Archive for December, 2006

Top Ten Stupid Things People Say about Adoption

My husband invited me to dine out with him on a business dinner. This always seems fun and I jumped at the chance for adult conversation and an excuse to actually blow-dry my hair and put on lipstick.

We met up for dinner at a local Mexican restaurant and it was all seemingly fine. I was on ‘social cruise-control’ and doing more listening than talking which was fine. The couple had brought along their teenage daughter who was mature and blended into the conversation pretty well. Earlier in the conversation, my husband had mentioned that we were adopting and that filling out the paperwork was my other full time job besides being a SAHM.

As appetizers ended and dinner was being served and eaten, it became more and more apparent that we were listening to them go on and on and on about themselves. Occasionally, we would try to segue into another topic, but it always came back to them. It was getting comical when all of a sudden, the woman really put her foot in it. She was talking about how children need to be taught responsibilities early on and how she had given her daughter chores when she was three years old. Then she made a little eye-rolling faces in the direction of her daughter and remarked how now that she’s a teenager, she’s messy and never makes her bed. “That’s when you threaten to give them up for adoption” Yeah, she said those words. I think I made a weird noise, a hybrid kind of word somewhere between ‘huh?’ and ‘nooooo’ Flabbergasted I was. I think she tried to gloss over it, but it’s not all clear in my memory. I think my mouth hung open a minute or so while I re-focused.

So, I’m thinking, “Note to self: dinners with clients are fine. Just not with them.”

How do we, as people involved in adoption, deal with people like this? Is there a way to tell someone something so that they hear the message and not get defensive? I hate that I sat there and really did nothing. It just so minimizes the feelings behind the relinquishing a child. I do have a sense of humor, I really do. It’s just that this isn’t funny. I mean, they knew we are adopting. Whatever. Capital W.

Ok, so without further delay, here are some of the dumbest, most asinine things people have said to me after I tell them we’re adopting. (in no particular order as I struggle to relive them)
10. The Story Above
9. You should try in-vitro
8. How much do you have to pay for your child?
7. Let me tell you the story I heard about someone who knows someone else who
adopted a baby and that baby is really messed up.
6. Why aren’t you adopting domestically? Those kids need a home too.
5. I don’t care what anyone says, in adoption you really are buying a baby. (from another adoptive parent)
4. You’re not adopting an newborn? You should get ’em as young as possible.
3. Aren’t there always problems with attachment?
2. The kid will always have issues about that. (Yeah….I know!!)
And our perennial favorite – such a cliche…..

1. Now that you’re adopting, you’re going to get pregnant.

Yes, all those things have been said to me, personally in the last few months. Here’s to a more educated 2007.

December 31, 2006 at 5:49 pm 8 comments

We’re Number Six!

I spoke with my agency today. I had to get some sort of update on how the referrals were coming and what kind of wait were we looking at. I got some nice little statistics. We are #6 on the list, with five other families in line before us also waiting for girls. One really good thing is that the referrals are coming in groups of two or three. Also, since we aren’t requesting a newborn, we might get a referral sooner rather than later. Can I get a Wooo Hoo!? The social worker I spoke with was so nice. She said it’s the hardest thing to know that a referral is coming, but not knowing when it’s coming.

Then, amidst all the hope and happiness I feel, a part of me remembers and pauses. My getting a referral soon means that right about now or recently, a mother made a choice that she will live with forever in giving her child to an orphanage for adoption. Somewhere, right now in Kyrgyzstan is a woman who is ailing physically or emotionally or psychologically or all three. She may not be living. All of that pain she endures and carries with her. She did her best. She did what she could. She did what she felt she must do. She did because she may have had no other choice.

I’m not sure how much information will be available from my daughter’s file. I am hoping there is a lot for my daughter’s sake. I will weave into our lives here, her life, her mother’s life, the life and history of her culture. I will not be able to be a mom to her without honoring her first mom. And every time my daughter cries for what seems to be an unknown reason, or rages and throws fits when all is seemingly well, I will remember her first mother’s tears and I will hold my daughter ever closer, hoping that the closeness and love that I feel reaches all the way to Kyrgyzstan and her first mother will know that her daughter is loved.

December 20, 2006 at 10:22 pm 2 comments

Our holiday decorations

I took pictures of something I made for our house that turned out pretty cool. I spray painted a branch with gold paint and suspended it from the ceiling. Then, I clipped on bird ornaments for an enchanted kind of effect.

I have learned something fun from my daughter. Sparkly and shiny aren’t bad things. Before her, I never bought anything pink, or glittery. But, through her 5 year-old girly eyes, I have softened and remembered how magical these kinds of things can be. It’s not a life-altering realization, just a delightful one. So, she and I decorated our house this week and I have to say it had never been more fun. I love that girl.

