The desires of my heart

30 07 2007

      Abbey’s sweet comment on my last post mentioned that she was praying for God to give me the desires of my heart.  Let me share a secret with you.
      Lately, in the past month or so, I have been sitting up late websurfing.  At 1 a.m. Neal throws a pillow at me and asks, “Are you coming to bed or what?”  I’m still hunched over the keyboard, clicking.  Click click.  Click click. 
      I’m looking at webpages of adoptable children.  I’ve been talking to an orphanage contact in Guatemala.  I’ve been reasearching the Snowflake program.  I’ve been reading blogs about adopting special needs children.  I’ve been watching slide shows of small faces on the US waiting list.
      Since Patrick was born, I’ve been praying for another child, another daughter.  When he was two days old I stood in my room and wept, saying, “Lord, he’s a perfectly beautiful baby.  But why am I still hungry for a little girl?”  In the months after his birth I mourned the loss of that daughter almost as fiercly as if I’d carried twins and one hadn’t survived.  I grieved terribly, all the time feeling how ridiculous it was to grieve with my precious Patrick in my arms.  
      I dream about her sometimes.  She’s small and has dark hair.  Something is wrong with her heart.  In one dream, she was sitting on a bridge waiting for me.  All around her the land was lush and green, and there was a slow brown river moving under her dangling bare feet.  She turned and looked at me tiredly, as if she had been waiting a long, long time.
      On these late night quests through the internet, as I learn about the options for homestudies, fundraising for foreign adoption, and subsidies for special needs domestic adoptions, I have been praying.  Lord, I have four kids.  Why do I want this?  You would think I have enough to do, wouldn’t you?  Wouldn’t you think I had enough to do?  Enough kisses, enough laundry, enough love?  Why is my heart so hungry over all these little faces?
      He answered me one evening, and I almost despaired.  He said, “Wait until after you move.”  I wanted to sit down and wail.  Neal was planning on staying with his job in Wilmington for at least two more years.  Maybe as much as five.  Five years!
      “How about now?” I asked him.  “I’m sick of cleaning the same old house.  My wandering foot is itching.  Let’s go!”
      He prayed about it a few days and came home.  “The Lord said, ‘Not yet,'” he told me.  My hopes sunk.  I tried to stay away from the internet.  I busied myself ordering books for the next homeschooling year, picking paint colors for our bathroom, and writing.  I wandered around the house, trying to tell myself I wasn’t vaguely discontented.  Trying to tell myself I was just bored.  Suffering from cabin fever, maybe, or an overdose of air conditioning.
      And then, last week, out of the blue he called me and said, “Angela, are you sitting down?”
      How can I sort out the mixture of pain and delight with which I recieved his news?  An agony of joy.  A swamp of dread.  And a soft, new-born hope: maybe my daughter is on the way.  Maybe it will be only a few more months.  Maybe we’ll have a new home, a little more money… and my dream girl will come home.
      The desires of my heart… a new home in a cooler place.  Trees outside my door, mountains in the distance… a house with four bedrooms, and in one of the bedrooms lies two little girls.  Their heads on the pillows, side by side, are dark and light.  Is it too much to ask, Lord, this thing I dream at night?

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