Saturday, January 31, 2009

Broken...yes again :

I have not blogged about this big prayer of my heart. I meet a little guy in South Africa, that I have been praying to be able to bring him home. He is a precious one...I love him. The more I prayed for him the more connected I felt to him, the more I wanted him home in my family. I knew there was a big chance it could not happen, but I still hoped. I prayed. His story is very heartening, as he was found in a garbage bag laying on the side of the street his color was Grey, his umbilical cord still attached, when a police man found him and called the social worker who brought him into the amazing home where they feed him breast milk and brought him back to life! I held him for the first time and felt a connection right away, I felt compassion for this child and wanted to love him forever. I mentioned something to the director and she said ''if you are serious we can see what we can do.International has never been done through us, but, we can look into it, no guarantee and don't get your hopes up high''! Then I found out his name means HOPE in ZULU! I texted my hubby right away it was 3am so I think he was thinking something was wrong :) in my text I said "Do you mind If I bring a baby home with me?'' ''What are you for real, call me later''. I waited what seemed like days for him to wake and asked "Please I want this little one to come home with me!'' Let me give you a back ground on this with my hubby...
He so knows me so well, he wrote a letter to me to read on the plane and sealed it and made me promise I wont read it until I am on the second flight to Africa. Awesome letter, saying how proud he was of me, and the final sentence made me realize why he wanted me to wait, so I wont argue this one on a long distance phone conversation. He said "Don't bring any kids home, don't even get the idea to bring any kids home''!
However that still didn't stop me!! He did respond to''sure!'' um that's a YES in my book! :) Knowing full well that can not happen because of dumb immigration stuff! Whatever! Anyways I came back to the US with HOPE in my heart that this baby would possible join our family. Impossible, but Hello MY GOD is HUGE right!! I began to research how we can make it possible. We contacted the South African Consulate and were in contact with lawyers. We were just waiting on some minor details. Such as his HIV test. On Friday I got an email that said my baby ( yes, I call him my baby!) has HIV and not that only it has escalated to AIDS. He would need to start treatment immediately. My boy, this little one. Reading my friends email who is the director of the home, my response was to write her back, and tell her that this means I have to come get him NOW! I know I didn't even think of anything else. I began to sob as I thought of his life, and that how realistic it can be that he can die.
When I was in South Africa I was asked if I would still be interested in him if he was positive with HIV, my first thought was NO! At the end of the trip my heart melted and I had even learned so much about HIV and how possible it is for kids to survive with the right medical help. I was in awe that the kids I thought had HIV didn't and the kids that look the most healthiest had it.
I had to take a step back and really surrender this to God the one who loves this boy more than me. I had to give him all of him, what aches is I did this with Hudson (my third son who died at 3 months) I surrender his little body as he died in my arms. I can not see another child die, It aches me that this baby will have to go through this. Yet I know he will get all the medical attention he needs, this is no question, I know he will get all the love he needs from the staff at this home. I just cant stop thinking about him, about the way his face would lite up when he smiled. This is not a death sentence for this little guy. My heart is open for whatever God wants for him and for us in this.
I am so sorry that my blogging has been such a bummer lately, seriously people I am a fun gal!! I laugh tons and I love tons! I have such a wonderful family!! I will write about good stuff too, its just therapeutic to write about the grieving of my heart it seems like its a lot lately and many of it has to do with this county that holds my heart so close.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Help Needed!!

Many of you that read my blog do so because you are adopting or have adopted or for some reason I have kept you entertained :)! I thank you very much!
Now I ask that you dig deep inside you and if you are even a tiny bit moved then please HELP!
I have a friend named Tom Davis he is an author and CEO of Children's Hope Chest, many of you have read his books and are even sponsoring through Hope Chest International, Thank you so much! If this is your first time hearing that name, PLEASE Read his blog. Tom and team mates are right now in Swaziland South Africa on a mission trip and have found some communities that are in desperate need of sponsorships. He calls the villages Care points, there is one care point in particular that I am trying to get sponsors for 90 vulnerable children and orphans mostly under the age of 12.
I know you may be thinking "Oh Natalie, there are kids everywhere that will need our help'', yes your are right. This is just one more thing a month. No I get it. This is a wonderful opportunity if you have wondered how to get involved but didn't know how. The cost is $34 dollars a month. Read more about sponsorship here. There are 90 kids to sponsor so thus is my goal to find 90 families :)!! I will be pinching pennies to sponsor but please read Toms blog to read the condition of these kids. You can be the answer for one of the 90.I have two families intrested now I just need 87 :)! Gods peace!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Getting over the Label!

