Its been a busy weekend, Little One.I will update more on it later. But today is slowed down to a halt when I woke up with no voice and a high fever. I’ve basically been sleeping and have been a big ball of non productivity today- which is no good considering we only have a few choice hours left to get our home ready before our first home study visit. It’s officially next week. Hard to believe!
The only good part about being sick is that it forces you to take time away from the real world and curl up inside of your head for a few hours. That’s a pretty hard task to accomplish in the real world. Everyday there is so much going on around us that sometimes its hard to even investigate how we’re really feeling deep down. But today I took the time (inbetween naps and tylenol doses) to do some soul searching.
I realized in all this time in my head today that in the beginning of this process I was fairly close minded about a lot of things. I’ve heard many horror stories about adoption and I thought I knew the facts. I was totally wrong.
One of the biggest misconceptions I had at the start was about open adoptions. I remember thinking, “How could I let my child have another mother? How could I share them with someone else? I don’t want them to be confused about who their mother is… I want to be number one. I’m going to be the one tucking them in at night, I’m going to be the one up with them at three in the morning singing them lullabies when they are sick and can’t sleep. I’m going to be the one crying at their graduation, getting them ready for their wedding, being there every second of every day in and out. I’ll be their one and only mother.”
But then I educated myself. I read books, adoption blogs, adoption boards, statistics. And once I opened my mind to an open adoption I realized something very, very important. Yes, I will be your mother. Yes, I will be the one to do all of those things. But I’m not the only person in this equation. I’m another part, but before me there was another mother. A first mother, who loved you just as much as I do. And is it really fair, knowing how much I am head over heels in love with you already, to know there is someone else out there who is hurting and making the ultimate sacrifice for you- and I’m cutting them out? And is it really fair for you to wonder where you came from biologically, if you don’t laugh like me or your Dad – where did you get your infectious laugh from? The answer is simple: its not.
I’m still exploring in my soul the level of openness RB and I are comfortable with. But I am sure of this: You will have two sets of parents that love you so much they are willing to do what is in your best interest. You will have two sides on your team. And maybe at your graduation, you’ll have more than just our two sets of eyes crying in happiness for you. I can’t see that far ahead (hell, I can barely make it through this part without being on the brink of a nervous breakdown) but I do know that RB and I will do whatever is best for you- even if we have to adjust our comfort level.
It’s a process, Little One. It takes some time to make that shift in your mind of what your family picture is going to look like. But the more we open our minds, the more room we’re making for other people that also love you to be included in our family picture. If it’s best for you, it’s best for us. And I’ve read a lot of sides from birth mothers who say that they were duped in their situations. That their adoptive parents said, “oh yes, we’re totally open,” but when the paperwork was signed and delivered, the door shut right in their faces. RB and I won’t be those people. Just as it will hurt us to our core to have a failed adoption, we can open our hearts and minds and realize how much that would hurt someone else to shut them out, especially on false pretenses. And it just wouldn’t be fair or right…and isn’t that what we’re trying to teach you? Whats right and fair in this world?
In some situations, there can be a lot of hurt in adoption. We’re making a vow to you to eliminate as much hurt on all sides as much as possible. That’s our role in your lives, to make your life as best as it can be, to give you a great childhood filled with memories of love and fun and understanding. We want to teach you about trust, open communication, love and the power of relationships with other people. How can we effectively teach you those lessons in life if we shut out the person that brought you into ours?
The old saying that it takes a village to raise a child is supremely true in adoption. We cannot physically bring you into this world, that is someone else’s duty. But maybe your birth parents couldn’t parent you with everything we have to give, and that is our duty. Its a two way relationship.
And this might be a little self indulgent, but adoption has taught me so much already and we’ve only just begun. I definitely needed a hard lesson in trust and patience. I needed a reminder to not be selfish with my love. You have taught me so much already, and you’re not even here yet.
We vow to always be open and do what is best for you, Little One. We vow to be your forever parents, to instill those values that we’re learning in this process in you.
And I trust that you’ll be here soon…and oh, the lessons we’ll learn together then!
With love and an open mind forever,