Sunday, December 23, 2012

Ty's Special Box

You probably don't remember this box.

I purchased it months before sweet Ty ever came home. I wanted him to have a special box to collect all the mementos of his story. There are pictures, letters, cards, and special gifts from Rebekah and her family in this box. It wasn't that I had forgotten about the box (I add pieces to it every year), but I hadn't thought about the timing of showing it to Ty. One day we were in his closet and Ty said, "Mom what is that up there?"

I carefully brought it down and said, "You know what buddy. This is a very special box. Let's go sit down in the living room and I'll tell you about it." I explained that it was the place that I put everything sent to him by his birth family. I got tears in my eyes when I opened it up and together we went through every piece.

There was a DVD in there that I had forgotten about. Rebekah made it for Ben for his first Father's Day (we hadn't left Colorado, yet). We immediately put it in and watched it together, as a family. Ben and I cried watching the combination of hospital pictures and video clips. Ty asked a hundred questions and was so excited to see "baby Ty".

As we walked through the years of Ty's life in his special box, we read every card and looked at every picture. I explained who each person was and whether or not Ty had met them before. The only thing I didn't let Ty do was to open the letters Rebekah has written him. They are still sealed and I want him to be the first person to read them...not me. There are plenty of other cards and notes to read.

It's been about a month since we looked through the box for the first time. Now, Ty asks me, every few days if he can get it down. I snapped these shots, yesterday.

We are going to Colorado in February and my heart is bursting for that time to come sooner. Ty has such a strong handle on his story and the people in it. To be able to put faces to their names is going to be so special.

I love the story God has written for this little boy.


  1. I'm curious - what was LJ's response to Ty's box? Did he want one? My little nephew is the same age as Ty (same month/year dob, I think) and he is adopted from Russia. I am going to tell my sister to put together a box for him although I don't think there has been any contact with his birth family....

    1. I have things collecting for LJ, too, and have been working on a digital scrapbook for him. For now, he enjoys hearing about Ty's story and asks very few questions about his own. Whenever we talk about Ty's birth story, we always follow it up with LJ's "coming to us" story. We talk about the first time we met him, the parks we visited during transition, and the first place we had dinner as a family of four (IHOP). He listens, but shows very little interest in knowing more. Just like we did with Ty, we don't push anything. We openly talk about both adoptions, but watch and listen for cues that they're ready for more detail.

      It's a walk that we take one day at a time. :)

  2. Very nice post! I got a little teary eye just thinking how much you have embraced Ty's story into his life about his beginnings with his birthfamily. You bring it all out and don't just magically start his life from when you got him. Your an awesome Momma!!

  3. I was wondering the exact same thing, how does LJ feel? I'm sure you already have a plan but as I saw that last picture I thought how fun it would be to take LJ out on a date just you and him and let him pick out his own box. Then you two could start filling it with trinkets from his journey of coming to you...obviously you won't have much of a past to ad to it...but you can put in printouts of blog posts in which you long for a sibling for Ty and another child to love. You could buy trinkets that have to do with anything you know about his past or special Bible passages that mean a lot to you for his future, etc. But something tells me you already have it covered. :)

  4. I love it! Both of my kids have memento boxes, Jackson's includes things from the hospital and the pictures on DVD that his birthmom had done with him in the hospital, etc. I guess the box is a mixture of both of his worlds. I love to hear how Ty went through it - I can't wait 'til the day my kids show interest in their stories. I have been collecting memories for them some day:). I also wondered what the previous commenter did - how did LJ respond to it all?

  5. You are such a wonderful, loving mom! Your blog brings me so much joy as a birthmom! Merry Christmas!

  6. We have boxes for our boys too! I always meant to create LifeBooks, but there is so much stuff that wouldn't work in book format that I decided to do LifeBoxes instead. Our 6-year-old absolutely loves digging through his. It's interesting to see what he zeroes in on each time (it seems to change): a photo... the tiny socks he wore the first time we saw him... a paper with his birth mom's signature...

    Our 1-year-old is obviously not yet interested, but I pray the first time we sift through it is as special as it was with his big brother. His box has completely different items (other than the fact that they both have some photos). Nothing I can do can prevent them from longing for what the other may have. The best advice I received from an adult adoptee was to resist the urge to try to "fix" painful situations or make things "equal" among siblings. He said that acknowledging the pain and just walking alongside your child is what's important. It sounds like that is the approach you'll be taking too; I happen to think it seems like good parenting advice in general!

  7. So sweet! What a great thing to teach him!