This week I received an email from an adoptive parent asking for my adoptee perspective. I was honored and touched that this woman had reached out to me. I was a stranger after all, and it meant a lot that she valued my opinion as I know the heart of an adoptee. Many of our stories vary, our backgrounds as wide as the sun is from the moon, but many of our feelings are universal. We carry an imaginary members only card stamped ADOPTEE. Some of us let that label define us more than others, but never the less we were given this definition. Many of us are now speaking out much like the #metoo movement, because one was brave, we are finding our courage also.
She told me about her experience with infertility and that her husband and herself were traveling down the path of diving into adoption. She said she started to follow several adoptive mommy bloggers on Instagram and she noticed so many of these mothers were placing a large emphasis on worry that their child will experience pain, loss, and trauma. She went on to let me know that both her mother and her father in law were adopted and they never experienced anything but joy and happiness to be adopted. She said she understood that there might be some that had a bad experience, but that most do not struggle. She said she is confused why adoptees advocate " their position" and feel the need to share their story. She is also confused to why these adoptive moms assuming these feelings their children might never have. She had a lot more to say about how she skimmed through parts of The Primal Wound and didn't really agree with it.
I wrote back with my opinion and understanding of adoption and trauma. I gave her statistics and research and I spoke from the heart about my own experiences. As I was writing her I couldn't stop thinking about FEAR. What is she afraid of by facing the truth of pain? Why are we so afraid of pain? I told her a story I had heard of a mother trying to shield her child from pain and heartache. What are qualities we would like to see in our children? I'd like my children to be loving and kind. I'd like them to be wise. I want them to be resilient. If everything were easy they might not know how to be so caring. What if the one thing we are trying to help them avoid is the thing that will help them become the people we are praying they become. Maybe my job as a mom isn't to bubble wrap my kid, but to help guide them through the pain. Yes, I wish abandonment wasn't my story, but if it weren't my story I probably wouldn't be the loyal, loving, friend who is instinctively aware of others feelings. My adoption story has hurt like hell at times, but it has also been where I have connected in the most beautiful ways with others who can say the pain in me sees the pain in you and we are beautiful and better together. I think God our Father does this also. He doesn't shield us from the pain, but He uses it to mold us, shape us and help us grow.