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Monday, November 3, 2008

Finding joy... today

We have fond memories of our childhoods, memories of being surrounded with great love and lots of laughter, and we hope to build these same kinds of memories in our own home. We can't wait to play with trains, swing on swings, chase butterflies, and re-experience the beauty of the world through a child's eyes.

The quote above is taken from our adoption profile. I've decided it needs to be changed... here's why.

Soon after the passing of Elliana and Emmaline, I found myself feeling sad that I had failed to provide a full life of memories for my girls. Even though I knew there wasn't anything more I could have done to save my girls, there was still a feeling of guilt and responsibility weighing on my heart... I should have been able to save them. (There's that banned "should" word from our vocabulary.)

From the moment I found out I was pregnant, my girls became my sole purpose for living. For the better part of five months I literally focused 100% on my girls. I dropped everything during those months - school work, Church responsibilities, even many household chores (thanks to having an amazing husband). I did a lot of laying on the couch, a lot of vomiting, a lot of sleeping... I also did a lot of reading to my girls. We got through most of the Chronicles of Narnia.

Since they've been gone, I've naturally had moments when it has been difficult to find joy or purpose in life again. As weeks have turned into months, I've tried to look at things differently. I've tried instead to live my life as a gift to my girls. I know they want me to find joy in living... and since they aren't able to experience all the joys of life here on earth, I find myself hoping that somehow they can find joy in watching me experience things for them.

Evidenced by the quote at the top, when we were preparing to adopt, I seemed to have the mistaken idea that we had to wait for a child to re-experience the joys of trains and swings and butterflies. I'm realizing we can experience all of those joys with or without children in tow (though I know the joys are probably at least 100 times greater with). I'm grateful that the birth of our twins has re-opened our eyes to the simple beauties and joys of life. Here are a few of the simple blessings that have given me a renewed joy for life:

Mother Nature. Maybe I was just blind to them before, but in the last three months I've seen more rose buds and flowers blooming than ever before... as well as butterflies and hummingbirds. Maybe they are extra special gifts from God. He knows how much they mean to me right now, and I am so grateful. I love the earth. It is such a wondrous gift.

This is the bike I wish I had...

Bike rides. Before three months ago, it had been probably at least 7 years since I'd really been on a bike for any extended period of time. Now, as we make our rides to the cemetery, my favorite thing to do is ride down the big hill with my hands high in the air... well, relatively high, anyway. Nothing takes me back to being 7-years old faster than that. Love it.

Ice cream cones. The newly constructed Rite Aid added an ice cream counter, selling Thrifty brand ice cream, complete with the cylindrical ice cream scoops! We've only been once... but, I was all laughter as half of my double decker melted down to my elbow - it must have been 109 degrees that day! It brought back the joy of so many childhood memories. We need to go back.

Autumntime. Besides all of the vibrant, autumn colors to enjoy, this time of year it's so fun to go on walks and hear the crunching of leaves and acorns.

Meet our maid and butler...

Dancing. With or without music. Lately, I've found myself swept up in Marc's arms much more frequently, swaying and holding on to the moment together. I love it how time seems to stand still in those moments.

Singing. You know, the outloud, completely out-of-tune kind that only occurs in the car all by myself. (Thanks, Mandi, for the awesome CDs you sent me... they have definitely brought moments of dancing in the sun, like you hoped.)

So, when we get back into adoption at some point, it looks like we'll have quite a few things to change in our profile... our perspective of life has changed so much... we have changed. Life is way too short and fragile to not enjoy every moment; whatever moment we are in and whatever the circumstances of that moment consist of. It's silly to put off exploring and enjoying the world around us until a child finally joins our family. We can enjoy it now. And find great joy in what life offers us today.


Heffalump said...

That is a good reminder. We all could stand to take some time and relive some of those childhood joys.

Jared,Tamara & Kylie Morgan said...

Megan, I'm just another shameless blogger that linked over from the R house a while back. I've cried so many tears for you and your baby girls over the past few months. I am so sorry for your loss. I've really appreciated reading your thoughts through your darkest of moments. Thank you for sharing them.

Though I understand the timing might not be right now I do hope you'll be able to pursue adoption again at some point. We were married for seven years before we had our first placement, a baby girl. While her specific situation was complicated and gut wrenching at times, once my daughter was placed in my arms it melted away so much of the pain. For the first time in years I was able to feel happiness and joy again. I know that it will never replace your daughters. Nothing ever will. Adoption has brought so much joy to my life and I hope it will for you someday too. I have a feeling that good things are in your future.


Sam and Lacey said...


I do want you to return to the adoption world again someday. I can't even tell you how big of a role our daughters played in our adoption. It was so nice to see them working to get their brother here. I was able to get to know them a little more in a different light. I know it will come. When the time is right your daughter's will be able to guide you next child into your life. I know it.

Kim said...

Sweet Megan. I am bawling. I just got done reading this other blog and I was really feeling panicky and wanting my baby back...wanting a baby to hold and to love. I can very much relate to your feelings of "should" it is a swear word that we mustn't use. Thank you for reminding me of all the little things I am grateful to be experiencing and for encouraging me to once again become aquainted with those things in life. Life is too short. I hope you get your bike for Christmas.

Wendy said...

I wish I had realized this when we were waiting/finding our first adoption. It would have changed out life. We had some perspective changing experiences while we were in the process, we enjoyed each other more, and we have been able to appreciate our son so much. I just wish we had lived more. Thank you for the example you are. We are just starting our second adoption and I have already decided that I am not going to let it control my life. I love reading your blog, you amaze me!