Posts filed under ‘adoptees’

Protected: Stupid or Brave…You Be The Judge

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October 12, 2008 at 3:37 pm Enter your password to view comments.

A New Me…

I’m so sorry I’ve disappeared from this spot for so long. I keep meaning to post to explain my absence but it’s been really hard to put my finger on.

The best I can come up with is all the growth and change here. Zannie started 2nd grade and Isabel turned two. It’s practically breathtaking to watch them grow and change at the rate they do, those girls. Isabel is doing baby signs like a champ (yay!) she has given up napping (boooo!) and she just unfolds and blossoms every single day. Suzannah is a total kid now. I don’t know fully what I mean by that except, I guess it means that there is no more little, little girl. She wants to wear pants and t-shirts instead of insisting on twirly dresses. She doesn’t say any words with cute mispronounciations. She’s Big.

Also, I feel a big change in myself and it’s been growing and starting to come out as the year goes on. I turn 40 in a few days. And, I feel really excited about it. The family-making stuff is done which is what my life was so centered around for so many years. And, as Isabel has changed from baby to toddler and sometimes goes off with grandpa to feed the ducks, I’ve felt the interests I had, the individual parts of me beckoning me. I feel this big page in the book of my life turning. It’s terribly exciting and a little strange at the same time.

I think for awhile I didn’t post because I was thinking that I was done talking about adoption or my family, but that’s silly and so I figured that couldn’t be right. Then, I was spending so much time sewing and trying to teach myself about sewing that I would change gears and have a craft blog. But, that doesn’t seem right either. Also, Zannie accidentally broke my camera and so I cannot take any pictures until we get a new one and that’s an expense I can’t justify at the moment.

So, I guess what’s going on with me is just this new idea that I can return to the things that I love, things outside of my children. (*gasps a bit…twinge of guilt*)

But, what I suspect will happen is that I will be beginning to focus this blog on all aspects of our family life, and the things I’m getting into, namely creative outlets. I am staying up way too late being crafty and it’s fun. So, stay tuned for all the projects and hopefully I’ll be able to show a picture or two soon. Oh wait…I have one from when Isabel was sick last month and fell asleep on daddy….

October 8, 2008 at 3:55 pm 8 comments

One Word Meme Along With NaJuPicMo

 

 

 

 

 

 

Me, sometime last year making my famous pilaf.  This is more cleavage than I usually post, but I’m living dangerously lately!

This, from the ever-lovely Margie at Third Mom is inviting others to do a one word meme.  I edited it a bit to add in my four parents and I hope that was alright to do. So…here goes…

1. Where is your cell phone? Car
2. Your significant other? Snoring
3. Your hair? Auburn
4. Your mother? Gone
5. Your father? Stuck

4a.Other Mother? Hiding

5a. Other Father? Connected
6. Your favorite time of day? Night
7. Your dream last night? Cooking
8. Your favorite drink? Tea
9. Your dream goal? Acceptance
10. The room you’re in? Dining
11. Your ex? Mean
12. Your fear? Loss
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Here
14. What you are not? Lazy
15. Your Favorite meal? Chez Panisse
16. One of your wish list items? Serger
17. The last thing you did? Clean
18. Where you grew up? California
19. What are you wearing? Jeans
20. Your TV is? Stupid
21. Your pets? Fish
22. Your computer? Inviting
23. Your life? Tapestry
24. Your mood? Keen

25. Missing someone? Horribly
26. Your car? Zippy
27. Something you’re not wearing? Tattoo
28. Favorite store? Oilily
29. Your summer? Smoky
30. Your favorite color? Green
31. When is the last time you laughed? Morning
32. When is the last time you cried? Morning
33. Your health? Robust
34. Your children? Heartwarming
35. Your future? Opportunities
36. Your beliefs? Strong
37. Young or old? Pffffft
38. Your image? Changing
39. Your appearance? Momish
40. Would you live your life over again knowing what you know? Yes

July 6, 2008 at 11:27 pm 2 comments

If you are about to adopt – reset your compass

The following will be a list of ideas and concepts to reconsider during your wait.  This is, in part a reaction to the changing face of wordpress adoption blogs and it seems that we have some work to do.  So, in no particular order (and feel free to add more in the comments section) here are things that PAP’s, in my opinion as both adoptee and adoptive parent, must confront before adopting. 

VERNACULAR 

1. She is not a birthmother if she hasn’t given birth or signed termination of parental rights.  If you are ‘matched’ with a pregnant woman considering adoption, she isn’t ‘your’ birthmother and the baby isn’t yours either. 

