an unexpected compliment

I took the kids out to eat at Cafe Rio last night (shhh, Adam was away for a Scout training). I am so impressed with our eating out skills that have developed–I only spent $15 for the five of us!!! Anyway, we had a good time eating and talking and teasing each other. I noticed a lady a couple of tables over stealing glances here and there. I am pretty used to that now because people naturally wonder what our story is. I figured she was just curious about our situation. So we went on eating, and she went on staring.

As she was on her way out, she stopped at our table(s) and said, “I just want to tell you that I have so enjoyed watching you enjoy your children. It is so refreshing, and I thank you for the opportunity.” I told her thank you (slightly embarrassed, of course) and told her that I appreciated the compliment. She and her husband left, and I teared up just a little because she did not preface her compliment by asking if the kids were adopted/fostered/babysat/fill in the blank. She complimented me based on what she saw–and she clearly saw that I was their mom, regardless of our situation. That was a first for me, one that I will not soon forget.

She did not witness perfectly behaved little robots, nor did she witness little terrorists. She just witnessed a mom who was engaged and happy. Her compliment, after watching me handle dinner time with four shining ninos, gave me more confidence that I am doing a great job.


  1. I am afraid if it had been me she might have seen the little terrorists! 🙂
    I am glad you noticed how great you are!

  2. Oh Rachel that made me tear up too! This is Jessica’s sister-in-law Lisa and I’ve been following your journey for some time. As a non-traditional mother myself I can relate to a lot of the frustrations and a lot of the joys. Anyway … now that I can actually leave a comment I just wanted to say how lucky (=blessed) your little ninos are to have you as their mother. I look forward to seeing how your family grows together and continue to wish you all the best! 🙂

  3. OMGoodness, Rachel! Thanks for the comment! I had no idea you sent request for the blog. It never came thru, I don’t think… but I’d never keep you out! lol. You have one of the most inspiring blogs I read. It’s your blog that I can identify with so easily, especially regarding the feelings part that goes along with infertility and adoption. I appreciate your transparency… Yes, we are in Colombia now and today… well, it was beautiful at the same time heart-wrenching… You saw the photos… Each child, they have a story of their own… they are all beautiful and special little children who need love and nuturing and their physical needs met, too…

    The kids really enjoyed today! We will go back this afternoon to tour the area more where we were serving. Tomorrow, we will serve dinner there and they are expecting more children. As the children who were there today are not schooled children. Did you know that here in Colombia, you must pay to send your child to public school? These children with no stable environment… There was a 7-9 year old working today… he just came to eat and then to go back to work!!! I know poverty is nothing new… I just believe it has become more real to me as I’ve been exposed to true poverty…


  4. You really are doing a great job sis and I admire you in so many way’s! I love that she had enough courage to say that to you and not just think it and leave — she’ll never know how much that one compliment will & does mean to you and how much good will come from it 🙂 Love you!!

  5. I read this one to mom and megan on girls night and we all went Ah at the same time what a great woman!

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