Eva and Hugh
Civil Affairs Office
Nanchang, Jiangxi, China
Kristin and Eva
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.