"Adoption has the dimension of connection--not only to your own tribe, but beyond, widening the scope of what constitutes love, ties, and family. It is a larger embrace. By adopting, we stretch past our immediate circles and, by reaching out, find an unexpected sense of belonging with others." -- Isabella Rossellini
Oh, how true that is. If Isabella was a preacher and I was sitting in her congregation I would shout a confident "Amen." I might even throw in a "preach it sister." When I consider all the AMAZING women I have 'met' as a result of adoption--women that are far beyond my immediate circle--I stand in awe, again, of adoption. Some of these women I would consider close friends....and I hope that one day.....I can actually hug them so hard (and I'm not a hugger) and kiss their kiddos and tell them thank-you for their friendship. Friendship that stretched over hundreds of miles, different family backgrounds, different kinds of adoption, different results, different.............but the same. Because the experience of adoption unites us. With a deep, thick cord that can never be cut. With people we never would have known otherwise.
I think about my friend Amber. Her son is the same age as Georgia. And they are spit-fires like none other. I think if we ever did meet we'd need to make sure there was a track available so our kids could just run laps together. We've talked about adoption, stubborn four year olds, blogging, and more. I never would have met her had it not been for adoption.
I met someone named Beth this year. She's incredible. So strong. It was such an emotional year for her and now.....she has this amazing little girl that is perfect and......hers. She lives far away from me and I've never heard her voice. But her little girls birth announcement hangs on my fridge and I look at it every day and I'm so thankful for adoption and that she e-mailed me back in October with a question about domestic adoption that we were able to turn into so many e-mails back and forth sharing struggles and victories.
Karen. I grew up with her and knew her through church but I was older than her and while we were friendly with each other.....we just had different groups of friends and went to different schools. But after high school I really didn't see her. She moved to Georgia and that was that. And then, she started the adoption process and to be honest.....she takes my breath away now and her friendship is one of the greatest treasures God has ever given me. I hold it so dear. Her world was rocked this winter, thinking her adoption was falling apart, and I spent so many sleepless hours between two and four in the morning crying for her and praying for her and wanting to hug her. I'm so glad adoption brought us back together. And we have some line-dancing (or something else truly Texan) in our near future.
And it seems like every few weeks, I'm meeting someone else who shares their adoption story with me. And I love to hear these stories. They teach me more about adoption and what it means for everyone. They encourage me and inspire me and challenge me and restore a lot of faith in humanity that is so easy to lose sight of. Some of their stories are hard and sad and heart-breaking. Some of their stories are similar to mine. Some are vastly different. Some are still turning into an adoption story; I love those. No matter what they are.....they provide a sense of belonging. Adoption can be a lonely club, or it can be a tight knit supportive one. We have to seek out the belonging---it's there, waiting for us.
I think we all have something in our lives that brings with it a deep sense of belonging; belonging to something different than we'd ever expected to belong to. Belonging, like Isabella said, with something outside our immediate circles. I think it's important to look for those far reaching circles. They generally can open our eyes to something great that we never would have experienced had we stayed safe, and private, and to ourselves. So whether it's an adoption circle, or another one....seek them out. Those circles can be some of the most rewarding experiences of your life.
Cheers. To stretching past our immediate circles.