Friday, November 18, 2011

Adoption Blog Interview Project

Adoption Bloggers Interview Project 2011

Thanks to Production, Not Reproduction many bloggers participated in an adoption blog interview project.

I had the pleasure of meeting the author of Sweet Little Nest. Don and Susan are adopting and are logging their journey to parenthood. Please click here to read about their life together and choice to become adoptive parents.

The following is my interview with Susan from Sweet Little Nest.

1) Do you feel a stronger connection with your parents now that you are pursuing adoption as well? Has this opened up more about why you were adopted or how they came to adopt you?

You know, I didn't really expect that it would give us a stronger connection because we're really close, but it has. I've always loved hearing stories about my adoption, but now I hear them differently. Heather, who blogs at Production, Not Reproduction, recently wrote about the fact that her daughter will likely one day be pregnant and that it will not be something they can share intimately. It got me thinking about it from the reverse perspective. My mom and I will share this special thing and that's pretty neat, I think.

2)I too felt that I was meant to adopt. After all of our personal struggles to arrive to the adoption path, it all seemed to make sense. Has the conclusion that you are going to adopt to build your family given you a sense of peace about your journey in life?

Yes and no. I always thought I'd probably adopt, so the fact that it makes the most sense from a medical perspective confirmed that it was the right journey.

3)What makes you most nervous about the adoption process? What makes you most excited?

I'm most excited to see my husband as a dad. He's my favorite person on earth and I think he's going to be a great dad. He's patient and tolerant and a wonderful teacher. I'm so excited for him that I'm sometimes overcome by it.

I'm nervous about matches that don't go through. I remember when we bought our house and three offers fell through before we bought the fourth house we made an offer on. That was really hard for me and I had a lot less on the line from an emotional standpoint. I'm already reminding myself that the match that is meant to be will be. Our child will find us and we will find him (or her).

4) I wrote an article, Adoptive Parents Are Expecting Too. The essay explains that adoptive parents feel all the same feelings as those awaiting a child through pregnancy. How have people in your life reacted to your expectancy through adoption?

Generally great, though I can't say everyone has had my ideal reaction. There is at least one person I have decided I won't discuss it with because she can't seem to wrap her head around the idea that we're willing to raise a child that's not our own. She cannot understand that our baby will be our own. It's terrible to voice that opinion to anyone adopting, but to say it to someone who is herself adopted is crazy. She'll be supportive of us as parents, and in the meantime I'll just keep her on a need to know basis. It's sad but we have so much other support.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Waiting for Wee

We are currently in month 8 of our wait to bring our son home from S. Korea. I cannot believe how patient I have been up to this point.

Now, however I feel as though I cannot take it anymore.

Wee is now 17 months old. We received pictures 4 weeks ago and were able to see him walking and playing, but it is not enough. I know he had 6 teeth and weighs 23 pounds but I don't know how much he is talking, his disposition, his sleeping schedule, or any other very pertinent details.

It is very difficult to know your child is out there living his life, growing and learning every day but without you.

We know he is loved and well taken care of and that is the only consolation.

Recently I looked at the photo album of when Min came home. What an amazing experience. The pictures at the airport when we returned home show there was not a dry eye in the house- men and women.

I simply cannot wait to hug my little boy and show him to everyone else who loves him and is waiting for him to come home.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Walking from my car through the's parking lot I inevitably turned my head to see the "Expectant Mother" parking sign. The familiar twinge of sadness in my heart ebbed for a few moments while I made my way inside the store.

I am an expectant mother. My baby lives thousands of miles away and not in my belly, but he is our son and we are his parents.

I don't need a special parking space or help picking things up when they fall. There is no need to dote on me and get me pickles and ice cream, but I feel the same way any mother feels who is pregnant. I think of baby Wee every day. I image what he will smell like and look like when he arrives. I hope that he is happy and healthy, although I rest assured that his foster mother is filling his heart with love and teaching him everything she can before he leaves her home.

Throughout my journey to motherhood I have learned a lot of things. I have learned about grief, joy, finding the good in life despite extreme pain. I have learned that I can endure and come out the other side a better person, someone who appreciates the difficulties in life because of the reward that can follow. Motherhood to Min and now baby Wee is unbelievable and remarkably I still marvel at my 4 year old nearly every day. I find myself taking moments while he is singing, jumping on my furniture, eating breakfast, and being silly to stare in awe that this is my child. I have also learned a lot about what parenthood means and what a complete joy and gift it is to raise children.

When do we become expectant mothers? I understand now that it happens long before we decide to try and conceive. It even happens before the marriage. Each woman may not think about having a baby in depth when they are young or beginning to start a life with someone, but motherhood is part of being a woman. There is an expectation of parenthood someday.

