We recently went on vacation and I of course went and got my nails done before we left. I have been to this particular salon before and liked it. I was having a nice conversation with the woman who was doing my nails and then she asked, “Do you just have one daughter?” My response,”Yes” and then she asks “Are you going to have more kids?” A few things went through my head before responding. Do I tell her that yes we do and that we are adopting and expecting a baby in October. I don’t get asked this question much by people I hardly know. So I told her. I thought just because you can’t see a baby growing in my belly that doesn’t mean that I can’t share that I am an expectant mom and that we are excited. She says “Your daughter is adopted?” Again my response “Yes” and then…chirp, chirp. I wish I could que in some awkward silence music. Because she said nothing to me after that, seriously I am not kidding it was like I had the plaque.
I have thought about this now for a couple weeks and wanted to share a few thoughts.
First: To the Adoptive Parent
If you didn’t already know awkward, rude, uninformed people are all around and when things like adoption get brought up it seems like all of those traits become exaggerated 🙁 There will always be people that don’t understand or know what to say and that’s ok. Don’t let their issues, opinions and lack of excitement for what you are going through affect your journey and your excitement. Share as much as you feel comfortable with. Celebrate the journey you are on and embrace that new life that God destined for you to raise up, nurture, steward and love forever. That is beautiful, holy and exciting. It’s worth sharing!
To the “Adoptive Mom” I hate saying that because like the quote says I am a mom I don’t need any other prefix. But unfortunately that’s not always the case. We aren’t giving birth to our children so that means we don’t have a big pregnant belly telling everyone we are adding to our family and we are excited about it. So when having more kids does come up we make the choice to announce it. Then make the choice not to let unpleasant reactions effect us.
Second: To those curious and asking
I am not mad at this woman who had such a strange reaction to my news that I am adopting for the second time. I don’t know her story. She may have had a bad experience with adoption, I hope not but I have no idea. I did wonder though that if I was 6 months along and showing if she would of treated me the same way. I’m not dwelling on this I promise just opening up and trying to take in every part of this journey but that thought made me sad. If someone you know is adopting and going through the process and you don’t know what to do here’s a few pointers for you.
Encourage, celebrate, repeat. Even just a simple congratulations is perfect. There are a few things as an adoptive mom I feel insecure about and one of them is my inability to carry my baby’s myself so to say to me/us “I am happy for you” or “Congratulations” that validates and shows that Adoption and what we are doing is worth being noticed and it matters. Sometimes I hold back my tears when I am with a group of other moms and they start sharing their birth stories. I don’t have a physical birth story and sometimes not all the time I feel like less of a mom because of it. I get sad about it but then at the same time I celebrate and am so thankful God has us on this particular road to parenthood. It’s complex, frustrating and really difficult sometimes but I can honestly say I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Sometimes just asking yourself would I want this to be said to me? Fill in the blank with whatever it is. When we announced we were going to adopt the first time we had some doosies thrown our way. Matt and I were able to shrug them off and move on. That’s the beauty of following God’s plan for your life. All the nonsense and insensitive things people will say to you don’t bother you like they may have in the past. What God wants for you is so much bigger and better than the silly opinions of others.
Apparently a lot of deep thinking and revelation can come from one visit to the nail salon for me ha. But seriously we are not called to make people comfortable or to live comfortable lives ourselves. So I won’t stop being excited for our adoption or our previous adoption. I will continue to share and celebrate this amazing journey we are on.
If you are adopting, thinking about adoption or you know someone who is adopting and you don’t know what to say to them. Please message me I would love to answer any questions you have, pray with you and for you or give you some ideas on how to encourage your adopting friends.
So much love!