Thursday, November 8, 2012

Not Ready for Today

Maria is doing an awesome job with this blog, but today, well, today shook the foundations of my world.  Maria and I are still processing, but I thought I might put some of my thoughts on this blog before I forget them, and while everyone is sleeping.  They are rough, and I am not as detailed as Maria is, but remember she is asleep, and this is an unsanctioned post.

Today we went to Hannah Ershu's "finding place" - the place where she was abandoned.  I didn't know what to expect.  I was afraid, afraid that a flood of memories would come back with a vengeance, and not in a good way.  I was not ready for what happened.  She remembered - Everything.

Our visit lasted less than an hour, but it has been replaying in my mind all evening.  As she told us about the day I imagine it the smells - the noise - the little girl on the sidewalk.  I picture my daughter waiting, and waiting, and waiting.  I see the people walking by.  My stomach turns with dread as her story unfolds.  Even now tears fill my eyes.

At the same time, I am overwhelmed with how fortunate I am to be her Daddy.  I get to love her.  I get to tell her that I will never leave her - in the same place she was left for good.  I get to carry some of her burden.  I get to show her a Father that never left her and will never leave her.  I get to be part of the plan God is unfolding in her life.  This was not something I was thinking of a year ago when we first learned about her.  I know there are special things in store for Hannah Ershu,  I know that God put her in our hearts and in our home for a reason ... a little girl halfway around the globe in a country I thought very little about (mostly on purpose) ... but I never expected what happened today.

There is an account of Jesus looking at the crowds and He "had compassion on them."  I heard that the word 'compassion' in this account is really more like a knot in the pit of your stomach from loving someone so much that you can't stand the thought of anything happening to them.  Today I felt true compassion. As my daughter recounted the details and events of the day she was abandoned,  I felt more that that knot in the pit of my stomach.  It was as if someone had kicked me in the stomach.  She is so precious, so smart, so special - how could something this tragic happen to her?  I am beyond sad that my daughter has been forced to endure so much in her short life.  I don't fully comprehend the fear and pain she has experienced - can you begin to imagine waiting for a father that never returns?  Can you imagine carrying that painful memory?

I was not prepared for what happened today.  Even though it happened several hours ago, I am still in shock.  I am still getting tears in my eyes as I think about it.  That knot hasn't left.



  1. Josh,

    You have me crying. I love you. Thank you for being such a compassionate daddy! I too shudder to think of what she went through that day. Wishing she didn't have to remember so much of it. Thank you for being a wonderful example of our Father for my nieces and nephews.


  2. Josh,
    we never got to see NingNing's finding place; it was never even offered to go there by our guide. I'm so very happy for you that you had that closure and could reassure Hannah of your love.
    Last night, after a wonderful conversation with NingNing, I asked why he chose to be adopted and leave China and he said....I just wanted a home....doesn't that say it all?