So the other day I was roaming Facebook (who me?? wasting time on Facebook? Nah, couldn’t be). A friend posted an article called 16 Things You Learn As An Adoptive Parent.
Now, I don’t agree with everything in the article, so if you follow this link don’t assume that I do, or that Katelyn’s Fund does (how’s that for a disclaimer?).
But some things were just right on! I hope if you read it and have gone through process you might get a laugh, and if you’re in the process you might pick up a thing or two.
Some are obvious. Some not so much. A few to note, just for fun.
“You will know what a ‘real mom’ or ‘real dad’ is” Uhm yes. All of my kids are my REAL kids. They are not fake. I am their REAL mom as well. Although if you could clone me I could use a fake me once in a while. Let me know when you accomplish that. Otherwise, let it be known. WE ARE REAL PARENTS, and THEY ARE OUR REAL KIDS.
“You will feel a unique kinship to other adoptive families” If you are reading this post, I hope that means you are plugged into Katelyn’s Fund. The friendships we’ve made and support we’ve gotten through Katelyn’s Fund are priceless. Not that we don’t have lots of friends who haven’t adopted. We haven’t become some type of private club. But sometimes it sure is nice to have a friend that “gets it.”
“You will field all types of stupid questions” This kinda goes with the “real” kids one. Yep, when people don’t know what to say, really dumb things seem to come out of their mouths. But you know what? I was ignorant about adoption at one point, too. So, I like to let them squirm a little first, then kindly educate. Like if they ask, which ones are your REAL kids. I pause, look confused, and say, “Well, all of them?” Like what could you possibly mean? I don’t get it. Then I pause and say, do you mean which ones are adopted and which ones are biological? Betting they won’t ask that question again, but they’ll appreciate any grace you gave them. Funny story–I once had someone ask me in a grocery store if two of my kids were twins. Uhm, hmmm…one is black, the other Asian. But why not? Sometimes you just have to laugh! Once in a while there are comments that are VERY inappropriate, especially in front of kids. Then, sometimes Momma Bear needs to come out, just a little bit.
Ok, this one is my favorite, “You will become a conspicuous family.” I’m guessing that would describe us. We are an interracial family with 7 kids. Before we adopted I used to worry about this. Worry about what people would think or say. The article says, “You may not “match” the way people expect you to match, which will lead to people looking you over. A lot. At first you will be aware of it, but after a while you will forget about your family dynamics and wonder if people are looking because you have something stuck in your teeth, or because your kids are being too loud. And then you’ll remember… oh. Yeah. THAT.”
That really makes me laugh, cuz it’s happened to me over the years. A few years back I needed something quick from Menards. Our oldest wasn’t with me, but I packed up the other 6 kids (9 and under) and off we went. Walking through Menards I felt people looking at me. I actually wondered, do I have a booger coming out of my nose? What in the world?!? Then it dawned on me. Oh. Yeah. THAT. We might have looked a little conspicuous. But you know what? I don’t have the time or energy to care. And that is so freeing!! I’m much more concerned about raising upstanding, hardworking, Christ-loving adults, then what you’re thinking. And that my friends, is THAT.