Sunday, February 13, 2011

The Boiling Point

"Aaaggghhh! I hate you all! I wish you never chose me! You chose me and made my momma die! I want to go back. I miss them so much!"


"You take Harry to movie and you don't take me! You buy everyone shoes, I hate shoes, I won't have any new shoes until I am 18 and I don't care. They are idiot shoes! I hate it here! I want to go back to Africa. No one tell me I can't do this or I have to do that. You kill my mom. And I don't even remember my dad. He was my dad! Not you! And are a bad momma! I hate you! Everyone hate me, no one care about me."

We all sat in stunned silence.

Isabel started crying.

"I don't care about you, Isabel! You better run because I am going to hit you!"

Isabel screams for me. George has picked up the seat belt buckle and has raised his hand to hit Isabel with it.

Joe pulls over the car. We get Isabel out of the back seat and she crawls onto my lap in the front seat.

George screams. It is like an animal. Unrecognizable.

Joe quietly says, "George. We love you..."

"No you don't! No one does!"

Joe repeats. "George, we love you. We all love you. We all hurt for you."

George continues a seriously wounded animal.

That's it. I have to do something. I get out of the front seat and climb into the back and simply wrap my arms around my son.

"Oh, momma! I miss her so much." George starts to sob.

And then he tells me this story..."My Africa mommy love me so much. She gave me a shirt and pants. They were ripped. But they were good shirt and pants. She tried to give me clothes when I was cold. But I was still cold. She made me a good breakfast every morning." Then he stops and chokes up. "But, I never said thank you to her."

The tears are streaming down George's face and all I can do is hold him and tell him that mommas know that kind of stuff. I tell him that most kids don't tell their mommas "thank you", but we know they mean it.

"I miss her. And I miss my Africa father. But I don't remember what he looks like anymore."

The pain was almost unbearable for all of us as we sat in the Suburban....stunned at what we were going through. We had just gone through an hour of extreme rage directed at us - so many hurtful words came pouring out of George's mouth that we just didn't even know what to say. He attacked everyone in the car verbally, intentionally trying to wound us all. And then, we all heard his heart breaking as he got to the core of it all.

If we try to walk in his shoes for a minute, he experienced great poverty and death. And then, one day, his mom who he loved so much just left him. And he is so, so sad about that. More sad than I could ever imagine.

George calmed down, relaxed in my arms and then said, "I want to give my mom a present. I want her to know that I know she was a good momma. Can I give her a ring? Where can I get a ring?"

We had just spent a wonderful weekend in Wisconsin Dells! We played and laughed and stayed up late. And George had moved so close to me! He held my hand on long walks. He sat on my lap for long stretches of time. There was no fighting...there really was LOVE! I thought to myself - we have really turned a corner. And then, as we were deciding on a place to eat on the way home on Sunday afternoon, George snapped.

"I don't want to eat with you."

We were pretty surprised. Where was this coming from?

We get in Denny's and George scowls at me. I ask him to come with me to the bathroom so we can talk. On the way to the bathroom, he throws himself on the floor and screams at the top of his lungs. I pick him up and get him into the bathroom where he continues screaming as if I was whipping him. I couldn't believe it.

So, I said, "We need to go to the car. You and I can eat in the car," and as soon as we get through the door, he bolts across the parking lot. Joe chases him down and eventually gets him to settle down. George joins us at the table and picks up a knife (thankfully a butter one!) and starts to try to cut himself. I lose it, crying. What is going on? We just had such a nice weekend!

We all decide to just get through lunch.

Joe takes George to the car while the rest of us use the restroom and finish up. Apparently, during that car time, George let loose with a vicious diatribe. When I got to the car. Joe is visibly shaken. And we pray.

Lord, help us! We have no idea what is going on! You have to help us....

And that is when the screaming began and the terror shook us all.

We still don't know why today George mourned, and I mean truly mourned his losses. But something triggered this emotional release. I have never heard him cry like this. And I have never felt so much heart ache FOR HIM. Thank God, I didn't make this about me. Thank God, for the past few weeks of searching for help and for answers which led me to think that maybe all this rage is really covering up great hurt. Thank God my heart broke for George. Thank God for Joe who knew to stop the car and simply tell his son how much he loved matter what was said.

