{Site currently under construction. Grace for my mess?}

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Heartbreak, High School Style

"He has a girlfriend now and I really think he is changing his mind about wanting this adoption to happen."

She says it frantic through static on the line, and this is what I feared, too, but couldn't—wouldn't—admit to, not with the foster babies getting ready to move out, not with having to keep my heart intact while I watch them shuffle headlong into a painful future and can do nothing to stop it. He wouldn't bring us this far in the adoption of this boy we already love—a whole year gone by—if it could unravel this easily, would He?

Would He?

The woman on the line wants me to move quickly, take action… do something, anything, to keep this from going the way it could go. 

But I can't give her anything to go on. I can't stop the world from unraveling. I can't be his mother if he won't let me, even if mere weeks ago it was all he wanted in the world.

I am held captive by the ever-important and always fluid social life of the American teenager.

The rumors come by telephone now like they did when I was 15 and I'm back in my high school bedroom somehow with Rolling Stone magazine covers and vodka advertisements littering the walls, holding my breath and willing the pieces of my fragile heart to stay put until I know the truth for sure. I am holding back breath and holding back tears and wondering how love can melt away so easy.

I'm afraid I'm being dumped by a 15-year-old boy.

Traded in for another girl because having a girlfriend is safer for injured boy hearts than having a mother. 

Mothers drink. And mothers die.

And just like the first time, when I was all ribs and elbows, I start to dial his number and pause over the last digit, unable to complete the call. What would I say? How do I ask this burning question? And if the answer is what I fear… what then? What happens next?

Who else will fight for you like I will? Who else will love you every step of the way?

A lot of adoptions don't work out and I scold myself for being so hopeful, for already being his mother.

A lot of mama heartbeats echo beneath ribcages for what should have been, and I know there were never any guarantees in this. But I am reduced, nonetheless, for the fear of what we'll never give him. I am wounded by the fear of being replaced by something temporary and where that will leave him, and I am all ribs and elbows again, all captive-aching heart and whispers to my pillow of no, this can't be happening. But this time, the pillow is his. His pillow, on his bed, in his bedroom, in what was supposed to be his house.  

I have no magazine covers on the walls these days, no room to call my own. No boyfriend troubles or stepfathers or algebra homework or raucous youth retreats to heal tender wounds with laughter. Just a house full of babies from all sorts of bodies and a mama's heart left behind.

No matter what happens, child...
                 I will love you every step of the way. 

Linking up to Imperfect Prose, back from its summer hiatus. Join us here as we revel in grace and community?

* Update: Made that call and asked the hard question. And he admitted to having second thoughts, of how hard it is to imagine a life other than his past, but...gently...that he believes his future is still here and I am grateful and relieved and a little more grown-up in my own heart again. We will proceed with the adoption plans still and pray for a heart guarding and lots of approval stamps before the wind changes. 


  1. gracious....
    "A lot of mama heartbeats echo beneath ribcages for what
    should have been, and I know there were never any guarantees in this."
    your words have captured what recently happened to us. we quickly attached to 2 young children who we were told by our social worker would be free for adoption. at the last minute DFCS changed their mind, refused to ask for TPR, and sent the kids home with their birth mother.
    it is very hard, and yes, i am "scolding myself for being so hopeful." and i am weeping tears for 2 kids who, even though it sounds crazy, i now consider mine even though they will likely never live in my home.
    and yet, i still know that God is good, and we were introduced to those kids for a reason - even if the reason is that i will pray for them every day for the rest of my life.
    praying for quick approval stamping for you!

  2. Oh Cara. My heart is with yours. I can't imagine. So hard to know what guarding one's heart entails. Whatever it does I don't think I'm very good at it.

  3. Wow, I feel the ache in your words. I hope and pray that everything falls just where it should.

  4. oh my dear cara... so much, so hard. i am praying for you, for him, and i love, love, love your heart. the way you love him.

  5. Praying for you, Cara, and your ribs and elbows and worried heart....extra love tonight for all that you do and all of who you are.

  6. My heart thumps hard for you, with you as I read your words. I know. Oh how I know...from the beginning to the end...from the grown up to the teenage to the toddler feelings...I know them all too well...and people say it's brave...I think it's just crazy courage...cause it's Jesus in our emotional messy heartbreak....and somehow it makes beautiful sense!

  7. As a woman preparing to go into the foster/adoption journey...my heart aches for you and these babies that God has engraved on your heart....hugging you from afar...

  8. Love your beautiful, tender heart. You remind me of a certain Nazarene...

  9. oh cara, this glimpse is a privilege. may God protect your mama heart, too, and make every crooked path straight.

  10. What a touching and heartfelt post You are a great blessing.
    Love in Him,


  11. Praying for you, Cara. I love how you've given your heart to this boy.

  12. I don’t know the whole story...but it sounds like Christ...patiently waiting...for us to receive all the love He has for us...but we must choose to accept it...glad to read the update...i will pray for him to find his way to love~

  13. thanks for the update as I was holding my breath reading this...will be praying Cara that God continues to open doors and this boy's heart to trust your love for him...

  14. This was so beautiful to read, I could feel the anxiousness, the cry of your heart to his. I am thankful to read that he is still wanting to move forward with the adoption and I am praying many approval stamps before the wind changes. Love and prayers to such a faithful woman and inspiring friend.

  15. Cara, thank you for your comment on my blog. Your post is so heart felt I could picture and feel your reality of your situation. I am so glad you added the update and I breathed relief for you. I pray all goes well and will be following your blog. Blessings. Behind The Smile

  16. Oh wow...what a journey. Thank you for sharing with us!

  17. Cara,

    We have family walking through adoption again, and have just recently ached with them over unseen changes... Thanks for letting us peak into your life here. May God weave...

    Regarding your comment on my post "He Spoke Huskily," thank you. Yes, that choice, daily, weekly, choosing one's man... and I am so floored by God's transformational joy and love that he tosses into the mix with our obedience.

    Have a lovely week,
    Jennifer Dougan


Your comments are such an encouragement. Thank you for sharing your valuable words.