Tag Archives: disruption

Faith in the Darkness: Disrupted Adoption

My friend Addie Zierman asked her readers to share their stories of faith in the darkness to mark the release of her new book, Night Driving: A Story of Faith in the Dark. I highly recommend her book and have already shared about it, but I wanted to take up her challenge and write my own story.

This is not an easy story to share, as you’ll see. There’s more I could confess. There are other, different, arguably more important perspectives. But this is my perspective and the only one I can share. I ask your grace and mercy in sharing this, not for me alone, but for everyone who had a part in this season.


The darkest season in my life started with a nine hour stay at the emergency room. That night—well, early morning I guess—we came home without our daughter. We would see her again, but she never came back to our house.

This is the story of a disrupted adoption.

That’s safe, clinical language for an adoption that falls through. You welcome a child into your home, make her a part of your family and do everything you can to convince her that this is a permanent and lasting home.

And then you kick her out.

It’s the antithesis of everything adoption is supposed to be.

And it’s what my family went through in 2011.

I remember driving home from the hospital and passing a wrecked car abandoned in the street. There were no police. No flashing lights. No people standing around. Just a mangled car. Broken glass littered the street, catching our headlights and throwing pinpricks of glare into the early morning dark.

It looked like someone crashed into a parked car and then drove off.

That hit-and-run felt like too apt a metaphor for what had just happened to us. There was no one at the site of that accident—no one to blame, no one to accuse, no one to give answers or directions. Just a ruined car and a lot of questions. Continue reading Faith in the Darkness: Disrupted Adoption

Saying Goodbye

On June 9, 2010 we first heard about our new daughter. She was 10. She had a complicated story and we were going to be her new family to help carry her through.

On May 9, 2011 we sat across a coffee table and said goodbye. She’s leaving our family. Her complicated story gets even worse and we all struggle with dashed hopes and broken dreams.

This has been my life the past few months as our latest journey into adoption has come apart all around us. It’s a little bizarre when life unravels and you’re not sure how to answer the ‘how are you?’ question, let alone blog about it.

When an adoption doesn’t work out it’s called a disruption (such a lovely technical term for a heart-wrenching circumstance). I’m not going to get into the details of our disruption. It’s a matter of privacy and when you’re dealing with an older child who can Google herself that’s just a bit weird. This entire situation sucks for her, and she deserves way better than that kind of indignity.

This whole mess is still being worked out. We don’t know what’s next. We don’t have much, if any, control of the situation and we don’t know all the details. It’s a feeling of powerlessness. Like being lost in a fog.

What we do know is that everything has changed. We do know that our family of five has become something else. We’re not quite a family of five anymore, but I hesitate to say we’re a family of four again. I don’t think you can go back so easily.

While she’s no longer in our house and soon to no longer be our legal charge, she is still in our hearts. I can be clear about that. She will always be our daughter. It’s not for a lack of love or a lack of trying or something else. The choices this process forced upon us are brutal, and I don’t really expect anyone to understand them. I wouldn’t have understood them a few months ago. It just sucks.

I’ve heard a lot of platitudes and I’ve offered a lot of nervous laughter and I’ve given fake smiles and I haven’t been able to maintain eye contact. Sometimes I’d rather not talk about it. And sometimes I need to get it off my chest (hence this post).

I don’t know where we go from here. We’ve asked for a lot of help and we’re trying to find our way.

My hope and prayer is that more than us, she’ll find her way.