It is easy to love the people far away. It is not always easy to love those close to us. It is easier to give a cup of rice to relieve hunger than to relieve the loneliness and pain of someone unloved in our own home. Bring love into your home for this is where our love for each other must start. -Mother Teresa

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The little things are the big things in orphan hosting

A lot of people helped us orphan host. A lot. 

Sometimes I am embarrassed because we received so much help and attention for such a seemingly small thing.  But with that being said, it is all sooooooo appreciated. 

I am not even going to begin to try and mention every single person and every single thing they have said, done, or given us. I couldn't because there has been so much and so many have done things quietly so has to hardly be known. We actually keep running across things....

But I want to share this tiny bit with you because maybe instead of your family hosting, you are instead called to help out someone who will. (And I am hopeful that some friends and blog followers will after reading our posts and meeting our Di*na!)

The night before we picked Di*na up from the airport, we spent the night with friends family who live in the Chicago-area. These people not only opened their home to us but they really made us feel comfortable and supported at a time when our hearts and minds were all over the place.

They ordered our favorite Chicago meal - Italian beef, Gyros, and hot dogs. (I should be shamed but I am not the Gyro and the Chicago-Style hot dog were mine!!!). We sat around drinking beer and eating Peanut Butter Pie talking. (For the record, I did not have PB pie - after all I just eaten enough food to feed a family!) They asked us really specific questions about hosting. Questions that made us know they had really been reading and thinking about us. 

They loved on our kiddos and asked them appropriate questions. But they also asked us general questions about life. They showed the perfect balance of knowing this was a big deal but yet it wasn't all that was going on with us. 

They fed us a great breakfast. (Totally have the market cornered on the perfect scrambled eggs as Nan reminds me every time I make some.) Then they sat around with us as we drink coffee and watched adorable little girls play. They made an anxious time into a good time. I can't even tell you how physically nervous I was getting. 

Although I am not embarrassed about the amount of food I consumed, I am embarrassed about how nervous I was. I was probably pretty close to a panic attack - I thought my chest was going to explode. I was crazy. There was no reason for this and I was trying hard to control but I was totally failing because my mind was filled with "What ifs". 

My friend saw this and totally calmed me down. She spoke truth to me and in a loving way told me, "Stop making too much out of this." It worked. I needed a friend who loved and knew me enough to call me on the craziness and follow it up with a hug.

Know what else? Our friend gave us very good directions to the airport - exactly what lanes and where to park all that jazz. The kind of thing detail-people like Michael need. Then he escorted us almost all the way there. 

Gyros, questions, the World's-Best-Scrambled-Eggs, hugs, and directions....weird combination but exactly what we needed. (Along with hugs from the most amazing Goddaughter in the world!) 

You might consider how the 'little things' you do for someone hosting (or foster parenting or adopting) are really the 'big things'. There are many other things people have done and are doing. I will continue to try and share some of these with the hope that they inspire you to do 'little things' for other host families too.

PS: I not only praise God for filling my life with friends like this but also for giving me 2 natural child births. I compare Di*na's arrival day to having a c-section. Bless you people who have to schedule c-sections. How in the world could you possibly wrap your brains around that let alone sleep the night before?????

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