My "gift" to Nia wasn't exactly what she expected. It was Discipline. It's been a tough week with her challenging my authority at times. I've given lots of grace and lots of 2nd, 3rd, and 4th chances. Finally, this morning, I had to take some action. It was mild action, but it brought her to tears. I held her and told her I loved her. Told her that I'm glad she's here. She was very cool to me afterwards, but she did start obeying me.
A dear friend (Donna Fulkerson) offered to give me a much-needed break this afternoon, which I jumped at! While I was out, I worried how Nia would receive me when I came home. I walked through the front door and she was the first one to run down the hall grinning from ear to ear, with arms outstretched. It was almost like the first time she ran to me at the orphanage. Thank you, God, for this greeting! I struggle between wanting to be both a Friend and a Mommy. I want her to like me (Friend), but I need her to obey me (mommy) and I can't be all fun and games and ice cream and candy all the time. So hard! With my other 5 kids I'm not overly concerned if they like me or if they want to go live with friends. With Nia, I catch myself wanting to please her and win her affections. But God didn't call me to be her best friend; He called me to be her mommy. I have had to remind myself of this numerous times these past few days. I'm having lots of "Help Me, Jesus" Days. It's only with His help that I can even remotely parent any of my children. But this child who probably feels so alone and misunderstood in this new world......And this mommy who longs for a relationship with her...... We both need to be cradled by The Father.