A Love Garden, Adoption, Family, and Life
The Love Garden, a story found in some dirt...
As we said on our
Compass Garden page
, creating a raised bed garden in the shape of a circle had many benefits.
But the main purpose was to share some time and love in building a healthy
garden with an unattached child whom no one could reach.
It was an experiment of sorts, we do a lot of experimenting around
Blackberry Blossom Farm, and it wouldn't be harmful, so it was worth a
Will it make a difference? Only years and time will tell, kind of like
growing a perennial garden. We hope for beds of profuse, colorful
blooms and years of harvesting fresh, nutritious asparagus,
strawberries, rhubarb and the like. But if the rain doesn't come, or we
don't put the right nutrients in the soil, put shade-lovers in sun, or
sun-lovers in shade, all of our hopes and work are a waste.
Learning about the circle of love in our lives is hard, it's a lifelong
education, destined to turns and twists we don't expect.
Our story of love... it starts with a field of weeds.
Hard ground, no nourishment, nothing of value was apparent.
Scrape the surface though, and you'll see a thin layer of soil where years of
cut grass and sawdust were composted, and milky spore disease added to
combat Japanese Beetle grubs.
Like a heart that shows no love, the ability to produce is there, but needs
some serious amending.
This story started several years before the
digging of the love garden.
Adoption and challenges...
We adopted 3 older children, aged 5 to 11 year old. Each has an
early life story of horrible abuse and neglect, being passed from home
to home, and as a result, suffered from many maladies, all which
presented as serious behavioral problems.
Among these severe diagnoses was something called Reactive Attachment
Disorder. This simply means that these children never created a normal
bond with a primary caregiver in the first three years of life, and as
they got older, never felt the need to bond with anyone. This creates
all kinds of serious problems, lack of conscience being one of the most
severe. Without feeling remorse, these children learn to manipulate,
lie, steal, abuse, and kill, often starting at very young ages,
progressing to the next level as they hone their skills.
resemble empty abandoned lots of concrete, trash strewn everywhere,
stench and filth. They are very comfortable in this environment and
will do anything to turn your garden of love into
their own environment.
Children in the foster care system with Reactive Attachment Disorder, otherwise
known as RAD, usually get passed along to multiple families as they
wear each placement out, usually leaving a path of destruction in their
wake. An all too common story is the shattered dreams of
foster/adoptive families who thought they could help these children.
They felt empathy for the unwanted and abused, shared their hearts and
homes with them but in the end, were left feeling abused and neglected
Without proper rigorous
training and support
, these families are usually left permanently scarred, continually
turning questions over and over in their minds and hearts. "What were
we thinking?", "We must have been crazy!", and finally, "What could we
have done differently?" Our hope for these children become
weedy love gardens
where there is no longer time or energy to nurture or water without
complete sacrifice of ourselves. The weeds choke out the seedlings we
had such high hopes for.
A Blackberry Lilly...
Look at the twisted blooms ready to unfurl and become a gorgeous flower.
What a JOY to watch these blooms open with the promise of new life!
It's a shame this garden of love takes so long
to grow into the beautiful showcase it's meant to be. Society is quick
to blame the gardener, but the more serious issue lies with the
seedling who so innocently enjoys failing to bloom, wants to be planted
in the hot sun to wither, and won't accept any nurturing from the
gardener. This seedling just waits to be plucked out and replaced with
a more suitable plant. They think, "That's what always happens...I just
wasn't meant to grow."
We know firsthand the frustration, the agony, the endless days, weeks,
months, and years of being patient, watering, staking, adding compost,
reading every gardening book on the planet, attending the Master
Gardener seminars, trying to save our seedlings.
But here's hope...
We've also experienced the joy of watching a conscience develop and grow, the
that blooms profusely!
Please visit our friend, Nancy Thomas, at
Families by Design
for parenting help, support, resources and training. She has the voice
of experience and we admire her for the work she's done to help so many.
Our goal, by sharing this inside private view of our family, is that other
families will find hope and help, keeping their own lives intact while
reaching out to other's whose needs are great. Growing their own
garden of love
while still giving a healthy environment to the
seedling who wants to be an unwanted weed.
Come along as we share this journey...one of hope, love, and finally... some
Beauty out of the rocks...
coax beauty out of a hard place to reach? How do flowers bloom out of a
crack beside rocks? Here at Blackberry Blossom Farm, we find many ways
that our lives learn from God's example of nature surrounding us. The
seasons, the weeds, the hard places where an unlikely flower grows
and blooms. How fortunate we are to live and grow in such a
For more help in growing your
Love Garden by using EFT
check out Gary Craig's site.