the6parkers

the6parkers

Friday, November 23, 2012

They Are Children Of My Own.

I was talking to someone once about adoption.  He was telling me how great it was that we had adopted.  Then he added that he didn't think he could do it because he would want a child of his own.  And, I was thinking, don't you get it?  They are your own!  I don't love my kids differently.  I don't love my kids as if they were my own.  I love them because they are my own.  (And because they are extremely lovable!)


They may not have my blood coursing through their veins.  I may not know what it felt like to feel them kick inside me.  But, I know a whole lot of other things.  And, I know that they are part of me.  William loves traditions and silly jokes because of me.  He feels compelled to sing about what he's doing like I do.  And, somehow he has inherited my ability to drop things, knock things over, and bump in walls.  His appreciation for bad/corny jokes, though, is totally Brian's fault.  Antwan makes the same sound with the exact same inflection that I do when he sees something cute. ("Awwww!")   He gets grumpy when hungry and feels better when he's fed, just like me.  His love for sports, though, is all Brian.  Lizzie calls every living creature (except humans) "Baby" like I do.  She gets intimidated in crowd settings or if everyone is focusing on her, like me.  Her love for vegetables, though, is Brian's fault. ;)


When William gets picked on at school, I don't think "I want to protect my adopted child."  I think "Where is that kid who is messing with my baby?!?!"  The fact that I haven't gone up to the school and beat up a bully yet is also Brian's fault.  (But, I don't want to be the grown-up!!)


When Antwan took his time and said his line in the Thanksgiving play so well; I wasn't beaming because the child who I adopted did a good job.  I was holding back tears because my baby did a great job!


When Daddy and Lizzie met me for lunch yesterday and Lizzie woke up from her car nap and hugged me so hard when she realized that I was there; I wasn't thinking how glad I was that I adopted her.  I was thinking about how much I loved my little girl.


And, I know they feel it, too.  When William says whatever random thing that he says, he almost always adds "Right, Mom?"  I don't usually know what he's talking about because he has a habit of assuming that I'm listening, no matter where I am in the house.  But, I do hear how he says my name.  He says it with love and a confidence that I am mom.

When Lizzie bellows for me at a park. She is secure in her knowledge that it is me who will come.  

And when Antwan asks me about breast feeding him, it's because I'm mom to him, in every way.

Cue the back story....

Antwan has recently discovered "boobies."  I blame his chatty big brother who has since had it explained that there are some things that you don't talk to your little brother about.  First, we explained that it's an inappropriate word which it resulted in him constantly referring to the "b-word" followed by a giggle.  So, then I tried explaining to him that the proper term is "breast."  I explained that "boobie" is rude and not a nice thing to call them.  That it is a normal part of a girl's body and no, you shouldn't touch them because it's not your body.  I didn't discuss breast feeding with him.  So, when he said this to me during dinner, I was floored. 

"Mommy, do you remember when I was a baby and I sucked on your breasts and I got milk?"


Several things went through my head and out of my mouth.  Good job using the right word. (head)  Who told you about that? (mouth)  After Antwan ratted out his brother and William got another lecture, I explained to Antwan that when we adopted him, he was already drinking regular milk.


He seemed a little disappointed.  And I felt sad because I wanted to say yes.  Not because it bothered me that he wasn't biological, but because I want every part of him.  He deserved to be lovingly fed as an infant.  Just like there were so many things that William deserved to experience.


They deserved to belong to someone who wanted them.  Well, they do now.  That's the only thing that distinguishes them.  If you have a child, they are your own and they always know it.  When you adopt a child, they become your own.  I have plenty of reminders everyday.  My children look nothing like me.  Their hair is different.  Their skin is different.  Their blood is different.  Everywhere we go, there are curious looks and questions.  But, when I look at them, all I see are my children.  The children that were meant for me.


Yesterday, all five of us were walking into the boys' school for a meeting.  One of the other black kids at William's school (there aren't many) was looking at us with a confused look on his face.  We're used to that. 


But, then he asked, "Is that your dad???"


And, Brian said, cheerfully, "Yep!  I'm his dad!"  Then he added, I assume for his own amusement, "I'm a little taller than he is."


And, I felt proud and I know that Brian did, too.  We are so proud that we belong to them and they belong to us.   


So, this Thanksgiving weekend and National Adoption Month, I can tell you that there is nothing in the world that I'm more thankful for than this.  When we didn't get pregnant, we were smart enough to go looking elsewhere.  We discovered foster care adoption and through that, we got the opportunity to make these (wacky, clumsy, silly, grumpy when hungry, freaked out by crowds, slightly obsessed with boobies) children---our own!



 

36 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thank you! I cried a little when I was writing it, too. :)

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  2. I always cry when I read your blog. Such a beautiful thing.

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  3. I found your blog from the Wendy's Wonderful Kids pinterest page.

    We have adopted our son through foster care who is bi-racial and are in the process of adopting his half brother whom also is biracial, but both from different dads.

    I love the word you used. I think so many times I am taken off guard by questions about parentage about our children. I really need to memorize some lines.

    I love seeing your beautifully happy family!

