It has been a while since I have posted. I originally thought that I have just been busier in recent weeks but I knew that it was more than that. Our Tiny Human Project has settled into a cozy corner of my brain. I am no less excited or hopeful about it but it has worn a comfortable groove into my thoughts and has not surprised me with torn or controversial thoughts as of late. We are still far from decided but it’s not feeling as radical as before. We have continued to work our way through Dr. Ray Guarendi’s Adoption: Choosing it, Living it, Loving it book. The question/answer format has been perfect for a few minutes of reading together here and there. Mr. Something agreed that he’s answering all of the right questions for our stage of “Educate Yourself.”
I spied a cute pregnant woman at the store today. She was totally rocking the belly with another little already in her cart. I wasn’t leering but I looked at that baby bump silhouette and the little boy with sandy blonde hair that matched her own and I asked myself, “Would I miss that? Would I feel like I missed out on that?” At the same moment I spied my own reflection in the store window and didn’t miss a beat when I told that reflection of myself, “No.” Every girl, whether a baby swooner or an on-the-fencer or even the hell no’s, have all looked down at themselves at some point and imagined that bump. It hasn’t and still doesn’t stir anything within me. Reading lots of adoption blogs I often find the phrase, “We were called to do it.” Now, a post about religious beliefs is a whole different blog post for another night but I am comfortable with thinking, “Maybe we were meant to do this.”
Mr. Something told me that he wants to see the photo listings. I was surprised given his previous feelings about seeing the faces of so many children in need. We have yet to cozy up on the couch together and explore the listings but moments like this are taking us inches forward to a decision.
I finally told a real life friend about THP. It was thrilling to speak of it, bring it to life in the “real world” outside of the Something home. My dear friend that listened was nothing but supportive, not that I expected anything less. She asked all the right questions and let me flex my newly acquired knowledge. I hadn’t realized how much I have researched and absorbed about the whole process and my feelings about it until it came spewing out in a face-to-face conversation. There are days that I can barely contain myself and I want to tell everyone. There are other days that I am so scared to put such a personal decision out there.
I, admittedly, do my best to not care what others think but tend to personalize things anyway. Especially when it comes to children, I am shamefully quick to judge. Screaming child in the grocery store? Take them home and come back later. I then slap myself, what if there is no later for that parent? What if there is no other parent to take that child home to?
There are other less drastic situations like the child jumping up and down in the booth at the restaurant. I was raised in a house when jumping on furniture of any kind was not allowed, not to mention jumping on furniture in a public place! Teach your child manners! I shamefully judge and I am afraid of being shamefully judged. I take pride in my home, and how we welcome people into our home. I want to take pride in my parenting abilities as well. Taking on THP might mean a child that has no idea that jumping on a booth in a restaurant is rude behavior. (If only that could be the least of possible issues!) Teachable moments, yes, but I know I am going to have to work on letting go of the worries about what other people think of me as a parent. This may be one of my biggest personal challenges with this situation. I won’t get to start parenting from scratch. Self-confessed control freak here! How on earth am I considering bringing a child or children into my home with years of experiences, both good and bad, that I have absolutely no control over?
I am realizing more and more that this is not just an “Educate Yourself” stage about adopting from the foster care system but an “Educate Yourself About Yourself” stage. I’ve got some growing up to do and, for the first time, I’m willing to let go of that control, examine myself with brutal honesty, and pursue change.