I am only about two dozen pages into Dr. Ray Guarendi’s Adoption: Choosing It, Living It, Loving It but I am already enjoying his easy manner and sense of humor. The book is organized into a question and answer format which makes skipping over sections that don’t apply to us (international adoption or infant adoption) really easy. He takes a no nonsense look at raising foster care children and addresses a question about whether or not six is the age where children become “too old” to adopt because their personalities are set. His quick reply of “No,” feels so common sense. Are any of us the same people we were when we were six? This is not to undermine the lasting effects that abuse or neglect have on a child but it makes tackling them not seem so daunting or impossible. It’s the age old question of nature vs. nurture and I have remained firmly in the world of “both” since my psych 101 course in undergrad.
Day after day during my stolen moments of reflection I always come back to the same question, am I strong enough? I like to think that there is something within me that has taken me this far. Which is really not so far at all. It’s the life equivalent of window shopping at this point. Maybe not even windows, I think I’m just flipping through the catalogue. The catalogue didn’t even arrive in my own mailbox. Perhaps it’s a few months old sitting in the magazine rack in the waiting room at the doctor’s office! Am I going to toss it aside the moment my name is called and move on with my life? What if nothing ever feels right? What if we move forward and have nothing but regrets? I suppose I could play the “What if” game until the cows come home, it’s something that I have very little patience for with my own students. I always throw “What if a pink elephant flys through the window?” at them to throw them off. I suppose I should take my own advice every now and then. “What if’s” are never ending and will get you nowhere.
For now I’ll continue to leaf through that catalogue, maybe dog-ear a few pages. Thanks for listening.