Tuesday, January 15, 2013


I am coming to the end of where I think I can post bunches on J. and C.'s thoughts and feelings on adoption.  They are theirs.  As a mother, their mother, I think that I can post some of my reactions.  Moments of enlightenment or careful thoughts about my next steps in parenting.

Over Christmas (see: Plague of 2012) J. became pretty withdrawn on Christmas Day.  DH and I thought that maybe we missed the mark on what she wanted or that the American Girl was way less than what she had hoped for, or...  But that wasn't it.  And it took some asking and waiting.

J. is quiet.  That's her countenance.  That's how I think she chooses to be.  When her kinder teacher told us that her goal for J. was to be a risk-taker, I almost got up and walked out of the meeting, since that's not J.  J. was slow to talk and is still slow to add words to her vocabulary.  Its not that she can't, its just that she prefers not to.

When J. tells a joke, we notice.  When J. adds a new word, but DH and I notice.  When J. doesn't get something she frustrates easily, but is reticent to ask for help.  She wants to own it and do it herself.

She was sad on Christmas Day because she missed her first mom.

Those were not feelings we placed on her, those were her own.  She came up with those and feels those feelings regularly.

On a special day like Christmas, she felt like she was missing something, like she couldn't be happy, because she was missing a piece of something.  And once we named it, it didn't make it go away, at all, but it did make it less of the elephant in the room and much more of something that we could recognize together.

J. turns 7 in two weeks.  And she came home today, finished her homework and then laid down and cried.

She missed her mom.  She said it was hard to have two moms.  And she worried that maybe there was not enough love to go around.

I am never threatened by her missing.  Or by her needing someone other than me.  I worry that I can't fill that need - actually, I know that I can't.  But I do know that I can walk with her and listen.

As a child I missed my mom often. At funny times.  I needed her to fill in gaps and be there, just around.  It was primal and immediate and indescribable.

For J., who doesn't like to describe, expound, or over talk, this need, that has no end to it, is really having a hard time being named.

As her mom, its hard to see that.


  1. We just went through this at our house. Sophia and Dmitry are night and day when it comes to adoption. Dmitry loves his birth mom, is curious about her and wants to find her one day. But he seems less enamored of her. He loves her and cares about her well being but never seems to have the same love he has for me. He has had to process feelings, thoughts and worries... but was always willing to talk about them.

    Sophia {sigh} she is hard. She isn't embarrassed of her adoption but she struggles. She hates talking about it. She aches because of it. She sobbed last week because she missed her. She is always worried I'll leave her, never her daddy or Dmitry, just me. She is the sweetest child or she can't stand me. I do talk to her, but it's a tightrope walk trying to make progress without pushing so hard that we fall backwards.

    Sorry to write a book! I don't talk much about it on the blog, just because I can't figure out the line between documenting their life and overexposing their private life.

  2. I happen to think that you are just simply an amazing mother. Your sensitivity and love for your girls is not lost on anyone, least of all them.

  3. "I am never threatened by her missing. Or by her needing someone other than me. I worry that I can't fill that need - actually, I know that I can't. But I do know that I can walk with her and listen."

    This...it's somewhere I never thought I'd be when I began our adoption journey and somewhere that I am so happy that I am now. But...we have the same issue with having EJ be able to verbalize what she is feeling and it can be so hard to help her and walk alongside her when I can't be sure what she is feeling or what has triggered her.

    Parenting is hard!


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