Sunday, May 9, 2010

For God So Loved the World

 What do you say to a man who, on this Mother's Day, has suffered and endured the loss of not one, but two mothers?

Before he could speak,

before he could crawl,

he would be given away.

Before he had any say in anything,

a choice was made to pass him along to someone else.

How this must break a heart.

As I look at my sons today I cannot help but think about this time in the life of a young girl, who herself, was unable to decide her future.  Frightened most likely.  Pregnant in 1946 at the age of 15, I would have been petrified.  Back then a girl was shunned, sent away.

We don't know what happened to her.

We only have the next bit of the story.

At six months old, my husband was adopted.

It was 1947.

A couple who were unable to have children signed a paper and now this baby boy would become Eric.

The girl that lay in the hospital bed named him, Johnny.

When I look at him some times I think, "Johnny."

Both our sons bear his name.  His birth name.

I ache thinking about this loss.


And hers.

I know a woman who gave her son up for adoption. She has shared with me her sorrow and loss. She wonders if he thinks about her.

How can he not?

She is his mother.

What does she look like?

What are her favorite things?

What would it be like to hold her hand?

Kiss her cheek?

Smile into her eyes?

Take her to dinner?

What would it be like to hear her voice?

And what would it be for her to see him?

To hear his voice?

To hold him in her arms?

How her heart must ache.

And how his heart aches.

Perhaps there are brothers and sisters.  A whole entire family out there wondering where Johnny is.  Wondering with their hearts.


Perhaps the burden is too great to share.  Perhaps Betsey carries the burden all by herself.

In December my husband lost the only mother he ever knew.  It was a long arduous road of illness.  He is an only child.  The burden was on his shoulders.

I have tried in vain to find Betsey.

To no avail.

His life with his adoptive mother was hard.  I don't know why.  Sometimes we end up with mothers who are scared and cannot give without that fear attached.  Perhaps afraid to love. Nevertheless, we all love the best we know how.

We do the best we can.  In the moment.  In our plans for our children.  I believe we all do the very best.  And when we fall short, we can pray.

I have this little game that came out of one of my monster mommy episodes.  I call myself, Monster Mommy some times.  I'm not always a monster.  But I can channel a monster.  It's really ugly.  But the grace of God prevails and because His spirit dwells in me now I have access to the most amazing information.

So one day I was M.M.  Horrible. PMS?  Whatever?  Unacceptable behavior.  I make no excuses.  Bad behavior is bad behavior, even if it's mine.

So my boys are crying, I'm angry about something, I'm yelling, I just cannot get out of my way.  I shout, "Now the day is ruined...we just woke up and everything is ruined!!"

I turned to walk down the hall. I knew my outburst was wrong.  They are little people just trying to figure it out.  I walk in my room and ask God, "How can this be fixed? Please Help."

I make an about face and walk to where the boys are.  "Boys", I say, "see this?"  They look up at my hand holding nothing.  "We don't see anything, Mommy."

"You don't."

"I'm holding the world's biggest eraser in my hand."

"We can erase the morning and begin again."  I start swinging my arm back and forth into the air, as though I am erasing a chalkboard.

"Now go back in your beds."

"What?  We just woke up."

"I know.  But if we are to start the day over, we need to do it right."

They hop back into their beds, giggling.  Already the healing has begun.  That's how He works.  He doesn't waste a minute.

They begin snuggling, pretending they are sleeping.  I call out, "Boys, it's time to get up!"

Both boys come running out of their rooms.  "Good morning, Mommy!!"

"See we just started over.  We can do that if things aren't right.  OK?"


And that day sticks out in my mind like it just happened.  We have had a few of those days.  One of the boys will suggest we start again and grab for the eraser.  I have even heard my oldest say to my younger son, "Let's just start over OK.  We don't need to be grumpy, right?"

God makes it simple if we have the courage to lean on Him.  

My husband leans on Him now, too.  He feels more loved than he ever has in his entire life, he told me once.  He also told me that he loves more, too.  The loss never goes away, but LOVE can be the healing balm, soothing and calming the broken heart making it whole again.

An abundance of love flowing straight out to us....always any any any loss...or circumstance.

My wish is that today we open ourselves to receive His love, even in the midst of what life may have dealt us!

Happy Mother's Day,


  1. Wonderful post, Happy Mother's Day. I have an award for you. Details on my post.

  2. Lovely post Kolein. Happy Mother's Day! :)

  3. OH kolein,
    What a wonderful, thought provoking post. I so wish I had thought of the eraser so many times when my children were little, and I was the MM. I cringe still to think of how awful I was at times. Thank you for being such a good mommy, and for coming up with the eraser. If ever I have grandchildren I will be sure to tell my children about the magic eraser, just in case they ever need it. Hopefully they won't, but just in case...
    Blessings to you and yours today,

  4. Great Post Kolein!
    Just the reminder I needed today.
    We all need a big eraser to erase the MM in all of us, or just to erase the Monster Moments... no matter what the Monster Of the Moment is.

