I had never heard of National Adoption Month until we began the adoption process. Naturally, as an adoptive parent, I wish that I could do some big, wondrous thing for National Adoption Month, but the best thing I can come up with is to show others how happy adoption has made us.
I do want to reiterate that not being able to conceive a child biologically is not the only reason that people adopt. That is not the reason we adopted. No matter how many times we tell people that, it still seems to be what people think. I can't tell you how many times we have heard how funny it would be if we got pregnant as soon as we adopted. (No hard feelings if you were one of those people!) Well, it wouldn't be funny. Not because God would be pulling one over on us, but because children, no matter how you get them, are a blessing from the Lord. We wanted our child and we knew God was telling us that our first child was in China. So we tried NOT to get pregnant. We wanted an adopted child, so we tried not to get pregnant. Having an adopted child was not our second choice. It was not our only option. It was the option we CHOSE, because we felt that's what God wanted for our family, therefore, the option we wanted for our family. Will should never feel that he's here because we couldn't have a biological child, that we would rather have someone else, but we settled for him. He was our FIRST choice.
We also plan to do it again. Biological children are a "maybe" for us. But we DEFINITELY want to adopt again.
Another thing I would like to educate people about is the phrase "a child of your own." I understand that most people use this phrase out of ignorance, meaning no harm. I've even had this conversation with my own family. The truth is, asking if someone plans to have a child "of their own" or asking if they couldn't have a child "of their own" insinuates that the adopted child is not their own. The politically correct term is "biological child." The truth of the matter is, even when said by a well meaning party, the phrase "of your own" hurts.
Will is "my own." I've prayed for Will every day since before he was conceived. I've shed many a
tear for him and spent many a penny to ensure his well being. When he's bleeding, I clean him up. When he's crying, I kiss away his tears. I dress him, bathe him, eat after him (and I'm a germ freak!) and play with him. I'm with him 24/7 most weeks. I take pictures and scrapbook all his important moments. I mourn for the time I didn't get to spend with him during his first few months on this earth. I sing to him and read to him and love him more than I love myself. He has my love of peanut butter and dancing, my optimism, my wild hair that sticks up all over his head when he first wakes up, my love of kisses. He has his father's natural inclination for guitar and all other instruments, love of books and bread, ability to take things apart and put them back together, and heart for sharing. He has his aunts love for talking. He has his grandmother's love of quilts. He has his grandfather's knack for cleanliness sense of humor. He has his uncle and his grandfather's name. He is definitely "our own."
Everyone isn't called to adopt. But God does ask everyone to care for the orphans. And adoption is VERY expensive to a common person. Yes, there are grants and fundraisers, etc, etc. But we only got one. And yes, we applied for many. So if your heart is moved by National Adoption Month and you aren't planning on adopting, consider making a donation towards someone's adoption(http://www.heartsforadoption.org) or giving to a charity that helps orphans who need surgery. If it weren't for such a charity, our Will may not have had the VSD surgery he needed when he was a baby.
Thank you for allowing me to indulge. Adoption is a wonderful thing. Will is a wonderful child. We are very blessed. We hope that, in some way, you are blessed by adoption as well.