Monday, November 30, 2009
In bed, and attempting to hinder my leaving him for the night, Isaac began unsnapping the buttons on my western-styled shirt. This is a funny game to him still for some reason...
It began long ago when he was only turning two and not three he would find his way to my belly button and coyly jab his right index finger as deep in as it would go. I would surprise at the electric-like jolt that radiated from said area and then dutifully proclaim in chastising and joking tones "get out of my bellybutton!" To which Isaac's response would be seizures of glee as he laughed hysterically at this game of trumped up pain, and pretense of intrusion. He would then double his efforts to reach that same spot in order to get a similar faux-reaction of surprise and harassment. Ahh... the crazy little games we play that lead our children into the therapist's office later on in life... but I digress.
Tonight he didn't look for my bellybutton as he pulled at my shirt. Standing there in his room, I sang him "twinkle twinkle little star," and he matched me with word and pitch and my heart soared.
Pulling the last button/snap open, he wraps his arms around me inside of my newly opened shirt, and lays his head on my chest and sighs. "I love you daddy"
"I love you too buddy," My heart brakes. "Isaac, I made a mistake" I started "When you didn't listen earlier about taking the leash off the dog and she ran away, I spanked you and I shouldn't have. I was angry, and what I did was wrong. I'm sorry I hurt you buddy" my voice is high and tears are flowing at this point. "I should have waited, and maybe just put you in time out, will you forgive me?"
He looks up into my face to try and understand what is going on, what he should be feeling in the presence of his father's tears and he begins to weep too. "I love you so much daddy. I'm sorry I took her collar off., I'm sorry I took her collar off, I'm sorry..." I stop him.
"Buddy, you didn't know, the only thing you did wrong was not listen... I forgive you for taking off the collar."
So gently with head still buried in my chest he says, "I forgive you too."
"Does your bottom still hurt?" I ask.
"No, it doesn't hurt anymore"
"Does your heart feel okay?"
"Yes it does," and with bright eyes "We're not sad anymore, daddy! That's so good!" to which we both must smile.
" Daddy," he asks "Can I have that shirt tonight?
I take it off and hand it to him. It smells of me, my work outside, my deodorant, and cologne. I ask as I leave, Do you like to smell daddy when you're in bed?.
A broad smile creeps onto his face. "I do, and, my friends, and Zoe, and caffeine (long story but true words), and food and mommy" You see all of those were the smells on my shirt.
It was then I realized it was more than a comfort trinket for the night. It was the story of his day our day, and our relationship. It was of mowing the grass, playing with the dog, running errands for Life Group, brownies, coffee, kissing on mom, wrestling with his Lifegroup friends, all the food we ate; and buried under everything are deodorant, and the perfume of reconciled emotions to mistakes I made out of frustration and haste.
My shirt tonight, as it is stuffed underneath little boy chin, and little boy arm, represents what it means to truly desire a person. To really take me in for all I am, every heinous act, horrid smell, outside musk, and look deeply into my eyes and say "can I have your shirt tonight?
Of course you can my son...Can I borrow one of yours to snuggle up next to as well? I prefer the one that started out soft in the morning and by mid afternoon felt plastic, and by night you were wearing sandpaper, because of all the food and grit stuck between fibers. That 's the one I want. I want your whole day Ike, right next to me while I sleep.
Yes, I'm a father, I'm weird, but I am so desperately in love with the people God has given me to love, that anything more might cause me to burst.
Friday, November 20, 2009
It's been a crazy couple of months - but that's nothing new!!! I've been going nonstop (or so it feels) with Doctor Appointments for the kiddos and me, a road trip to NY with a dear friend, organizing all of our adoption paperwork, and just regular old "life stuff." It's been a season of change, joy, sorrow, hope and anticipation for the future!
I am finally starting to feel better - no more puking all day every day. With the other four pregnancies, I didn't start feeling semi-normal until about 25 weeks - with this one, it was at about 16 weeks that I was having more good days than bad. For that, I am EXTREMELY thankful. God is good, and merciful and faithful! We had an ultrasound a couple weeks ago. Everything looks good and we found out we are having another BOY! All four kids came with us and watched the little guy on the screen - so fun, and I hope, so memorable for them.
The adoption process is going very well. Our home study is complete, approved, and in the hands of the adoption agency! We hope to have our Dossier complete and sent out by the 1st week in December, pending some notarization of documents (quite an ordeal, let me tell you)! I have been cautiously diving into the world of adoption grants, loans, and fund raisers. The kids have decided they would like to help raise some money and are making bracelets to sell. Macey is quite the little sales person and already has two or three sold - before they are even made! I will be posting some pictures of the finished products soon if anyone out there in blogland would like to contribute.
We do have some specific prayer requests if you are a praying person: Finances are probably the top request right now - we need to raise about $6000 dollars in the next few months. Typing that, it sounds daunting, but I know my God is big and that is totally a doable amount for Him! The second request is for a vehicle. We've decided that we are going to be "that family." The one with the 12 passenger van...! I am actually kind of excited...more room, more seats - more kids! We are looking, praying for a good deal. When we first started thinking about adoption I really felt a vehicle is something that God would provide for us, w/out a lot of stress involved. I'm holding onto that, and trying not to panic as the time draws closer.