  5. What a lovely post! It is a shame that so many people take their children for granted and don't seem to realize what a blessing they are. Your kids and husband are blessed to have a mom and wife so dedicated to serving God and your family!
    I hope you had a great Mother's Day1 :o)

  6. What a beautiful post. Isn't it amazing that we serve a God who erased everything for us so that we could start over? Prayers for Eric, that you will someday find Betsey. Happy Mother's Day!

  7. That was just lovely.
    I will tell you something, that I will post about sometime when the Lord tells me to, but I, like Betsey, am a birth mom.
    I have a son, named John :). He just turned 22. I had him when I was 20.
    The adoption was open, so I know him and his family, etc...I don't talk to him often, but as he contacts me, as I am letting him decide how close he wants to be to me.
    Maybe I need to rethink this?
    Maybe I need to contact him more often--as I hear what you are saying about the pain in your hubby's heart.
    What I want to tell you is, that as a mother, I cannot and never will forget that John is my son.
    I think about him often, and love him dearly, and pray for him often.
    It was not easy letting him go.
    But, it was God's will for me and him, at the time, and now.
    My mother's heart does ache for my son.
    Please tell Eric that I know that Betsey's heart does ache for him, too.
    (I know dozens of birth moms, as I was a volunteer in a Crisis Pregnancy Center for 6 years, and no mom ever forgets their children.)
    She probably thinks that Eric would be better off not knowing her, that it's too painful to open that door. It's a guilt thing.
    Too much to explain here.
    Anyway, just wanted to comfort Eric with the knowledge that somewhere, his mother, especially today, was thinking of him, and missing him.
    Try this website, and talk to Coley or Lani, if you would like to maybe get some more info on searching for Eric's mom:
    Love, Leslie
    P.S. Thank God for BIG, HUGE erasers!

  8. What a blessing to read this tonight. Thanks so much for sharing your heart with us.

    What a blessed man your husband is to have you and your precious sons.

    God bless you all, my friend.

  9. What a wonderful post Kolein. I know a few mom's that have put their children up for adoption, and as Leslie said, they never forget that child. They never stop wondering and wishing.

    One woman once said to me "The children always talk about how they've hurt because they were given away. I often wonder why no one ever asks how the mother hurts because she had to let them go." Makes you think. So many people don't stop to think about what the mothers go through. I'm sure Eric's birth mother was scared beyond understanding. How could she not be at 15?

    I so hope that you will get a break through and be able to find her. I have a friend who recently went through the very same thing. She found her husband's family after 9 years of searching. Unfortunately his parents were deceased, but he has a brother and a sister and tons of nieces and nephews now. He can't believe he never wanted to look before.

    His siblings were able to give him pictures of his parents, and he looks just like his birth mom. I really hope that Eric will have that for himself some day.

    I'm sending you something else in email. Look for it.

  10. What a wonderful post HEART post my dear Kolein!
    Sending love n hugs!

  11. You are the best. Love the emotions that your writing stirs up. We all need to visit those places of deep feeling. Happy Mother's Day, friend!

  12. What a heart felt post that gives us, your readers, another view into the woman that is you ... compassionate, soft hearted, thoughtful, insightful and ultimately beautiful.
    Thanks for giving us another piece of you.

  13. Kolein, you made me cry. I love the starting over, I'm gonna use that myself.

  14. I was given up for adoption by a woman who had 2 children and a husband. I was not her husbands. I was premature, 2.5lbs. I was not adopted til I was 2.5. I lived a tortured life with a crazy pshycho mother. I have not seen her for 20 years because by God's grace He gave me an opportunity to escape her clutches by her own words. I was/am able to raise my children without carrying on the insanity/abuse she brought.

    It has been a long journey, and I met my own mother but, it too was pushed forward by a willing older brother and sister. She has never been able to come to grips with her decision. Especially finding out how wretched my life was. The guilt was too much and to this day she wants nothing to do with me. I communicate with my brother and sister. But mostly I just feel bad that she carries this burden so deeply and cannot find freedom for herself. I know she thought she did the best. I don't hold anything against her, even now I hold no resentment....I just wish her freedom from her pain. Maybe your husbands is the same way...those women were so shamed back then. I hope one day he will meet her...just finding history and resemlance in the small things does an amazing thing. Just to know where you fit into does an amazing thing. It is the not knowing that kills us the worst.

    Not to sound morbid, or mean, or bitter, I am not. I am just saying I know what it is like. I watched my close friend give up a baby. He is 20 now and it kills her. She even has known him his whole life, it was an open adoption. She had the chance to meet him many times, and watch him grow up...a separation of mother and baby is such a loss on both sides. Something only God can heal, as he gave his son up for us.

  15. It's me again. Thanks for visiting my colorful yellow door. You are just too darn sweet. I am anxiously awaiting to see what you do with yours. As for my foyer, I hate to disappoint but it will be a calming sea of creams and whites. The eye needs a place to rest and I don't want it to look like Pee Wee's Playhouse. :)
    I saw your comment and thought, oh my I haven't been to the kitchen table for a few. I read your posts in reader but I can see that you have had a busy week and haven't posted since Mom's Day. Hope all is well with you and the fam.


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