Monday, November 15, 2010

The reality of how I see it (National Adoption Awareness Month)

I was in line at the local grocery store.  Two women behind us were just commenting about Tigger and how cute she is...I smile and agree because well ya know, she is cute.  The great thing about where we live is that people will automatically assume a child is yours biologically and they also know when your child is biracial.  It's nothing sinister, it's just where I live, most people are in interracial or intercultural marriages so we're an interesting town.  Well these ladies were interested in my Tigger because the lady has a grandson that resembles her and then started talking to me about biracial children and how gorgeous they are.  I nod and agree...again, I'm slightly biased. 

Then they ask the question "was she very light skinned when she was born?"  To which I answered 'yes' and didn't elaborate.  First of all, I'd seen a newborn picture so I wasn't lying, second of all these are strangers so they don't automatically need to know that we are an adoptive family, and third I don't use the word "adopted" as an adjective in front of the noun child (or daughter)....Tigger is my daughter period.  Do we have other complexities that she and I will deal with in the future?  YES.  Do we look the same?  (well ironically we do look similar in some ways) that's debatable, Do we love each other?  YES.  Do I need to qualify the fact that she was adopted to everyone we meet?  um NO...

Yes this is adoption awareness month, yes I'm more than happy to blog about my journey, but the truth of the matter is that she's my daughter and that's all one needs to know.  A person asked me when did I have a kid...I answered and said it happened last year....another  person that  just happened to know my situation quickly made a point to say that I was lying because I didn't "have" her....I rolled my eyes and pleaded "semantics"...who cares?  Maybe they were trying to spare me from whispers of "that loose woman"...I don't care...if a stranger wants to brand me with "slut"  well let's just say I've made peace with that a long time ago. 

In adoption awareness...there are different types of awareness for different people and their perspectives...birthmothers, adoptees, and adoptive parents.  My point for me in my view as an adoptive parent is that being aware means that you know that don't treat my child as a second class citizen.  Be prepared to get slapped if you even insinuate that Tigger isn't "real", "my own", or ask when I'm going to "have my own".  Don't go there.  Ever.  Tigger was my FIRST choice and foster/adopt was my FIRST choice. 

If you read this blog and aren't quite sure about what is real and what is a myth when it comes to adoption...I encourage you to research and search out what is true and what is not.

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