The Robbery of Christmas

A man who had known me for a few days must have overheard something about my life and he asked me, “Do you counsel people who have experienced loss?” I was a little taken back. I wasn’t sure how he even knew to ask me that question, but even so, the fact that he was asking meant he had loss he needed to talk about. That was heavy.

I stumbled a bit and then I said, “Well, I have personally experienced loss so I know a little about it, but I am not a professional counselor.” He proceeded to talk about he and his wife having a stillborn child over 10 years ago and he wasn’t through all the hurt and emotion of it. I encouraged him to see a professional counselor {much to his dismay}, but I finished our conversation with telling him how much he was robbing himself and his family for not dealing with his emotions. I think he was surprised I would say this. However, this is a lesson I learned all too well.

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This Christmas season I am watching my son have his very first experiences of a holiday with a family. He is loving every minute of it. We can’t open presents fast enough or see family quick enough or put more decorations on the tree at the rate in which his excitement revs.

I watch him sometimes and while my heart bursts, I mourn deep inside.
I mourn for his biological mom.
I hurt for her on a level I can’t even begin to do justice to in this blog.
She was never in a place to understand what she would miss out on or what she was giving up, and most likely she never will be.
God redeemed this because he made Aiden with Jared & me in mind, but deep sadness overcomes me when I see him giggle and I know she doesn’t know the sound of her son’s voice.

She doesn’t know that he is such a bossy little thing. He is particular about almost everything. She doesn’t know that he loves to say “mommy” a million times a day. She doesn’t know that when I hear him say my name a thousand times and I get exasperated that I then think of her and become overwhelmed at the fact that she will never hear those words from him. She doesn’t know that right now his daddy has hung the moon in his eyes and Aiden beams when he walks in the room. There is so much she doesn’t know. And most of all right now…

She doesn’t know what he wants for Christmas.

Each time I think of her, each time I think of what I know of her and where she probably is at this exact moment I mourn for her and the loss she may feel for not being able to keep Aiden. And if she doesn’t mourn that, I mourn that she doesn’t know she should mourn him. He is exquisite.

IMG_3874This season of so much happiness and joy can cause many of us to go to places of sadness, regret, remorse, and pain. This season that makes so many people happy, reminds many of us of our losses in life.

I finally realized, I can feel for my son’s biological mom, and I can wish this world was more perfect, but I do not need to rob my son or my husband of the joys God has given us just because I feel grief.
I want to feel for her and pray for her and be the mom to him she probably wishes she could have been, but I do not want the Christmas spirit to make me mourn her losses. I want the Christmas spirit (and the spirit of being alive every single day) to make me rejoice in Aiden’s life and not rob him of the fullest parts of me.

When we lost our daughter, I was on a quick path to robbing anyone of my joy and my time. I was so hurt and lost that I was caving in on myself. When Aiden came along, I realized very quickly I had to grieve that loss in a way that did not take my attention from him. He needed me. In fact, if I let it, my loss is what made me a better mom to him.

Had I not experienced abandonment myself in the adoption process, I could not even begin to relate to Aiden on any level. I have no clue what it would be like to have no parents, but my loss helps me see Aiden in a different light. I am a better mom to him now than I ever could have been before I experienced such hurt.  

What do I want my new friend to know who asked me if I counseled people through loss? I want him to know that his two daughters who are living need the best version of him. They need his heart and soul to be well. He needs to love them and himself enough to get the help he needs to overcome the darkness of his loss.

This is so much easier said than done. I know that first hand.

The spirit of Christmas is a time that is difficult on so many people. The people who are hurting during the holidays are often lost in the bubbles of the Santa Coke commercials and the chime of the Salvation Army bells.

If you are hurting this Christmas, think of ways to fully be there for your family this season in the best emotional way possible. Ask them for help. Ask anyone for help. Those closest to you need you –  ALL of you.

If you know someone who is hurting this Christmas, don’t overlook them on your way to see Christmas lights. Be Jesus. Be their joy this season.

Merry Christmas my loves.

-KR

Ornaments4Orphans Giveaway

If there is ever a time I feel the weight of the greatness of bringing my son home at its fullest, it is at Christmastime. The air is full of cheer and a giving spirit. I see in his little eyes the overwhelming joy of the season and this year, I see the light of family. For him, family is the ultimate gift.

Just tonight while I sat on the floor helping him change his clothes, he climbed in my lap, wrapped himself tightly around me, and called for his daddy to come hug us. Sandwiched between us, he went limp for the joy of the warmth of parents. He loves having a family.

Ornamnets4Orphans has tapped into this same need in Uganda.

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In Uganda there are many families that take their children to the orphanage because they are too poor to feed them and too poor to put them in school. The children who fill those orphanage walls have parents outside the gates who love them, but have no resources to keep them.

This is where Ornaments4Orphans came in and filled a need. They employ these moms to make all kinds of amazing ornaments. They are exquisite and SO beautiful. By employing these women they now have a chance to keep their children and love them well.

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{This sweet lady is head of the widows co-op that makes all the stuffed animal ornaments}

With it being almost Christmas time, I wanted to give one of my sweet readers an opportunity to adorn their trees with some of these masterpieces from Uganda.

Enter my giveaway by doing these things below and one winner will be chosen for Ornamnets4Orphans to send a trio of animal ornaments to {my FAV}.

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To Enter : 1. Like this post and FOLLOW BOTH @krystalribble and @ornaments4orphans on Instagram. 2. Visit www.krystalribble.com and subscribe to my blogs (Pink Button on the Blog Page) in order to be notified each time I do another giveaway. 3. Tag two friends who would love my mission and @ornaments4orphans’ mission to uplift the broken people and places of this world. **You must do all of these things to be entered to win. We will be checking each entry.** GIVEAWAY winner will be drawn at random on Sunday night December 13, 2015, and announced on my (@krystalribble) Instagram. (Giveaway not sponsored by IG, must be 13+ old and US or Canadian resident to enter.) Please know that I am receiving no compensation for this. I just absolutely LOVE what Ornaments4Orphans is doing and I want you all to join me in their cause!

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