Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Reassure. Build Trust. Show Love.


We have been planning a family trip to Ruidoso, NM for quite some time now and this past weekend was finally the weekend to sneak away as a family to a new place to explore, play, rest, and have some fun together. It was really a wonderful weekend. Such a nice, quaint place with tons to see and do. The mountains were beautiful and I am still amazed that it is only 2.5 hours from El Paso yet the scenery and land so very different! It was amazing! It was a refreshing break away from normal life, for most of us.........

I wouldn't say that it was refreshing to Joshua. I think it was confusing and scary for him but in the end, we all came home together and together, we overcame another adoption fear and hopefully he gained a little bit more trust.

He was really well behaved on the trip and he had lots of fun playing in the snow, but there were MANY MANY times that he asked lots of questions about our trip.... "Why are we at the mountains?" "How many days at the mountains?" "Is this a new house?" "Where are we going today?" Then on Saturday afternoon, he followed several of the above questions with the ONE QUESTION that let me know what he was REALLY concerned about........"In two days does Joshua go back to El Paso with Joel and Madilyn and Jackson and Hannah?"


It occurred to me that he must think that we were bringing him there to drop him off with some other family/home/orphanage. Remember our little trip to the doctor last week and the fear, insecurity and drama.....well, a trip to the doctor, followed shortly after by a "weekend getaway" and this little boy was feeling unsettled and he was a box of nerves! Poor little thing! It breaks my heart but also re-affirms my suspicions that he is still really trying to sort things out, trying to understand why he was taken from place to place in his past,and he's trying to figure out what will happen next from here.

REASSURE. BUILD TRUST. SHOW LOVE. These are our goals for now with Joshua. We're going to just keep trying to reassure him that he is here forever and that we love him! He will ALWAYS have a forever home with Joel, Madilyn, Jackson and Hannah, Mommy and Daddy!

The weekend away was really fun, but it was even more GREAT to bring Joshua back home to El Paso and say "WE ARE HOME!" I hate that our little trip grieved his spirit and caused him any anxiety but at the same time, I am also thankful for another opportunity for us to show him that as a member of Team Newsom, we will go places together and we will all come home TOGETHER!

If anyone out there has any tips or ideas on creative ways to explain the concepts of forever, trust, and permanence to a sweet little 4 year old, please leave me a comment and share the wisdom!

Many Blessings,

Monday, February 8, 2010

How many days is forever?

It's been a few tough days for our little man Joshua. We spent about an hour at bedtime last night listening to him tell us stories of Ethiopia and Tigist and the orphanage, he asked lots of questions and we answered lots of questions. We spent lots of this time speaking TRUTH to him as his fantasies about Tigist and Ethiopia have become much more elaborate over time. There were also many "WHY" questions that we just can't answer. At one point last night, I was trying to explain to him that he was going to live with Mommy and Daddy in America and be in our family forever. I knew he didn't really understand when he asked, "How many days is forever?"

Forever is a very hard concept to explain to a 4 year old child that has not had a life experience of stability and who is also just learning English! We finally said goodnight to him and really did feel like we had made some progress explaining things to him but we recognize that we still have a long way to go before he understands PERMANENCE. Today was even more evidence of that!

Joshua had an appointment to see the doctor. Going to any type of health clinic is one thing that just sends him into anxiety mode. I'm really not sure why, but I believe that he must be scared that after he goes to the doctor, we are going to leave him. He cried and begged to not go. I spent lots of time loving on him and explaining that we were going to see the doctor, we were NOT going to get any shots, and then we were going to come right home! He was still terrified. He cried lots. This has happened almost every time I have taken him to a clinic. Of course, I tried to re-assure him that it was all going to be okay but he is just so scared! I feel so bad for him and my heart hurts knowing that he still isn't sure that he's really going to stay here. FOREVER.

We made it home from the doctor after stopping for a little soda treat for both of us, and all was well.....for about an hour. Then there was a very small, very minor sibling issue over a toy that mushroomed into a full blown meltdown for Joshua. The meltdown was absolutely not about the toy. It was just too much emotional turmoil for him to handle without letting it all out! Did I say that it is super hard to see him hurt like that?!? I sat in the recliner with him for about an hour and a half, just exactly where we have sat through many meltdowns before, and I just held him tight as he cried and cried. After awhile I began to sing that little song to him from my all time favorite children's book....
I love you forever,
I like you for always,
as long as I'm living,
my baby you'll be.

