The strangest thing happens to me all the time. I'll meet someone, say a friend of a friend, and the first words out of their mouth are "Oh you're the girl that adopted two babies! Aren't they, like, under a year apart?" And I say, "Yes, yes that's me. And yes they are."
So now let me tell you why this strikes me as strange because you are probably sitting there thinking, well you are the girl who adopted two babies in under a year. What gives?
It's strange because I don't define myself that way at all. I can go for days, nay, weeks and not think about my children being adopted. People don't stare at us in public because we aren't the same color. They stare because we are a circus to behold. I'm rarely reminded in my daily life that I didn't birth my babies.
And that is why I find it very curious that other people hold onto that fact. It doesn't offend me in the least. I don't expect other people to know the true nature of adoption until they have experienced it firsthand. It's a spiritual concept that must be learned. I just wish that if people are going to talk about me, and tell my story, could they also throw in that I make jewelry and do illustrations? Maybe pass out a business card or two?
I love that my babies are adopted. Truly. What fortune our family has had! To most of the world, adoption might seem like a second choice option, but for those of us who have found our kids through atypical ways, we marvel at our good fortune to have been given a wondrous gift. The journey to adopt a child is a real life adventure tale, with magic and monsters and all sorts of battles. To triumph at the end of the sojourn is the most amazing, relieving, incredible experience. Everyone should know such happiness.
On October 12th we will finalize Henry's adoption. It seems like such a trivial thing. It only takes ten minutes before a judge. It's hardly a blip on our family's lifeline. But it means that we can write the last page of our adventure tale and start a new story.
Speaking of stories, here's a true one: On the way to the hospital to see Henry for the very first time we had to pull over so I could throw up.
It was a mixture of medicine-induced nausea and panic over the thought that I might look at this tiny little boy and know that he wasn't mine. We all know that isn't what happened. Seeing Henry for the first time was like looking at my own hands. He was mine in every way. Happy ending.
Everyday he changes and becomes more of a little person. He has a scratchy little voice and a rather square head. He's the happiest baby I've known.
Here's another true story: When she was little, my mother-in-law lived next door to a boy named Frankie Valentine. She told me about Frankie and how years later, while walking through her living room, she caught sight of Frankie on T.V. He was all grown up, but it was him alright. He was a police officer.
Ever since I heard that story I can't look at Henry and not call him Frankie Valentine.
It's the perfect name for him. Half Baby Face mobster, half Eddie Munster. All sweetheart.