN UP FOR THIS!

Dave and I did everything in our power to make sure Sarge was going to be placed in a loving, Christian home when we said no to adopting him back in March. We had a plan in place and I was absolutely thrilled with that plan.

Only problem was IT WASN’T GOD’S PLAN.

That’s a pretty big problem. Because God’s plans prevail. Always. It says it right there in Proverbs 19:21, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”

That verse summarizes to a T Sarge’s adoption.

My journey through infertility has taught me many things but quite possibly the most important thing it has taught me is that God has called me to live a life surrendered to Him.

This means, when I have made a plan – a plan that seems absolutely perfect – and then God steps in and calls me to do something completely different from what my plan is, I SAY YES whether I want to or not.

Why?

Because I know God’s plans are good and perfect and He can see the big picture whereas I cannot. His ways are higher than my own ways and He promises that His plans for our lives are good and perfect, plans that will prosper us and not harm us, plans that bring us hope and a future.

How can I say no to that?

Saying YES to God is NEVER easy.

Saying YES to God does not mean life will be absolutely perfect and enjoyable. The opposite is in fact true. Saying YES to God stretches you in ways you didn’t know were possible and it forces you to lay down your own plans, dreams, desires and surrender to God’s Plan.

That is not easy.

Prior to August, life was good. You could read that as “life was easy”. We had been through the fire in the early parts of the year but all of that had settled and our family was probably in the best place it’s ever been in our 7 years of marriage! Our daughters were five and three years old. We were moving out of the baby/toddler phase and looking forward to our first official year of homeschooling. I had spent nearly the entire summer pouring over curriculums to find the best fits for Little Bug’s Kindergarten year. I had reorganized our homeschool room, gone to the Homeschool Convention to purchase our curriculum choices and then I had come home and had fun organizing it all and getting it prepared for our First Day of School. I was immensely looking forward to the beginning of the school year. I was looking forward to having the freedom of getting out with the girls more this year than we had ever done before because there were no babies in our mix – no one needing a morning nap and older children who could be more flexible all the way around with their sleep schedules. I saw many days ahead of just simply enjoying life with my little girls.

I didn’t necessarily feel our family was complete, but adding a newborn to our family now was the farthest thing from my mind.

Then I got the phone call that changed everything on August 5th.

The moment that phone conversation ended…I knew it. God was moving to place this baby with us. I was scared out of my mind as I approached Dave to see if he was sensing the same thing. And I was still groping for any way possible to see if my plan could still possibly play out. Surely God wasn’t trying to place a baby in our family now!

We all know what happened from there. Eighteen days later Dave and I were driving through the middle of the night to a hospital not knowing what to expect when we arrived.

It was the triage receptionist that told us in the most anti-climatic way that the baby had been born. I was expecting to sit with the birth mom during labor, but that was not to be.

When we learned the baby was born and the friend of the birth mom was on the way to greet us, I turned to Dave in astonishment and said, “This is really happening. We have a son.”

From the moment we received that phone call on August 5th, life has been nothing but a constant whirlwind. And it has yet to stop three months later.

Before I go on, let me clear the air and say that Sarge is 100% my son. I could not imagine life without him now! I love him with my entire heart like I love his big sisters. He is the sweetest little baby boy I have ever laid eyes on.

All that doesn’t mean I can’t struggle through this! Because right now, life is a struggle. Every single day. Every single moment of every single day…..it’s a struggle as we get through the worst of the effects of the drugs on his tiny little body.

Life as I knew it was stripped away. I went from thinking life was going to be one way to life being totally and completely different. Instead of spending my days with my girls every day, I am shipping one off to preschool so we can have some measure of sanity around the house at least three days a week. And then I am trying to keep the other child on some sort of a homeschooling routine while keeping Sarge as comfortable as possible.

And don’t think for one moment I am managing this all on my own! When was the last time I took care of all three of my children by myself all day long?

