Welcome!

May you be edified here and see adoption through the eyes of adopted, foster, and aged-out kids of all ages. And, for fellow adoptees and foster kids, may your complex identity become unshakable.

My story is that I’ve gone from nameless to shameless. Immediately after my birth, my mother disappeared, and I was named Baby X.  When reuniting with her at 47, I learned shameful circumstances surrounding my conception. However, I know now that my conception began not at physical conception, but in the heart of God my Father. He has shown me that I am His jewel.

Thanks again for stopping by!

 

An Unexpected Prescription for Adoption Grief

 

How To Grieve Loss

It is extremely difficult for those touched by adoption–whether adoptee, birth parent, or adoptive parent, to keep their balance in the midst of deep grieving and loss. I was surprised to find how Job (of the Bible) handled it. And, he ended up in the latter part of his life being better off than before loss–he was given double blessing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dear friends through adoption and foster care,

If you could talk to someone who could tell you how to keep your balance in the midst of grieving adoption loss, would you listen?

Are you desperate enough to listen?

Desperate to listen to God?

If so, what do you think he would prescribe for painful adoption loss?

  • Stiff upper lip?
  • Game of pretend?
  • Happy face?
  • Bite the bullet theology?
  • Attend every adoption convention in the world?

I was relieved to discover that Scripture indicates the opposite.

Instead of the above, God prescribes worship.

I can hear my fellow adoptee friends saying, “You must be kidding, Sherrie. Why would God prescribe worship for painful adoption loss? And, besides, what is worship, anyway?”

Let’s take a closer look at Job and at the same time, see if we can identify with his suffering.

  • Job’s servants were knifed to death
  • Sheep were killed by lightening
  • Camels were stolen
  • All of his children died in a monstrous tornado (he lost his family….sound familiar?)

Job’s pain was unimaginable, just like many of you.

“Yet in the midst of the pain, Joe responded with worship.

Yes…worship….go figure!

How did he worship?

Did he belt out all of four stances of the Great Is Thy Faithfulness hymn ? Did he sing a religious song on his knees? Did he quote Romans 8:28 repetitively?

No…Job did three simple things:

  1. He verbalized his primal pain. “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart.”
  2. He acknowledged blessings as well as the losses.”The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away.
  3. He offered a sacrifice of praise: “May the name of the Lord be praised.”

This is how God defines worship.

Surprising, isn’t it?

How about us?

Are we willing to enter into transparent, Job-like worship by verbalizing our primal pain to God? Are we willing to acknowledge the painful losses of adoption along with the blessing? Are we willing to offer a sacrifice of praise and thank a good God that our lives have been sovereignly touched by adoption?

If Job, a blameless and upright man worshipped God in the midst of suffering like this, dare we you any less?

Selah (Think about it).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Connecting with Your Incredible Adopted Child

Dear friends,

We adoptees look through glasses that are cracked by trauma and loss and oftentimes, it’s so hard to see. We need you as our journey mate. Here are some tips about entering the delicate world of your adopted kids:

HOW TO ENTER THE WORLD OF THE ADOPTED CHILD

  1. Acknowledge the reality of adoption from day one (with newborns, foster kids, adoptees). Talk realities!
  2. Initiate conversations about the child’s pre-adoption perceptions.
  3. Validate the adoptee’s identity by never speaking ill of the birth family. Show respect to the role of the parent but not the performance.
  4. Create a safe, non-judgmental place where the adoptee can freely express any thought or emotion. “I hate her.”
  5. Celebrate the differences between the adoptive and birth families that you see in your child.
  6. Be sensitive to the child’s unspoken need for a sense of connection to his past. A photo?
  7. Respect the adoptee’s ned to consider searching for birth relatives, or in an open adoption, for a “date” with birth mom or dad.
  8. Be emotionally present.
  9. Become an expert in helping your child learn how to regulate emotions. Tell her you want to stay and connect with her when she’s hurting.
  10. Learn how to play!