December 17, 2006 at 5:24 pm 1 comment

It’s not me….it’s you…

Have you been following the controversy over Pizza Hut’s advertising campaign in the UK? At first it seems like it’s just a low-budget weird kind of fan site dedicated to mini bits of bread. But now, when Kim Kim (on my blogroll) wrote to the advertising and marketing department she received a real response back which is almost as offensive as the website itself. First of all, check out the website for yourselves

www.adopt-a-bite-now.com

Then, go to Kim Kim’s blog to check out their response. I’m so dumbfounded over it all that I hardly know what to write. These people went to a LOT of trouble to produce the photos and clips. But mostly, it’s the copy that gets to me. Please weigh in! I myself have a pretty good sense of humor and am not easily offended. For instance, I’m not personally offended by things like adopt-a-highway. I’m not always politically correct. But this is just plain not funny and somehow manages to insult and denigrate each party involved in adoption. Please look and see for yourselves. If you’re offended, Kim Kim has posted the e-mail of the executive involved.

************UPDATE*************

The offending ad has been removed!! After about 24 hours after Kim Kim posted about this ad and the resulting complaints, they have removed the ad. Well done everybody! and thank you to Kim Kim.

December 14, 2006 at 11:57 pm 1 comment

Come see our dossier pictures!

Ok, I’m a neophyte blogger and don’t really know how to put in links or upload photos to this blog, I am giving you a link to my flickr account and you can check out our pictures. (Really, I always blame my inability to figure this stuff out on the fact that I have a Mac and that they don’t make it easy for Mac people to do this stuff. I don’t even know if this is true, but I’m sticking with it.)

I WAS able to figure out how to upload my pictures to flickr though. Here is a link to my pics. You can see pictures of us and our house and Zannie too. You can see the fruits of my homestudy cleaning freakout.

So, I’m sorry that I can’t figure it all out. The people on my blogroll have incredibly sophisticated blogs and they look awesome. My inner geek, she is not strong.

December 11, 2006 at 11:21 pm 5 comments

Dossier update

So, I whipped through our dossier. It is 90% done and sent off to our adoption agency. The two things I haven’t done yet are the ‘good conduct’ letters that have to come from the local police (why? WHY??? Aren’t the state and federal fingerprints enough???) and the physician’s form stating that we have no life-threatening conditions. I am not doing those until January as these two documents have a 3 month shelf life before they expire. We don’t want to get these until we are closer to getting a referral for a specific child. I don’t care to do them twice because for both forms, we have to bring the notary to sign the documents WITH the doctor and the police. So, what I definitely feel now is that the homestudy is much more pressing and stressful. It’s so personal. With the dossier, it’s just a pain in the behind. Not difficult, just a bit tedious with all the notary requirements and all. We just plunked down over $300 in notary fees.

So, I have nothing to do on the adoption front until January. That’s good for awhile so I can concentrate on Christmas. But then again, waiting is not my strong point and I may go into obsess mode. I’ll report on the state of my mental health as it changes and, let’s be realistic, as it declines.

December 7, 2006 at 8:38 pm 1 comment

I’ve been tagged

My friend Helen (her blog is on my blogroll Welcome to MY world) tagged me. I LOATHE this. But, for some reason, when it comes to Helen I am bowing to peer pressure. So, drumroll please….
SIX WEIRD THINGS ABOUT ME
(Can there be that many???)

(in no particular order)

1. I like hamburgers. I like pickles. I don’t like pickles on my hamburger.

2. I like re-reading books and re-watching movies over and over. The first time I read ‘Gone with the Wind’ I finished the last page and then went straight back to page 1 without blinking. For whatever reason, I’ve seen ‘When Harry Met Sally’ about 97 times and I’m not even exaggerating. I can quote long passages from it. I don’t know why, I just can.

3. I could knit a scarf for someone with my eyes closed, but no matter how hard I try I cannot crochet. I’ve taken classes and bought hooks as thick as turkey basters, but I just can’t do it.

4. I’ve made over 800 marshmallow pies. Once, in a twelve hour period, in a commercial kitchen, I made over 200 pumpkin pies. I haven’t eaten pumpkin pie since.

5. By the time my daughter was conceived, I already owned an entire wardrobe for her from size newborn to 2T. I was possessed! I bought every green, yellow and plain overalls there were on the market.

6. I’m addicted to buying dishes. I go crazy over dishes the way some women go crazy over bags or shoes. I have many sets of dishes and countless serving pieces and platters, soup tureens, bowls and the like. I want to travel to Portugal specifically so I can buy a houseful of their pottery. My new obsession is to get a set of Annie Glass dishes. They are gorgeous hand-blown glass dishes with metallic edging. Modern and traditional at the same time.

7. I was about 10 miles from the epicenter of the ’89 earthquake in Northern California and didn’t feel it. The Bay Bridge collapsed from this earthquake and it was 70 miles away from the epicenter. Splain that one Lucy.

8. If I hear the Law and Order “dun dun” sound in the beginning of the show and I happen to see more than 10 seconds of the episode, I must watch the entire thing. I am sucked in and won’t move to go to bed or even go to the bathroom.

Ok, so that’s EIGHT weird things about me. Gawd. The shame of it all. Bring on the comments, I can take it.

December 7, 2006 at 8:11 pm 3 comments

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