NEVER. I have never been on my own taking care of all my children. I HAVE to have help. Every day. My mom told me upfront “You are my ministry right now. Let me know how I can help.” She is at my house every day around 8am to help me manage the needs of my three children because, right now, with Sarge’s special needs and health issues, it is impossible for me to manage everything and everyone in my home right now.

And, this, blog world, is what is about to drive me INSANE!

It is not that I see my mom every day. We have a wonderful relationship and if not for my mom, I probably would have run away by now or collapsed from pure exhaustion or….who knows where I would be?

Even still….it drives me insane that I can’t do it all – yet. I love my job as stay-at-home-homeschooling-mom. I absolutely love it. Sure there were difficult days with just the two girls but ultimately it it MY calling in life and I wouldn’t do anything else at this stage of my life. I just want to get to a place where I can manage my home again all by myself!

I take great pride in being the manager of my home. And that has all been stripped away from me and I guess you could say I am grasping for some sense of normalcy to come back to me…but we just aren’t there yet and probably won’t be for some time still.

It’s not that I am killing myself trying to keep a pristine clean home. I gave that up 3.2 hours after being home with three kids. The girls still have to clean up after themselves for the most part throughout the day as they play, but after everyone is in bed and Dave is feeding Sarge around 7:30/8pm, it is my new routine to go through the house and pick up/clean up whatever needs attention so we at least start fresh in the morning.

It’s that I can’t do it all! That I need Sweet Pea to go to preschool three days a week (this has been a very good experience for her – I am very glad she gets to go now), that Little Bug is about to lose her mind because we can’t get out of the house like we used to, that I am contemplating other schooling options for her just for this school year.

Everything has been thrown off in my plans and it is going to take a while for our family to once again feel “normal” again.

I am trying to keep the Big Picture here myself. I know God can see the Big Picture and He knows what He’s doing even though there have been many inward struggles within myself since we got home as I have asked God over and over again why my perfect plan wasn’t His plan. I feel like I am on the flip side. Why give us a 3rd child when there are people out there still waiting to adopt their 1st? My plan would have given a couple their first child. I don’t need an answer. I know that is just my finite mind thinking. God’s ways are higher than our own ways and He has a plan for every single one of His children.

I guess in writing all this and choosing to publish it, I am hoping you see my struggles for what they are. So many people who know our infertility story have said what great faith I have – and I do have great faith in Jesus Christ – but I want everyone to see the ugly side of having great faith in Jesus Christ.

It’s not easy. I struggle accepting God’s plan. I don’t just fall on my face before the Lord in complete surrender and say “Yes, Lord, do as you wish!” without struggling to accept God’s plan for my life sometimes. I have been angry with God through this. I’m probably still a little angry – but He is a patient God and like He always does, He is waiting on me to come around and see thing the way HE sees them.

This has been one of the most difficult years of my life. I am planning to start blogging about this year and the events that happened in January which ultimately tie into Sarge’s adoption. There is no doubt that God has done two miracles in our family this year. That doesn’t mean it’s happened without struggle on our part.

I am not sure I have adequately communicated what I wanted to say in this post, but I am publishing it anyway. I simply wanted to say surrendering to the call of God is NOT easy, but the rewards are great. When I push the constant craziness in my mind away and allow myself to see the circumstances of this year the way God seems them, my perspective totally changes.

God has done what He has done for HIS GLORY. And He will receive it. Much of what I’ve been feeling lately I know is spiritual warfare because on Saturday night Dave and I are publically speaking about this year for anyone who wants to hear. Satan doesn’t like this. Not one bit. Because what we are going to say brings glory to God.

Our story is one of repentance, forgiveness and redemption. There is no way to hear our story and not see God’s hand all over it. I think maybe part of my frustration might even be because, for now, I am being quiet about all that happened. Something very unexpected that came from this blog was a platform for me, quiet-little-Elaine to SPEAK boldly about what God has done in my life. Because what happened was so traumatic, I couldn’t speak at first. If the holidays were not approaching I would probably begin to tell the story now because I need to write about this, but I don’t want to make myself write during the holidays about something that was so traumatic. So that’s why I’ve chosen to begin writing in January. I miss writing frequently on this blog and sharing what God has done in my life and I have done very little of that in the year 2014.

