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Choosing Love: When Letting Go Becomes the Ultimate Act of Love

Over the weekend, I became a grandpa. Our adopted daughter, Ms. L, welcomed a 6lb 8oz little boy into the world. However, the joy of this occasion is tempered by the fact that she ceased communication with us two years ago for reasons unknown to us. It’s challenging to express love for someone who doesn’t seem to want it.

I still remember the first time I met Ms. L. It was prom night at Coyote Children’s Home. She was adorned in a borrowed dress, undergoing a transformation with makeup and hair styling. In that moment, it seemed like her past struggles vanished, replaced by hope for a normal night. We were mere visitors then, chatting with her younger sister, Ms. A, who has since returned to us after a period of foster care hopping. Now, that once bright-eyed 15-year-old is a 19-year-old mother, still carrying the weight of her past hurts, which she has projected onto us.

Despite the challenges, there’s a glimmer of hope that she’ll realize we’ve always been part of the solution, not the problem. I recall writing her a letter years ago, expressing my aspirations of being her supportive father, walking her down the aisle, witnessing her milestones. Yet, today, she regards us as the laughingstock of her world.

It’s disheartening to hear, especially when labeled as “her truth.” But what does that even mean? If everyone has their own truth, then truth itself becomes subjective. Just because something is perceived as truth doesn’t make it reality. Truth, as defined by Webster, is about faithfulness and constancy. Our human complexities often distort this simple concept into a tangled web of lies and self-soothing narratives.

Despite feeling gaslighted by the daughter I love deeply, I find solace in knowing that those three years were spent doing our best. We chose to love and adopt her, committing to be there for her unconditionally. This journey has given me a deeper understanding of God’s love, as expressed in Romans 5:8. God’s love isn’t coerced; it’s a choice left to us. I understand the pain of rejection that God must feel when we deny or abandon Him. Yet, His love remains steadfast, patiently waiting for our return.

On December 12, 2022, I received a text from her, signaling her departure. Despite her walking away, my hope as her adoptive father is that she’ll eventually come back. Until then, I’ll find joy in glimpses of my grandson through leaked photos and sporadic Facebook posts, clinging to hope for her eventual return.

In conclusion, love is not merely a feeling; it’s a choice and an action. It’s the conscious decision to prioritize someone else’s needs above our own. Currently, Ms. L feels compelled to navigate life without what she perceives as unwanted parental guidance. It’s a difficult path for her to tread, but it’s one we must respect because of our love for her. Despite the challenges, my wife and I are committed to supporting her, even if it means stepping back and allowing her to find her own way. Our love for her transcends the need for control or validation; it’s about honoring her journey and being there for her when she’s ready to accept our support.

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