as a parent you say to yourself "i'm going to love my child no matter what? they could never do anything that would make me look at me different." as an adoptive parent we are told not to have any expectations of our kids. most of them come from hard places and it would be challenging for any of them to reach our expectations. at the beginning b and i had no idea what we were doing. we didn't have any expectations because we wouldn't have even known what expectations to have. we had been working towards adopting for a few years so we were filled with the extra grace and patience it would take to parent these kids from hard places. we felt very prepared at the beginning. we took the PATH classes, read all the books, sought counsel from everyone we knew. we just loved on our kids. it was challenging but God really moved through us. it was His grace that poured out of us.
now we are almost 3 years into being a family and those expectations that we for so long said we didn't have...yeah, we have them now. we are trying so hard not to because we know that 3 years is still only a drop in the bucket. but honestly, the expectations have crept in. we long to be able to plan more than 2 days ahead. we wish we could plan a fun family outing and know that it will be wonderful. i even have expectations of myself. surely i should be more organized by now. shouldn't my house be in much better shape than it is? we should be so much further along than we are. but...are expectations i'm finding are unrealistic. i don't know at what point i assumed that it was time for my kids or my life to meet my expectations but it happened. and with those expectations come a deep disappointment when they aren't me. and now we have these expectations but our grace and patience are on empty to fight the same battles. when preparing for adoption and parenting these kids from hard places we plan for the immediate. we don't plan for the long-term. no one says that 5 or even 10 years later it will still be the same. the further along i get in this journey i am realizing that it is not about my expectations even though i have them. it's about my obedience to what God has asked me to do. and each day is different. God is asking me to walk new roads every day. ones i never though would ever be my life, both for the good and the struggle.
on the complete flip side of my expectations being unmet God is surpassing so many expectations that i never even knew existed. he has given me a peace to walk through doors i don't understand. he has met us each step of the way. and on somedays the moments with my kids are so sweet i can hardly stand it. k has started giving me the biggest bear hugs before he walks into school. my 7th grader has started to sit close to me and let me put my arm around him while we listen to the preacher at church on sundays. my oldest is talking to me about girls (that's an entirely different post). and my husband gets to be home a week for thanksgiving and 2 weeks for christmas. wow! it is all about perspective. so yes i have expectations of my kids and my life. and yes most of those expectations are not met. but God is good and he supersedes my expectations even when i fail to live up to all he desires from me. grace can only come from the one who gives it, Almighty God. i'm working on changing my expectations to have kingdom purpose. for it is all about Him anyways!