As the month of March ends, I look ahead to April, the month of Liam's birthday.  He will be 5 this year, the age where I really see him growing up.  No longer a baby, nor a toddler.  Not even a preschooler anymore.  A bonafide child.

He has been acting older lately.  He's given up his afternoon nap.  He enjoys reading books in bed before falling asleep for the night.  He is proving to be quite the helper around the house.  His conversations have more meaning to them.

One day last week, he had been overly sensitive and emotional throughout the day.  After I put his brothers down for a nap, I sat down beside him and began a conversation.

Me:  Are you sad?

Liam:  Yes.

M:  Can you tell me about it?

L:  I'm just sad.

M:  Do you ever think about your birth mom?  (thinking that he is at the age to begin to explore his adoption story at a deeper level)

L:  Yes.

M:  What do you think about when you think about her?

L:  (crawling into my lap)  I miss her.

M: (swallowing a huge lump in my throat)  Oh baby, I'm sorry you miss her.  I'm sure she misses you, too.  She loves you.  You know, if you ever want to talk about her, you can ask Mommy and Daddy questions.  We love you and want to help you understand your adoption as a story of love.  Do you need to ask me a question?

L:  Uh-huh.  Can I make her a card?

M:  Sure, baby.

We gathered the materials he needed, and he set to work.  He wanted help spelling her name for the front cover, and he added his name nearby.  He drew a picture of a hospital with birds, trees, and clouds.  He said that it was a picture of the day he was born.

As I watched my eldest, my little Peanut, make this card for his birth mom, I watched my baby mature in a very special way.  He's beginning to put into words and art his emotions for this woman that gave him life.  He probably doesn't truly remember her, as she let the adoption agency take him from the hospital upon her release.  But he knows that somewhere out there is a woman who carried him in her belly and chose us to parent him.

I have been reading Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew by Sherrie Eldridge over the past week or so.  Honestly, it's the hardest thing I've ever read, because it makes me dig deeper than the love behind my boys' adoption stories.  It is a book written by an adoptee who has counseled many other adoptees, and she encourages adoptive parents to allow their adopted children to grieve the loss of their birth families.  She stresses that the grief over this very real loss can take place in babies, children, teens, and adults.  And the more we are able to help our adopted children face their grief, the healthier we will all be.

Going into the adoption process over 5 years ago, I knew the day would come for my children to face this loss.  And I knew it would hurt them and me.  But I wasn't fully prepared for the pain that would pierce my heart.  

I am not hurt because he wants to jump in the car and hand deliver this card to his birth mom.  I'm not hurt because I have to share his heart with her.  

I hurt because I don't want to see my baby suffer.  I don't want to see him hurt over his adoption.  I want him to see his adoption for the sacrifice and love that it is.  But it is not realistic to expect him to accept his adopton in that manner and to never grieve the fact that he was separated from his flesh and blood at four days of age.

He has to face his grief.  That stinks.  I have to help him face his grief instead of stuffing it under the pillow.  That stinks.  

But I will do it, because I love this child with every ounce of my being.

Would I do it all over again, knowing the pain that we have felt this past week?  100% yes!  He was destined to be my boy, and I will love him until the day I die.  As long as I have breath, I will strive to help him be a whole boy/man.  

Dear God, please help my child. Please help him to fully deal with his loss and to be a whole person as a result.  Equip me where I have no clue what to say or do.  Where I fail him, fill those voids with your grace.  Amen.

1 comment:

Christie@tisbutaseason said...

Oh Ami! You'll do just fine. You know your son better than anyone and you'll be able to guide him and comfort him. I know this because I know what an awesome God we serve! HE will guide and comfort you!

peace & blessings on this journey!