When Her Bitter Isn’t Just Bitter Anymore

I see you, Mama 

You were on lunch duty, volunteering. You watched her from across the room, sitting alone at that long rectangular table that could fit twenty, while girls dressed just like her filed in and jammed their small bodies into tables all around her. Those 3 minutes she waited alone, craning her neck — too young to have learned to look nonchalant about her solitary state —  felt like 30 minutes to her. It felt like three hours to you. Is anyone going to sit with me? — the question masking the real question: am I worth wanting?


The auditorium was silent. Could everyone hear your heart drumming inside of you? She’d been practicing this one dance for months and still couldn’t quite grasp where her feet were to be on beats four and eight. She’d mastered it maybe once, alongside girls who could do this in their sleep. Practice hadn’t make perfect for her and the stage was right now, unforgiving. One hundred and thirty five sets of eyes would be fixed on twelve girls. Her mistakes were minor to a watching mother, but you knew they might mean the end of dancing for your little non risk-taker. 



Late nights and long hours studying and countless practice tests weren’t enough to increase her score this time around. She packed up all the paraphernalia from this one college that she’d accumulated over so many years of high school dreaming, realizing as she stared at the rejection letter that it had no allegiance to her. She threw out the gear with the rejection letter. What was that about dreaming with God? she accusingly questioned you. After all, you’re the one who’d encouraged her to think big and press hard and ask Him.


The thin sheen around my daughters’ “safe” childhood snapped long before lunch tables and dance lessons and college acceptance letters. They were adopted — which, for them, meant there was messy loss before beautiful gain. But the undercurrent of their story is not so much different from the stories your four walls might hold — if they haven’t yet.

We sign them up for classes and sports and buy them cute clothes. We decorate their rooms and theme their birthday parties and teach them to read scripture. We practice piano with them. A lot. And while all of these things are good and beautiful and necessary, there is another reality our daughters will face at eight (or thirty-eight) for which we must prepare them.

One day their world will break.

Scripture promises this. One day it all won’t work just so for them.

One day they [continue reading post over here —>]