There’s a crazy Barbie in my son’s crib.

Last month our updates were delayed by a computer malfunction at the transition home. It was a big bummer, but when we did receive the latest on our boy, I soaked up every detail of the report and pictures. We were delighted to see a bald Baby S, fresh from a clipper line-up, no doubt. THE cutest bald head, right?Commonplace

In the uncropped photo, he’s very much standing right at the edge of his purple crib, looking every bit of his nine months. Sigh…

The next best thing about this picture is Crazy Barbie.

Reasons:

1) um, that she’s there at all.

2) that she seems to be having a super time. Live it up now, Barbie. (I promise I will be bumping her from her post just as soon as possible. I kind of feel like she might be rubbing in this whole “I’m here, you’re not” thing a little.)

3) that she’s white. And every child in the transition home is not. And every nanny is not. But (most) every adoptive parent from our agency simply is. It’s a beautiful non-thing, really.

Sidenote: Ever been shopping for a dark skinned Barbie? Or toy? It’s worth the excercise, promise.

I had no thoughts about color when I was very young. No conversations with my parents that I can remember. Very few personal friends of different shades. But…I vividly remember my mom buying me a family of beautiful, dark skinned Barbies. I noticed the difference right away. I think I might have even smiled nervously, unsure. She didn’t say a word, but the gesture was epic and formative, as I now look back. And, of course, in the next blink, I know my little girl self was off playing with my four brand new Barbies (because that is what kids do with great and new toys). It was a score.

A million points for toy diversity. 😉

4) that she is anything but off-the-shelf. Maybe a few too many smacks at the mercy of a wired toddler? (Hopefully if S stares at her a little everyday, he’ll have no fear at all when he sees me in the morning. Ha!)

5) that the sassy Barb made me laugh.

Yes, God’s grace absolutely can take the shape of a misplaced toy on my son’s crib. He knows what we need, and I needed that laugh.

We’ve hit another familiar little policy bump in the road. The timing doesn’t feel super, but we know better than to complain too loudly. We’ve seen a whole lot more grace than we deserve.

 

For us, right now, there’s so, so much grace in all of you checking in on us in your various wonderful ways. To name a few: a funny t-shirt, a friend remembering an important-to-us date, a sneaky check, a phone call, a suitcase of donations (MOPS moms!!!), a thinking of you text, a written prayer, a package of little boy treasures from a photo client, a listen that only a sister can give, an entire small group’s willingness to host a post-Halloween party “in case we [had] to travel with our trick or treater” (Shucks, we didn’t. But a nice offer, just the same.), a couple of you who have shared our burden right alongside some of your own very big burdens, affirmation, several “I want to do this for you guys” statements, and the kind of “I’m praying for you” that is the. real. deal.

Let me tell you, the real deal works every time. For every circumstance. And truthfully, some of you have flat out bested us at our own We’ve Got This model. You snuck in and showed us God’s grace in these genuine gestures, and it really does make waiting much easier. So, thanks for butting in and being so nice.

Back to Barbie…

That flailing gal was either a donation to the transition home or a gift to a child living there. Next to his medical notes, the September report didn’t specify whether Baby S actually plays with Barbie (He should. She seems great.), but I do know that he has been part of a system that is largely resourced by donations. His diapers, wipes, formula, food, clothing, bed sheets, toys come from the transition home supplies, mostly stocked by traveling families. It’s a beautiful system, and we’re grateful for the families who traveled before us.

To be honest, we’re not used to receiving charity or having a child who needs it. Despite our We’ve Got This model, our family of four has indeed needed grace and stuff. Humbling.

Grace and stuff.

I could not begin to dictate the exact right ways to put that powerful combo together, but I do know that there seem to be plenty of opportunities, all the time and everywhere, to try to give a little of both.

There is just no denying its impact. 

We’re grateful. And also still very joyful and excited. Last week our agency hosted a conference call about this new government change. We feel at peace with the information we have, and we’ll wait until we hear more about our last document.

In the meantime, we’ve entrusted Barbie to watch over that little bald head.

 

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