Sunday, October 19, 2008

Perfect Fit

A few months after we got married, Ted and I were visiting his brother and family in Klamath Falls, Oregon for Christmas. My sister-in-law is an expert thrift-shore shopper who finds the best deals of anyone I know, so I was excited to go with her to dig through the bins at Goodwill (she's the one who sent us that beautiful sweater Abe's wearing in the "Calling Your Name" post--a garage sale find). On this shopping trip, Ted added to our pile of stuff a little pair of size four baby boots. I was touched that he picked something out for a child that we hoped to have one day. The boots hung in my shoe rack in Los Angeles through the first couple of years of our marriage, and after a painful loss and many dashed hopes, I had to move them out of sight. These boots were a reminder to me that I wasn't the only one longing to be a parent. Someone else had picked them out, someone who would be an excellent father and seeing these little boots made me feel like a failure, that I was somehow letting down the most important person in my life...and that's a difficult pill to swallow.

When we moved to Oregon, Ted put the boots in his office, and I'd see them occasionally on the shelf to the left of his desk, amidst the boxes and disheveled papers (and bow-ties, tennis balls, fake teeth and paperclips: Ted's particular brand of off-beat clutter). I just kept them there, relieved to know that someone else was the keeper of the baby boots.

After many long months of waiting for a child to fill those boots and then for that child with tiny feet to grow enough to fit into them, I pulled out the boots on Saturday and put Abe's feet into them. He wasn't sure what to think of them at first, as he'd never worn hard-soled shoes before. He stood up slowly and thoughtfully rocked back and forth a few times from heel to toe. And then he took off. They're a perfect fit.

One of my dearest friends I've made through this world of adoption had for her facebook profile picture during a difficult waiting time a photo of a small pair of tennis shoes resting on a chair. And this afternoon, I talked on the phone with another very sweet friend who is feeling impatient with the wait, despite her best efforts of being realistic about the length. I know the feeling. And I guess I'm writing this now for all the people out there who are longing to fill those shoes. As diligently as you prepare yourself mentally and spiritually for the long wait, bad days are going to come. You're going to feel impatient at times, and that's alright. Feel it and give it up to God.

Just hold on. Sooner or later, you're gonna see that shoe, filled with sweet and surprisingly stinky feet, dangling casually off the side of the stroller, like that's where it's meant to be. With you always. A perfect fit.

27 comments:

coffeemom said...

Another one. PErfect. Perfect fit for today too, for me. The 'boots' of mine though I think might be more like funky uggs or pink tennies....size ?? 6???? I don't know. But love this post. Beautiful. and a great shot.

Cute shoes!

MissHannah said...

Lori...I don't think I've ever commented before, but I follow your blog religiously. I'm a good friend of Jana's. I love love love your perspective and your family is so fun and such a perfect fit.

I also love that you live in the Pacific NW...a favorite of mine, I live vicariously through your pictures.

Natalie Fournet said...

Just beautiful! Thanks so much for the encouragement as we continue to wait!

Julie said...

Thanks Lori. As usual, eloquent and beautiful. I'm sending you a picture I posted on my blog.

Meredith said...

My version of your baby boots is pair of ruby red slippers. They make me happy and so does this post. Spirit fingers to the perfect fit!

Heather said...

What a sweet and encouraging post... thank you Lori!

Amy B. said...

Lori,
This is a beautiful post. It makes me smile that Abe's smelly little feet fit so perfectly in the boots now.

Amy

emily said...

Such a wonderful post and great reminder that His timing is always perfect!

Kerri said...

Lovely...

Jana said...

Dear friend,

Thank you. This is encouraging to me today, as I feel like I'm walking around holding my breath as our court date approacheth. I think I just need to breathe. God is good all the time, and He knows.

Love to you.

Erin and Keith Sager said...

Tears, Tears, thanks for such a sweet post. There must be something about shoes, I have a little pair of hot pink boots I can't wait for her to splash in the rain with...Blessings

Autumn and Dan's family said...

Ok...tears.

A Memory Each Day said...

beautiful.

PVZ said...

Teary eyed here. Just a perfect bit of writing there.

Blog Shmog said...

Lovely lovely post Lori. It appears those shoes were meant for Abe. They look perfect on him. :)

The Albertsons said...

Love this. Such beautiful words!
And yes, cats go to heaven (in reference to your comment on my blog). Anyone who thinks otherwise is dumb. There's my really objective statement about that :).
love
becca

Tricia said...

Oh, Lori. Such a sweet, sweet post today. As we begin our journey, it's comforting to know that I'll be able to refer to this one on those tough days ahead.

Amy said...

Of course you wrote another amazing post... This was too sweet.. And such cute boots too! :)

Drew Carey Show said...

What a lovely, and of course perfect, post.

Caroline said...

Hmmm, I'm going to have to join the 'this post made me cry' group, I'm afraid!

Rebecca said...

Beautiful post. Of course, it made me cry as well. But it does provide HOPE. Something I'm trying to focus on right now.

More Dorrs said...

Thank you, Lori. I feel like you wrote that post just for me...I needed to read these words.

-beka

J, A and T said...

Awesome post...crying!

Stacie said...

Oh Lori! Again, you say it so well. So sweet.

Sam said...

You and these amazing posts. And I write about t he joy of spreadsheets. i need some blogging lessons!

Susan Isaacs said...

Oh what a lovely entry, Lori. Just lovely. Thank you for encouraging everyone. I love watching you blossom as a writer and a mom. Gorgeous photo. The shoe. And the pic of Abe at the top. You artist.

Vinitha said...

That was so beautiful Lori! Perfect!