“Thank God it’s Friday” may be a popular saying, but around here, I thank God it’s Monday more often. I especially thank Him for Mondays after a long holiday weekend. Thanksgiving, as one of my trauma mama friends so aptly put it, is one of the hardest times of the year for our kids. Everyone is talking about being thankful. For our hurt, adopted kids, being thankful is hard! For what are they supposed to be thankful? Being adopted? For my kids, that means also being thankful that their biological mother neglected them while she took care of her own vices and their father left them in a way no parent should ever leave a child. Be thankful? Yeah, right.
My Evangelical Christian friends will need to hold onto their hats here, but I’m going to write what I know as truth in our family. Here goes: The expectation to be thankful AND be part of a Christian household adds even more stress to our kids’ hurt lives. Everyone is telling them to be thankful for what GOD has given them – that GOD has set them into a family – that GOD is ready to meet their need – that God is good. For children who have been raised to believe that God is for rich Americans with no real need, and who know reality to be that they must take whatever they can to survive, this is fantasy. For children who were set into a family the way God’s design intended – for kids to be raised and loved and cared for by the people who bore them – only to be ripped from that family against their will (however dysfunctional and toxic), God seems cruel. For children who rummaged through dumpsters and begged from neighbors to put food into their bellies and the belly of a baby sister (that a corrupt government took away from them and placed with a family without their knowledge), believing God will meet their need is ludicrous.
EVEN THOUGH they are loved, well cared for, fed, clothed, and given many of the things middle-class Americans enjoy (even as they take those things for granted), EVEN THOUGH they have been “redeemed” in a sense and brought out of poverty, and EVEN THOUGH they have come to believe in Salvation through Jesus Christ, they cannot believe – not deep down – that God is good. If God were good, then he would not have taken them from their family, their life, their culture, their language, their heritage and placed them in a family they did not choose, in a country they did not choose, dealing with the most absurd language on the face of the planet. This is my kids’ truth, even for all the “right teaching” and “sacrificial love.”
If I can get just ONE of my Christian friends to truly “get” all this (one who is not also an adoptive parent raising a hurt child – especially a child adopted at a much older age), then I will be amazed. If just one person not walking this walk can fully understand what my kids have been through and how it affects them and their life on this earth – and how the core of that WILL NOT CHANGE, even by “coming to Jesus,” then I will feel as though I’ve met a part of my mission on this earth. Why? Because if just ONE of these folks can get it, then maybe others in the Church (universal) can begin to “get it” – REALLY GET IT, too.