November is National Adoption Awareness Month and I am so proud to finally be able to share our adoption story with others. If we inspire even one more family to adopt, we have done something amazing. If this A to Z journey helps another family not feel alone, then that’s pretty extraordinary too.
Families across social are sharing their story daily this month. If you are considering adoption, then finding inspiration through these stories is the best advice I can start with today.
This picture was taken about two minutes after the boys met in Colombia.
Our oldest was five when he told me on Mother’s Day that he wanted to “blow out a candle to make a wish for mama”. When I asked what it was, he said he wanted to wish for a “baby for mama’s belly because mama loves babies”. My brother had just announced his pregnancy, and while I was ecstatic for them, I cried on the way home. My husband knew why, but I didn’t realize our little guy was paying attention. I was shocked to tears. Kids really are amazingly perceptive. We told him mama couldn’t put another special baby in her belly.
“Not even the scientists can put one in your belly, like with me, mama”?
Sadly, no. L has always known that he was born from “prayers, miracles, and science”. We have a framed image of our embryos and IVF process hanging on the wall. But not until that day did he understand that he will always be the only baby to come from mommy’s belly.
We blew out a candle on his breakfast toast, and he wished for a little brother. We were already in the midst of adoption paperwork (for the second time).
While we didn’t think it was time to explain infertility, we did explain what adoption is. We spent days talking about why a mommy would ever leave her baby to someone else, explaining that it wasn’t out of lack of love, but usually a necessity. Our then five-year-old was now a part of the waiting process that is adoption. Whenever someone had a baby brother or sister at school, he would announce that we were waiting too. Most of the time however, he would forget about it.
The day we got our placement news, he was on Skype with us and seemed excited. He was relieved he got a brother (not a sister!) and knew that he would go meet him in Colombia alongside us.
Now eight, his four-year-old brother isn’t everything he hoped for, at least not yet! They don’t share in any of the same tastes (they couldn’t be more different) and although B is four, his development delays really make him closer to a two-year-old. It’s only been three months. They aren’t bonding. B tries hard to get his brother to pay attention to him and hug him. Big brother just isn’t ready. I am stressed and worried about both of them. We are talking to a family therapist. She will tell me over and over again that I have to be patient. We use the tools she gives us to teach the kids to be with each other and cope. But they don’t always work.
Adoption means having faith, love and most of all patience.
I have faith that time will bring them the connection my husband and I both share with our own siblings. They are our best friends. But the one thing adoptive families learn is that only time, love, and patience builds a family. And God willing, we have a lifetime of bonds to build with, and for, our boys.
I will be publishing our adoption “A to Z” stories throughout the month, follow me on Instagram to follow shorter versions of them in real-time. If you have any questions about our adoption or adoption experience, feel free to reach out to me anytime.