The Hard Days: An update on Sean
Many have asked for an update on Sean. I could say that everything is going well because it is. I could say that we are happy, because we are.
But I can also say that these days are hard.
I Know More than I Did
I know more about Sean than I did. I know more than the simple file that was emailed to us before we said yes. I know more about him than I did the day we met.
Sean is a good kid. He is helpful. He enjoys cleaning up after dinner. He plays well with the little ones. Unlike our others boys, he even makes his bed.
Sean is flexible. He is doing better with the changes than I think most would. He seems to be okay with most of the differences in his new life.
Sean is grateful. He tells us constantly that he loves us. I do not know exactly what love means to him, but I can tell by the look on his face and in his eyes that it is good.
I know more than I did, but there is still so much I do not know.
Adoption is Hard
Adoption is good. But it is not easy. Believe it or not, the hardest part of adoption is not the paperwork or the long wait.
Adoption is not convenient. It does not make life simpler.
It is not cheap. It will destroy your financial plans. And that is just to pay to make the adoption happen not to mention the cost of food and doctor visits and clothing.
It is exhausting. We were busy before Sean. Much too busy. Bonding with a 14 year old is not something we had time for. There is nothing else to cut out of our days.
I have even blamed the stress of everything for my kidney stone.
My Biggest Struggle
The issue is not with Sean as much as it is with me.
My biggest struggle is to love no matter what.
I can love as long as things are the way I want them to be. I can love as long as people fall in line with my expectations of them. I can love as long as my love asks very little of me.
But most days I feel like love is asking more of me than I can give.
When our stories prove to be hard, we often forget why we need to push through the struggles.
Henri Nouwen was a catholic priest and writer who experienced a very difficult and dark period in his life. In his journal which was published as The Inner Voice of Love (affiliate link), he had this to say about his own difficult experience.
The years that lie behind you, with all their struggles and pains, will in time be remembered only as the way that led to your new life.
Identifying the struggle matters because it tells me the road I am on. It shows me the new life that I am headed towards. It shows me what the pain and struggle is pointing me towards.
And one day I will no longer remember these hard days.