Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Waiting Room (Lost Days)

I am home.  It's been strange. 

People will walk up and congratulate me and ask where the kids are. 
They aren't here.  I left them in Ethiopia without a choice or a say in the matter.  They are now our legal children, Moses Paul Roepnack and Miriam Paul Roepnack, but we must wait for a US Embassy appointment in a few months to fly out and pick them up.

In the meantime, we got a few new pics from some wonderful traveling parents.  Buried within one of the albums, we found a video of our girl, taking her first unassisted steps.  As soon as it cued up, I began cheering her on... yelling into the computer, clapping, screaming...

"GOOD GIRL!!!  Mama's so proud! 
Good girl, Miriam...!!!"

....And the video cuts out. 


Not long after, Paul took the girls upstairs, and I began my nightly chores.

Suddenly, my knees buckled, I hit the floor, and I had my first BIG cry.  The open-mouthed, punched in the stomach, heart in your throat, can't even breath, big ugly cry. 

I thought of my how she can't hear me cheering for her.

I thought of the day I walked away and left them behind.

I thought of all these lost days.

I thought of the picture I recieved a week after I got home, of my sweet girl sitting alone on a concrete floor in a Bumbo chair (she hates sitting in Bumbo chairs) and still wearing the pajamas I brought for our slumber parties, and my insides scream for Mercy

I thought of my son, and his brand new growing "fro",
 and how I long to run my fingers through his hair and rock my strong little man to sleep. 

   I thought of Laura

We were supposed to be walking this path together.



God doesn't leave mothers alone on the floor.  

When Jesus was struggling for breath on the cross, he was arranging for his own mother's care.  It was one of the last things he did before he died under the weight of our sins.  He gave Mary to John, the "disciple that he loved".  And she lived with John from that day forward.

I am living in that place.  I am in John's house.

I know people want to know what it's like to be in this limbo... 

...To be in the waiting room.

They ask all the time;  prospective adoptive parents, adoption blog-stalkers, ambulance chasers....And in the questions, I can feel them weighing it out against their own abilities... 

They know adoption is hard...but HOW HARD is it? 

They are thinking the same thing I was when I would ask about timelines, travel, finances...they are wondering if they can handle it, or if they even want to. 

For all of you who want to know: 

You CAN'T handle it. 
It's too hard.

God handles it. 
And He makes it easy.

He gives you the kind of faith you need to leave your two babies behind in an orphanage and fly home without them, even though after only 11 days, you love those children as much as you love the children you labored and bled for.  It's unthinkable.

He creates even more joy in your life than you ever thought possible.  You get to watch Him create beauty from ashes within your own soul without any help from you. 

God gives an incredible gift to adoptive parents:

He gives you a broken heart, put together in a new way. 
More like His.  You get to undergo Heavenly heart surgery at the Hands of the Master Craftsman.

And when that heart breaks all over again, and you find yourself lying on the floor with a dishrag in your hand, He fixes it.  He makes it better. 

He gives you your lost days BACK.


Thank you for our Boy.

The Hope of Christ moves your hand back and forth across the counter, wiping crumbs, and setting you back into your mother-motions.

He guides my eyes up to the picture of my children's Nannies that I hung over my sink only moments before...

And He tells me that He's got it covered.

He tells me that nothing is lost in Him. 

He tells me that He will give me back all of these "lost days" with my children 100 times over in His name. 

Because there are no such thing as lost days within Christ. 

All those days. 
All 32 years before I surrendered to Him. 
Not one of them wasted. 
All of them put to good use for His purposes.

He promises restoration. 

And I believe.

I walk upstairs with sippy cups in hand, to love the daughters that wait for me.  I take a quick peek at a decorated and empty nursery, and I thank God almighty for His perfect timing. 

It is well...with my soul...

I would not trade this wait for anything. 

For Laura, 
I love you. 
No lost days, no lost anything.


  1. Wow. Powerful post and one day this wait will be a blip in time, even though it doesn't feel like it now. Hang in there!!

  2. I've never been very good at putting words to describe this wait. You have, you have said it so well. Thank you for sharing this! Praying for you all!

  3. Words to help us understand just a "little" bit. Thanks. Pat W.

  4. This was so beautiful. Incredibly beautiful...

  5. How true it is that all of this is FAR beyond our own strenght-and if we even try it on our own, we will surely fall. But with HIM, all things are possible.

    Thanks for a beautifully written expression of His love for us and His provision for our children.

    And by the way, I just LOVE those nanny pictures. I've never seen such an out pouring of love and tender care as I did in those Ethiopian care centers.

    We are truly blessed that our children receive such amazing care in our absence.


  6. Don't ever forget these days!! After our meeting a few weeks ago, I have been praying for your family and those beauties in Ethiopia. I hope our paths cross again soon. I have been there...and I TOTALLY agree...YOU can't do it. God DOES give us more than we can handle. Stay on your knees - He is able! Hugs!

  7. Missy, I love you. Just read yur blog today. As you are aware, I have been struggling - with my faith, my hope. Struggling with the enormous regret of running from God for so long, wasting so much time, and now I battle cancer with an uncertain future. I've known you such a short time, but I feel closer to you than most in my life. And although we live only two front yards apart, we unfortunately have been unable to physically be around each other due to my chemotherapy. I miss you terribly. And yet you touch me - without hugging you, without holding your hand, without sitting on your couch sharing tea, you touch me - with your incredible words of love and encouragement, with our talks on the phone, with your waves from your window. YOU give me hope when I feel empty. You love me like God loves me. Thank you, thank you for your love and for helping me find God's love when I feel blinded. Thank you. I love you,

  8. I love you, Laura. So much.

    You taught me to be confident of myself, because I have caught you on numerous occassions bragging about how "great" I am to others, even when I don't feel "great" about myself.

    You give me hope during a time that I needed it...if I didn't have hope in God's promises for YOU and for my kids right now, I would be a wasted mess. You are so brave, so graceful, so loving, and I am so proud of you.

    You taught me that it is possible to truly live without fear of the worst thing, and that it is possible to give thanks in a storm. And you have demonstrated God's love for ME, too, by loving me no matter what. No matter how much the chemo keeps us apart right now, I look across the street and I KNOW you love me as much today as ever.

    I pray that we will witness miracles together. I pray for a culdesac filled with a rainbow of children, mine and yours. Miracles. I love you. I'm WITH you!!!

  9. I am living through this with you and waiting for the return.... knowing these days are not lost.

  10. I am living these days with you and know they are not lost.... waiting for return.

  11. Your words are beautiful; your heart behind the words even more. I know this feeling - this heartwrenching, deep, deep longing. I will pray for you as you wait...

  12. Thank you for sharing your aching and His faithfulness. It is true - even in the midst of unbearable pain. These days are not lost, never lost, for He is working. In His own perfect timing, He is working. Prayers for you.

  13. Thank you for sharing your aching and His faithfulness. It is true - even in the midst of unbearable pain. The days are not lost, never lost. He is working. In His own perfect timing, He is working. Prayers for you.

  14. yep. the wait pretty much stinks. but there's just something to be said about clinging onto Hope. i've had an ugly cry or two myself, and i know that He is right there with me in the midst of the sobs.


Thank you for your words and support.