Adoption is helping my children understand they are loved and valued. It is also about questions and grieving. Easy questions like, "If you die am I entitled to an equal inheritance as my biological siblings? Did you make a distinction in your will between your biological children and your adopted children?" Sometimes the questions are harder to answer, "Why doesn't my birth mom want to have contact with me?" "Why didn't my birth father want me?" "Why does my birth mother only write while my brother's birth mother calls and sends gifts?"
Adoption is about times when there is anger and frustration involved. The questions are impossible for me to answer, and all I can say is, "You are right, I don't know what it's like to be adopted. I don't know why she made the choice she made. I don't know why I couldn't make the same choice. I love you no matter what. I will love you even if decide to walk away and never come back." I try to hold back the tears. I try not to show my heart being ripped from my chest, but the tears fall anyway despite my brain trying to turn them off.
Adoption is about hard days when I try to explain that I will never win the comparison, of their wonderful birth mothers and me. I am not perfect. I have never claimed to be a perfect parent, in fact motherhood is not easy for me. It is something I have to work really hard at, and even then I fail most days. I have to say, "You are seeing me at my worst. You know all my faults. You see my mistakes. You only know the goodness of your biological mother. I will never win or come close if my many faults are pitted against her many amazing virtues." They understand this, and I know they love me, but trying to figure things out can be tough when the answers don't come easily. Adding puberty to the discussion is adding a whole new set elements to the questions.
Adoption is beautiful. Even as tears stream down my face, and my heart is a little broken I would not change a single minute or decision of our lives. As I contemplated why I have not written more about the joys of adoption (most of my adoption posts seem to be about the trials), I realized I have those joys. For me there is not a separation of children. I don't look at my biological children differently from my adopted children (I do look at my boys differently than my girls, but that is a whole different story). They are my children. They each have all the love my heart can give. When I write about their lives and my feelings for them, adoption is part of all that. That is who they are, that is who we are.
Adoption is about those sweet tender moments when you look around the dinner table at everyone talking and laughing and you can't image the world more beautiful than at this exact moment. You understand that the difficult moments are bumps in the road that make precious views all the more sweeter.