I'll leave you with a couple pictures of the last few months. Enjoy:
Micah jammin' with his friend Brighten:The whole crew at Historic Bratonsville:
21 Week Belly Shot:
The kiddos at the airshow:
My loves inside a war plane:
Saturday, October 17, 2009
To Love Deeply
How do you love, really love, when you know the object of your love is temporary? How do you do relationship the way relationship was meant to be when there is the possibility, the probability, that the closeness of relationship will be compromised?
How do you embrace change, and not run screaming in the other direction?
When we moved to SC a little over a year ago, we had a feeling that it was not to be a permanent location. We didn’t know exactly what that meant (and still don’t) but neither of us felt that this was to be our last move. When we started building relationships and strengthening existing ones, I knew in the recesses of my heart that at some point we would have to say goodbye. I just always figured it would be us doing the leaving – that’s way easier, right? I’d be the one pulling the rug out, not the other way around…ummm…maybe not so much!
In the 15 months that we’ve been here, we’ve been blessed with friendships with like-minded, like-spirited friends. It is an amazing thing to connect, and to keep connecting on a level that is not found every day. Depth ordained by God, community that is uncommon. When we first started feeling the kindling of the flame of friendship, my first instinct was to pull back…to preserve myself from the pain of saying goodbye. If you are not invested in something, it is way easier to let go.
But then I was thrust into a situation, albeit willingly, where the overwhelming theme was “love deeply the ones that are with you, while they are with you.” I watched an amazing woman of God struggle with that very thing, and though I was not in her shoes, per say, I felt and learned right along side of her. When someone comes into your life for an undetermined amount of time, what is your reaction? Do you dive in? Do you wade slowly, cautiously, trying to find your footing? Do you turn and run back to the safety of the shore? Do you immerse yourself, knowing that those you love may be ripped away?
I witnessed this woman seek and struggle and laugh and cry. I watched her surrender to her desire to love the way Christ loves…with all that she is, no matter what. To give everything she knew how to, holding nothing back, though the outcome was uncertain. She probably has no clue what an eternal impact this had on my life - on the way I do relationship.
So, here I am now, watching friends leave. Saying goodbye to “those” types of friends. You know, the ones you will have for…ever. I do feel sad, I do feel kind of like the rug has been pulled. But, in the midst of it, I feel peace. I know they are all where God has placed them. I would rather have them there – whether it be 3000 or 300 miles away, than next door to me. There is comfort in knowing that I have loved to the best of my ability – flawed and wounded though it may be – I have loved.
A great man of God once told us to “hold lightly to people, places, and possessions.” Hard, but true and necessary. If our palms are open, if our plans are moldable on the potters wheel, if our hearts are softened to the leading of Love, than change is not quite as scary as once thought.
Friday, July 31, 2009
Kylie and Caleb received their class assignments for school today. It's pretty crazy to think that I'll have two in school this year. They grow up so stinkin' fast! Speaking of growing...we just recently found out I am are growing another Thompson! Baby will be here in late in March or Early April. We're not quite sure how this will effect the adoption, but we are still pushing through with it. From what we can tell, infant referrals from Ethiopia are about 7-10 months out - so they could be arriving at or very close to the same time - crazy, exciting, scary, wonderful!
It is so easy to shy away from what we feel God calling us to because of the enormity of it in the moment. But, over and over and over again, espeically during this season, I have felt God saying "My grace IS sufficient, I AM made perfect in your weakness." And, oh - how my weakness is magnified on a daily basis. There is nothing like being a parent to highlight my shortcomings. And there is nothing like knowing His mercies are new EVERY day to keep me going!
Friday, July 17, 2009
Wow - what a year! July 11th marked one year for the Thompson Clan in South Carolina - it's been a year of adventure, discovery, new beginnings. Kylie successfully finished her first year in public school and she and Caleb are getting ready to start back - she in 1st grade and he in Kindergarten. Macey has fully embraced her life as a 4 year old (as of the 14th of July)! She loves all things ballet and barbies and will tell you about any of those things, and more....all. day. long - I love it! Micah turned two a month ago and is quite the little man. I would say his favorite thing right now is the guitar (tar) and pic (he calls it a key) and daddies guitar pedals. He loves to walk around holding it saying "two, one, two, one - sing!"
Jason and I celebrated our 9 year anniversary at the end of May! I could not imagine walking through this life with anyone other than him. I look forward to the next phase of our lives, exploring, learning, laughing and loving!
So that's what has been happening...now to what we are looking forward to -
Some of you who follow this blog and know us personally know that Jason and I have had a heart for adoption for a couple years. We have talked and prayed, sought council and advice from family and friends and followed (stalked?) quite a few blogs on the subject. After a big push from God and clear "now is the time," we are now officially "in the process" of adopting a child from Ethiopia!
