when you feel too broken to be chosen

Dear Girl,

Unexpected snow fell last night, dusting the world and the orchard with white, like someone forgot to put in their order to choose spring.

Suitcases splay across the living room floor here this morning.

The floors are warm, defying the snowy chill of an April morning.

Trying to pack up a lifetime of hopes and dreams here and fly half way round a busted, dizzy world, fly hours and endless cramped hours straight across that worry-tossed ocean to you, Little Girl, so I can kneel down in front of you at that foster home and whisper real soft:

I choose you.

There are things about this world I wish I could tell you.

They’ll tell you that to ever get picked, you’ll have to be beautiful.

To ever be liked, to ever get a spot at the table, on the team, in the club, you will have to look a certain way, be a certain way, have a certain charisma, have a certain charming brilliance about you.

It’s a weight you could feel, right there on the edge of your shoulders, that you live with so long that it’s simply become part of you — that you aren’t wanted like everyone else.

That if everyone could choose — they probably would choose someone else — not you.

Sure, those highly venerated folks known as “They” —- they don’t put all this in some kind of public service announcement in some Manual To The Innerworkings of the World— but you don’t have spend half a New York minute glancing around at the screens and the ads and the billboards before you feel it in your gut —

The economy of everything says that to belong you’ll have to be more than you are.

Sometimes you can stand there on the pushing corner of things, watching the people stream by with their bags heavy over hunched shoulders, and you can read this in all of our brave eyes.

And it can run like the slow numb of a constant white noise in the back of your mind that you’ve just learned to live with —

If my people had a choice — if they had the option to have picked someone better than me — they would have.

If my friends could have chosen someone smarter, sharper, funnier, cooler, hipper — they would have.

If my kids, my partner, my parents, my colleagues, my employer, my community could have chosen someone more awesome than me? They would in a heartbeat.

It’s heartbreakingly easy to think that if your people could, they’d trade you in or upgrade you for a more appealing model or a sleeker, faster, sexier update.

That’s where the edges of your heart can get stuck — thinking everyone is just sort of stuck with you.

It can feel like everyone just accidentally ended up with you by default—- instead of feeling like you are not loved by accident, but chosen on purpose in spite of your faults.

This is an ache.

All we want is to be deeply wanted.

When I first saw your face, Little One — and I first held your picture there in the palm of my hand, looked down at that photo of you sleeping — that’s what they told me —- you have only literally half a heart.

You can feel like what makes your heart beat —- isn’t enough.

You can feel like if anyone saw what’s on the inside of you, they’d pick someone else.

You can feel like if anyone saw the depth of your unspoken broken — you’d never hear those words spoken: I choose you.

You and I, Little Girl? We are not so different, you and I.

I’ve got this broken heart in here and I’ve known abandonment in the my bones and I struggle to believe in chosenness and hear me with all that you are: you are not alone.

In a handful of days now?

I will reach out one unbrave hand and lay it tenderly on your uncertain cheek, like making a vow on a Holy Book, and I’ll look you in the eye and whisper it, one busted mother making the promise that a perfect Father cannot stop whispering relentlessly to a wounded world and all His walking around with their unspoken broken:

You are wanted when you don’t want to be you.

You are picked when you feel picked apart and glossed over and not good enough.

Your name is called when you’ve had lies in your head for years calling you names.

You are loved when you feel unlovely and unloveable.

You belong as you are — even when you long to be someone else.

You are broken —- and Chosen.

You don’t have to hide your brokenness —- because it doesn’t change your chosenness.

You don’t have to deny your brokenness — because nothing can ever deny you of your chosenness.

You don’t have to fear your brokenness — because there’s nothing that can undo your chosenness.

That is all: You are broken — and Chosen.

There’s nothing to ever fear ever again.

Broken. And Chosen.

The End.

And — the very beginning of everything we’ve ever wanted, this being deeply wanted.

The snow will melt in the orchard, of this I’m sure.

Spring will come, of this you can be sure, a certain chosenness about it.

And grace will fly to you, this being unconditionally loved, this changes the conditions of everything.

Feel that now —

 feel that coming your way right now.


Related: when you don’t feel like you’re enough: our year long story — and a new chapter coming

…our unlikely adoption story will unfold quietly here over, in excited bits & pieces, & over at Instagram, as we travel to China this week  & as we find our way through the next several months, trying to find words to a little miraculous story He’s writing…