Sunday, June 30, 2013


It's harvest time in Kansas.  Usually we think of harvest and it's metaphors in the fall.  But Kansas is wheat country, and around here the big harvest is usually in June.  We live what I like to call "country adjacent."  Though we live in a suburban neighborhood, the wheat fields are all around us, and I've been trapped behind a slow moving combine plodding down the street in front of me on numerous occasions.  It is a part of the culture here.  When I worked in a medical clinic in a nearby rural Kansas town,our clinic appointments would come to a stand still during harvest.  We'd keep suture kits out and ready, because we'd see plenty of harvest injuries, but not much else.  Our local newspaper ran this  as the front page story this week.  They took photo submissions for collections titled "Wheat Harvests" and "Wheat Harvest Memories".  Harvest excitement is palpable.

photo credit: Kansas Ag Network

In the midst of this massive harvest going on around us, these two non-farmers are fumbling around trying desperately to plant some seed. Many of you know that about a month ago we moved two 18 year old young ladies (identical twin sisters) into our home.  They had been in foster care and had aged out.  Because of a complicated number of issues, they had become homeless, and the place that they had been temporarily staying was no longer appropriate.  So we heard their story one day, met them two days later, and they moved in two days after that.  Just like that.
How is it going, you ask?  Well...

Some days it looks like this:

I feel like I want to be John Stamos in this scenario. Just...don't ask.  It might have something to do with that feathered and fabulous hair.  :)

(As a side note, you should know that I can sing that entire theme song.  Actually, I can sing the theme song to most sitcoms.   I am somewhat of a sitcom theme song savant.  For real.  It's a gift.  Want some WKRP in Cinncinati? it.  Want some Family Ties?  Sang it to my husband yesterday.  Want the theme song to the original Bob Newhart show?  Well, there aren't words to that, but I can hum it to you.  But I digress...)  :)

Some days recently it has felt more like this:

I'm obviously Tom Cruise in this scenario.  You know...the one hanging on by "a very thin thread."

And in rare but frustrating instances it has looked more like this:

Not sure which one of the nameless fighters I am in the scenario.  But I know I'm not Chuck Norris.  There's only one Chuck Norris.  Chuck Norris doesn't wear a watch.  HE decides what time it is.  And Chuck Norris died 20 years ago; death just hasn't had the courage to tell him yet.  Chuck Norris counted to infinity...twice.  Chuck Norris took out two stones with one bird.   :)  Ok, enough with the Chuck Norris jokes.  :)

My point is that the girls aren't perfect.  And neither am I.  So we fumble through together some times.  If I'm not careful, I'm tempted to compare who I was at 18, and the decisions I made at 18, to the girls and their choices. But this is incredibly unfair.  Our life experiences to that point were night and day different.  A more fair comparison would be to imagine what I would have been like at 18 had I been through what they have.  I'm quite sure I would not have fared so well.

On those occasions where they make progress, I'm crazy proud of them.  And they ARE making progress.  Bonds of trust and friendship are slow to form, but we are finding our way.  I try to make a point of telling them that I believe in them, on good days as well as tough days.  Because I DO believe in them.  And it's important that they know someone does.  Every day.  No matter what their actions and attitudes are.  Before you give me too much credit here, you should also know that my attitude isn't always what it should be.  I get frustrated, and anxious, and angry more than I should.  But we're all working through it together.

I once read a quote that said,
"You come to find love not by finding the perfect person, but by seeing an imperfect person perfectly."

We are all sadly imperfect, but working hard to see each other through the eyes of grace.    

Farmers will tell you that a wet and messy spring brings about a fruitful summer.  Well, my spring was certainly wet and messy, as we lost the referral for a child that we'd spent 7 months thinking was going be ours.  But now,  as we work to plant our metaphorical seed the best way we know how, we look ahead with excitement to the promise of harvest.

p.s.  If you are looking for an adoption are we.  Sadly no movement in our case.  We are perpetually told "next week".  It's going to be done "next week".  Always, "next week."  Eventually one of these "next weeks" it has to happen, right?  I sure hope so.  

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