Sunday, March 08, 2009

Waiting and Living

It is Sunday evening, and all are asleep and the wind is kicking up pretty good just outside my window. We have done pretty well being essentially TV-less for the past couple of weeks. We have not gone 100% without the screen as we allowed the boys to watch a movie last night when Joshie's buddy came over and had one to share, and a couple of others exceptions but for the most part we have had it off all evening every night.

It is amazing how much more time we have together when the Boob Tube is off! We are really enjoying it, the boys haven't fussed one time about it, and somehow our evenings are filled with activities. Of course they already were with piano lessons, TaeKwonDo, trumpet, Cub Scouts, and church activities the boys seldom have the chance to say "I'm bored!", actually I don't know if I have ever heard that word around our house ever...there just always seems to be something to do, something to play, something to keep busy with!

What have we been doing instead? Let me share with a photo or two:
In case you can't quite figure out what the heck they were doing, after a project in Sunday School this morning where they made windsocks out of file folders, they asked me if they could make a project at for $4.49 at Target for a box of 100 file folders, they spent an entire afternoon creating their own version of "Ironman"...or should that more correctly be "Fileman"?! Hahaha! They were going to make a set for each of them but it took longer than they thought so they made one outfit and dressed Matt in it, complete with jetpacks on the back. They had SO much fun with files, a stapler and Christmas ribbon!

We have also been working on losing more teeth, and Joshie has another loose one he is working on. He proudly shows off the first missing one:

We have also been fulfilling a childhood dream of mine, if you can believe this. It is sort of silly, but when I was young I LOVED the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I would save every penny until I could buy another and would beg for her books for Christmas or birthdays. I must have read them all 4 or 5 times each, at least. I actually still have the entire original set, some marked with notes in them from my Dad..."Cindy Roehrman, age 7, bought with her own money...Little House book for a little girl". I saved them all in the hopes that one day I would read them to my own daughters. Yea, I was definitely tied to traditional gender roles back then, wasn't I? Hahaha! Well, we started reading the series last week and the boys are SO HOOKED on it, they are begging me every night to read a couple of chapters. So we are snuggling up on the couch each night just before bedtime, reading about my old friends Pa and Ma, Mary and Laura and Baby Carrie. I wonder why I never imagined reading them to my sons instead of my daughters when I was a little girl?

We all have certain things we carry as dreams when we think of our life with children prior to ever having them. At one point, I had 2 of the original Cabbage Patch dolls put aside for our children...they were from the first year of issue when everyone was getting into fist fights in the stores over them. Somewhere along the line during those 13 years pre-adoption I got rid of them. I don't recall it, and I know it wasn't a traumatic moment or a letting go of a dream of a family or anything, it just seemed silly to keep them around when it looked like it wasn't ever going to happen...

I remember imagining reading to the kids, just as I do today and have for years. I always thought I would find myself hanging out on ballfields much as my own parents did for years and years but that was dropped as we realized that none of the boys are really all that into the Big Three sports. I have been spared thus far one of the visions I had of breaking up bickering, pestering children as our boys get along so well that is thankfully something that doesn't happen often at all around here but my poor mom was driven to distraction by my brother and I nitpicking at each other! I thought of sitting in front of Christmas trees with lights aglow, of trips to the library, of long talks, of bear hugs and good night kisses. But interestingly, I never imagined what my children would look like...I never saw pictures in my mind of kids that looked like mini-me's. That was one thing I didn't have to relinquish with adoption.

Somewhere along the line though, I found myself letting go of those thoughts. The longer we were married, the more years that passed with no pregnancy, the more distance I put between myself and my dreams of life as a family. It wasn't painful really, it was just reality. You gradually find your mind drifting in different directions and one day you wake up and realize that you aren't even really thinking about it anymore and it is time to make some decisions to determine if you are indeed going to let go of the portrait of yourself as a mom or if you are going to get it in gear and start looking at alternatives. We almost shoved that portrait aside for good, we were [[thisclose]] when suddenly our thinking shifted, and those images started flooding back...thinking of warm and fleecy footed pj's and quietly whispered "Night Mommy" 's.

