What Schaefer Taught Us – Final Part

While I could post more about what we learned from our time with 40 Days for Life at American Family Planning on Schaefer Ave, I think after today’s post, I will have conveyed at least a few of the most important lessons as pertains to our journey toward adoption.

Today, the one last aspect I want to highlight about our time there is more personal. When I stood on the sidewalk at the clinic watching the women exit their cars and walk through the doors, I remembered my own start in life, unplanned and difficult. I saw my mom in those women and saw myself as the life-changing problem in their wombs that had to be dealt with.

As God often does, when we set out to help other people, he shows us how much we’re the ones who actually need help. And although I had dealt with many particulars of my past years before, there was something about being in that circumstance that made my empathy surface to a whole new level. It reminded me that the past doesn’t stay in the past and as much as we want to deal with it and put it behind us, we can never really let it go.

And I’m glad I can’t be free from my past, because it’s precisely why I was empathetic toward those women in desperate situations. Because I saw what my and my mom’s life had become, against the odds, and had so much hope for them. And if they didn’t have hope for themselves, if they couldn’t imagine how that baby might actually stabilize their instability and sober their insobriety, I wanted to help them have hope, whatever that might look like. Whether by hearing our story and lifting their eyes from their present circumstances to what might be, or even in a more tangible way, like loving and raising that baby in their womb for them, that they just didn’t feel equipped to parent for whatever reason.

Tomorrow I’m going to repost something I wrote after our first few visits to the clinic, telling a portion of my and my mom’s story. It is still the most read post on this little blog, getting over 1,600 hits. While the numbers don’t mean much, they do tell me that it was one of the most helpful posts I’ve written and that it is a message that needs to be heard. And because it reflects such a significant part of our adoption journey, it deserves to be documented in this series about our family’s adoption.


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