What I Learned About Adoption from Miss Marley

Oh, Miss Marley. You are treasured and held so closely in love, sweet girl.

Marley was born fast and furiously into this world. So fast, in fact, that she was born in the car, in the parking lot of a Louisiana police station, and into her mother’s arms. Right after she was born, her birth mama looked at little Marley’s mother and said “Happy Birthday” and put the little 4lbs and some oz body into her mother’s arms like the precious gift that she is. Marley was born in a car, in a New Orleans police station parking lot, and into her adoptive mama’s arms on her mama’s BIRTHDAY!

I was on standby for the birth itself, but I had a call from the birth mother’s sister while I was at another birth. Maybe within 10 minutes I had another call that Miss Marley was already here… born in the car. I made plans to go the following day.

I haven’t had my own journey intertwine with an adoption story like this before. I didn’t really know what to expect or what I should prepare my heart for. The way it had come about left some questions of understanding how everyone that would be there would all fit together. That doesn’t really matter, but not knowing what to expect, I wanted to make sure I was mentally and emotionally prepared.

Once I was there, I understood. The adoptive parents were there, the birth mom was there, and the birth mom’s sister as well. It was room full of joy, tears, grief, and blessings. It was one of the most sacred events I’ve ever been a part of.

I won’t go into details about everything and everyone. It really isn’t my place, but I will tell you this:

Adoption often celebrates the joy and open arms of those receiving such a blessing. I’d not really seen the sense of loss and wounds that would take time, prayer and much mercy to heal. You see, adoption is very joyful. It truly is SUCH a blessing. However, there are also many layers of other complex emotions that take so much time and thought and the hand of the Lord to mend and grow and change.

What did I learn from Miss Marley? Far more than I expected.

I learned that beauty from ashes is one of the most precious gifts we have on this earth to experience and there is joy within the tears of loss. There is grace that surpasses anything anyone on this earth can give. There is a love letter written within the ebbs and flows of grief.

It was the most selfless, life-giving, sorrowful, and gorgeous love story I’ve seen in first person, aside from own redemption in Christ.

From the love that flowed from the birth mother to the child as she said goodbye in front of my eyes, to the love overflowing onto Marley from her mother and father in that room, then to the unconditional humility and gratitude from these parents towards the birth mama, to the deep heart-felt connection between these two mothers, and the silent & joyous yet grieving eyes of a sister that loved her niece so much that she reached out to make sure her niece AND sister were cared for fully in the most selfless way by the two new parents…

… I saw the love of a Father that redeems and pursues His children in a purposeful, forever way and cascades love that ripples farther than any of us can see.

Thank you for helping me learn so much, Marley. You’ve taught us all so much about the One from whom all blessings flow. Thank you, sweet one.