He's such a sweetheart and such a blessing. We made it through the rest of the afternoon without any more tears but we are both just exhausted! Thankfully, he fell asleep very early tonight and I'm on my way now!!

Please pray for Joshua Nahome if you think of it. I am specifically praying that God will just just heal and replace all of his insecurities, pain, fear, and anxiety and fill his heart and mind with love and a peace that passes all understanding!


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Driving from the back seat......

Some might say that today was just another day in the Newsom house...... it was a day full of GREAT moments and also many NOT-so-great moments. I'm praising God that I'm FORGIVEN AND LOVED and that He extends GRACE to me when I don't deserve it, like today. Today really was pretty normal and honestly, I'll admit to you that all day I've felt weighted down with a heavy heart. I've been struggling with being overwhelmed with decisions, to-do lists, needs, chores, children, responsibilities, committments, etc. etc. The reason I share this with you is because tonight, during my quiet time with the Lord, my burden was lightened and I realized that my "NORMAL" overwhelmed feelings, were "NORMAL" because I have NOT been handing over the steering wheel completely to God. I keep reaching over to make sure that all things remain in control!! I'm a great back seat driver when I really need to just let the Lord take the wheel and I need to be a willing passenger--- not a back seat driver! :)

The Lord has placed so many burdens on my heart recently......for people He has placed in my life here in El Paso, for orphans that have touched my heart, for family trials both near and far, for our military families that are REALLY struggling to keep it together while being apart,for my children as they grow up in this fallen world and struggle to sort it all out, for my neighbors that are sick, for the people of Haiti and really, all third world countries, for the upcoming medical mission to Ethiopia, Etc. Etc. Etc. The list goes on and on.

MY list just keeps growing and all day my heart has just been hurting for all of these hurting people. I was so overwhelmed! I am so thankful that the Lord has REALLY opened my eyes, ears, and heart with compassion but, REALLY. Really, Lord?!? What can I possibly do? There is only one of me. There are 5 children in my home....I'm already so outnumbered! There are many friends that need time and a listening ear, but I only have 2 ears!! There are 147 million orphans out there.....but I am only one person. There are millions of earthquake victims....again, I am just one person. There are LOTS of hurting military families that have sacraficed so much......I have only me to offer. What can I do Lord? I am just me. I am not capable, or even able to handle all these things on my plate right now.

I've been mulling over this overwhelming list of concerns on my heart all day long now and I've been praying about WHAT God would have me to do about all these needs, burdens, concerns, heartaches, hurts, pain that the people in my world and in my life are suffering through, the things that I never get done, etc. etc.......

Then HE gently reminded me in my quiet time, that HE IS GOD.... and I am just me. HE IS IN CHARGE; I am just a servant. HE WILL PROVIDE; I just ask. HE WON'T GIVE ME A LOAD BIGGER THAN I CAN BEAR; I just need to be a willing vessel. HE IS MORE THAN ENOUGH; and I only need just enough every day. HE WILL DRIVE THE CAR; I'm just a passenger. GOD is GOD.

Acts 17:25 "Human hands can't serve His needs, for He has no neeeds. He himself gives life and breath to everything, and He satisfies every need there is."

Galations 6:9 "Don't get tired of doing what is good. Don't get discouraged and give up, for we will reap a harvest of blessing at the appropriate time."

Matthew 11:28-29 "Then Jesus said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle and you will find rest for your souls."

My heart was so refreshed after I read these scriptures and poured my heart out to God. I am so thankful that He reminded me that I don't have to do it all myself, in my own strength. I don't have to do it, I only have to give God ALL of these issues that burden my heart.......I can give them all to my loving, gracious and kind GOD and HE WILL MAKE MY BURDEN LIGHT! HE WILL DO THE DRIVING!! The King of Kings, Lord of Lords, the Alpha and Omega, the PROVIDER, HEALER, and MAKER OF ALL THINGS......God is sovereign!!! NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE WITH GOD!! He will take care of it all and He drives really well without any help from me in the back seat!!!

I pray that your yoke is not heavy today and thay you can unload all your burdens today and REST your soul! It feels really good to REST in the Lord and He is a much better driver than I am, anyway!

Many Blessings for you and yours,