I know just yesterday I posted a very raw post and today you read that I am over it? Let me tell you what I am over. I am over the label! I went to the library and started reading a book called out of sync child its a book that has huge amounts of information on the disorder I believe both my kids have. For the past few days I have been in a pit about the label stigma that goes along with the disorder for my children and also down because I feel that some how I have done something wrong during pregnancy. Reading the information and the comments you have left for me, I am beginning to see my children in new light. When our children would misbehave and we would really struggle with the same behavior time and time again, we get so irritated and feel like we just got to give them more of a discipline; reading the information in the book has made me realize the struggle we have are very connected to this disorder. Such as my oldest brushing his teeth and crying when we do it for him because he doesn't do it hard enough. Or A the little big guy his body goes completely limp sometimes and he complains that he cant walk or move, I used to think he is so lazy. I have even made comments like ''Come on A no time to be lazy, we gotta go!'' Now I realize that really he has no energy. Going to Occupational therapy and having them on a sensory diet will make such a huge progress for them.
The label does not change my love for them, it does not change they way I feel about them, It needs to not change the way I feel about myself! These boys were given (borrowed) to be because my Mighty Father knows I am the mom for them!! I can not be responsible for the way others treat them but by golly watch for the claws! What can I say, I am Latina! This doesn't change my heart to grow my family either, one thing that was a struggle for me. I thought how can I have more children if these kids would take up all my energy. Would I still say the same thing two weeks ago? NO, so really doesn't change my heart on this issue either. I feel good, I feel relived for the mere fact of knowing. I feel a wind under my wing. I am not alone. If my mom is reading this it would help if you packed up and moved here to help me out :)
My boys are fun, very smart, loving, caring, and AWESOME, Thank you Jesus for them! Thanks for praying for me and please continue!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Natalie In the Raw (long post!)

These past few weeks I have found comfort in journaling in my prayer journal and have forgotten all about blogging. Its been a sweet retreat as I have been on a mountain high from Africa until now. This is hard for me to write about although it may be therapeutic. I have two awesome fun totally wacky boys!! If you know our family you would agree. yet in the heart of this mom I always sensed something not right. There emotional state have always been not "common'' so to say. They are highly emotional on some matters and not on some things, you may say I am explaining some of your kids, however its very different. I have been in our pediatricians office many times with the concern and our doctor has just said my children are very ''spirited", hello like there mom. Although it never settled completely with me that my kids are just ''spirited''. My son who is 8 has not slept normally since he was 2. Has a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep this has been a major struggle that we have gone to all ends to help. We have done sound machines, natural medications, strict routines, behavioral therapy, I even had friends lay hands on him and pray multiple times! That's the first thing. J also is extremely sensitive to sound, material, does not do well with transition at all, has extreme anxiety and now socially has become withdrawn. Our pediatrician had us go to a Physiologist when he was 3 who diagnosed him incorrectly with OCD and wanted to give him medication. NOT an option for me. With another referral to a physiologist we took him in last week and the DR. asked if I have ever heard of Sensory Integration Disorder or Sensory Processing Disorder(SPD). I did because every time I looked up my sons symptoms it came right up. I didn't want to really look into it because I just thought physiologist and pediatricians sometimes look to hard to diagnose a child when they are just developing at there own pace.
When I came home and really looked it up and took the time to research other parents who have children with the same disorder, I was shocked it had both my boys written all over all the symptoms. What one son didn't have the other modeled to a T. I called my pediatrician and told him all I had searched and we wants me to get right into an Occupational Therapist right away to do a full evaluation but feels that this is very well what my children have.
Even though it feels so good to finally have a ''label'' for my kids I am still crushed. This disorder is marked as a special needs child. Do you know what this means for me, every child my womb has carried has had something not right. I am angry right now with God, yes, angry. That's where raw comes in from the tittle of my post! Why? Why me, why, really? My road will be marked with many therapy sessions to help my children and our family cope with things children can handle every single day.
Please don't get my writing wrong, I love my children, I love JESUS!!! But the challenge I have faced these past few weeks, because its gotten worse that fast, has been a deep digging for me. I can still be angry with God and know that he will help me through this one, know that His peace will get me through every day with my boys. Know that he can help me not stay in a pit of despair where I think I am the victim. Help me look to the cross with knees bent for an embrace every minute of my days. That they wont be labeled by people as ''special'', in that way. That there friends would still want to play with them. Help me see that this is a blessing (the diagnosis) so I can help my children function to handle themselves and others in a way that would help them not feel overwhelmed. He has obviously seen something in me worthy to raise these boys right? I am talking myself into this one?!!
This long post to say I am we are so hurting! Pray for us we as seek therapy and that our son sleeping at midnight every night for the last two weeks wont distress our days. That I can make it through this day without thinking I have done this to them, my womb my body.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