As I write this, about three hours after this amazing episode, George and Lincoln are crawling around the house pushing police cars and fire trucks, playing happily. As soon as we exited the car, George ran to Isabel to hugged her and said he was sorry. And he has come to Joe and I several times with huge hugs and heartfelt apologies.

Joe and I have begun talking about how important it is for George to really mourn his parents. We are talking about a church service - or a time where we gather all the people who are important to George and celebrate his birth parents, and also mourn their passing away. I don't know...there isn't much "out there" from other parents in our situation. But we know that George needs a way to say goodbye...and to say thank you to his momma.


Brian & Amy said...

Absolutely incredible. You had tears rolling down my cheeks. I am amazed at the depth of George's pain...and yet, I wonder, "how would I cope being his age and experiencing ALL that he has?" Bless his sweet precious heart. I am praying. Praying for you and Joe to continue to listen to God's heart and to minister love to your precious son.

Thank you for sharing and not hiding your trials. Your honesty helps us walk into adoption with open eyes and an awareness of the pain with which and from which these children come to us.

Keep on in this path of love. George needs your stability now more than EVER.

love you guys!!

Brooke said...

Wow. Tears flOwing. Heart breaking for George. It's so very obvious to me, Traci, that George has been put into the Perfect family. A family who sees the underlying pain despite his anger toward you. I know his mama and daddy would be thanking you. I also know Jesus is watching and hurting to see you all go through this, but also saying I KNOW I did the right thing by making George a Weldie.

Praying for all of you. Especially Georgie.

LisaMarie said...

This sounds just like a couple stand offs I had with Cheyenne. I'm sure you saw them on my blog. I would guess he was feeling bonded to you after this weekend and those feelings were uncomfortable for him so he had to try and oppose them and oppose you. Not to mention its always so scary for them when they feel somewhat attached to you but have lost before. I think subconsciously they want to make sure you're in it no matter what. You all are standing the test. Stay strong and cling to Him. He has dealt with even more hostile children of His own. He knows. <3

Donna-Jean Breckenridge said...

Praying for you. You teach so much with this posts - but they are lessons that are costly. I pray the love that has been planted and that is growing also blooms and rejoices your heart. You're showing God's unconditional love - and I pray your little guy gets it, and has a healed heart.

jane guffy said...

Let me put my tissue down and wipe the tears that are giving me double vision as I try to type.....Thank God George feels enough trust to "go there" with you. Could it be that he had such an enjoyable time and felt the fusing and bonding that it triggered such conflict and guilt that he was tormented, by it? He tasted what he misses. I love your idea of a "memorial" type of service. An intentional naming, of his parents, as such, to say thank you and good bye to. There is dignity in that! Would you consider planting a tree in their honor. A tree that is tied to them by name or species, but survives in zone 5?
~God picked the right family for George. I think George is beginning to feel that!

Anonymous said...

What an incredible time for your family. I can't even fathom the feelings of turmoil your family felt throughout that episode, but how gracious of you to provide comfort to your George in his time of fear, anger, and sadness.
Love your idea for a memorial service! I don't know if George likes to write, but I know some of my little clients who have written letters to someone whom they have lost. I know this sounds corny, but maybe have him write his bio parents letters and tie them to balloons... it gives a sense of "letting go" of some part of a huge feeling they are experiencing... Just throwing that out...
May you continue to feel the comfort of our Heavenly Father as you comfort your precious child!

beckley said...

Traci, the work you are doing is extraordinary.

May the grace of God bring you peace, as you are involved in the building blocks of shalom. And may the spirit continue to empower you with a calm that is extraordinary, to meet the demands you face as a mother. I can't imagine how difficult it is; I can only imagine it is a stress beyond what a human can bear apart from our Counselor.

Rob Bell has some work on lament, maybe from lent two years ago? I've never heard anything like it (even through seminary), and found it powerful. Lament is a lost subject these days. I wish you success in finding the appropriate map for George's lament.

I can only imagine your other children are being gifted with understanding the state of the world that most don't, and they will be empowered as so.

grace and peace be with you all-