It's been a while since I have blogged. We've been in the trenches, parenting and dealing out tough love.
I know from my side as a parent, there have been challenging moments; parenting a child who has had a rough childhood. A childhood where he learned to trust no one, fend for himself, and shut out any emotional hurt that others have caused him. His defense is to go into shutdown mode when things get tough.
And then I look at where he has been for the majority of his life and take a step back. It must be hard at 15 to change EVERYTHING you once knew and learn to rely on others, learn a new language, new social cues and skills, and a school curriculum that is totally different. There is no way that I would want to be in his shoes. And I'm thankful he trusted us enough to take the chance at a family.
He holds his own in casual conversations, but we have found he is very good at acknowledging us during conversation and nodding, but when we begin to ask questions, we find out that he is still struggling with the language. He's to proud (or maybe a tad ashamed) to admit he doesn't understand and ask questions for fear of looking silly (or stupid in school) and so he is not asking. He's covering up his lack with a "funny guy" persona.
He's a great kid. He is very helpful at home when asked, his sister adores him, and he is very patient and sweet with his sisters and little brother. He's making progress. He's learning to trust. He's learning it's okay to admit he doesn't understand.
I'll freely admit, it's not just him who is struggling. I didn't have time to work up to having a teen. It wasn't suppose to be this way. He was suppose to come home in 2007 at the age of 10. I was suppose to have six extra years to raise him, teach him good values. I feel the pressure of being judged by others in his actions. There are moments I want to exclaim "It wasn't suppose to be this way. Please don't judge me as a parent. He's just been home for six months. He's a work in progress. Give him time, I promise you'll see he's worth it. I KNOW he's worth it."
And then I realize that has to be the way God looks at me. I make mistakes--daily/hourly. I'm a work in progress. Do you ever think God looks at me and says "This wasn't the way planned it....I'm working with her, trying to raise her right to teach her to follow my word." I'm sure he does. I'm human, I'm flawed, just like every other human. I'm thankful God hasn't given up on me, he's there to cheer me on every day, encourage me to do my best and follow his Word.
He needs time. We need time. I'm thankful for the tough days as well as the good days. I look back at all of my children and where they were when we brought them home and how far they each have come individually. There have been leaps and bounds of change. For that, I am thankful.