The Passing of Days, Birth Families, and Pictures

We have loved our Littles since the moments we saw their faces peering back at us from the screen in Fall of 2012. We have watched the days pass as they grow through pictures. We have seen beautiful babies with yellow skin and eyes turn pink under the care of surgeons and medical staff. We have seen the fat of their legs and the rolls on their wrists enlarge as they are fed and cared for. We have seen their beds, their toys, their cloths, their care givers. We have seen. I can not describe the difficulty of watching them grow via pictures and not in my arms.

But my heart aches with their birth families. They aren’t watching them grow in any way. They aren’t seeing. They don’t know. They can only wonder. What does that do to the heart of a mom, to a dad, to birth grand parents, to those who love them? Oh my heart.

You see they have loved them since the moment they knew they were pregnant, since the moment they felt them kick or move. Since the moment they heard their first cries, changed their first diapers, took in their smell, tickled their little toes, and kissed their cheeks.

We don’t know what life circumstances, emotions, and decisions preceded both of their relinquishments. But we do know Fin and Mae were both visibly very sick. So we can assume their families knew they needed care. From that point we are left to wonder.

How I wish I could hug their mommy’s necks and tell them that their babies are being cared for. That their babies are alive. That their babies are thriving. How I wish they could see pictures. That they could know. That peace of mind could fill their wondering hearts.

Each day that passes without Fin and Mae home in our arms, I am not only reminded of our loss, I am reminded that their birth families are also grieving their absence. They are without their babies too.

Adoption and foster care are not without loss. They are because of it. There is a fracture in what should be. Yes, what is and what can be have the potential to be beautifully redemptive. I am in no way taking away from the beauty of adoption. I am a mommy b/c of adoption. Adoption is my life, my world, my hope. But to fully understand the depth of adoption, we must see the loss. My kids need us to see the loss. Our birth families need us to see the loss. My own heart needs us to see the loss. Out of the loss we can see healing. We can see restoration.

My prayer for each of our 4 internationally adopted children is that their birth families could KNOW that their beloved babies are loved with a love beyond words and that they are safe. Our domestically adopted kiddos mommas have the gift of knowing this already, but our other four birth families do not.

The first picture we saw of Fin


After the Kasai surgery

Quentin Original(1)

Growing up



The first picture we saw of Mae


After the Kasai Surgery

MaeGrowing Up

MaeMaeCan’t wait to kiss those cheeks!



2 thoughts on “The Passing of Days, Birth Families, and Pictures”

  1. Tona, Been meaning to ask you – how does one contribute to the adoption costs?

    Loved your blog post today. Touching. with love, Brandi

  2. Loss is so real. We felt it immediately as we heard Jack’s birth mother wailing in the back room of the agency as she signed the papers……Then she came out and embraced us and we wept together. We wept even more as we took her home, got her settled into her home again, and then kissed her goodbye….taking her son with us. It felt so broken. It was absolutely the worst feeling and the best feeling rolled into one. I was a mommy….finally. But at such a great expense. I remember realizing that I would also have to grieve the loss of being completely happy that I was a mommy. Every day I see her face in Jack’s eyes, nose, and toes….. We love her dearly…and are so thankful to have a relationship with her and with Joy’s birth mom as well. Treasures. Absolute gifts to our children. But reading your heart on here……thinking about those sweet birthparents who wonder….who never forget……This breaks my heart to the core. Oh, how wonderful it would be if you could let them know…… May God grant them the peace that we cannot give….

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