“Did you know that your baby boy has come to make you new? This child that you’ve delivered will soon deliver you.” —“Mary Did You Know”
In January 2008, a little boy was born in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, in central Asia. Either because of the death or inability of his biological parents, he was by all rights, born an orphan.
Within two months, a young American couple working their way through the international adoption maze accepted an adoption referral, setting the wheels in motion to turn a life around (make that three lives). The couple flew to Kyrgyzstan, met the baby, fell in love and flew back home, forced to leave him in the orphanage until the paperwork could be completed.
Two years and nine months later, they are still waiting. And the baby, now a toddler, is left waiting, too. The adoptive couple have added two babies to their family since. They’re still fighting to get their oldest son home. The woman is a mother to him in every way possible from 6,700 miles away.
In January 2005, a woman, 13 weeks pregnant and counting, started to experience cramping and spotting. She’d already had one child, a smooth pregnancy without complications and no reason to anticipate problems with the second. But within a week, she and her husband are trying to explain a miscarriage to a 4-year-old, while they couldn’t understand it themselves.
Today, a woman and her husband make one more appointment with one more doctor on their journey to become parents. After years of trying, it’s easy to get discouraged.
As they search for reasons and possibilities, they struggle with how easily some others get pregnant, how people who have no business having babies continue to do so, and how unappreciative some parents seem. Understandable emotions.
The hopeful mother, who faithfully hangs on to the what could be, already has the heart of a mom. All she needs is a child to open it up to.
Why are these obstacles set in front of such a pure desire as wanting to be a mom? If all of the unfair things about life were ranked, this would have to be on top.
Most of us either know someone who has been in similar situations or have been ourselves. And the big question for those struggling: Why me?
The adoptive couple is my niece and her husband. The second was my own experience. The third is a friend. I can’t help but compare the differences in the paths people take to parenthood. Even in my situation, which eventually made me mom to two healthy kids, I have to ask the same question.
Why me? It’s as big a mystery to those of us who have it. Thank God… but why was I so blessed?
And why can’t they be too?
It’s Christmas. No better time of year to think about the purity of a mother’s love. It’s unmatched, as raw as a heart can be.
If someone as unlikely as Mary could deliver a child who delivered the world, especially considering her journey from an unexplainable pregnancy to watching her child die a brutal death as a man, there is no surer sign that parenthood—and the paths to it and through it—are a mystery.
I think of this when I hug my daughters and they hug me back. Moms come in all forms. Some are reluctant. Some are unsure. Some are pros. Some are long distance. Some are waiting.
And some are naturals, whether they have a child yet or not. My holiday wish is that those that should be, are.
Rabindranath Tagore has said, “Every child comes with the message that God is not yet discouraged of man.”