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Sunday, July 1, 2012

Indelible



Keri asked, what was written on my heart; indelible.  I had to look up the meaning of indelible. :)
"Etched, permanently".....

There is something written on my heart; indelible. :) I would like to share it.  Hopefully, I live it, every day.
The Love of Christ is written on my heart. The GOSPEL, good news, is written on my heart.
The call from Scripture to LOVE, and to care for the orphan and widow is written on my heart.
I pray that LOVE, indelible, is etched there forever..

Today was a hard day.  I missed services for the last two, yes TWO weeks, and this turned into week number THREE....
One week Anna had a terrible sunburn. Our sunscreen didn't work.  The next week, I was in the emergency room with an infection, and then, today happened.

We came back from camp. I fully expected some fall out with Miss Alli because we left and she didn't get to go.  I just expected it yesterday and not today.  Yesterday went great!  Today not so.

I had fully planned to attend fellowship, and was really looking forward to it.  Alli was out of sorts all morning, and I so wanted her to stop what she was doing.  I figured if we just got in the car, she would settle herself down on the way.
That was not to be.
Anna always goes with Daddy to get Miss Joy from the Nursing Home, so they were already at church by the time we got there.  I asked Sarah and Erika to go ahead and we'd be in soon.
I had hoped to encourage her, but it didn't work out that way. 

She dug in and then the words started pouring out of her mouth.  I was a liar.   What was my crime? What did I lie about?  There was never an answer to that.   Trauma doesn't make sense; but it does hurt. 
I was caught off guard.  I finally got her out of the car and she was to go into her class, where daddy teaches, but the entire time was insisting I was only trying to embarrass or humiliate her.  I simply told her this was not the case.  She was embarrassed because of her own behavior not mine. I have nothing to be embarrassed about.  I would never try to humiliate her ever, and she knows this; but I had a class to help teach, and I wasn't there. 
I felt so bad about letting my co teacher down. :(

But I told Miss Alli that she was important, and I needed her to understand that she was my priority.
She was reduced to a 2 year old refusing to go into class, so we went home. 

I have to say, I was not a happy mommy.  Tears flowed.  I really NEEDED to be there, and I wasn't.
I know many may not understand or may think I should have done something different, but when Trauma invades, it is overwhelming and powerful.  All I could see was the best thing to do was to go home and start over.

Once we were home, she started to ask me if I wanted her to clean or help with dishes. Did I want her to check on the chickens? Feed the fish?  Take out the trash? 
I told her no. I don't.  What I want is for her to trust me and trust daddy.  I want her to NOT call me a liar and to control her tongue.  I want her to be a part of a HAPPY FAMILY and to understand that ALL of us are human beings, who live and breathe and feel.
With that last statement she muttered, "And what am I , an alien?"
THERE WAS MY KEY..... She didn't include herself in my statement "all of us are human beings"... 
She was back to us vs. her. 
It is such a difficult bridge to get past!  She has crossed it many times, and then retreated.
I cannot wait for the day she crosses it and BURNS the way back!
I cannot wait for the day that she FULLY embraces her family and never looks back.

We had a very good talk about what happened this morning and also discussed once again what true repentance is.  The "I'm sorry with attitude, vs. the "Mom, I am truly sorry", and there is positive action afterwards.  There is CHANGE with a repentant heart.  She wants this, I know. I have no doubt. Sometimes, she just gets stuck.  Today was one of those days.

But the Lord has called me to patiently wait, patiently guide, and patiently bear the burdens of pain that those of us who work with children of trauma, bear.
Sometimes it is lonely. Sometimes it is triumphant.
Today, it is lonely.
I miss my friend J.J. who used to live so close. 

So how am I living out the gospel?  How am I loving?  The scripture says to "Bear one another's burdens and so fulfill the Law of Christ."  
I am bearing Alli's burdens... I am taking her before the Lord, I am choosing to love her, when she is choosing to hurt. 
She asked about punishment and if she could pick one.  I told her no.   She needs to trust us.
If we feel she would benefit from a reminder, we will be the ones to decide such a thing.
I think she is wondering about this right now. :)   That last little bit of possible "control", cloaked in "how about if you give me THIS consequence" was taken away. :)

I told her I do not like punishment and consequences. I WANT her to learn from true discipline, not punishment. I explained to her the difference between the two.  She was deeply listening.  We are past the events of the day and she has been really doing well since noon time.

Me?  After being sick, going to camp, coming back and this.... I am rather exhausted.
I choose NOT to have TRAUMA written on my heart, indelible...... It is there, but I pray that the only thing INDELIBLE will be the LOVE of Jesus Christ.
And as for Miss Alli, I pray that our love for her, and the Love of Christ will be written on her heart, INDELIBLE~! :)


4 comments:

Keri said...

a beautiful beautiful, heart-wrenching post. I have had so many days like this with Nastia these past seven years. I know that deep pain and loneliness. God, Love Incarnate, knows our loneliness and sits by us for every minute of it. He is there, holding our hands though we dont feel it ofteen.

You are one of my greatest teachers, Christie, and it is posts like these that remind me to be ever-vigilant about patience for my daughter. It is so easy to snap. You remind me, always, to take the higher road. I will ALWAYS be grateful to you for that. I love you and admire you, my dear dear friend! And I LOVE what is written on your heart!!!!

Annie said...

I am with Keri. I feel like God himself provided you as a support for me. There are other good "trauma mamas" out there....but somehow you speak to my heart in a way no one else does.

I tend to think her "consequence" (as it were) was to help you by having her photo taken to illustrate the post. That is cute.

JJ said...

In that 1st photo above, you could put a mole on her nose and call Alli the Wicked Witch of the West...while in the latter, bottom photo...Princess Alli. Attitude IS everything! And, many of our kids are more greatly affected by changes in family dynamics than we realize. Thank you for continuing to tell Alli's story, knowing it helps so many others.

Mike and Christie said...

Thank you all for your kind words.
Today has been a really good day. We seem to be back to normal.

I do think that Miss Alli is connecting well enough MOST of the time that we decided to give her an actual consequence. She cannot use the computer until Saturday.
She was not expecting this, and we did not allow her to participate (control) any followup.... I brought her into the rocking chair and told her that daddy and I had talked and felt it would be appropriate to help her remember to control her tongue. She smiled and agreed.
I also told her that if the word liar comes out of her mouth towards me again, no matter the reason, for each time, she will lose a day of computer.
She agreed that this would help her remember to NOT do that and use the tools given.

I would NEVER do this with a newly adopted child, or with a child who could not understand cause effect. But she has REALLY come a long way in this area, so it is a new tool in OUR toolbox to try.
We shall see! :)

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