I stood next to Ben at the kitchen sink with a lump in my throat. I could hardly stand next to him his heart's heaviness begged my knees to buckle. Even though his "clean-up duty" time gives me a much looked-to break, I offered to dry because...well, no words would do.
Our caseworker had called and the news wasn't good.
Little Missy's father (I hate even using the term) is out of jail and ready to be super dad to the daughter he has never met. I can't get into the details, but this will, likely, be a long battle. I take her to her first supervised visit on Friday.
Our heads say - this is a career criminal with numerous obstacles, no resources, multiple children and a new one on the way, soon - it will never happen. Our hearts wrestle the unwavering love and protection we feel for our daughter and the failures that exist within an imperfect system.
As our caseworker laid out what the next six months will, likely, hold, I took the information in stride and felt tremendous peace. When she finished, I told her that we would continue to take it one day at a time and trust God for baby girl.
"You are, seriously, the calmest person I have ever met," she said.
I reminded her how crazy the inside of our house is. I can't, possibly, concern myself with the craziness that exists OUTSIDE.
She laughed and we hung up.
My peace is genuine, buy my heart heaved for Ben. I dreaded telling him. We are not in the same spot and I knew how the update would affect him.
I don't know when God gave me complete assurance, but I remember our conversation well. It was at least several weeks ago and I walked away feeling deeply loved. Here's the thing. In my worst case scenario, I am forced to hand my daughter over to a man that I don't like, trust, or believe has any business raising children. I wouldn't argue that the tragedy of that event would devastate my heart and leave me sadder than I can even imagine. But. I trust God more than I trust my plan. He has never failed me. He won't fail Little Miss. I want Little Miss to be forever part of our family, but if things don't go my way, I will trust God to protect her and to give our family what we need to make it through.
Once I was able to process the worst case scenario and lay the mess of it at the altar, I was filled with irrational peace. No matter what happens, God will give me what I need. And I know he did not rescue sweet Miss to abandon her. He will give her what she needs too.
Fast forward to the kitchen sink.
My Ben is the most tender, loves-beyond-himself man I have ever met and his heart bleeds for the fatherless. He is one big sap ball when it comes to our little tribe. And I am crazy for him. Watching him process my words and vent his frustrations was almost more than I could stand. I wish I could, supernaturally, infuse him with the peace in my heart, but it doesn't work that way.
While I can't run this part of the course with him, I can stand by...and dry dishes.
And I can pray. I can pray for another miracle; this time for our baby girl. And pray that God softens our hearts toward this man that is about to become a part of our, weekly, routine.