I was in my office with Roseline in my lap. We were savoring the last few moments of quiet before the rest of the kids arrived home from school and serenity dissolved into mayhem. Ro and I were chatting, playing and trading hugs and kisses; just enjoying each other’s company. I leaned back in my chair and propped my feet on the desk. She leaned against my chest and propped her feet on the desk too, careful to cross them at the ankles just like mine.
“Hey,” I said. “I have some new music. Do you want to hear it?”
“Yes, Mommy! Me hear music,” she replied.
I leaned over and pushed the disk into the player and selected track number 15. India Arie’s soulful voice filled the room as Roseline began nodding her head in time to the music.
I choose…to be the best that I can be!
I choose…to be authentic in everything!
I choose…my past don’t dictate who I am!
‘Cause you never know where life is gonna take ya and you can’t change where you’ve been…
Roseline listened intently, watching my lips as I sang. Pretty soon, she was singing along. We danced and danced there in that chair until we could remain seated no longer. When the song was over, we began it again. I removed Ro’s socks so she would not fall and stood her on the desk so we could dance together. That did not last long because she jumped in my arms and we began dancing around the room.
I choose….my past don’t dictate who I am…..
We played the song over and over. We danced and we danced. It was tremendous fun but oh, so much more.
It was an inoculation against despair.
There is so much negativity in the world surrounding adoption and it is true that every adoption begins with the trauma of tremendous loss. I recently read a blog by an adult adoptee that was filled with angst and fury. At one point, she said that “adoption is never the best option.” I know what she means. In a perfect world, all would follow the original plan: one man, one woman, one family, one lifetime.
But this world is a fallen, broken place. It is far, far from perfect and the reasons for relinquishment are as diverse as the mothers who face that difficult, rending, and painful choice.
There are also countries in this world that are plauged by disease, poverty and famine where mothers’ and fathers’ lives are cut short.
Children die too. So many, many children.
And in a world like that….adoption is a gift.
I am not saying that once a child comes home there are no issues. The are issues, many of them formidable. The adoptive parent must face those issues realistically and offer their child compassionate support and resources. Most of all, they must offer them the gift of their own belief that the child can overcome. I refuse, refuse to believe all hope is lost because of what my daughters have suffered or because of the scars they continue to carry.
I choose to pray. I choose to encourage. I choose to speak life into them.
I choose to hope.
“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”