myhollydays

A glimpse into the world of the handicapable.

Archive for the tag “adoptees”

Adoption…baby pictures

20131230-002007.jpgI have a friend that has a blog. She adopted two little boys from China. She had a conversation with one of them about baby pictures. She was showing them baby pictures of when she was a day old. She was in her little hospital issued baby crib, her belly button had been pinned up and healing, the hospital issued blanket was displayed around her. Her little boy asked where HIS baby pictures were. He had none.

I don’t remember asking my mom for my baby pictures. I don’t think I gave it a thought until my high school graduation. It was a tradition at our small private school to show a slideshow of each of the graduates. The slideshow consisted of a letter written by our parents and pictures capturing our lives from birth to graduation day. It was a sweet tradition and I had been looking forward to seeing what my mom would write to me. I wasn’t disappointed. =)

However, I didn’t have a baby photo to include in my montage like my classmates. Instead, my slideshow began at 2 years of age. I was a little embarrassed at the fact that I didn’t have a picture of my mother swaddling me at the hospital hours after my birth. To clarify, I wasn’t embarrassed about being adopted. My entire school (all 200 of them) knew about my family and about my situation. I was proud of being adopted. My mom would always reassure me about how she “picked me to adopt.” I was “special because I was adopted.” However, I wanted to be like everyone else and have that infant picture.

Decades later, I still don’t have infant pictures of myself. Instead, I have something SO much better. I have an infant picture of my precious baby boy. I have a picture of myself in the hospital holding my baby just hours after he was born. I have my memories of him growing inside of me. I have pictures of my pregnancy. I have journals I have written before, during and after his birth. I have so much more than I could have wanted as a high school graduate. I was just focused on wanting the wrong picture.

 

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Adoption

When I was a kid, I never understood what it meant to be adopted. Meaning…I knew that I WAS adopted, I knew that I had a Korean mommy. I knew she couldn’t take care of me, but loved me very much-according to my mom. I just didn’t know what the whole process really meant.

I’m noticing that more and more of my friends, colleagues and people about my age are adopting…it is finally sinking in the reality of adoption. What it costs the birth mother emotionally. I couldn’t imagine what it would be like to hand over Caiden to complete strangers and trust that they would love him as much as I do. I can’t imagine the sacrifice my mom and dad made when they decided they would take me in. How difficult it must have been to have a child that doesn’t speak their language, doesn’t look like them and have no idea of her full potential (physically, emotionally and academically). I don’t even want to get into how much the adoption itself cost!

I applaud all the moms and dads out there that have welcomed those who are considered “unadoptable” (like myself). Wow…

Now that I’m all grown up (I’m using those words loosely), I appreciate all that my parents did to make sure I felt loved. They did a great job making sure that I knew that I was hand picked and wanted. They pushed me because she knew I could do anything I set my mind to. I am here today, a wife, a mother an educated professional…and able to achieve all that and more because of this great country and my awesome parents. My parents never made a distinction between birth kids (aka the “real” kids as some would say) and the adopted kids (er…fake kids?). We were a family and there was always room for one more.

I do think of my birth mother every once in awhile. I think how hard it must have been for her, but at the same time I am a little bitter at the country that (at that time) weren’t as open minded to disabilities as the Western world.

But I’ll let you in on a little secret…my brain still thinks I’m Caucasian.

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