And then, one night, driving home through Sardine Pass - it came. The answer just came to me, and it involved an 11-year-old and it was not the path I was expecting, but there it was anyway, and it was like a deep breath in midwinter.
There are many reasons behind our decision to have Jason come live with us. We had talked about it since we first started dating, but we always thought it wouldn't be for a number of years. Some of the reasons are very personal and meaningful, and I won't share them here. There is a real and deep need for Jason's home environment to change. Sam and I made the decision like we make all important decisions - slowly, with counseling from those people whose opinions we respect most, and lots and lots of prayer and fasting. It's the big decisions that need the most consideration.
And this is what I realized - Sam and I would have fulfilling lives either way. We could take him or not take him, and chances are we'd have a successful marriage. We knew taking Jason would mean less money, more stress, more responsibilities, and less time to mold our marriage as a couple with no kids.
But what I really want, as we look back over the years, is for our life to be beautiful. I don't want it to be conventional or cute or perfect, I want it to be beautiful. Jason is amazing, and having him in our lives will be such a growing and learning process. But more importantly, it will be a beautiful process to have an 11-year-old whom we need as much as he needs us.
So here's to choosing beauty over convention, challenges and change over stability and static, and most of all, to that road trip we're taking this weekend to bring home the 11-year-old who is changing, and saving, our lives.
Thank you, thank you readers, for being so supportive and positive.
It's people like you who inspire me to be better every day. And I mean that.
And on a slightly different note -
Pre-teen parenting tips?
Great parenting or "foster parenting" books? (we're not actually foster parents)
I'll take any advice!