My parents have a wonderful new porch. As the kids are napping, I thought I would try to capture some feelings on my blog while enjoying the serenity of the rain falling on the metal roof (love). These particular thoughts have been running through my head for quite some time, I just have been unsure about vocalizing them, or more unsure of how to adequately do that. I decided I must try.

All of October, I was in a funk. I knew there were many reasons for this funk…the stress of having one son in and out of the hospital, the move of another son or maybe the fact that in 6 months we had 8 nights “off” – But, there was something else there that I could not put my finger on. Towards the end of the month, we got away for some much needed rest. We went camping and did absolutely nothing. It was wonderful. But, I was still so sad. Early one morning I went for a walk and it was then that it hit me. I knew. The cool brisk air and the turning of the leaves brought me back 3 years ago to the day we lost our son. I remembered the sadness, madness and bitterness I felt…the helplessness and feeling of betrayal. I remembered packing our bags and leaving town because I was terrified of everyone seeing these emotions…Zach trying to get me out of the house for a walk and me falling to my knees in the middle of the road weeping…the hours I spent on the porch talking to our adoption agency trying to get answers. I remember feeling as if Caleb’s short life didn’t matter to anyone.

While all my feelings were normal, I can look back now and see they were not valid. Caleb was never alone. Caleb was loved more than I could have ever loved him. Caleb is in a much better home than I could have ever provided him. And his life mattered – his short life changed our lives, completely. His short life forever changed the course of Khai’s life. Each child we parent or come in contact with at the ranch, their lives are changed because of the transformation that took place in our hearts.  Each child we sponsor, each child we financially help join a family…I could go on and on.  So many lives are different because of the great work the Lord did through this precious life.  The Lord has opened up the door numerous times for me to share Caleb’s story with churches or students. Each time his story is told, it changes lives – his story builds awareness for the precious children still waiting for families.

I have a hard time knowing how to mourn Caleb’s death. I still cannot think of him without longing for him and being sad…but, I know if he was in my arms, Khai would more than likely still be in an orphanage surround by children who are still waiting (since VN adoption is still closed) for someone who may never come.  I obviously cannot imagine my life without Khai. 3 years later, I have finally started working with someone who is helping me sort through the emotions.

God used the adoption process to transform our lives and the lives of those around us. Even though it felt like the “process” took us to hell and back, I can now say I am thankful for everyday of that process, even the toughest ones. While I cannot imagine my life without Khai in it, I also cannot imagine what life would be like without Caleb either. It may sound corny, but if asked who has been the most influential person in my life (besides my Savior), it would definitely be my Caleb.

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2 Responses to Caleb

  1. Anne says:

    In no way will I pretend to “get” the emotions you feel as we each experience our losses in different ways. I started reading a new book tonight, Ann Voskamp’s: One Thousand Gifts. If you haven’t picked it up, I think you will want to. She is very poetic in her writing, which is often hard to read and at other times so visually beautiful. Here are two particularly interesting paragraphs:
    “If I am ruthlessly honest, I may have said yes to God, yes to Christianity, but really, I have lived the no. I have. Infected by that Eden mouthful, retina of my soul develops macular holes of blackness. From my own beginning, my sister’s death tears a hole in the canvas of the world.
    Losses do that. One life-loss can infect the whole of a life. Like a rash that wears through our days, our sight becomes peppered with black voids. Now everywhere we look, we only see all that isn’t: holes, lack, deficiency.”

    While it sounds like Voskamp is maybe this bleak, even goth-like, soul, I think this is just her part of the story before she learns to view her life through God’s lens rather than her own.

    Sounds kinda like that is where you are… finding the right lens, accepting the view, allowing God to transform your heart to reflect Him. And selfishly, since I am more in line with the above excerpts, I need to know people who are able to see God in their pain. I am glad you are grieving the loss and I pray you never feel alone in that. Love you Friend!


  2. Kelli K says:

    I can’t even begin to imagine how you must feel. It has to be so hard. It sounds like Caleb’s life changed so many things for the better. Thinking of you…

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