I feel like I am starting to pin point why there are so many hurdles in this race towards attachment. It isn’t that Jaydn won’t let me love her, and it is most certainly not that I don’t love her. The issue that has surfaced over time is that she is adaptable. Too adaptable. She conforms to her environment and has no sense of self. It isn’t her fault, its just another defense mechanism that protected her the first two years of institutional life. But the poor girl is a chameleon. That is why she would be perfectly content to walk off with a stranger and never see us again b/c she would just change what was “required” and survive there too.
This characteristic poses a daunting task to me as a mother. It is my job to help my kids figure out who they are, what they like and what they want to become. Its clear Jaxon is a people pleasing, tender hearted, brilliant and self confident little boy. Its clear Jovie is a strong willed, independent, charmer with a love for all things beautiful. Its clear Jaydn is…. she is….um…whatever people want her to be. My heart breaks that even she doesn’t know what she wants or who she is and be confident enough to go and be it! How do I teach her this habit of “doing” is less important than “being”? I want to know and see who SHE is and comfort and nurture her from that place. But when a child grows up more like a parrot copying behavior, actions or words for the sake of attention (good or bad), it is difficult to know how to parent them in the most effective way. What “works” one day won’t the next b/c she has simply adjusted herself to the situation rather than chosen what is right and wrong.
Im not sure I am articulating all of this very well so let me just leave you a word picture for how it feels: Its as if I am playing a game of “pin your heart on Jaydn” and after being spun around 20 times and after the blindfold has been removed I look around only to be told that I am supposed to pin my heart on a vapor, an ever changing, ever moving mirage. Its an impossible task, or at least that is how it feels right now. But I am trying and hoping and praying. The only thing that brings me comfort in this crazy “pin my heart” game is the knowledge that God knows Jaydn. He knows her heart, desires, dreams and personality better than I ever will. Maybe I will get glimpses over time and I pray I do, because I can’t wait for the real Jaydn to be revealed to the rest of us too.
I have been married since 2003 years to a worship pastor, a rock star, and the most involved and intentional dad I have ever seen! Together, we have the privilege of parenting three amazing children (Jaxon-born in March 2005, Jovie, born in March 2008, and Jaydn born in August 2008). Jaydn came home to us through international adoption from Uganda, Africa. I enjoy writing as a way to learn life lessons out loud because, most of the time, the right (wise) answers are in me somewhere; I just have to dig to find them.