I have had a chance to share about Ravenna and Georgia lately but now I want to share about my favorite little guy Parker (affectionately known around our house as Pedpod in a pumpkin patch). He is our miracle! After realizing that a biological child, we shifted into adoption mode. We always knew that we wanted to adopt but a big part of my heart grieved not knowing what it would feel like to carry a child. Over time and lots of tears, God really began to heal that grief. I knew that God was so loving and had begun to accept that he knew what was best for our little family.
Late December 2004 our life was ripe with anticipation as we neared our referral for our first child...we were weeks away from seeing Ravenna's face for the first time. In a spirit of wrapping things up before becoming parents, we had schedule my final knee surgery ( after 6 other foot and knee surgeries). With my pre-op appointment the next day, I stood in line at Target with a cart full of little girl things. A thought flicked through my mind...tomorrow they would ask if there was a chance I could be pregnant. Crud. I turned the cart around, got out of line in search of one of those tests. Even though my heart was healing, I still despised that aisle and those little purple boxes brought back such memories of deep heart-ache.
Little purple box nestled in with all that pink girlie stuff, I paid for my things and headed home. Unpacking the bags I came across that box and decided to get it over with. Doug was downstairs but I didn't even think of telling him as it was just to confirm that I could tell the surgeon "no" to that question the next day. So I did my little bit, set the thing on the windowsill of the bathroom and headed back to unpacking things for our little girl. After awhile I went back to check the test. What I saw shocked me so much that something not very ladylike came out of my mouth, my legs gave way and I sat down on that toilet, lid up and all! You guessed...it was positive!
After a few minutes of gathering myself and sitting (off the toilet) with this news, I headed to Doug's office. He was on the phone and I was still so overwhelmed that I just handed him the test. He took a quick glance, laughed and handed it back and kept talking. A little history...when we were first married, Doug pulled the ultimate joke on me. We had one of those, "Uhhh..what if we could be?" times. I had taken a test and left it in the bathroom. While my back was turned, Doug took a red sharpie marker and drew a line on the "positive" side. At that point in life it scared the dickens out of me and He let me stew awhile before letting me in on his secret, it has been a joke between us ever since. So...he thought I was getting payback. After a second glance and a look at my face, he quickly got off the phone. We were both speechless and finally broke down tearfully in prayer.
Fast forward to mid August after a wild pregnancy including a trip to China, tons of kicking while his big sis cried in my arms, flips and turns when the planes took off and a whopping round of preterm labor...our sweet little Parker was born with a flock of almost white blond hair that stuck up just like Sting's and a hairline like Jack Nicholson. The first thing he did when they placed him in the plastic thingy to clean him up was fling his little feet up on the edge like he was content as can be...and he still is the most content guy around.
I remember sitting there at the hospital when Ravenna came in to meet Parker for the first time...the lump in my throat as I stared in awe at the precious children God had given us. I also remember so many nights standing by Parker's crib (he was not what you would call a great sleeper, I think I "slept" standing by his crib most of the first year). Before he was born I felt like God spoke this verse (Psalm 37:4) over his life:
"Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart."
If there is one word to describe Parker, it would be DELIGHT. He seriously has the gift of making you feel like a million bucks. Every day when I pick him up from school he runs, backpack as big as he is (filled with rocks, he sneaks them from the playground because he wants a piece of school with him), screams "Mama!!!" and literally jumps into my arms. Every morning he peeks out of his bunkbed, his puffball of bedhead looking like he is a large lego man (you know, the giant plastic hair on those guys?), grin as big as can be and says, "Can it be morning????!!!!" He zooms through life, arms outstretched, racecar noises at full volume. If he is not a racecar, he is a robot savings the world from the evils of not recycling...arms out straight and robot hands snapping open and shut.
His imagination is second to none. I have been stopped over and over by people who know him and have been told that they love to listen to him talk. He spent 10 minutes telling the school receptionist about his make believe robot and what all of the buttons on it do to save the world and then what everything aournd the robot looks like. He tells the most fantastic stories about he and his friends zooming in hot air balloons and warding off badguys...but he describes it all down to the stripes on the ballons, the color of the basket, what the clouds look like and exactly what the bad guy is wearing and why he is bad (down to what yucky stuff shoots out of him) and then he chatters on and on about how they save the world from him.
Watching him at preschool has been incredible. Our little guy who seemed to get lost in his "stories" as he put it, has absolutely become a social buddy. Parent after parent has told us that their child says Parker is their best friend. If you walk down the hall with him at his school ( a preschool - 12th grade christian school), he knows everyone. He high fives with the seniors, pretend sword fights with the first graders and just walks around with a big ole grin on his face as kids yell, "Hey Parker!" He and Ravenna are best buddies, playing made up stories all day long (seriously). He is so tender with Georgia (most of the time).
In the midst of all that creativity is this certainty that God is huge and can do anything. In talking about God, He just jabbers on in such excitement about how God made the trees...the world...you name it and how God can fix anything that is broken including people's hearts. If I ask him to pray he always answers "sure!" with that big ole grin.
I am so very proud of our Parker and cannot wait to see what God has for him as he grows up!!!!