Friday, February 3, 2012

The Occupiers of Dreams

My heart is breaking today...was breaking all day yesterday as well. If you haven't noticed, I've been a little consumed with my friend Kelly's blog this week. As well as a passionate adoptive mama,  she's a passionate advocate for our kids. She went on a Buddy Walk this year...I've never even gone on a Buddy Walk. She has no children- and she is choosing to adopt a child with Down syndrome for her very first parenting experience.

 Can someone please go give this woman a crown??

So as I was reading her previous posts on her blog yesterday, I found one that tore my heart to pieces. Have you ever read something and it grabbed your heart so powerfully- you literally felt physical pain? The kind of words that just made your chest constrict and your heart hurt, and you could not just walk away from what you'd read -- unchanged?

I spent the day with these children on my heart, crying out to God for miracles for them...these children, the Occupiers of Dreams.

What occupies your dreams?

Is it thoughts of what you're going to decorate your house with, what new gadget you're going to purchase, what fabulous new recipe you're going to prepare, what vacation you're going to go on next?

I'm being honest- sometimes those things do fill my dreams. Sometimes I look around my house, and I wish I could start all over; every room has something that's lacking, old furniture, broken toys, chipped plates, missing pieces...I look in a magazine or browse a store, and I want to revamp my entire wardrobe- scrap the whole thing and start over again. It's so easy to be consumed with material things, isn't it? Everywhere we look there's the opportunity to do it better, to get more: a new car, new house, new wardrobe...

But these kids just want a life.

They just want to know what it means to be loved, to have someone care for them, to be valued.

They just want life.

Once again, I've asked Kelly if I could copy her words here...I hope they move you beyond compassion to action. 

by Kelly Dirkes

I hear their laughter in my dreams sometimes.  I hear their cries, too.

And I wake up feeling completely powerless.

They are the ones we are leaving behind when we bring Charlotte home.

Everyone told me that leaving our girl would be excruciating.  No one told me that leaving the others would be just as painful.

Vitaliy lit up like a Christmas tree when he saw us walk into their lesson on our second trip to the baby house.  Grinning from ear to ear, he made a beeline for my husband’s lap, tripping over the room-to-grow in his shoes as he came.  He settled himself right in and got down to serious conversation.  They examined the tiny toy tiger in his hand from every conceivable angle.  They pointed out the nose, ears, and tail.  They roared (or at least tried).  He soaked up the ten minutes of undivided attention from a loving daddy until his caregivers came and took him back to finish his lesson.  He cheerfully waved goodbye and returned to his task, but he kept sneaking glances at him from across the room.

I can’t help but wonder what he was thinking.

Kacey initially observed us from the safety of the child size chairs across the room.  She was clearly skeptical of these new people watching her lesson.  She watched carefully as Charlotte eagerly climbed up into my lap and snuggled in for some hugs from Momma before participating in her lesson.  Her curiosity seemed to overrule her initial fear, and she shyly sidled up next to me.  She extended her scarred arms and hands and looked up into my face, waiting to see what my reaction would be.  When I smiled and traced her scars with my fingers, she relaxed.  She put her hand on my leg and questioned, “Mama?”

I don’t think I could ever forget the look on her face when my answer was “nyet”.

Diane wandered over to investigate the contents of the red backpack resting on the floor at our feet.  She looked utterly delighted when she discovered that it was full of toys.  She gave a big belly laugh when I reached in and handed her a red My Little Pony to play with.  She swung it around by its mane and galloped it along the edge of the carpet.  She was happily lost in her own little world until one of her caregivers stood her up at the end of their lesson and tried to return the toy to us.  Her lower lip began to tremble.  Her eyes widened as I laid the red pony back in her hand and smiled.

I wish all the world’s problems could be solved with a 5 inch plastic toy.

I cannot bring them home.  I cannot be the momma that they so desperately want.  My husband cannot be the daddy that they so completely deserve.  We have to leave them behind.

But I can be their voice.

I can jump up and down and scream NOTICE THEM!

They are Charlotte’s friends.  They are her first family.

They deserve a life of acceptance and love.  They deserve hugs and silliness and laughter and comfort.

Please don’t leave them behind.

Can you love them?


Kelly is bringing home one of these treasures- redeeming a life from the rubble that is an Eastern European orphanage...a trash heap, where children are thrown away.

We have four days left on this giveaway. I am AMAZED at the miracles that have happened- over $10,000 raised since Tuesday morning. This wasn't one blog rallying hearts- this was our community pulling together to cover its own.

We have $6,550 left to get them fully funded to bring Charlotte home next month.  I am pushing for this goal, in spite of what has already been raised, because it's a mountain that must be moved for Charlotte to come home.

We have a fabulous giveaway going on can donate to the chip-in on my sidebar, which is linked directly to the Dirkes family's grant fund on Reece's Rainbow. The giveaway ends Monday night, and Kelly will announce winners on her blog.

Please help ransom Charlotte today.


Leah said...

This post of Kelly's has been gnawing at my heart too. Thank you for posting it where so many others' hearts can see it. I just know that these other three treasures can find families to take them home.

crystalkupper said...

I read this blog yesterday, too, and my stomach turned over with the first picture of the institutions. I was on the phone with my husband at the time, and I actually stopped talking mid-sentence. Praying about our next step....

nicole said...

Once again, thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

I am crying but thru my tears I am PRAYING for these eastern european countries to GET IT!!!! Get it that these children are not worthless! I just can't believe it...the attitude must change. I just keep praying or these momma's to fight for their babes! Need more Kleenex - thanks for this poignant post.

cara said...

Wow! My heart aches.

I was cleaning out and dusting a bookshelf today. I found an old journal I had. I found an entry dated on October 3, 2010.(also my birthday) I had to share with you what I wrote Patti. This was the very last page in the journal, and I just happened to pick it up and read it. I am SO thankful to see Kelly rescuing Charlotte. The LOVE she has for this precious girl is overflowing. I did not know who she was until I saw her recently advocating for Charlotte. How happy I was to see her pictures with Charlotte and all the LOVE- pure love. I was not sure what was happening with her. Here is my entry:

"I am just waiting on Jon to watch a family movie. I LOVE my family. And there is this precious, precious girl on my heart tonight. I found her on Reece's Rainbow site- an adoption ministry for kids with down syndrome and other disabilities from Eastern Europe. For some reason, I can't get her out of my mind. Her eyes are so sweet! She is born in January 2008, just like Mary. Maybe Mary's birthday. And she kind of looks like Mary and Anna Rose. She is pulling at my heart. So, I pray, Oh Heavenly Father, You know this girl I am talking about. Oh how my heart longs for her. I don't know if this is Your Will. I know looking after orphans is Your Will. I pray You will open the flood gates of heaven if it is Your Will for us to adopt this precious girl. Make it clear to us in Your Awesome Way. I pray you will put her on Jon's heart as well. I love You Oh Lord. In Jesus's Name I Pray, Amen."

That was Charlotte(Maria) I was talking about. I remember praying and praying for her. I had just been led to Reeces's Rainbow. I showed Jon the site and showed her to Jon and began praying. My kids fell in love with her. And then she was on the My Family Found Me page. I knew that she had a family that loved her, and I was thrilled. I continued to pour over all over their faces. And then I saw Olga on your page, and you know the rest. I keep spreading the word about these giveaways and praying and giving when we can. But I want to do more. Oh this post just breaks my heart.

What a blessing to see what you are doing for these kids Patti. I just cannot tell you enough how beautiful it is to see what is taking place!! through your blog- God is using you my dear friend. Love you

Kellan's momma said...

I don't know what to say...heartbreak.