Monday, August 27, 2012

The Adoption Affect

Nic and I live in a small community and with that comes an invisible network of information flow that seems to travel far and wide.  Because of this network we run into allot of people we barely know who are aware of our daughters adoption.  We have been very open about our adoption and for the most part people are happy to meet her and ask few questions.  The odd time though we do run into people who are genuinely interested in our adoption journey.  Last week I ran into two of these people and both conversations were truly moving.

The first was a man who I see yearly for some advertising.  He always comes by the house and we have a short chat.  This visit he shared that he and his wife could not have children and did think about adoption but in the end decided to not pursue it.  They billet young boys trying out for the local hockey team and have for over 20 years.  He said he has found that has fulfilled their parenting cravings but hearing our adoption story moved him to tears.  I could literally see him reflecting on his own life and falling in love with Gabriella before my eyes.  Amazing!

My second encounter was with an adult adoptee who is a close friend of Nic's Aunt.  She had been following our adoption journey through Nic's Aunt and was overjoyed to meet Gaby and hear how things were developing.  She was originally in a closed adoption but ended up finding her birth mother and father and spending time with both of them.  She loved hearing about our openness journey and the relationship we have with Gaby's birth family.  She went on and on about how beautiful our daughter was and how lucky we were to have her.

It is this type of conversation that makes me happy Nic and I have been so open about Gaby's adoption.  Before we adopted I heard horror stories about rude people asking inappropriate questions and making adoptive parents and children feel uncomfortable or emotionally attacked.  At first these stories made me nervous and I wanted to try to keep as much as we could to ourselves.  We still do keep some things confidential that we feel are part of Gabriella's story that she can choose to talk about or not in the future if she wants.  But for the most part we are open and try to teach people about adoption whenever we get the chance.  I am happy that we made this choice because so many of these people's stories and comments have literally changed my life.  There are so many people who have been touched by infertility or adoption that I think are encouraged to open up about their experience when they hear ours.

Our baby is so precious to us and we can't even think what we would do without her.  Maybe it is the emotion people see when we talk about her and her birth family, or just the fact that she is so darn cute but I think that she has changed the way allot of people view adoption, especially open adoption.  The sharing of information continues to teach us about life and parenting no matter if it is negative or positive.  My heart grows with each positive encounter and I hope it never stops!

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