adoption and my impatience

adoption and my impatience, photo by dominik martin
photo by dominik martin 

This post was originally titled “Adoption and Patience,” and then I was like, what? No. Who am I fooling? This is all about adoption and my impatience.

I am impatient. Very impatient. Choosing adoption as the primary means to grow our family has stirred this up over and over and over again. It’s been an interesting journey.

When we started an international adoption in May 2012, I wanted to ram through every step as quickly as possible. And it really worked for a while! We received a referral before we expected, we sailed through the first steps of court and getting a passport, and we began preparing a room for our sons. Of course it was all halted shortly after that, and I, spoiled from the smooth sailing, bucked against any sort of waiting.

There were absolutely days (months!) of depression and anger and the deepest impatience and disgust for waiting that I have ever experienced. I believed I could control when these boys would come into our home, and I believed I had made decisions that prevented it from happening already. There was a decision to not overnight some paperwork that still haunts me.

But, as a year and counting of waiting unfolded, I began to see the damage of my impatience. My mood was sour, and my husband was hurt by words I directed at him because I wasn’t brave enough to direct them at God. I began to accept that while many decisions in life are within my control, the result of those decisions are outside of my control. (And yes, I would do it all again knowing what I know now.)

So, I had mastered patience. Right?

And then we started a concurrent domestic adoption in September. And up sprouted the weeds of impatience I had worked to hack down. My impatience is magnified by the delicate timing of the situation we find ourselves in. But I also felt like I deserved an easy road at it this time. How easily I forget the family-growing journeys others are daily experiencing that are far more trying than my own.

We gathered our home study materials at lightning speed, having done this all before. We communicated our desire for a quick home study, and, for the most part, our social worker got it done. Okay, we’re approved, I thought, now surely we’ll get the call next week! You are laughing because you see the foolishness in this, aren’t you? It’s hard for me to accept that there’s still work He wants to do in the area of my patience. 

Through almost every wait I’ve experienced — the years-long waits down to the one-more-day waits — I can usually look back and see the purpose. This in itself is a mark of true growth since adoption became a thing that we are doing.

So, while we wait for what may be three children who may soon live in this home, I will accept that He has my best interests in mind. And He wants to see a more patient Natalie. And He delights in the extra time we have had to prepare our home and go on more dates and learn more about parenting adopted children and turn to Him in deeper pursuit than He’s seen from us. I’ll keep reminding myself of that.

  • This is so beautiful! I tend to be a VERY impatient person, let’s-take-the-bull-by-the-horns attitude so God has really had to work on my heart (and attitude sometimes) when it comes to waiting patiently for Him. Praying for you and your family during this time of waiting 🙂

  • Ashley Smith

    Another great post! I would like to offer for your consideration that God MAY be working in other areas or other circumstances that are not about you or your patience at all. (But of course that totally COULD be his focus…) The reason I say that is because I’ve often felt closest to God while I suffer, so what incentive does He have to make my life smooth? The answer is, God is a good and loving God who delights in giving His children the godly desires of their hearts. And though He’s not a genie, He’s also not vindictive. You may never know this side of heaven what is taking so darn long, but do know that God sees, and he cares.