Unknown (adjective): not known; not within the range of one’s knowledge, experience, or understanding; strange; unfamiliar.
We see it every time we go on social media, check our email, or turn on the news. There are a lot of unknowns in our world right now. We are living in this perpetual state of waiting, not knowing what will happen next, and more importantly, when it will happen. This can cause stress, tension, and worry.
There are a lot of unknowns in our world right now.
The worry and stress that come with living in the unknown is often rooted in fear. We want to know what to expect so we can plan for it, and when we don’t, our fears can take over. Fear of what might come next, fear of not being prepared, fear of not having the strength to get through what is ahead, fear that we will never have the answers we are looking for. So how do we respond to this fear? What do we do with all of these unknowns?
One of the best ways to make it through the unknowns, and fight this fear, is to have hope. Hope can bring light into the darkness of fear. Hope can connect, while fear disconnects. Hope can bring peace to calm the doubts of fear. Having hope can make facing the unknowns of life feel less worrisome.
One of the best ways to make it through the unknowns, and fight this fear, is to have hope.
Unknowns in Adoption
Living in the unknown is not an unfamiliar feeling for those who are on an adoption journey. The process to either adopt a child or place a child for adoption has moments where one may feel suspended in an expanse of the unknown. “When will we be chosen?” “Will another family love my baby as much as I do?” “What will the future hold for this little one?” “How long will I feel like this?” “Am I making the right decision?” These are all difficult questions to wrestle through and the answers are often unknown until you get to the other side of the situation. It often takes time, patience, persistence, and trust to work through these moments.
Why, you may be wondering, would anyone choose to go through something that is so full of unknowns? It is for the sake of the child. Both prospective adoptive families and expectant parents choose to go through the adoption process for the sake of this child that they love more than they could have imagined. For the child that they have been longing to add to their family. For the child they cannot care for on their own. For the child that they love beyond words, even though they have not met him or her yet. The answer may be simple, but the journey is not always easy.
Both prospective adoptive families and expectant parents choose to go through the adoption process for the sake of this child that they love more than they could have imagined.
Our Response to the Unknown
There are many unknowns in life, but we can’t stop living just because we are facing something bigger than ourselves. We don’t have to get stuck in the unknown and sit there helplessly. We can choose to have hope. Hope can bring us the peace that we need during these difficult times. Hope for the future, hope that tomorrow will be better than today, hope that this doesn’t end here.
What You Can Do When Living in the Unknown
It can be easy to say “have hope,” but it can be harder to put that into practice when we are feeling overwhelmed. So, what can you do to bring some hope into your current circumstances?
- Take a deep breath in, hold it, now let it out slowly. Taking time to breathe deeply can help calm the fear and worry.
- Bring others into your story who can sit with you in the unknown. Call a friend, share with a family member, and ask others for help along the way.
- Write down your thoughts and feelings in a journal. It can help to get things out on paper. One day, believe it or not, you will be on the other side of this unknown. It may be helpful to look back and reflect on how far you have come.
- Pray. Cast your cares on God and trust that He is here for you.
- Share your story and listen to the stories of others who have gone before you on this journey. It can be healing to share, and it can bring hope and insight to hear about others who have faced the same unknowns.
- Find a support group of others who have experienced what you are facing. Knowing there are others in the same boat as you can bring hope. Utilize organizations like Bellis and MN ADOPT to get connected with adoption specific support groups.
- Find accurate information about the unknowns you are facing. A lot of unknowns fill us with fear because we don’t have accurate information about what might be next. If you are in the midst of deciding if adoption is right for you and your baby, check out organizations like BraveLove who provide factual information about adoption.
No one can do this alone. We know that there are times that the unknowns will be tough, but we are here to support you through this process. So, ask questions, share your thoughts and feelings, and be free to be honest about where you are at. We are here. We know it’s hard. But in the end, we can have hope.