Monday, July 5, 2010

It isn't LastChance Theology...

Like I said in my previous post, really any one--and I mean preachers, teachers, missionaries, scholars, PhDs and those with a third grade education--who say they have everything figured out in the realm of God/spirituality/religion makes me wary. I'm not calling anyone out here, I promise. I just mean people have to recognize that what any of us have is faith, a belief system, an idea of what we feel that comes from a place very deep inside of us and is the result of a million different things--exposure to life, exposure to different cultures, exposure to tragedy, exposure to no tragedy. Yes, there are written words and guides but they were all written by humans, translated by humans, repackaged by humans and every one of them were humans--with different goals and motives and all of that too.

I'm no different. I'm just one little human being with one little human brain and heart, navigating through life trying to do my level best to love other people, respect the life I've been given, and leave the earth just a little bit better than I found it.

The mister and I most definitely feel that when we finally meet our baby we will say "Yes, she is ours. She was meant for us and we were meant for her." But quite honestly, we feel like we would probably have said this if we had chosen adoption three years back, or five years back, or if we didn't choose it for ten more years (but really by then we'd be geriatric so maybe not!). Just like my friend Gail will never say that losing her twins brought her her living daughter Katie, I will shy away from saying that all my failed cycles "brought" me my adopted daughter. We say that in the end, it won't matter how we got there, or why that particular child comes up on the list when it's our turn to be matched--what will matter is everything from that moment forward when we come together as a family.

As far as God's will on earth--well, if we really truly imagine what that would be like then I think we have to rewind things a few thousand steps. There would not be 6 million children in Ethiopia in need of a loving home and someone to help parent them. They would be able to stay in their own culture, raised by their families. There would not be poverty--the wealthy countries would not waste food, we would not be gluttonous with our enormous super-sized portions and restaurant meals while children starve to death. We would not build bigger houses while others have no shelter at all from the elements. We would not be spending money on frivolous cosmetic procedures while life-saving medications are not delivered to people who need them. God's will is there--stupid humans muck it up repeatedly and then we all have to figure out how to deal with the consequences. And maybe that's our part with our adoption--to give a life, albeit a compromised one, to a child who would not otherwise have had an easy life--our teeny tiny part that helps to right a million wrongs that have already happened that brought that child to a place of need in the first place.

I think prayer (and meditation--the quiet 'listening' phase that is often overlooked, mostly by me) is invaluable. I think it helps us sort out the issues on our hearts and keeps us feeling connected to God, the universe, and other human beings....if used the right way. And there I go again writing as if I know the 'right' way. But I think you know what I mean.

This stuff is too heavy--far too heavy for my blog--and I really wish I could just leave you with a picture of all my Curious George dolls, patiently waiting in the closet of my guest room, finally freed from their trash bags and plastic tubs. But I'm too tired from the running, swimming, yard working, cleaning, baking, checkbook-balancing, grocery shopping day we've had today to go get the camera and snap a picture. One day soon, I'm sure, that picture will be here. And it will be a much lighter post.


  1. I really enjoy reading your thoughts on spirituality because again, even though I'm not spiritual, I can appreciate it and I definitely value seeing someone speak about religion in a way that I don't think puts others down or judges their choices...which unfortunately has been most of my experience with "religion."

  2. I know you told me to get off the Internet, but I can't. If I did, I wouldn't get to hear your perspective and it always makes sense to me. I don't believe that God is the reason that I do not have children yet, (this is me trying to me hopeful) but believing in God, or meditating, or listening to a hypnosis cd help me in some way take control of the situation. At the end of the day, I need to be able to say to myself that I did and tried everything.

    But you are right, Infertility is a disease and God did not give me the disease. It just happened. Thank you for again, sharing your thoughts and helping me get some perspective.

    BTW- what are you baking and where are the pics?

  3. Great, insightful post on a very, very difficult topic. As an IF who has also suffered baby loss, I raged at God for the unfairness of it all. But at the same time, I thank him for giving me my daughter, even if for only 9 months in the womb. There is much to be thankful for, while being angry for other injustices. It makes the topic of religion, for me, very difficult. It's always nice to read someone else's perspective on this subject, as I find many IF bloggers to steer clear of this topic at all costs.

  4. Very thoughtful post! I remember when we just started IF treatments I had a friend who got pregnant on her first try and she said, "I guess our Heavenly Father really wanted me to be a parent" and that hurt me BAD! I thought "what a tart!" HAHA:) And someone else I know (who got pregnant in zero time) told me that God's timing is perfect, and I will never forget that she said that to me. Changed my opinion on our friendship forever. I hope someday all of this IF stuff will make sense in my life, but until then I find the only thing I can do sometimes is look up and say "If You are up there, can you just hold my hand??" It's scary going through all of this!
    I sometimes write posts that I get embarassed about or think they might be too deep, I think most bloggers have done that. :)
    Looking forward to seeing the Curious George animals!

  5. Perfectly written. Thank you for the mention.

  6. The sad reality is that many, many people have tragedies and trauma happen in their lives. I'm not sure what this has to do with God myself, but the human suffering, it's the most difficult thing to make sense of. Because I work outside, I see the same suffering happening to animals, and I wonder, do they think about God or why this is happening to them? I think when you go through any trauma, like infertility, you start questioning your relationship with God. Maybe things become clearer in that relationship or maybe it becomes murkier. All I know is that control over what happens in our lives is an illusion. For me, letting go of how I wanted my life to be is the hardest. It's hard to trust god when you feel so let down.

    I'm all for the deep stuff along with the superficial. We're all complex. Why shouldn't your posts be too? Some days I'm really angry at God. Some days I know that I had no control over what happened and that I need to move on in my life. Maybe there is a greater plan for me, if I would just stop resisting it.

  7. Have you read the book "Bad things happen to good people" by Harold Kushner? Its an excellent read and helped me deal with some of your questions.

  8. I can't believe in an "interventionist" higher power - for all the big reasons you hit on, and the small personal ones, too. No one is punishing me, even though sometimes it feels like it.

    Well written as usual. I'm looking forward to that picture.

  9. aww, you should start a lastchance theology :) isn't that what we're all striving for anyway? making sense out of it all? and clearly a lot of people appreciate your perspective, as you have a very unique and wise one, evident by your introspection. that's why i keep coming back! even if i don't agree with everything, i understand how different experiences shape people.
    one final note though, why would we strive to do good things if it was perfect here on earth? we would have no reason to do good works for there would be no difference between good and bad. and perfection is in heaven. at least that's my take.

    anyway, thanks for not being mean to me :) i'll stop with the annoying questions now.

  10. I couldn't agree with your phrase "God's will is there--stupid humans muck it up repeatedly and then we all have to figure out how to deal with the consequences." any more.
    I also agree with the "free will" that you commented on my post about. Absolutely we have free will, and our 'duty' is to make the good choice, the helpful choice, the Godly choice, every day. All too often, I know I make the selfish ones, and try to justify them to make myself feel better.
    I like your "theology" posts... keep them coming!

  11. Hey, I was reading another blog by a person who also goes by T. I don't have a blog though, but I have commented several times and I appreciate that you let anonymous people write to you. Thanks.


    *I think the other T puts a period after her T