Sibling Love.

When we began to very seriously consider adoption as a path to grow our family (just a year ago — crazy!), I had some hidden fears about what it would mean for our birth daughter.(A little back-story if you’re new to this blog. Many people adopt because they want to help a child. They have a few birth children and feel that they have more love to give, so they adopt a child without a family. Our motivation was not so selfless. Frankly put, we adopted because we couldn’t carry another child to term without medical intervention. We were given options of pursuing fertility through surgeries, drugs, etc. — but we felt God was calling us to a different path to grow our family. Once we began considering adoption, our hearts became open to a lot more than we ever thought possible and we did, ultimately, choose international adoption because of the living conditions of children in orphanages and our desire to be a family for such a child — but that’s a post for another day. Back to the subject at hand…)

While we were beginning our adoption paperwork, I had some deep, dark fears in the shadows of my heart. One of the reasons we wanted to grow our family is because we wanted our daughter to have a sibling. But I was worried that Yaya was going to still be lonely because this second child wouldn’t be a biological sibling. We were, after all, adopting from Africa and her sibling would look nothing like her. Would this be a great cross for her to bear? Would she see her friends and cousins and their siblings with matching hair and eyes and feel like something was missing? Would she have a longing in her heart for a sibling who had the same blood that ran through his/her veins? Would she secretly envy the comments of “You look just like your brother!” that all her friends were receiving?I am embarrassed to admit these fears that now seem so silly and ridiculous to but I am doing so because maybe you are struggling with these fears? Maybe you are wondering if you have made right choice or on the fence between adoption and fertility, trying to decide which path is best for your family?

Friend, I don’t know your story, but I am here to tell you today that my fears in months past could not be further from my daughter’s current reality. I think of Jesus admonishing his disciples and encouraging them to have the faith of little children, because I see the beautiful child-like love of my daughter for her brother and it makes me think of His example of child-like faith.

She loves her brother so much. She covers him with spontaneous hugs, kisses and affection throughout the day, inhaling his scent and gushing over his beautiful brown skin and curly hair. She oversees his baths, bringing her stepping stool to the kitchen sink as soon as she hears the water running and running up and down the stairs to bring him her own bath toys. She laughs at him hysterically, brags about him to her friends, and loves feeding him and “helping” with him whenever possible. You may have noticed in our homecoming video that from the moment he was carried off the plane, her adoration was ready and waiting . Her love for him was instant.

And while my children look nothing alike, there is nothing more beautiful to me than when they lie on the floor next to each other laughing — her pink cheek pressed against his chocolate one.

As I sit here and think of my own relationship with my brother, I can’t believe I ever worried about Yaya and her brother. I, too, love and adore my brother — and it’s not because people often think we’re twins. I give little — if any — thought to the fact that we look alike and scarcely notice when someone comments on our physical similarities. I love him because he is my God-given brother, because he makes me laugh more than anyone, because so many of my childhood memories and experiences are only shared and understood by one other person in this entire universe — my brother.

And  that is what Yaya will have with her brother — her God-given brother.

Last week, I was reading a book to Yaya while she laid down for a nap in my bed. I scooped up Baby Boy to take him downstairs to his crib but she protested: “Can he sleep with me?” I said we could give it a try, thinking neither of them would sleep and I would be back in fifteen minutes from now to separate them. I could hear them giggling from the kitchen for a good ten minutes and it wasn’t long before I heard their snores. My mama heart was overflowing.

siblings

“If we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. There is no fear in love.”
1 John 4:12 & 18a
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  1. […] I put together a homecoming video for Baby Boy and marveled over the instant sibling connection between Yaya and Baby Boy. […]

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