2. Also, let’s give the terms original mother, first mother and other mother a fighting chance.  Consider a woman’s feelings and worth when reducing her role when you call her ‘birthmother’

3. Don’t ever breathe one single negative word about your child’s mother, father, state, country, race or culture.  Not for any reason.  If there are disturbing facts in the situation, state them plainly and support the feelings that may come.  But don’t add commentary. 

EXPECTATIONS

1. Tough, but the truth.  No one owes you anything.  Infertility does not buy you the right to parent someone else’s baby.  Sucks, but there it is. 

2. And this isn’t going to win over any friends, but…here it goes… God did not hand-pick, or decide to have someone else get pregnant for YOUR benefit.  Believe me, I can understand how it feels that your child is perfect for you, was the missing piece in your family, or is spiritually connected to you.  That still does not mean that there was a grand, benevolent or divine plan,  to have a misfortune befall a woman, so that a child could fulfill your family, or so that you could feel as though you are doing what your church teaches you is right.  Children are not pawns.  Neither are their mothers.  Also, just because you believe that children ought to have a two-parent home in which the parents are married, still does not earn you the right to dictate what ought to happen to the child. 

3. Along these lines, later on in life, do not tell your child that she ‘grew in the wrong tummy’.  Do not tell her that she was’chosen’.  Do not tell him that you were able to give him ‘a better life’  It’s a different life…you can’t know that your family and life would be better.  Don’t go into an adoption without the implicit understanding that your family will be different than if you had had children biologically.  You are taking on extra responsibilities. This means that your child needs nurturing that encompasses their feelings which typically include, but are not exclusive of: lifelong feelings of rejection, insecurity, a certain ‘otherness’ and also feelings of grandiosity.  Do you have a longterm plan to support your child if you begin to see these things creep up?  Do not minimize the impact of adoption.  Yes, even if you adopted at birth.  Ask any newborn baby who they want to be with.   They want to be with that lady who sounds familiar. 

4. Put your infertility issues in the past.  If you are adopting straight out of the doctor’s stirrups, you are setting up a highly charged situation which can propel you into unethical behavior such as coercion of a pregnant woman.  Again, it isn’t appropriate for a woman to decide on adoption until after her baby is born, as well as having an advocate who is talking with her about all her options and telling her of the support available to her.  If you have a serious broken heart, and a houseful of baby stuff – that’s some serious danger! danger! Will Robinson.  A child you adopt should not be put to work by being there to heal the serious and lingering pain of infertility.  Besides, healing doesn’t work that way anyway. 

5. Do nothing but encourage honest feelings from your child about how they see their adoption. 

6. Do not lie or misrepresent facts to your child.  Adoption happened to your child and they had no say in the matter.  Honor your child with the truth.  Do as much as you can to obtain their original birth certificate. 

7. If your child is old enough to know their name, which is probably younger than you might think, don’t change his name. 

8. And just because you see the world and people of color as represented by a beautiful rainbow of colors does not mean that the rest of the world does.  The public can be a cruel place for your child.  People say stupid and racist things.  Be prepared for this if you have adopted a child whose skin color does not match yours.  How will you teach your child tolerance while others are being intolerant?.

GET BRAINY

Read Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew – Sherry Eldridge

Don’t read books about how you can say and do things that will speed up the process.  Yes, there is a book like this. 

CHECK ON YOUR AGENCY

Check with your state for any grievances or complaints on file regarding your adoption and/or placing agency.  Email previous clients, find ones who are not on the provided list given to you from the agency. 

In closing, this is not a transaction.  We are dealing with human lives.  And, as beautiful as you might see the whole idea of adoption, for those of us who have experienced the many feelings of loss because of adoption, we ask you to consider the above.  Don’t strip away or deny what is real and what may be troubling for the others involved, namely your child and his or her mother.  Please uphold the bond between mother and child.  Celebrate family…the one you’ve created and the family that your child also has somewhere else. 

If you can’t do these things, or at the very least, be willing to examine and challenge your given ideas or even your core beliefs, then you probably aren’t ready to be an adoptive parent. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

May 21, 2008 at 11:44 pm 95 comments

What I ought to feel

…is gratitude and thankfulness.  I ought to stroke my daughters’ hair and feel the softness and feel my heart melt.  I love the cards I got and the beautiful picture frame that was handmade. 

But I am so, so sad today.  I am putting on a good show, because it’s the right thing to do.  The sadness is winning right now. 

My heart is broken in two for missing two mothers today. 

What I want, I can’t have.  What I want to do is to have my mom over for a big dinner, or to go to my childhood home and celebrate there with my daughters.  Instead, I’ll drive to the cemetary that I walked through on my way home every day after school and place nasturtiums on my mohter’s grave. 