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    1. Thanks for reading! It's amazing, the questions that people will ask, huh? :) Good luck with the adoption!

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  4. I absolutely love your blog and your amazing adoption chronicles. (I follow you on Facebook, too!) Beautiful post; beautiful family. I hope to one day do the same. :) -Tammy in NC

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    1. Thank you so much! And, thank you for following on facebook, too. :)

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  5. I love your first paragraph. I also don't get what part that people don't understand....they ARE my children. I may not have carried them in my belly, but they've been in my heart since I was just a child myself. They are our kids, not our adopted kids. People that know us, know they are adopted because they've seen our family grow. Ours look like us, many act like us, have our quirks, eye color, hair color, attitude, sense of humor or lack thereof. I can't imagine my life without them.

    Great article. I found it linked on FB from AdoptUSKids.

    God's Blessings

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    1. Exactly! The biology is such a small part of it. Thank you for reading!

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  6. just found your bloggie through FB. as an adoptive mom of 4 from the foster system, HEAR HEAR! i get so tired of kudos for being a mom. i just plain love my kidlets like any other mom would!

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    1. Very true. It's interesting. We're often being told we're heroes, saints, etc. I'm very proud of what we did. But, we didn't go out looking to be heroes; we just wanted to be parents. If anything, we saved each other. :)
      Thanks for reading!

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  7. Love your blog! I have a 19 yr old bi-racial daughter and an 11 year old Aftican American daughter. I am caucasian. They are so much my own - couldn't love them any more if I gave birth, impossible, they are everything to me!

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    1. Thank you! Agreed! It would be impossible. :)

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  8. This is a beautiful post. My husband was adopted and his adopted parents never loved him the same as their biological children...it's very sad. I wish he could have had parents like you guys (although against all odds he turned out just fine, but even though he pretends he doesn't have a broken heart, he does). Your children are so lucky to have you. Your family is a perfect example of pure love. Thanks for leaving your blog public and for sharing your amazing story.

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    1. That really is sad. I can't understand how thet could be that way. I'm glad he was able to get past it, mostly. Thanks for your kind words and for reading! :)

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  9. A friend posted this on Facebook- I am so glad to read a post like this, and I look forward to reading more from you! :)

    Kari

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  10. God willing the day will come when adoptive parents are able to stand up and proudly state out loud: "No, these are not my children; they are entrusted to my care, and I am giving to my community by caring for them. I pray for the day when they might find their way back to their parents; and I pray for the day when their families and communities might be able to care for them again. I vow to equalize the injustice that led to their adoption in the first place, instead of leveraging that to make claims that are, we have to admit, patently false."

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    1. Everyone has their own perspectives. And, yes, it is very sad that the foster care system even has to exist and that so many parents don't take care of children like they should. But, regardless, these three are my kids, completely.

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  11. wow, this was an amazing blog! I've adopted 3 kids from foster care, and one definitely looks like there is no way I could have been her birth mom. I get comments all the time like "you aren't her REAL mom, are you?" or if I have all 3 kids with me, people look and say "so are THOSE two your REAL kids?" People can be so rude and ballsy! Anyway, what a beautifully written post. I nodded my head, laughed, and got teary eyed reading it! You have a beautiful family!

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    1. Thank you! It really is amazing what people will say, sometimes. Thanks for reading. :)

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  12. great post! They are ALL ours is what I often tell those who ask which are my "real" kids. I think most people don't mean for it to come out that way so I try to have lots of grace in my responses. I really love it when people ask if we are a school. lol! It's nice to meet your family via this blog.

    danielibnzayd - yes, actually, adopted children ARE our children. they may not have been birthed from our bodies, but they are in every way our children. They have all the rights and privileges of a biological child, all the love of a biological child, they are a part of our family. We aren't just giving to our community by caring for them. We love them, provide for them, teach them, give to them, learn with them, and everything else that families do together. and, yes, we wish that the injustices and circumstances that led to their need for an adoptive home would be corrected but realize that right now, right here, these children - OUR children - are sharing the blessing with us of growing up in a family. I would NEVER ever say to anyone "no these are not my children. . . " as you suggested. Can you even imagine how defeating and discouraging that would be to the child who heard that?

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    1. Well said! Realistically not everyone is meant to be a parent hence the need for foster and adoptive parents. I am in the process of adopting a child and once everything is finalized the child will definitely be 'my own'.

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    2. Thanks! I guess people just don't think. I've been asked if I had an in-home daycare, haha. Nice to meet you, too!

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  13. Wow, totally moved. I have 5 adopted from foster care and 3 are bi-racial. I can relate. Thanks for the amazing heartfelt inclusion into your life. Oh, and I have had a thought or two about chasing down some bullies myself lol. ;)

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    1. Thanks! Haha, it really is tempting. I think that Brian is being most inreasonable when he stops me. ;)

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  14. Just discovered your blog. I am loving it. I have adopted two sons from the fostercare system. They are totally my sons. A question I get asked is "Are they brothers?" my response Yep different fathers, I am not married. LOL One is white/hispanic like me and the other is African/hispanic. It's funny to see their face and leave them wondering. It's none of there business.

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