Friday, April 27, 2012

Loss of Control

One of the hardest lessons I have learned is the loss of control.  During the past 29 years I have had learned this lesson in small portions of my life at a time but never before in everything.  Never before have I lost total control of all aspects in my life.  Growing up you do not have control over your diet or schedule but I always had my room, my headless Barbie dolls to play with, and my cabbage patch dolls with home haircuts.  I had control over their world.  I remember playing with Barbie and having her go on crazy adventures, she had a jeep and RV, our Barbie went camping a lot.  Part of the appeal of playing dolls was control.  I could control what they did, what they wore, and how they behaved.  I remember thinking as all kids do when I get older I will set the rules, I will be in control.  Wrong.
Africa took all control from me.  While in Uganda I lost control of everything, I was learning that my life is not my own, it is not my own to control.  It is His life and I need to let Him control it.  By letting God control our family decisions our family has taken a path that we could never have planned.  I never could have planned a homemade daughter, Russian son, and two Ugandan daughters, two dogs, eight chickens, and the best husband.
I was looking forward to returning to our home in Tennessee partly to regain control.  I wanted to make the decisions again over what I ate at my meals and when my house got cleaned.  Don’t get me wrong the staff in Uganda was AMAZING but the control freak in my wanted to do these things myself.  Little did I know returning to a house with four little kids running around would mean no control, no organization, and pure craziness.  In fact the pure craziness is far better than I could have ever imagined.  It is wild, the kids have a blast, we have a blast, and life is fun.  They know that mommy and daddy love them and more importantly Jesus.  So if my control for the day is yelling out the door please wear pants if you are going to play in the front yard I will take it and enjoy it.  Our family is learning to find comfort in this loss of control and that only comes from knowing that our Heavenly Father holds it in His hands.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Home At Last

I know this is long overdue and for that I apologize but we are home.  Actually we made it home a few weeks ago.  I am late with this post because coming home after months with four toddlers in the house is crazy and a lot of work.  But I love every bit of it and am bathing in the craziness that is my life.
Coming home came with extra drama as is typical for my family in this adoption process.  During what I thought would be my last day in Uganda I picked up the girls passports with the much desired visas stamped inside them, I packed one suitcase to take home, gave away everything else, visited with the staff at the home, and visited with the orphanage director.  After that we were off, I successfully bathed and fed all four kids and got them ready to go.  I tried to be as prepared as possible because I was to make the trip to Amsterdam with the four kiddos by myself, Chad met us in Amsterdam.  However, after our two hour car ride to the airport in the middle of the night my heart was broken once again.  This was supposed to be a glorious day, a wonderful day, the end and begining of an adventure but once again God had different plans.
  Once we arrived at the airport the airport officials quickly pointed out a typo on the girls visas.  I could not believe it there was a tiny little mistake and we could not get on the plane.  Fortunately the embassy was able to correct the issue the next day and get us on flights the following night.  As I mentioned I had given everything away, our room at the guest house had even been occupied once we left.  Therefore for our last day in Uganda we had to rummage through the donation bin at the house for clothing to wear and slept in a tiny room with a twin bed in it.  It made for one last Ugandan adventure before we came to America.
Once I arrived in Amsterdam I was thrilled, more than excited to see Chad get off of his plane.  We were together all six of us, it did not matter that it was not America yet, all that mattered was that our family was together.  We then quickly learned that our flight from Amsterdam to America was way over booked.  After speaking with the KLM staff we volunteered our family to be bumped from the flight.  We would catch the next flight 24 hours later to America.  This was a true blessing for our family for many reasons; it gave us precious family time, it helped ease the jet lag and the rest of the travel, and the compensation helped pay for our trip home.  So we had a little vacation in Amsterdam, stayed at a nice hotel in the airport, the girls had their first taste of McDonalds Happy Meals, and the kids played for hours in the airport playgrounds.
The following day we continued on with our trip home.  Fortunately the rest of the trip came without drama.  All four kids were great for the flights and were on their best behavior.  We were greated by an overwhelming welcome party when we arrived at the airport.