Our daughter is THREE. A friend on FB tells me to write down the words, because moms get so busy momming, they forget, and then – blink – your kid is 45, pushing your wheelchair through the crowd at your granddaughter’s junior high graduation.
So here are some of the words – full sentences now because she is THREE, but with spelling faithful to the pronunciation.
“These binocleears are for watching birds with Granny.”
“NOOOOO!! I can do it MYself.” [forty-five times a day]
“I can’t eat yogurt from this, Mom. I said I need the green bowl. Not the pink bowl. The green bowl. [pause for emphasis] This bowl is pink. I said the GREEN bowl, Mom.” [In my defense: I’m not color blind or deaf. The green bowl was dirty.]
“Only kids can use this water [in the birdbath] for painting this [the iron railing on the porch stoop]. Grown-ups don’t know how to do this. Only kids know how, Mom. Only kids. Not you, Mom.”
“You can’t drive until I’m done with the buckle, Mom. STOP DRIVING! I have to figure this out.” [she unbuckled her car seat to ‘fix’ it]
“Get away from me.”
“I want to have you.”
And there, my friends, are some of the words. Lord knows I have enough angst within me I could analyze them. I could talk about how broken the adoption industry remains, count the annoying comments from strangers, express the disappointment that our agency – ours, the one we like so very much – still can’t grok the way we built our family…but it’s late and I’m tired and just want to rest in being grateful.
But please do remember this: families are built in lots of different ways and until birth family has the same power as adoptive family, authentic “mutual regard” is pretty impossible. It’s like trying to tell the truth to your boss: sure, you might think you have a great relationship, but your boss can fire you. So really how honest can you be? Don’t forget that please, adoptive parents, k?
And in the meantime, “I want to have you,” so drop me a note and tell me what parenting (grand or otherwise) is like in your orbit.