Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Happy "Forever Family" Day: One Year With Hudson

     I wish I could bottle up time...where in the world has this year gone???  Oh, we definitely have had days where I wish we could speed through these toddler years.  But at the same time, it seems as if we were just in Zhengzhou, China, spending our first days with Hudson. 

     Coming back to this blog feels right.  I so had hopes of keeping up my ramblings...using this as a place to encourage others to explore God's commandment and perhaps be the voice used to encourage others to enter into the journey of orphan care or adoption.
"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this:
 to look after orphans and widows in their distress
and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." 
James 1:27
But life with three kids happened.  We have been EXTREMELY blessed that Hudson's attachment to us went pretty smoothly.  I hear of so many children having a difficult time bonding with their new family.  I credit his smooth adjustment to the wonderful care he had at Little Flower and at his other foster home.  And all things considered, Henley and Griffin did pretty well too.  Of course there were (and still are) times when they just don't understand why he gets so much of our time and attention.  Part of this is his age, and part is his high-energy curiosity (along with the fact that he has no off button, is into EVERYTHING, and has no fear).  Surprisingly to me, the one of us that has probably had the biggest adjustment is MYSELF.  Juggling three high-energy kids and working has not been an easy road.  And I don't say this for anyone to feel sorry for me...just to say that it surprised me!  Another unexpected part of this journey has been the loneliness.  Loneliness that comes from keeping a low profile so that Hudson could really bond with only us.  Loneliness that comes from having a child that came to us in a different way than most children do.  Wondering if a behavior is adoption related or age related, and not knowing many people who can answer our questions.  But God uses our loneliness...we seek and find him more in the hard places.  And it is the during the smooth sailing that we often forget his constant presence.  My verse for this year has been 2 Corinthians 12:9...
"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." 
Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses,
so that Christ's power may rest on me.     
     I cannot count the times when I have had no "power" left in me, when I have been so weak that the only power I could count on was His.  I don't think I have truly understood the depth of His grace until this chapter of my life.  But one thing that has stood out to me, even on the toughest day, is that I never question the decision we made to adopt Hudson...I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that it was God's will for our family.  And I think I thought that the burning desire to do something for the "least of these" would be satisfied after adopting Hudson.  But if possible, this fire is bigger.  As David Platt said,
"Orphans are easier to ignore before you know their names. 
They are easier to ignore before you see their faces. 
It is easier to pretend they are not real before you hold them in your arms. 
But once you do, everything changes." 
     So lets get back to Hudson...after all, it is his special day:)  Hudson is brave, bold, and determined.  He is cuddly and strong-willed at the same time.  And he is funny.  All of these traits that can make him a trying toddler will work to his advantage in the future.  This child who once would never let us cuddle him or read to him now insists on being rocked and read to every night before bed.  His loves are food, all things with wheels, and his teddy.  As we wrap up this "Gotcha Day" anniversary, my prayers are that he will be confident in his life story and be brave, bold, and determined for Christ.  We love you, Hudson MengQiu Beddingfield!!! 
A Look Back...