Brett has been nagging, I mean asking, me to do a follow up post to the one we did on adoption to see what life is like two years after adopting our daughter Rachel. I have been putting it off, mostly due to legitimate reasons. We have became a family of four as I gave birth to our second daughter, Emma, and so life does have that frenetic/blurry/chaotic/kid edge to it that makes it hard to remember your shopping lists and when you last had a good nights sleep. But when I look around I see many moms with more kids, more difficult kids, and more on in their lives who can still churn out one blog post a week. So I had to ask myself; what is stopping you from taking one hour out of your day to write about adoption from the other side? Why are you hesitant?
And the answer is this: from the other side, adoption is normal, it’s every day, and I don’t see the difference.
Before we adopted there where so many questions floating through our heads; doubts, mixed feelings, insecurities, the unknown was big and looming and we were both excited and terrified at the same time. There was so much to say! And then those first few days and weeks were a whirlwind of emotion; fear and uncertainty, extreme love and joy as we got to know Rachel and she started to bond with us.
Fast forward two years and I forget she is adopted. I’m sometimes genuinely surprised when someone gives us a second look on the street. Why would you stare at my daughter like she’s different? She is just like me!
And so I sit wanting to write about being a mom. Because that’s what adoption is. Becoming a mother. On this side, with biological and adopted girls on each hip, I don’t see the difference. Both have vomited on me. Both have kept me up for hours in the night. Both needed rocking, shushing, cradling, cuddles and kisses to stop crying. Both had me sobbing in empathy with their first real hurt. Both have caused me to grin from ear to ear at their antics. Both swell my heart with pride. Don’t get me wrong, they are different, and I have had to parent them differently, but the ultimate outcome is the same. I am mom.
So what do I have to say about adoption? If you want to be a mother, adopt. If you want to save the world, buy a superman cape. Because adoption, although it changes the life of a child that seemingly has no hope or future, is not about saving a child. It’s about starting a family, becoming a parent, having a child to call son or daughter.
There’s nothing ‘special’ about Rachel. She is a normal, shy, happy, silly, loving girl. And yet she is the most precious, adored and special girl in the world to me. Not because she is adopted. Because she is MINE.