Thursday, February 02, 2006

I think this is worth reading and I hope you do too...

Eva and Hugh

December 2004

Civil Affairs Office

Nanchang, Jiangxi, China

Family Day

Kristin and Eva

December 2004

Nanchang, Jiangxi, China

This is a post I have been wanting to write for almost 2 weeks, but I haven't had the time to sit down and properly compose my thoughts.

The other Sunday at Mass the sermon focused on the word, "abandon". Now, let me confess that I often spend the sermon mentally listing all the things I need to get done in the coming week, or, what would I do if I won the lottery... in other words, I don't always pay attention. However, the word abandon hit me like a slap... there are few words that are so intimately connected to Chinese adoption that you tend to sit up and take notice when it is mentioned in conversation.

Our priest spoke on how the very word abandon is, "like as island". It is such a lonely and isolated word, conveying such negativity, that it is "an island no one wants to go to." But, then he went on to say something that I found so profound and so lovely... he said, "but, what if, in abandonment a person is given an opportunity to truly be seen?"

Think about that for a minute.

"Truly be seen". I turned this phrase over and over in my mind throughout the day and what I got from it is this: there are many things we don't know about the start of our daughters' lives. I think it is safe to assume that there was quite possibly disappointment, perhaps fear, and definitely great and unfathomable sorrow. Our children came into the world and were, despite love or desire, a hardship for their birth family.

And so our daughters are abandoned. Abandoned because Chinese society will not allow for an adoption plan, but in that moment of abandonment there is love and hope for the child. When our children are left, to be found, there is the clear message that this child means something to somebody and this child should be given a chance at life.

Then we come along. We are parents in love with the idea of our daughters. We cry with joy when our referral comes and we call everyone we know and share our love and excitement over our blessing. We travel to China and in an instant, someone calls our name and hands us a beautiful and perfect child and we are overcome with love. We look at our new daughters and see nothing but love and goodness. We are not faced with a problem or a burden... we are faced with grace.

In the selfless act of abandonment our daughters are given the gift to truly be seen.


Anonymous said...

That is absolutley beautiful.
Thank you Kristin, for sharing those words with us.
This type of selfless love is what it is all about.
Thank you for reminding me of that.

J.D. said...

Thank you so much for writing that. It's a thought that I can carry into my day.

My sister lives in China, so I've learned through her quite a bit about how the Chinese culture works, and it is absolutely horrendous toward children. Most of the marriages are loveless social arrangements and children, even when they are kept, are often ignored.

I'm glad that your daughter got the chance to know what it's like to be loved.

Northern Stargirl said...

I would argue a little with the previous post regarding both marriage and the treatment of children in China. Everything that we saw and learned supported the idea that the Chinese people truly love their children and that is why they have agreed to international adoption. For a county as proud as China to admit they have a problem that needs help in solving and then are willing to let people come in and remove their children shows me that they are desperate to do what is best for them.

That is just IMHO. Your sister has the benefit of knowing actual families and particular situations.

I agree with you that it is wonderful when a child is given the chance to be loved.

Kristen, what prompted the priest to discuss abandonment?

Tori said...

Beautiful words Kristin.
Eva is very lucky... and so are you.
Look how much she grown since her "gotcha" day! Its hard to believe. She has cetainly imprinted herself (with her fairly large loaf feet) into our lives and we feel blessed and honored to know her.
Oh and you guys are ok too... I suppose...

Anonymous said...

You are a very funny person and your writing is very good. I ususally enjoy your blog very much considering that your sense of humor is not what I ordinarly enjoy.
I wonder what your motivation to adopt from China was. I was called there by my faith and I know in my heart that my child is waiting there for me. God works in mysterious ways and it is not our place to challenge or question HIS actions. My daughter is in China and that is all that matters.
As you have already have two bio kids, I am wondering what made you decide that you should go to China.

Kristin said...

Thank you for the compliments.

Our desire to adopt stemmed from the very simple reason that we wanted to grow our family... just like everyone else out there!

Kathryn M. said...

Eva is so lovely. What a thrilling time. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on abandonment. I have bookmarked this post to share with my daughter. Thank you!

Joannah said...

I just found your blog over the weekend, and I love your writing style. This post was really insightful. Thanks for your comments on my blog yesterday. I'm happy to say that my packet arrived today and things are beginning to move along. Eva is beautiful and your boys are so handsome.

Tikiking1 said...

Hugh in a Ryen Spooner??? No Way...


Recovering Wino said...

You gotta love Hugh's shirt

KAT said...

What a wonderful way to think about your daughter's situation before she came into your life. She was meant to be your daughter and I'm sure her life will be all the better for it.

Nancy said...

What a touching post. Such a blessing that you can give your girls a loving family. Eva is truly beautiful.