Before we even got engaged, Fred and I knew if we married and had kids we would build our family at least partly through adoption. Then one Sunday in church, the newly married us watched a video of orphans in Ukraine and knew we were meant to adopt first, then “have.”
Our twin sons were born in Guatemala to a birth mom whose name and picture we know. Birth father: unknown. We brought Heriberto and José home when they were two and a half. Though we were assured we were “really young” for adoptive parents, we experienced a kind of Tired we had never known before. But, wow, did we love those boys.
Life is not the same. How we see ourselves is not the same. Going out in public with our kids is not the same as it is for bio-parents, or even for parents who adopt children of the same race. We are no longer SOLELY Caucasian Americans. We wouldn’t be good parents to our sons if we insisted on remaining there. We are a “Cauca-tino” family – white parents raising Latino boys. It’s a stretch, but we wouldn’t change a thing because we’ve become more compassionate/aware/pro-active in the process.
And yet, we also bump into standard parenting issues just like every family. So we live in the balance, and so do our kids.
Four years later, we’re in the process of another adoption, this time from El Salvador. Turns out, the “adopt 2, have 2″ thing wasn’t what God had in mind for us. After a year of “trying,” we discovered a low-fertility issue that most likely will mean we will never be biological parents. But the grieving period was relatively short, since we already knew the answer. While fertility treatment is right for many couples, we had a heart for adoption, and the two sons we already had could not be more perfectly matched to us. So we adopt again. Not so much as a Plan B – though we did not expect a Round 2 – as a “this must be why we felt so pulled to adopt to begin with.”
Thanks for being connected to our story.