Wednesday, January 25, 2012

2 years...

...since we signed up to be adoptive parents. Wow.
As I look back, I take note of how this process has changed me.

In the beginning, I was excited and bouncing from the walls. I couldn't get my mind off of adoption. It was all I could talk about. (My first blog post two years ago... took witness to my excitement and perhaps naivety.)

Now I am even keel. I don't think about adoption every single day, and I don't talk about it with everyone in ear shot. I have learned to not get excited. Don't believe it until you see it, and certainly don't get your hopes up.

In the beginning, there was no way anyone was going to tell me it would take at least 2 years to adopt. Come hell or high water, I was going to have a child home within 2 years. I was full of piss and vinegar and bound and determined to make it happen.

Now, I am just sensitive and emotionally raw. I feel defensive and ready to pounce. So much of myself, emotionally, physically and monetarily is invested in this that I am like a Mama Bear hovering over her child, ready to attack at the first sign of any offense. This has been my largest challenge. We have friends and family members who have not closely followed our journey. Some because they never asked, and others who initially had a negative response it... just got left out in the cold. I know this is their choice. But now, with so much time lapsed, and so much work and heart put into this adoption... it is very much a large part of us, and very important to us. To anyone else it may feel like we only just told them this last summer - "wow look how fast things are progressing." And to them, it may feel like the equivalent of booking a vacation or a buying a vehicle... but it is so much more. I am easily offended by these people and I have to remember that they just don't understand. Which does not help the fact that it I am offended that they don't even care to understand in the first place. Which makes me wonder why I even care...

 After some thought, I realize the main offense is that they offer up advice and their opinion without any consideration to the child that lies at the center of this adoption.

I'm certainly capable of taking care of situations like this... if it were my own. In fact, I have had little bumps in the road with my family/friends - but they have all been worked out because I addressed them immediately. However, in this case, it is not my place to step up and educate or to say anything at all. So now, I am a chained up Mama bear. See what blogging does for ya? It can get to the heart of anything. These situations bother me because I cannot address them or control them! Oh, yes - another Leo symptom, but fully explains my frustration. Blogger truly is my best Therapist. Ha!

Well now that we've digressed right off track and onto the path of no return... let's just carry on shall we?

I would have thought you were off your rocker if you told me 2 years ago that I would take my family to live in Kenya to adopt! No way. Would not have even entered my mind. Due to bureaucratic nonsense, waitlists, and agency bankruptcies etc... I have been driven to do something so outside my realm. For this I am grateful!

Two years ago I spent endless evenings watching youtube 'gotcha' videos with a handful of kleenex, crying right along with these parents. Now I pour over orphanage photos with a box of kleenex, crying for the parents who had to give these children up and for the children who no longer have parents.

Two years ago.. I would have been elated and over the moon to first meet my adopted child. Now, I would be on my hands and knees, thanking the heavens above and bawling my head off! 2 years of battling the adoption process can make you very appreciative! It is the bad times that make you appreciate the good ones right?

Two years later, I am stronger, wiser and more ready than ever before! Bring it on! I have done the time and paid my dues. Let's get this adoption rolling!


Bumber's Bumblings said...

I hope things start moving along for you very soon!!

Sylvie and Victor said...

I felt your pain Jo! I know what you are going through and it’s a rough ride! What you just said...’ more ready than ever before! Bring it on!’ I KNOW YOU MEAN IT and I know you are ready for this. It’s nice to see that your spirit is up!!!

I love reading your blog. It gives me so much more energy after I read it. :)

Melissa said...

Yes, I can sympathize.

It's been 2.5 years for me. I used to get offended when people didn't ask about my adoption . . . now I tell them not to get excited. I am on much more of an even keel, but I do a lot of "managing of expectations", including my own.

Here's hoping for some good movement on both of our files this year!

'Jo' said...

Thank you all!

Sylvie you are positively sweet! Thank you.

Melissa - You and I have a similar journey, only you took a Left and I veered off the road. ;) I hope your program gets moving!! It's time!!