The longer it takes the easier it is to find myself distancing a bit more from our current adoption plans. I am not looking at photos much, I am not thinking ahead to what it will be like, I am not thinking much about Girl Scouts or raging hormones or what to do with girl's hair. There comes a point where, for self-preservation, you speak about it in practical terms as if plans are still on the move but when it seems there is such an incredible distance between desire and completion of the dream, you have to let go, to turn your mind away...or you'll never make it. I am not really depressed over it, although at moments I guess I might be...I am more resigned to the wait, and continuing on with the business of living. But it gets admittedly tiresome after 2 years to say "I don't know if we can go on that camping trip...we might be here and we might not" as you sit in anticipation of extended adoption travel which may or may not be happening in the coming months. I look forward to the day when I get that signal from God that it is OK to start thinking of a future, to imagine sitting at the kitchen table doing ...oh my gosh I can't believe I am saying this...crafty things with my daughters (not TOO crafty, mind you! Hahaha!) or to think of buying a prom dress or two.

What does happen with the passage of so much time is doubt begins to creep in, and you try and whisk it right back out the door but often that proves very hard to do.

So, as is usual about this time of year, we are proceeding to register the boys for church camp, to think about summer adventures we will have close to home, we continue to make our every day plans...all the while hoping that those plans will be destroyed with a phone call giving us a couple of weeks to get on a plane. It is actually quite a weird little place to be in. With each passing month, with each delay you readjust your thinking...first it was "I am not sure if we should sign the boys up for soccer as I don't want to pay for the season and be gone for most of it" then it becomes "Maybe we will miss the first part of school next year". And still we wait.

I have changed and evolved a tremendous amount over the past few many ways I am hardly recognizable to myself, at least in terms of my internal thought processes. Patience is something I was never good at, it is something I am learning to be VERY good at.

So we keep on living, we keep on hoping, we keep on doing. The rest will take care of itself.


smctiver said...

Oh my, can I ever identify with your post tonight!!! From Little House on the Prarie to waiting, having pregnancy NOT happen, then diving into adoption preparation & waiting again for months on end... I sure hope to have a couple of boys home soon so that we can watch them make "folder men"...and I hope you have a couple of girls come home soo so you can do some of those crafty things.

Anonymous said...

Dear Cindy,

We continue to keep you, and the girls, in our prayers. I know from the comments on your blog that many, many people across the country (and even in other countries) are praying for them.

What if all of us who are praying e-mailed you our location, and then you could make a map of all the places where people are praying??

And then, one day, when the girls are safely home, you could show them the map, and say, "this is where all the people lived who prayed and prayed and prayed and kept on praying for you."

Just an idea, with the hope that it might be an encouragement through your long season of waiting.

"We wait in hope for the Lord;
he is our help and our shield."

Psalm 33

Peggy in Virginia

Anonymous said...

Great idea, Peggy! I'm not very far away but put me on the map!! Joan in Grand Junction! XOXOXO

Anonymous said...

Dear Cindy,

I'm a great fan of your blog, and as I was reading this post, I had a mad idea.
Why don't you keep things exactly as they are Kenny wise (your husband, the teacher, other support he might have), and pretend you have a homeschooled 4 or 5 year old, and sit with him everyday 30 minutes doing work from X years old onwards? Hopefully, he'll be able to move a bit faster than a X year old, and maybe you can lay the foundations to some of the brain wiring for him to start building other knowledge on top.
No rush, no pressures, just slowing picking up from the level he is playing right now (which is a good indicator of which experiences his brain needs to learn from), if he likes 2 year old toys, let's start there, if it's 4 year old puzzles, wonderful... and make the best of the time you still have until you go to pick up your girls, and other 2 educational needs will come into the equation.

Thank you for sharing your life.
Good bless you.

Best wishes,