The first step is to penetrate the clouds of deceit and distortion and learn the truth about the world,
then to organize and act to change it. That's never been impossible and never been easy. ~Noam Chomsky

Monday, March 12, 2012

Can You Feel My Zen?

In March of 2009 I was convinced that we were going to adopt. Specifically a child with special needs or a waiting child. What that looked like, exactly, I wasn't sure of yet, but God was doing in me. Everything looked different after that January trip to Ethiopia and my visit to AHOPE. The world was spinning at a new angle.

Never one to believe that feeling "called" means turning off my God-given brain or making wild assumptions that the easiest or most obvious path must be *the* path, I went into research mode. That month I spent all of my free time researching, reading, emailing, and looking at DVDs of children. I so clearly remember the day I filled in an online order for "more information" from one of those agencies.

I remember March of 2009 distinctly. I secretly purchased a few, very small, things. For a future child. Very small. Nothing of note. No clothes. But a few visual reminders tucked into the back of my office closet. A stuffed animal. I remember opening the closet and looking at him when I needed a reminder that someday, I would be a parent.

This little blog hadn't even been born yet. But I was reading a friend's adoption blog, and her friend's blogs, and her friend's blogs. On our nightly walks around the lake with the dogs, I would feed J tiny bits of information. Tiny tiny bits. He wasn't quite ready yet.

The rest is history. You and I all know the rest. And for posterity it is all recorded on our original blog: (my first post, July 2009, on the old blog.)

Now, here we are, together. You, me, this often neglected blog.
J, Ariam and I.
My utterly fantastic circle of Ethiopian adoption friends who have come to mean the world to me both in person and online.

And that brings me to July of 2011. In July, a week after Ariam's 2nd birthday party, we sat at the playground watching her bravely slide down the biggest twirly slide all by herself. And in a less than 10 minute conversation agreed that we would do it again in a heartbeat. All the pain of searching for Ariam's first mother (a post for another time), all of the heartache of infertility and figuring out what to do about it (nothing), all of the questions about ethics in adoption, all of the time and money. We still wanted to do it again. Because we are selfish like that. Ariam has made us both insanely happy. And we want more. More happiness. More laughter. And we want her to have somebody to grow up with.

I immersed myself back into learning. Learning more about domestic adoption. Continuing the fight to find Ariam's truth/first family in Ethiopia. Asking myself and others hard questions about adoption systems, both in the U.S. and in other countries we were considering.

A couple of months ago we decided that we were ready to move forward. This month, every Wednesday, we have our homestudy visits. We've been fingerprinted. We've started collecting all of those endless pieces of paper that, when put together, tell the story of our lives: medicals, bank statements, taxes, loans, marriage certificate, birth certificates, employment letters, references, psych evaluations, and on and on.

No tears. No hoarding of secret baby clothes or toys. No overreading of blogs. Just a peace that comes with knowing that we did this once and we can do it again. The peace of knowing that we've done our homework, we are prepared, Ariam is ready, and at some point, hopefully in 2012 or 2013, we will be the parents of 2.

But with my relatively new zen attitude has come a new realization that, while I loved to share our journey to Ariam here on this blog, I'm not so sure I can share to the same extent this time around.

It worries me. That he or she will someday read here and believe he/she was less wanted just because mama's learned to reign it in a bit...

Hopefully not though. Hopefully he/she will know that all the same excitement, yearning, and love applies the second time around. It's just a very different process moving from 10 years of aching to be a parent to adopting again while parenting an almost 3 year old!

At some point I will be ready to share about where we are adopting from. And I'm absolutely positive I'll be quoting some good Sara Groves lyrics (because obviously she writes her music to coorespond exactly to my adoption emotions!)  In the meantime, thanks for reading.