Friday, September 25, 2009

Adoption Hits the News...And insider's perspective

This is the blog you've all been waiting for, I'm sure...

One of the defining moments in my life was being adopted. Now, I was an infant when I was adopted.

I don't believe my childhood was too different from any others. In fact, in many ways, it was exceptional. To this day, whatever their flaws, I believe I won the parent lottery.

That said, I also won the sibling lottery too. Whatever his flaws, my brother has been there for me more times than I can count as an adult. As kids, we were your typical brother and sister, driving each other crazy one minute, playing video games together the next.

The only really unusual part of my childhood are things like:

In my first baby picture, I'm about a week old, and I'm living with a foster family.

Though I was born in January, I didn't legally get my last name until October that same year.

I don't look like anyone in the house I grew up in.

My family has a higher level of respect than most. Since our parents believed that we were our own people, and didn't seek traits of themselves in us, we were free to grow up as our own people - guided by the love and respect for our parents.

I realized early in life that blood may be thicker than water, but love is stronger than either.

That said - I realize that that simple circumstance of my birthright, gave me a unique view of family that I am forever grateful for.

So when I read today that, 18 months into an adoption, and infant was brought back to child services, I was saddened. I do believe that everything works out in the end for the best interests of the child (naive, I know, but I believe that faith is a good thing - maybe the best of things - and believing otherwise gives this infant a grim prognosis). But it saddened me that, someone who has five children of her own, and wanted to open her heart and home to give life to an innocent... well, the fact that they "couldn't bond" like these parents could with thier biological children, saddened me.

I'm sure the bond is different with biological families. In fact, I am 99.99% sure that it is. But I don't think that makes it "better", just, perhaps, easier? My speculation comes from this - it's easy to bond with something that looks like you, where you can look forward to "I wonder if they'll look/be like me?" With kids that aren't biologically related, some traits pass on, but many of the obvious ones (hair color, height, eye color, skin tone, etc) just don't.

So -the bond between adopted child and parent is unique. I think going into it expecting it to be the same relationship as a biological child, is a mistake. It's just as rewarding, and maybe perhaps even a little more because it's a tad more difficult to forge.

In conclusion, I'm sure things will work out just as they are supposed to for this little guy.

Just like it did for a little 5 year old girl from Taiwan that I won't forget. It was about 5 years ago. I remember sitting there at Christmas that year for the first time feeling that something was missing from the picture perfect life I was living with my then-husband.

She had glasses and was older and was therefore dubbed "difficult to place". I'd fallen in love and we'd gotten started collecting information to bring her home, when I found out that we didn't quite meet the requirements. I kept inquiring and after about 2 months, I found out that she was placed with a family in Chicago, closer to where her younger sister was adopted out to a couple years earlier.

While it obviously wasn't ment to be the way I had hoped. My heart both hurt and rejoiced for her.


For the first time, I felt like she was mine and it was just a matter of bringing her home - yet, when I heard where she was placed, I knew that right had been done by her and was glad for her good fortune. I'd like to think, for a split second, I may have understood one of the purest, most unadultered forms of love.

Not everyone is able to nurture that kind of unique relationship adopted kids have with their folks. As for me, I hope that little girl won the parent lottery like I did. It does my soul good to believe it, wether it's the truth or not.

I hope the same for this little guy.

And who knows?! I'm not dead yet! Maybe someday I'll be able to share the love my parents did for me. As long as I'm this side of dirt - there's hope! ;)

2 comments:

  1. Not sure I will be in a place to start a family, but I would much rather adopt a child than "have" one. (I can't really bear the kid hench the ""s. LOL)

    One of the reasons is that I see one of the problems today is overpopulation and there are a bunch of great children out there without parents. So why bring a child into the world rather than give my love to one already here?

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