7 marks the year of completion!

On new years day my sweets and I sat down and read our old prayer journals. Its was very comforting to read the prayer request from years past and see that God has not only answered so many of our prayers but also to read our very interesting requests. In 1998-2001 I constantly prayed for the salvation of my sister in law in almost every entry. I would plea that the Lord would capture her heart and that it would set afire to her husband and family. I love that the Lord answered my hearts cry on this, because now she has a heart that He did capture and set fire to. Her darling husband and her have not only accepted Christ but have been walking their family in the path also! I made another great discovery and I shared this very interesting finding with my husband and we both were in awe of Gods completeness in my answer here is my entry for that day:
I have not picked up this journal since 2002 so this was a great surprise

December 2001

"Father I am so tired of being apart of this Lord, not living here in Washington, just part of a culture and generation that cares only about ourselves on how to make more money on how to get better and more things. I am sick of it. I am so angry and grieved. I want to do what our friends Warren and Jenn are doing to be missionary's. It makes me so sad because I don't think we would be supported by my family. I don't even know if this is your call on our lives. I know I made a promise to you that I would be a missionary for life but is this what you want of me? Father what is that you want me to do with this heart? Am I to feel this way forever?
I always wrote what I felt God would answer to me

"My child, do not worry about what I have for you, when I reveal it to you its because its my timing!"
This is the part that was awesome, I can not draw for the life of me, but sometimes in my prayers I would doodle something I would see in my mind. I have taken a picture above of what I doodled (again I suck as drawing:) its a doodle of two stick figures holding hands and above it its says South Africa. I called my friend Jenn and told her right away and she told me this entry was done exactly 7 years ago and 7 years is the number of completion. God completed my hearts cry and had be apart of something beautiful!

New year New Resolutions

I have had a blast spending three weeks with my family, doing nothing just enjoying each other laughing, dis fussing fights between brothers, picking up Lego's, falling for my dog again (I have had a rough patch with him, now I love him!) Its been so nice to just be and not have to drive really anywhere. My tribe is so much fun, I don't believe there is ever a moment where someone is not laughing, crying, yelling, hitting and teasing (working on this one constantly!)
Just a few days ago against the will of my dear children I wanted to sit down and have a family meeting to discuss our new goals this year. Can you tell I am a middle child I like to keep the gathering and unity in my household. These are the ones we came up with:
1. More outdoor activities: fishing, camping, hiking, walking, swimming, biking
2. More indoor activities: baking, building, and more family time
3. Start volunteering within the community

We got to number three before there was whining and teasing, and time for bed :) We are at a good start 2009 here we are! Raise your hand if you though we would have flying cars by now, I know for real, I am so disappointed with back the future.
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Pray for sweet Abby Riggs!!