I would love to call M. today and have her feel comfortable in accepting that she is a mother too.  I wish that even if she rejected that she is a mother, that we could at least have a relationship.  I suppose we can’t have the latter without the former.  I don’t pretend to understand or know.  I guess that’s the problem in the first place. 

So, what I ought to feel is a whole lot of gratitude.  I was never promised any children whatsoever.  I have two miracle children who are healthy and happy.  I ought to be praying for Isabel’s mother and sending her good thoughts and reassurance that her daughter is alright and loved and that I’m so sorry that her motherhood has not been given a chance.

I’m just so sad.  It’s all so unfair, all the loss.  For all of us.

 

May 11, 2008 at 11:31 am 7 comments

Craft For China – Putting Creativity To Work

I found a blog that I believe exemplifies part of responsible adoptive parenting.  Should we adopt from afar, then we owe that country a deep and lifelong commitment to its betterment for the future.  I think this is especially true for adoptive parents to take a part in helping the orphanages.  Along comes the brainchild of blog creator and art student, Melissa Robertson.  www.craftforchina.wordpress.comCraft for China is a fundraiser for orphans in China. Artists, crafters, and other volunteers have donated their time and products to be auctioned on eBay. 100% of the proceeds will go to Love Without Boundaries, a nonprofit organization that helps Chinese orphans get medical care, nutritional care, foster care, educational help and so much more. The money raised goes towards sponsoring children or their orphanage 

bigcfc.jpg

Consider putting their button on your blog, crafting your own items to donate which will be sold at their fundraiser, or sending in a donation.  I think this is a marvelous idea and I would like to perhaps start making things to sell at Etsy and donate the proceeds.  Maybe someday I could even start a Craft for Kyrgyzstan, or Craft for Central Asia. 

March 27, 2008 at 9:43 pm 5 comments

Early Intervention & Izzy’s Pit Crew

smartbaby.jpg

Izzy has an entourage.  She has staff.  Peeps.  Around here, we call them Izzy’s Pit Crew. 

Isabel is enrolled in ‘Early Start’ of which I believe, all 50 states have a version of.  What this means is that from birth to age 3, if a child is showing signs of developmental delays, physical, cognitive or behavioral, then the child and their family can choose to enroll.  Being in the program offers the child a great chance in getting the intervention necessary to boost their growth.  Even if the child is at risk for being delayed qualifies the child for these services.  Offered to children in the program and their families are physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, screening testing for auditory and/or speech problems, and on and on.  Parents can receive up to 24 hours per month of respite care, which for the parent may provide some much-needed rest.  Parents of children with delays are under a certain amount of stress and worry, on top of the usual amount of parenting stresses.  There is a playgroup that we can go to, classes to educate the parent on how to best serve your child, and even helping siblings understand and cope with their own feelings about what it’s like having a new sibling who is receiving all this care. 

I would be one big bundle of worry and feeling like I was living on my last nerve every day if it weren’t for Izzy’s pit crew.  Isabel is receiving every single one of these services in some form, some more than others.  Her biggest focus right now is with her speech.  She’s a quiet little thing.  She only makes a few sounds and is quite delayed in this area.  So, without the Early Start people, I would be wringing my hands over it.  But I’m not because of what they have taught me.  Isabel only started walking about a month ago.  What I learned is that when babies are becoming toddlers, and learning to walk and other gross motor skills, their little brains can’t handle learning how to talk.  The brain is just too busy with all the physicalities.  So, just like they told me would happen (It will Tina…it will…she’ll talk soon…) she has started making new sounds, and they are coming more frequently. 

It does sound kind of odd, that my wee little toddler has all these therapists, and eventually most children who have been adopted internationally catch up just fine, I still am so glad that we are in this program.  They come and play with her for about 45 minutes, check out her progress, give me new ideas on how to get her to her next milestones, sing and eat bagels, and then they leave.  And, almost without fail, that day she does something new. 

I want all of you reading who have adopted internationally to just consider your state’s Early Start program for your child.  Even if your kid is only slightly delayed, and even if they will catch up on their own without the program, it’s still something to consider.  The effects of spending months or years in an institution is, without question, very difficult neurologically and psychologically.  A baby or child is more stressed and has little stimulation.  The brains of these children aren’t being fed in the way that a child in a home are.  There are almost always delays in some form or another.

Love and cuddles and attention count for a great deal, especially with Izzy.  But I absolutely know that her peeps are essential to her development right now.  We Heart Izzy’s Entourage.

March 14, 2008 at 9:16 am 5 comments

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