Monday, April 2, 2012

On Open Adoption

Dear Future Adoptive Moms,

What you thought you believed about adoption, what you swore you believed about adoption, what you were unwavering on when it came to's all about to change.

And when it changes, it will be this force that crept into your psyche, seemingly overnight, and it will feel like it's always been this way, like what you believe now is what you were so rock solid on before, even though, it's in fact, just the opposite.  You'll deny that you ever thought open adoption was scary, risky, strange, politically correct, or for someone else.

You'll be irritated at others when they express doubt about what you're doing, how you're doing it, why your mind-set is changing, and why they can't just 'get there' with you.

You'll start to feel like anything else would be unnatural, like writing with the opposite hand, driving on the other side of the road, or sleeping on a different side of the bed.

When you start the adoption process it will feel like open adoption is chasing you, threatening to defeat your will, about to over-take you, sucking up your determination about the process and then...........when it catches you........

You'll realize that it was never trying to beat you.  It was trying to catch up with you.  It wants to help you maneuver  through the rest of the race, give you a purpose for continuing to work hard and win, and to help you see adoption in its most pure, loving, and sacrificial light. It will make you a champion for open adoption more than you ever thought possible.

It will make you an adoption freak. You'll want to wear a pro-adoption sandwich board wherever you go so that people know to ask you about adoption, so that you can tell them how it changed so many lives and how it has expanded your family in more ways than simply giving you this amazing gift to raise and love beyond words.  It will make you want to march into high schools and demand to know why they aren't doing more to encourage their young women and men to make adoption plans, it will make you righteously angry when you hear people say about girls who do make adoption plans, "adoption is the easy choice.....keeping your baby is taking responsibility for your actions," and it will make you feel like you're a member of one of the coolest clubs in town........the adoptive mama club.

And open adoption will cement for you the fact that being a mom is one of the most important things you can ever do.  Because you're doing it for more than just you and your child; which alone is enough.  But you're also doing it for someone who chose to give their child something they weren't able to provide just yet, you're doing it for someone who gave one of the most painful gifts I can imagine giving, and you're doing it because you were literally chosen to do it by someone else and you yearn with the deepest parts of your soul to do a good job because it's the weightiest assignment you've ever been tasked with by another human being.

So get ready future adoptive mom.  Get ready for your thoughts to be ripped from your head, torn into pieces and stomped on the ground.  Get ready to admit that what you "knew" to be true and right and your way when it comes to adoption isn't really true or right or your way after all.

It's fantastic--that moment when you know what you actually believe.  What you'll stand for now.  And what you can't imagine thinking any other way on now.

At least it was for me.

And get ready for one of the most amazing experiences this life has to offer.

Oh.....and don't forget to get your adoption freak flag made.  You'll be waving it high in no time.


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