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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Patient Wait

I was thinking back today of a childhood memory - going fishing up at the dams with my dad and older brothers. I don't remember if either of my sisters were there for this outing, but it ended up being a memory I wouldn't forget. On this particular fishing trip, at the young age of seven, I had my own fishing pole. I don't know how it's possible, but I knew how to cast, how to bait the hook, and I was even good at letting the line stay out for long periods of time without impatiently pulling it back in.

At one point I had decided to reel the hook back in, to see if the bait was still hanging on. Sure enough the bait wasn't there, so I reeled the fishing line in until I could carefully grab the hook and put more bait on. Somehow the "carefully" part didn't happen. I grabbed the three-prong, barbed hook and one of the hooks went into my right middle finger with ease. Unfortunately because of the barb it wouldn't come out with the same ease. I tried to hide at first, embarrassed at the situation I was in. I finally ended up going to my older brother, Mark, who tried to work the hook out. When that didn't work he took me to my dad, who tried himself, though unsuccessfully.

So, off to the ER we went. I don't remember much else. Except the funny blown-up-glove balloon that the doctor gave me afterwards, and the "fun" bandaid they put on my finger. Oh, and they gave me the fish hook... a souvenir, I guess. I have a photo somewhere of me standing on my front porch, proudly holding my balloon in one hand and the fish hook in the other hand. Somehow that awful experience ended with a big smile on my face. Perhaps it was because of the day's happy ending that I kept going back to the dams with my dad and brothers, without letting the hook deter me from having other positive experiences fishing.

Lately I've been consumed with thoughts of adoption... struggling to figure out if we're doing all that we can, wondering when and how it's all going to work out. Earlier today, I was thinking about this fishing experience and how it relates to our adoption journey. We know there are certain things that are so important for us to have throughout the adoption process - having the right tools, being surrounded by supportive family and friends, having the patience to keep our line in the water, and not giving up completely at the slightest sign of pain.

I've been wishing I had the same child-like courage I had 22 years ago to grab that fishing pole and get out there again and again without fear of pain or failure.

Maybe it's inevitable that there will be pain along the way. Maybe pain is just naturally part of the process - maybe it's supposed to teach us that we can learn to trust in the supportive arms will be there to lift us back up and bind our wounds. As much as we'd like to keep our intimate, painful moments to ourselves, maybe we're supposed to learn how to allow others to help us carry our burdens.

The hardest part has probably been exposing ourselves completely... our infertility is no longer a secret. We have been stripped of all our secrets, and we stand before complete strangers to be judged and analyzed. It has been very humbling. It's no wonder people ask us why we put ourselves through it.

We do it all for the miracle of life that will come to us. Then, it will be worth it.

The majority of our marriage has been spent pleading for that miracle. The first part of that miracle came about a year ago when we first felt guided to adoption. We have had many moments since then when we have felt a calm, quiet assurance that we're headed in the right direction. We're trying to be patient as we wait for things to happen according to the Lord's will and timetable. We know He knows the empty ache in our heart that yearns to be filled with the joy of a child... and we excitedly anticipate that day.

We can't wait to embrace the birth family who will bless our life with that most precious gift... there are no words to express what they will mean to us.


Amy said...

I understand all too well, after seven years of yearning. But don't feel disheartened. God hasn't forgotten you, and although it gets so frustrating when people keep saying "the right child will come to you when it's supposed to" - it's true and there's nothing you or I can do about it but be prayerful and do our best. I guess it's our lot to learn the lesson of patience, no matter how hard a lesson it may be.

It WILL happen. And when it does you'll be all the better parents from going through the life experience of this time spent waiting and getting closer to Heavenly Father and each other. Not to mention, the prize at the end will definitely be worth the wait. Hang in there, you're always in my prayers.

*Carly* said...

I hope you don't mind me commenting. That was so perfectly put. I am enjoying all these new found blogs and the perspective of what it's like to be the placement family and the journey that you go through. it's helping me more and more to understand where my family came from and what they may have felt. I LOVED how you said that you have been stripped and now to be judged by the public. it is very humbling when you put it that way. that gave me a whole new perspective. I don't completely understand adoption even though i've been through it. it doesn't make sense that there are families out there that are MORE qualified to have children than some people that can just pop them out. I think everyone should have to go through the process that placement families go through before they have children. Again I hope you don't mind my commenting. I pray that you will be blessed shortly!!

*Carly* said...

p.s - it's amazing to think that just as you are being prepared right now there is a birth mom that has been or is being prepared to be the vessel in which your precious baby will come to this earth through.

Marc and Megan said...

Amy, it's funny how two years ago I thought I had reached the max of learning patience... so, I'm being very careful not to dare think the same thing now. The beauty of hard times is that in the end we are better off than we would be without them. You're in my prayers, too. :)

Carly, I actually stumbled on your blog yesterday and spent a good chunk of today reading your adoption story - I was in tears more than once. As painful as my burden is at times, I feel great empathy towards birth mothers who go through so much heartache themselves through this process. Your story really touched me. Thank you so much for sharing it! And, thank you for your sweet, encouraging words! :)

Heffalump said...

I look forward to hearing you yell out from the riverbank..."I've got one!"
The wait will be worth it, and the story will be the greatest "fish" story ever.

Calamity Jane said...

Beautifully put. I am praying for you two, I love your hope, courage and humility.

Bryce & Brenley said...

When reading this, I felt like you were taking the words right out of me and these feelings are still very close to the surface for me. Bryce and I also went through this stage, where we felt like we needed to take more action in our adoption, emotions, and faith! It it so rare that you find someone who completely and truly understands your feelings and emotions. Through blogging I have found that it has been very healing and theraputic.

I also totally feel for you in having to take away that private part of your life and have to share it with the world! That is so hard to feel. And I pray that you will be comforted in all of your feelings and emotions right now. I will also pray that you may find "your" baby soon!

Bryce & Brenley said...

Also you should also check out The R House (link is on my blog). She has been posting articles on infertility and adoption and she is just a wonderful lady! And I am glad that Carly found your blog, she is a wonderful women with a perspective that is amazing.

mindyluwho said...

Beautiful post, my heart goes out to you.

Marc and Megan said...

Thanks, everyone, for your love! You see, this is exactly what I mean... we have been blessed with the most supportive family and friends! We are truly blessed.

azlvrz said...

Marc and Megan, You guys are awsome. We miss you guys so much!

Mindy said...

I hope this is okay to say ... but in a small way (and even though it's in different circumstances) ... I know how you feel. Sigh. :( :)