The months continue to pass and both of our babies, the one in our arms and the baby in my belly, continue to grow healthy and strong. Our precious little buddy, our foster son, is now 7 months old and weighing in at a whopping 17 pounds. This silly little guy, though not crawling yet, loves to cover as much mileage rolling around on the floor as possible. He enjoys reading books, snuggling and rubbing noses with me but once Joel gets home from work, it is loud and crazy play time. He fills our home with so much laughter and delight. The baby in my womb, now 34 weeks, weighs in at approximately 4.5 pounds. He or she (yes-we are crazy and want to be surprised!), loves to wiggle around inside of me and is making it slightly more difficult to sleep, climb stairs and bend over to pick up little buddy. I tend to receive confused looks in public with a 7 month old on my hip alongside my large protruding belly. No, it is not physically possible to have babies this close in age. We praise God for this crazy season and the blessing of children.
The reason there have not been many updates on our blog however is because there continues to be nothing new to update on in regards to our little buddy’s foster care situation. It is still quite certain that he will go to live with his extended family members but their home study and paperwork has yet to be completed by the state. Therefore, we continue to wait and as October dawns, we find ourselves standing on the brink of welcoming a new born baby into our home, Lord willing, in early November, but also losing a precious son who we have poured ourselves into for the last 7 months. To say that we have mixed emotions is an understatement. We feel such joy and gratitude for the new baby we are expecting while at the same exact time, our hearts are filled with sharp pangs of grief and dread as we anticipate the loss of our foster son.
In my years of walking with the Lord, I have experienced seasons of sweet giving from my Heavenly Father’s hand as well as seasons of painful taking from that same loving hand. This however, is the first time I have experienced the giving and the taking at the same time. This uncharted territory has left my emotions quite confused most days. My moments of laughing and playing with our little buddy are often joined by pools of tears welling up in my eyes. The moments of overwhelming fear and dread at the thought of parting with our foster son are accompanied by gentle kicks from inside my belly. Contrary to what some may think or have said to us, expecting a new baby does not make the loss of another baby easier. Though we are grateful and consider it gracious of the Lord to not leave our home or arms empty, the joy of expecting a baby and the sorrow of anticipating the loss of another do not cancel each other out. Deep joy and profound grief are mingled together and co-exist in our hearts.
My soul has found much instruction and comfort in the book of Job. Though the giving and taking did not perhaps happen at the same time for Job, he blessed the Lord for both. He recognized that the same God who had given Him everything he had was the same God who was taking it away. Furthermore, at the end of the first chapter, it says that he “did not sin or charge God with wrong” (Job 1:22). He continued to acknowledge the goodness of God both in the joyful blessings and in the painful takings and so my soul finds it fitting to seek to do the same. The same God who gave and took our first child through miscarriage last October, is the same God who brought our precious foster son to our home a few months later. The same God who gave us another new life inside of my womb, is the same God who is now seeing it best to take our foster son from us and place him with his extended family. Though my understanding fails to see the why in His doings, my soul must bless Him for who He is and acknowledge with Job that we have a God who is able to do all things and whose purposes cannot be thwarted (Job 42:2). He is the creator and sustainer of life and He is God over the foster care system. He is good, He is wise, He is all powerful and His timing is perfect. Whether you find Him giving or taking in your life today, or perhaps doing both, seek with me to join Job in saying, “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21).