For those of you who are familiar with the adoption process, we have completed our homestudy and adoption application. We are waiting for our dossier packet to arrive (hopefully this week) and applying for the I-600 and visas, and passports. We are also working on raising the funds we will need when we turn in our dossier.
We are excited, scared, nervous, thrilled and amazed! It's been quite a journey to get to this point. We have not always been on the same page, but our God is so faithful and has gently brought us to the same vision for our family. He is a beautiful God!
We ask that you pray for us as we walk in this new phase of our lives - pray for wisdom, for divine provision, for grace for us and Kylie, Caleb, Macey, and Micah. Also for favor with the courts and most of all - please pray for our baby in Ethiopia; that he/she will be kept safe and loved, that he/she will know that their family loves them and is working on bringing them home!
I hope to be able to update this blog more regularly - how many times have I said that? School is starting soon, so maybe, just maybe, the craziness of summer will subside a bit...but who knows?!!
Thursday, June 04, 2009
I did have the wherewithal, however, to capture a few pictures:
Tuesday, June 02, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
We had just gotten back from a massive trip to BJ's. I had found these whole wheat tortillas that I was excited to try with some hummus and veggies. The older kids were wandering around the back yard and Micah was playing inside while I unloaded the groceries. I came in to find this:
Apparently you should never leave a hungry-almost-two-year-old alone, even for a second, with a whole table of food....he's quite crafty, and very cute!!!
And just because I thought it was sooooo freakin' amazing, here's a couple pictures of an awesome storm that rolled in last night. I would have taken more pictures, but the neighbor was looking at me weird...I think he though I was taking pictures of his house. Anyway, the storm was loud and intense - such a beautiful, frightening display of the Creator's power - kind of like Him - Beautiful, Frightening, Awesome!
Sunday, May 24, 2009
I've been thinking a lot about risk lately. Now, more than ever before in my life, I feel God is asking, and I am more aware, of risk. The unknown, the unseen.
I really don't like the "idea" of risk. I like to know what will happen: how, when, the definite outcome, how it will effect me and my family, what it will look like in the future. Kind of makes me think of what a wise man said once "Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things unseen." Ahhh...the unseen, the unknown. That's the hardest part for me. Kinda like taking a leap of a cliff, simply because your Daddy told you too and He said He would catch you.
I have been seeing risk in all sorts of areas in my life lately. There is risk in love, in relationship, in obedience. God asked us to move across the country and be part of what He is doing here...a bit risky by my calculations! There are other things God is asking us to do lately that sound just a little out of the box, a little unexpected in most people's opinions.
I am so grateful that God is not a God of the ordinary...He dwells outside of the box, He requires risk, He desires us to live in crazy faith! I love that there is blessing in obedience. I am more and more convinced that if we are truly seeking His will, His face, then whichever way we turn, whatever path we take, He will bless us!
So, bring on the unknown, let us walk in the unseen. If that is where You are, that is where I want to be...I want to jump!
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
I've never had to "hunt" for a church. Granted, I've been a voice in the decision before, but the final decision has never rested mostly on my shoulders. When I was younger, I went where my parents went. When Jason and I were newly married, the transition from my parents church to his was natural. For nine years, we were happy, content, challenged, blessed, stretched, and HOME at The Bridge.
Enter: "the move." Honestly, I think leaving The Bridge, the amazing friends we had there and our superb pastors (Tom and Nadine) was one of the hardest things we had to do. But, we knew God was calling us, wooing us, moving us. It was clear.
So, we left our home and ventured to the great state of South Carolina. Thus began the hunting journey. We tried a couple different churches. Big and small; crazy and not-so-crazy! They all had different, unique "feels." None were "bad," but neither did they feel like "home."
We were given a word from a woman I admire and respect deeply before we left. "You are being given a new set of tools to use in SC. Don't look for the familiar, don't depend on the familiar." Hmmmm....what could this mean. How would it apply to churches. Were we to find ourselves in a huge, traditional, conservative church? Were we to not look for the "home" feeling? How would we know...when would we know?
A few months were spent at a big (Really, really big) church. It was annointed, it was moving with the Spirit, both Jason and I were ministered to, but for some reason we never felt it was right. This led me to think - what is important in "church." What is essential; what should or should not effect the decision; what are is just a matter of preference? Can you, should you, allow your kids comfort at church to be a factor, and how big of one? Do you look for a place where you can be ministered too, or is it more improtant to find a place where you can serve? Can there be a healthy balance of both? Can you compromise on some things - or on nothing? I'd be interested to hear other's feedback on these questions...?!
We have found a place - we feel like God is moving there, like the pastor has God's attention, and that God is excited about where He is taking this church. It is somewhat familiar - it looks like The Bridge, but in so many ways is so very different. The kids (even Caleb) enjoy going - they love Sunday school and are quickly making friends. I am being challenged in the concept of an organized, official denomination again...who would have thought!? We know this is where God has landed us for now, there is peace and great anticipation...that's gotta be good, right?
I still miss the Bridge - a lot! But, for everything, there is a season....and God designs each one to be beautiful and fruitful...
Until next time....