• Erin E. McEndree

Adoption ReImagined Excerpt: Chapter 3 Contentment with the Unknown

Hello! Erin here! As I continue to edit to get closer to publication, I want to share some snapshots of what is to come. Enjoy!


Is your mind is a hamster wheel of over-thinking and endless loops asking What-If? Take your feelings out of the driver seat. Imagine you could reach the end of your adoption issues and be content even when you don’t know the answers to your burning questions. You can do this by turning your What-Ifs into But If Not.


If you never find an answer that satisfies your mind, are you going to stay on the hamster wheel called What-If? How is that working for you so far? I challenge you to change What If to But If Not. Right now is your life. You can’t change one thing in the past. You can’t change variables from your beginning with What-If statements. You cannot change the decisions others made when you were that variable. You can, however, have a whole new attitude if you incorporate But If Not into your thought patterns.


Nothing in the past can guide your future unless you allow it. The past is like an annoying backseat driver in your car questioning your every turn and manipulating your route. You can kick the voice behind you out of the car if you intentionally change the constant stream of What-Ifs that are hurled from the back seat. Tweaking one phrase in your thoughts can change everything because But If Not puts the control back in your hands. What If seems to address what others could have done differently.


However, But If Not focuses on how you react to situations beyond your control. You can do nothing about the What Ifs, but you have all the control if you change your perspective to But If Not.

Practice: 'What if I never....... But if not, I will carry on being who I choose to be."

Pain can be caused by not knowing what you stand for and what you value. Your mind changes scenarios over and over, lamenting on what you could have done differently because your values change, too. The What-Ifs keep you running in circles with the illusion that after the next turn the answer will become clear. Your pain is created in pining over the What-Ifs. However, when you change the focus to But If Not, you are intentionally putting yourself in the driver seat. You decide to deal with what is right in front of you instead of the ghost you can’t see. Knowing what you stand for helps you say, “But even if I never know, I will thrive in life. But even if they don’t accept me, it won’t define me.” This attitude puts the control with you and not with elements of life you have no control over.


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