I know God’s not going to leave me hanging in my current state of mind. We will push through this. Sarge’s little body will heal. I like to think of the future….when life settles down and Sarge becomes more of a normal infant and I can go on a walk in the neighborhood with my two little girls and baby boy.

I look forward to getting there. In time, I will.

In His perfect time, I will.

Because His faithfulness abounds and He will not leave me here forever.

8 thoughts on “I am really struggling.

  1. Thank you for sharing. I have no magic words to make you feel better, but I do feel with every struggle come a victory and with God’s plan there will be plenty of victories for you. When will those happen, ha, we all know in God’s times. Until then, stay positive, and as my Mother always told me, this too shall pass (again, we don’t know when), but in God’s plan, it will.

  2. Thank you for sharing. You are not alone. I am home with my two babies, born 18 months apart…God’s plan not mine and feeling a similar sense of the struggle of surrender. My dream always was to be a mum and now I have these precious little ones and I am not happy. I am struggling with all I cannot do and all I cannot be to these kids. And thats when in the quiet of my cry God reminds me gently that I cannot do it all. He is the only one who can be all – for me and for my kids.
    I am digging in to Him, trusting that soon I will see how to be a mother to two on my own. As they grow, each season sees more peace but it is still hard. You are the voice of so many mothers. Whether caring for a child with a special need only adds to your plate. May you know His peaec, hope and especially joy as we move into this holiday season. I have no doubt that your kids know they are loved and that means you are doing an amazing job.

  3. Thank you for your openness. I come time and time again to your blog because I find it refreshes my soul. Hearing that you trust God in the midst of these struggles and that you don’t have everything under control makes you…human. It reassures me that I can trust Him again even though I can’t figure out why he has given me so much. Thank you for your honesty, it means a lot. I will be praying that you will begin to feel some sanity return to your life.

  4. Thank you for your honesty. I don’t have the time right this minute but I’ll message you soon. I don’t have magic words (although I know that wasn’t what you were looking for) but I can sympathize. Love you girl.

  5. Praying for you. I struggled with severe postpartum depression after the births of my babies, so I can certainly relate to the mixed emotions of joy against struggle. But God has His hand on you & your family…. You will be alright. Just take it one day at a time. One day you will notice the sun feeling a little brighter and warmer, the flowers blooming around you, and you will realize you’ve come to the other side of it. Hang in there 🙂
    PS ~ as a homeschooling momma, I can completely relate to the chaos that is likely ensuing at your house right now. Just remember that home education is a marathon, not a sprint, and little bug is still very young!! Give yourself some grace…..

  6. Thanks for sharing! It is always better to get it out and get it off your chest. And your doing the right thing to keep going to God and keep praying. Prayers for you dear as you have A LOT on your plate!

  7. Thank you for being so open and honest and vulnerable. Of course I am not in your shoes and I cannot imagine how hard it must be to have a baby that is in so much pain and at the same time have two girls who also need all your attention.
    The part I can understand is how hard it is not to be able to take care of everyone and everything on your own.

    I had a burnout after the placement of our third child with us. The oldest was 25 months, the middle one 16 months and the newly placed boy was 7 months old. Soon after the placement I collapsed and needed help. Me, the always strong woman who could do anything and everything, needed help…
    I found it horribly difficult to accept that people had to cook a meal for us, drive half an hour to our place and then drive back, just to feed our family. I found it terribly hard to accept that my mom had to come all the way from Europe (we are expats living in South Africa) to help us.
    For the first time in my life I was helpless and really needed help. Oh, how difficult it was to receive help in stead of giving help. But now I thank God that He taught me a little bit about it.
    I don’t know you in real llife, but I’ll be praying for you and your family.

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