Empowered To Connect

Archive for “Motivations and Expectations”

How Long Do I Have to Parent This Way?

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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

As a result of their early life experiences, children from hard places often miss out on some of the key development that is essential in helping them learn to trust and grow relationally. As a result of their unique histories and needs, these children need parents that are willing to utilize the unique approach of trust-based parenting to help them heal and grow.

Watch as Dr. Karyn Purvis encourages adoptive and foster parents to embrace trust-based parenting as the “new normal” that God has called them to as an essential part of the journey.

The Lord Is Our Strength

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Monday, September 10, 2012

As adoptive parents walking a journey of healing with our children, we have an opportunity to enter into their world with empathy and compassion in a way that points them to the hope of the Savior. God has given us the divine honor of being mom or dad. We have the privilege of nurturing our children’s hopes and dreams, giving them goodnight kisses, wiping away their tears, teaching them as they grow and mature, and being the ones they look to for acceptance, security, and love. Parenting is holy ground, and we are allowed a front row seat as we watch their stories unfold and God does His work in and through them.

But as amazing and wonderful as being a parent can be, it can also be exhausting and at times terrifying.

…And They Lived Faithfully Ever After

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Monday, September 3, 2012

Everyone loves a story with a happy ending. It’s the stuff that best-selling books and box office hits are made of. Happy endings lift our spirits and inspire us to dream. They get us started, keep us going, and give us reason to believe.

When families adopt they too dream of living out a story with a happy ending. And well they should. After all, adoption is full of joys and blessings, and for many these experiences are the hallmarks of the journey itself.

But there’s just one problem when it comes to our enchantment with happy endings – they don’t always happen. Not in life and certainly not in adoption.

I Remember Summer

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

When I became a mother, I wanted summer days to be relaxed and fun. With a larger family, there was more work to be done, so my children had significant chores, and yard work to do, but there was still plenty of time for play. Stacks of books to read, afternoons at the local pool, and sleeping out in the yard were foundations to our days.

This summer my desk is stacked with lists of activities, charts for chores, camp registration forms, and appointment reminders. As I’ve been working on plans for this summer, I recognize how differently I approach summer as the mother of children from “hard places.”

How Do You Measure Success as a Parent?

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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

It is critically important for parents to remain focused on what it means to be successful as they navigate the adoption or foster care journey. Watch as Amy & Michael Monroe share their insights about how to measure success on this journey.

Meditations on a Messy Life

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Thursday, April 19, 2012

You know those people who always seem to have it all together? They look great, their children are well behaved and dressed in darling outfits, their homes are decorated and lovely, and life seems to be going along swimmingly? I used to aspire to be like that, but that doesn’t seem to be God’s plan for me. It’s not that I’m admitting defeat or saying that I’m giving up on a tidy life, rather I am accepting that our path is messy.

When we love people, we invite their brokenness and mess into our lives. Mess is inconvenient; it takes our time, energy, and sometimes money to make it better. Despite our efforts, the mess cannot always be fully contained. It spills over and touches the people who dare to stand near.

Compassion is the Answer. What’s the Question?

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

I’ve been talking with a lot of moms lately and many of them are struggling with their kids. I get it. There are days I struggle too. The issues we face vary from the small, frustrating and everyday, to the big, infuriating and out-of-control. But no matter what the issue or challenge, the one thing I constantly remind them of, and the one thing I have to constantly remind myself of, is the need to see my kids with eyes of compassion…and to approach each and every interaction with them compassionately.

Giving the Gift of Voice

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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Giving ‘children from hard places’ the gift of voice allows them to replace fear with trust. Giving them voice enables them to learn how to ask for their needs appropriately. Giving them voice helps them to begin to express what they are feeling. But these children will not find their voice on their own — they need insightful and equipped parents that are willing to give them voice.

Watch as Michael Monroe explains what it means for parents to give their children the gift of voice.

Confessions of a Sorry Father

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I want to be a good father. I even like to think I work pretty hard at it – certainly much harder than I ever imagined I would. But despite my best intentions and in spite of all of my efforts, I am still a pretty sorry father at times. Sorry as in bad, rotten and no good. I can think of some other ways to say it, but I think you get the picture.

Take this morning for example. Mornings before school can be dicey in general, but for the most part we have our routine down and we’ve learned – parents and kids alike – how to make things run smoothly. Every once in a while, however, someone decides to mix things up. Maybe it’s because the kids went to bed late or one of them isn’t feeling well. Or maybe it’s for no reason at all, as was the case today. Whatever the reason, my kids need a father that can handle whatever they throw his way. I want to be that kind of father. Not some of the time; all of the time. But today I wasn’t. Today, I was the problem.

The Importance of Repairing Your Mistakes

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

There is no such thing as a perfect parent — and that is actually good news, so long as parents are willing to focus on repair when they fail and make mistakes.

Watch as Dr. Karyn Purvis explains why it is important for parents to repair their mistakes, and how repair can actually encourage growth and strengthen the relationship between parent and child.