HOW TO MISS ENTRANCE INTO YOUR CHILD’S WORLD

  1. Avoid the topic of adoption as long as possible. Hope that the child never asks about his/her past.
  2. Deny any differences between the adoptee and adoptive family. Tell child she fits right in because she looks like you.
  3. Correct any expression of uncomfortable emotions about adoption by “accentuating the positive.” Count your blessings. Be thankful.
  4. Pretend the adoptee’s life began on adoption day. Don’t mention the child’s birth or birth family.
  5. Enforce the unspoken “no talk rule” through various expressions of body language. A quivering lip or a shaky voice speak volumes. Staring with head down also effective.
  6. Take offense if the child uses words like “real parents.” Interpret them as a slam.
  7. Foster silent shame about the adoptee’s need to consider searching for the birth family. Sarcasm works great. Why not let sleeping dogs lie? Let bygones be bygones.
  8. Just pretend you’re really listening to child. “Lights on, but nobody home.”
  9. Avoid “doing your own emotional and spiritual healing work.” Don’t worry…it’s not about you. Really?
  10. Send your child away to room during temper tantrums.

Love to all as you parent those incredible kids!

Contact me anytime through this post.

 

 

Excerpt from Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew: Purchase here: Http://SherrieEldridge.com/shop 

 

The Real Reason Adoptees Push Themselves

I could just hear Bob saying, “You didn’t have to do that, Sherrie. Such a familiar phrase.

He said it when:

  • I accompanied a fellow adoptee up the steps of the Indiana Capitol building when I was just 10 days out of knee replacement surgery.
  • I invited neighbors in for wine and cheese on the day I got home from my second knee replacement.

You, see, I love to give, give, give.

I give because I want others to feel special or to help lift a heavy burden from their shoulders.

That’s my nature.

Overextending

I also overextend, go the extra mile, and do what my heart tells me.

Just about every fellow adoptee I know has similar desires. My friend, Jody, and I laughed at ourselves one evening long ago when we gathered for a meeting. We were the only ones that brought a gift and we wondered at the time if that trait is characteristic of many adoptees.

Why is it that we are such givers? Why do we over-extend ourselves? Why do we work like dogs?

No matter what the cost, be it rain or shine, by golly, we will be there. We are as faithful as the day is long.

You Didn’t Have to Do That

Yesterday, I was reminded of Bob’s admonition.

While preparing for a meeting at our home, I baked homemade blueberry muffins, washed and used my mom’s china tea cups, picked fresh flowers from the garden, and served salami, cheese, and crackers because the meeting went longer than expected.

The dear women who attended didn’t care if we sipped coffee out of mom’s china tea cups.  They didn’t care if the muffins were homemade. They were simply there to start planning a community outreach.

But, I cared! Big time.

Adoptees Overdoing

Yes, most adoptees love to give and help meet the needs of others. But, when do they draw the line? When do they take care of themselves?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aha! I think we’re getting down to some issues.

Addictive Thinking

First, I get an absolute “high” when I use mom’s tea cups or bake homemade muffins. It is my way of saying, “You are special.”

The high?

That can be characteristic of addictive thinking.

Second, why am I exhausted after over giving? Why am I spent? Isn’t that what God calls us to do and be? To love others more than we love ourselves.

No…God says to love others as we love ourselves.

Because I care more about the needs of others than I do my own. I sacrifice my health for others. I would get zero on a quiz about self care.

But, what if others don’t feel special or know that burdens have lifted?

Anger

Honestly, in my exhaustion, I get mad. Really mad.

Over the years of being an over-giver, I have discovered that when I am in need, people don’t serve me coffee in their mom’s china tea cups. They don’t accompany me by post-op hobbling up Capitol steps.  Nor, do they come bringing wine and cheese when I’m a few days out of knee replacement surgery.

They never meet my expectations.

How could others be so unthoughtful?

I expected tit for tat. I thought if I did it for them, then they would certainly do it for me.

That is stinking thinking.

I believe what our hearts are saying, fellow adoptees, is: ” I want to feel special. I am the one that needs help, not only up Capitol steps, but every step of the way. I am the one who wants to have wine and cheese brought to me.

Someday, that will happen.

Jesus is preparing something phenomenal for those that love Him–a wedding banquet in heaven.

And, in my adoptee heart, I believe He’ll be serving coffee… in exquisite china tea cups.

I’ll feel special, not because of the tea cups, but because of the nail-scarred hands that pour the heavenly coffee.

I can’t wait!

 

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