First off I apologize for my almost inappropriate language in the title but I could find no other way to accurately express how I feel.
As I look back over my blogs and Facebook posts and think back to all the conversations I have had with other people (including family and close friends) I realize how positive I have always been about our upcoming adoption. Let me be clear I am about-to-pee-my-pants (thankfully, not literally) excited to have little ones home with us but I have been leaving out a very big part of my own emotional journey on becoming a mom, much less becoming an adoptive mom to kids who have known (at the very least) two motherly caretakers, a foster mom and a birth mom. I could tell you it slipped my mind, that it never came up, or other seemingly plausible excuses but they would be just that: excuses.
Truth be told, I left all that out on purpose. So much so that when someone asked me recently if I was scared at all they seemed genuinely shocked by my answer (see the title, but it might have been slightly altered had they been people from church!).
I know that all prospective parents are supposed to feel scared but for some reason I felt that my husband and I didn’t have the right to feel scared. We went into this knowing full well what the possibilities were, that there would be hardships. Adopting is nothing like having a biological kid. For example no one forces a pregnant women to go to a 3 hour class on how to install a car seat when she has two bachelor’s degrees and a master’s degree (wow, totally off that rant now!).
I guess I felt that if I talked about ALL of my thoughts and feels towards adopting people would jump on that as their long awaited chance to talk us out of it. I have absolutely no evidence that anyone in our lives is not fully supportive of us in our decision, but sometimes I wonder. You can’t really ask, because well, what are people supposed to say then. So since I don’t know 100% that people support us I steer clear of talking about any doubt, fear, downside, or second-thoughts. This makes me feel disingenuous and I HATE is so I vow to stop (or at least try my hardest to stop) this behavior!
I’m sure some people think we are crazy, some people think we are saints, some people think we are naive, and some people think we are aliens (ok maybe I just wish that last one because then we can be in an episode of X-Files, but that is WAY of track) but the bottom line is that we are people. We are people who have been abundantly blessed by God and want to share that blessing. We are unable to have biological children (for a variety of reasons) but still feel strongly called to parent. We have love running up and over our buckets (if you are familiar with that analogy) and the support of an awesome family close by (Seriously, you guys rock and I am so thankful that you have welcomed me with such open arms into your family. You have literally taught me the meaning of adopting my never treating me as anything less than your child whom you love. You are my parents just like those in Omaha. I love you Mom and Dad L!).
Anyway, back to being scared shitless….whoops, I said shit….oh no, i said it twice. Why didn’t I just delete it when I realized it you may ask? Well, typing is easier for me when I don’t add silly things like deleting and stoping to spell check because then my flow is all broken so 8 deletes ended up being a paragraph. But how great a paragraph!? You can put a price on that time we just spent together, that is true bonding.
OK, really back to the point… I was/am really scared about adopting. All the normal new mom fears:
- Will I know what I am doing
- Will I break them?
- What will I do when they throw a fit and I have a grocery cart full?
- What if they are bad in church?
- Can I do it?
- Ect, (and many more completely irrational fears that may be funny to share some day thanks to OCD)
On top of all the normal mom fears in my mind are adoption related fears:
- Will they ever attach to me/Joel?
- Will I be jealous of their biomom/foster mom/other family
- Will I love them? Like truly love them?
- Will they have behaviors that we can’t handle or don’t yet know how to?
- What if they don’t want to be adopted?
- When they grow up and find their bio family will they still want us (sadly I’m kinda crying as a write this one)?
And then on top of all that stuff I have (probably unnecessary) concerns about people in our life:
- Will they support us when we need it or say we choose it so deal?
- Will they understand and be supportive of our children’s special needs?
- Are they waiting for the change to talk us out of it?
- Are the just waiting for us to fail?
Someone once told me “If you have to get someone’s approval you are probably not ready to do it”. And I agree with that. Let me be clear I do not need everyone in my life to be on board with the decision. They can think I am crazy, they can assume that our life will go down the drain. It’s not their lack of support that I am afraid of it is two other things: A confrontation and my own fears that it brings up.
I feel beyond a shadow of a doubt that God has called me to this path in my life. In fact when we were praying about kids and about whether to attempt to have kids biologically or adopt we prayed that God make it very clear (having already decided that fertility treatments and hormone medication we not for us). Though a serious of difficulties I have come to find out that it is not just the current OCD medication that I am on that is preventing pregnancy that I cannot, without treatment says that doctor, (or God’s healing says me) have a child on my own. How much more clear could it be.
Every new parent the world over has fears. I have addressed these fears by devouring as much information as I can about adopted children and how to parent and heal these hurt children and get them the help they need. I have also been praying and putting my trust in God. This on is hardest. When I am reading up and researching I at least feel a little in control but the truth is that I am not (and should not and do not want to) be in control. I want to go down God’s path. And if that means that all my worst fears come true for His glory then I will walk through that knowing all the while that He will NEVER bring me to it if HE won’t bring my through it.
The bottom line of this REALLY long post is this: I am so excited, yet really scared and I have resolved to be honest from now on about ALL aspects of this adoption journey. I will leave you with this: