"On this piece of paper, here, I want you to write down what you plan to do tomorrow and with whom. What about next year? In five years? What is your life plan?...Good. Now I'd like you to read your words...Rebekah, what's in your five year plan?"
Well, professionally, I hope to be in pursuit of my PhD, teaching classes at university, have a publishing contract, and maybe writing adoption books for kids. Personally, I hope to be a mother to multiples - 3? 4? 5?"
"Wow. Okay, that's ambitious. Ben, what about your plan?"
Me? I'm just exhausted from hearing her plan. [everyone laughs]
"I want everyone to stand up with plan in hand and rip it to shreds...what are you going to do when your plan doesn't go as planned?"
Our first day of foster license training included this exercise. It was simple, yet it carried with me into my week. Ben and I have gotten really good at letting God rewrite our plans - to fall in line with his. I'm a mixed bag of emotions as we head down this road again. My tank is running about 90/10. Ninety percent certain of God's faithful hand and ten percent shaken at the prospect of what that means.
I stifled sobs throughout our first day of training. The heaviness of what we're walking into is palpable. The cases we studied - the stories we heard - made me want to run to and from the system...at the same time. I'm anxious of all the uncertainties that exist, but equally broken with the stories; it's hard to know how to function.
It's a strange dynamic.
I want to be excited about the possibility of expanding our family, yet there's this underlying tone of despair that comes with reasons for placement. I feel like I'm in this strange euphoric place, saying, "God. Your will be done. My mind can't comprehend the future, but I'm willing to let you lead me blind. Whether we adopt one or ten, this year or next, it doesn't matter. I trust you. And I'm going to continue to put one foot in front of the other as you finish the work you have started."
The adoption process that led us to sweet Ty was nothing like this. I was anxious and emotional and insecure. One day my emotions rang high, the others they bottomed low. I never felt this calm, steady, or at peace. I know part of that was the throbbing hole in my heart to mother. Walking this same, but slightly veering, trail with a little hand in mine makes all the difference.
When Ty boisterously proclaims, "Jesus. I need a sister," I don't ache with want, but instead look up and repeat...You heard him, Father. He needs a sister. (Smile)
The security in knowing that God has called us to walk this path is enough to lead me to my tape dispenser. I can tape my ripped plans back together and hang them on the fridge as mementos...reminders that God brushes with strokes of an artist. His picture has more depth and detail than mine ever would.
Three more weeks of training and an updated home study in November start to turn the key of our future.