Life is fragile

99.9% of orphans will ever be adopted from people in the US, leaving the rest of the world quite a handful.

WARNING: if tragic stories are too much for you to read just now in your life, please don’t continue.  I will be quickly sharing some stories I have read about orphans, the brokenness about their world and how I am processing the response I have.  If you jump in again after the website link you’ll be safe:)


I have been plowing thru that stack of books on my shelf.  Some have been too painful to read (birth moms, most in their early teens, forced to give up their babies for adoption in the 1950’s) or simply tragic (Mei-Ling Hopgood had a great adoption story but once she met her birth family, let’s just say they weren’t all she’d hoped for).

I’ve read about orphans who’s mothers gave up their virginity when their daughters were Calista’s age.  A cleft lip baby boy left to cry and starve to death in a room in the house.  Monkey attacking a baby boy and his “big” sister dug a hole through their mud hut to rescue the two of them.

Then these kids (some) grow up and are seriously, mentally ill.  They harm themselves.  They suppress their memories of the tragic and eventually, when it comes out, it is just too much.

Then there are the statistics.  How many kids thrive and live in the US compared to a country’s orphan numbers.

You can read more here:

Interestingly, Brian had CSS students over last night.  As I was wading thru “going on a bear hunt” for XS’s 10-12th time that day, I was overhearing a few of them practicing a Gospel diagram we use called the Big Story.

The first part says, “Do you ever look at the world and think, what the heck?!  There must be something better!”

Yes, oh $(#! yes!

We adopted because we look at the world, the millions of orphans, the needs around us and the kids we already love and said, what can we do differently to help make a difference?!

It was really hard to find ways to volunteer with a 3 and 5 year old.  So now, my 4 and 6 year old are teaching English to a Chinese orphan with major speech needs.

It was a bracing 55 degrees this morning!

It was a bracing 55 degrees this morning!

Calista left for school today and I cried.  I’m not ashamed to admit it.  She is a rock star.  XS is a hero but seriously this girl deserves … something really neat.  She read “going on a bear hunt” 6 of those 12 times yesterday.  And I think she did again today.  She pushes XS on the swing.  Reads while I do the pile of dishes I piled up tonight due to the crazy meal lack of planning: I did a Chinese noodle dish for XS (requiring a pot, steamer and wok) leftovers for the kids and a separate pesto (thank you Rebekah) garden tomato (thank you Terry) and chicken (thank … You Jesus?!) dish for me, just because I wanted to.  Brian is away and I guess I’m coping through food.  Don’t judge me.

Okay so Calista, she’s amazing and putting that leader, teacher and compassionate big sister on the yellow bus was just about heart wrenching as it was 12 months ago when she left me alone with Elam, I mean went to school.

However, I had the conscious thought (it was 3:00 in the afternoon and I had had a nap) yesterday: I cannot imagine only having 2 kids.  Then today, I actually admitted to my neighbor it is easier having 2 boys than 1.  And I think I believe it.  They beat each other up, poke each other’s eyes, ram into one another on their bikes and do things in the bathtub that make me yelp.  But they also chase each other for fun and share toys now that XS has learned “me too!” or “my turn!”

Last week XS’s English turned into sentences.  See above or even, “Elam pushed me.” Every school bus today was “jei-jei school bus.”  (Jei-jei is big sister).  It has made a big difference.

So the world is broken, disturbingly so.  But the orphan that is now an Asker is in a place where he can learn to speak a new language (while we try to keep up his first language).  His big sister and brother are learning to care for a kid that has different, challenging needs.

The world is broken because we are all so fragile, orphans or no.

I am just grateful we can endure by seeing him who is invisible. (Hebrews 11:27)

We hand picked these beauties in an embroidery shop.  Not an embroidery clothing shop but the hang on the wall, 2-sided amazing Chinese embroidery which is becoming a dying art form.  These outfits just couldn't be left behind.  The $500 wall art could.

We hand picked these beauties in an embroidery shop. Not an embroidery clothing shop but the hang on the wall, 2-sided amazing Chinese embroidery which is becoming a dying art form. These outfits just couldn’t be left behind. The $500 wall art could.  And for the record, I disagree God is invisible.  Just look at these faces.





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