Kira is toddling around my family room. I lean against the sofa knowing if I sit down it will be seconds before I must jump up and redirect her…if I sit down the comfort will feel too good…if I sit down I will get cranky because I can’t pick up a book and relax a while. We cleaned out the board game closet and I’ve designated the bottom cabinets for her toys. Yesterday when she opened that door I pounced to remove her, distract her, and put up with yet another complaining fit. She remembers. Now she touches the handle and looks back at me with those eyes. She babbles with her mouth but her eyes are talking to me, “I think I’m going to get my hands in here even though yesterday you said I couldn’t. I’m going to do what you tried to teach me I cannot do. I want what I want and somehow I will get it.”
I’m learning girl talk. Even the eyes have more words in an hour than a boy has in a day.
I tell her, yes, you can go in there. It’s ok now. I made it safe for you. She doesn’t really believe me, she wants to believe she is getting away with something she shouldn’t do. She happily finds her toys inside and climbs in giving me a few minutes to gaze at my gardens out the window. They are as perfect now as they will be all year long. They make me happy. I enjoy a peaceful moment while she explores toys from a new space that seems all at once new. I open memories.
I think back to years ago when Craig would nudge me and suggest adoption would be something to do next with ourselves. A full body panic came over me and I had to shake my head, not yet. With four children pulling all of my limbs in opposite direction, and a habit of moving across country every two to three years, I just couldn’t see how it was possible to do something so entirely HUGE, even though my heart went out to the children. The brochure for adopting from China sat on my desk during those years for a long time poking guilt at my indecision.
Of course, I see now I was looking through my own eyes, when I needed to put on the spectacles that show me what is possible when God leads the way. And, also, those days weren’t really designated as our time yet, because Kira was meant for us, and we all had to wait on God’s timing.
It’s an elusive subject I so casually toss around as if I have some detailed manual to follow for God’s will, and God’s timing. I know it causes most people to furrow a brow and think how can she know it’s God’s will, and His timing? It’s a personal condition of shifting in my heart, it’s a coming together of many unusual circumstances that cannot be coincidence, it’s a bible verse that suddenly illuminates, shimmers and comes to life like never before. It’s a small whisper at the back of my mind. It’s a matter that becomes clear and requires all of my faith. It’s the Spirit of God that dwells within me that cannot be quenched by my fears. It’s a deep knowing that requires my surrender and obedience so I can have the peace I crave.
She crawls around the corner to another room and I’m back into the moment. It still makes me laugh that I’m 43 and I’m chasing after a one year old little girl. What she has brought to our life cannot be measured or compared. She’s not a new flower in my garden. She is what I discovered when I went through the hidden door, a whole secret garden full of wonder, beauty and treasure. With her is where I want to be, right now with my wrinkles, next year when we sing songs to learn the potty routine, a few years closer to fifty when she enters kindergarten, and on and on and on. I know the stages.
She’s going to keep me young even if I am the grandma on ‘meet the teacher night’ for kindergarten. She’s probably going to give me more wrinkles. She’s definitely going to give Craig more gray hairs. I’m not in a hurry for her to get to the next stage, the easier one. I don’t strap her onto my schedule. I adjust mine to hers because right where she is now, this minute is what’s precious. This crazy busy is all going to be a bewildering memory very soon. I don’t want to miss a single bloom in her secret garden.