I remember playing with dolls, changing their diapers, giving bottles and rocking them in a cradle. I always had tons of names in mind. Like most kids I didn't particularly like my name and always thought I could come up with something better! As I got older thoughts formulated about things I would do with my children. I am a linguist. I knew I wanted to teach my kids Italian and Spanish. They would grow up in the Thousand Islands at our family cottage. Memories were created long before I wanted to become pregnant.

Now that I am a mother and fulfilling those thoughts and dreams I have new hopes for my second child. He will be 18 months when he comes home from Korea. I hope that his transition into a new life will be easy for him. I am so thankful for Min because he will help his little brother become acclimated to all the new sites, smells, and sounds of our home. He will give him affection and talk to him, helping him to learn English. He will be a great big brother.

Expecting our second child through adoption is another surprise in my life that is nothing less than magical. Being an expectant mother for the second time feels the same as waiting for Min but different as well. The wait is longer. There is a different level of difficulty in imagining how he is doing and what he is like. I try not to think too much about how fast he is growing and what we are missing but rather all the time we will have with him.

As an expectant mother I may not need to be helped out of the car or supported when feeling anxious about a pregnancy, but I do need help in the long wait until baby Wee comes home. There are tough days thinking about the remaining five months until we get the call that he is coming. I need help rejoicing in his existence and what life will be like when we all get to hug him and meet him for the very first time.

You can also find this post and many others on Parenthood for Me Blog

*image provided by google images

Monday, June 20, 2011

Perfect Moment Monday

We have a very small kitchen. Beyond one person there are definitely too many cooks in the kitchen. I am always asking Min to go in the living room with his toys when I'm in there cleaning or "cooking" ( I don't cook).

After a long day I was trying to clean up and I had grabbed the broom. Little man went in the back closet and I thought he was screwing around.
I come around the corner and there he was crouched down holding the dust pan for me. Looking up with his big eyes he said, " I help sometimes, Mom."

My heart melted and together we sweeped up the kitchen.

What a darling. It was a moment where I remembered to have more patience and enjoy every moment with Min as he grows from a little boy to an independent young man.

Check out Write Mind Open Heart for more Perfect Moments.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Happy ICLW - Speed Dating

Thank you for visiting my blog! You can also find me at Parenthood for Me.

I am mother to Min who is 4 and awaiting the arrival of our second son, Wee who was born May 10, 2010.

Here is me in 60 seconds or less.

Interests: reading, writing, sewing, decorating

Favorite food: bagels

First car: red VW golf

Educations: BA from University of Delaware in Foreign Language and Literature. I speak Spanish and Italian.

Place I would like to visit: Ireland

Favorite place to visit: My cottage in 1000 Islands

Martial status: Married 7.5 years to AJ

Live: Western NY

Most important in life: family, health, friends

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Happy First Birthday

Today is Baby Wee's first birthday. It is a joyous day for our baby boy as he has reached his first big milestone. In Korean culture the 1st birthday is marked with a big celebration called the Dol. You can read more about the history here.

Before the main part of the celebration, the baby is dressed in very colorful, ornate clothing called dol-bok. The dol-bok that the child wears differs according to the child’s sex. A boy would traditionally wear a pink or striped jogori (jacket) with purple or gray paji (pants), a striped durumagi (long jacket), a blue vest printed with a gold or silver pattern or a striped magoja (jacket), a jonbok (long blue vest) with a gold or silver pattern, a bokgun (black hat with long tail), and tarae-busun (traditional socks). In addition to their dol-bok, boys and girls would wear a long dol-ddi (belt that wraps around the body twice) for longevity and a dol-jumuni (pouch) for luck. The dol-jumuni would be made of fine silk, with a thread to open and close it

The ceremonious part is when the baby picks up various items on the table that attracts him or her. The items that the child picks up are said to predict the child’s future. If a child picks up the bow and arrow, it is said that the child will be strong and a warrior. If the child picks up the thread, the child will have a long life. A child who picks up the pencil, book or calligraphy set is forecast to be a good scholar. A child who picks the rice, rice cakes, or money will become rich. If the ruler, pair of scissors or needle is chosen, it is said that the child will be dexterous. If the child chooses the knife, they will become a good chef.

While it is a wonderful day for baby Wee, I find myself feeling quite sad. We have had few updates since being matched, and it is very difficult not knowing what his daily life is like. I am confident that he is happy and healthy and thriving. I do not have anxiety about that which is a huge relief. He is loved and being well taken care of.

I just want to see more pictures. I want to hear if he is walking and getting into mischief. Does he laugh, eat well, have favorite toys?

This adoption feels much different than Min's. The wait time for his arrival was much quicker so it felt more appropriate to plan the nursery, buy clothes, and toys in anticipation of "the call." That wonderful moment when we received the called to make plan reservations because Min was coming home. I find myself holding back on preparations because of the remaining seven months before his arrival.

We talk about him nearly every day with Min. He understands as much as a 4 year old can.

"Mom, baby Wee is going to play with my toys? Baby Wee is going to wear my clothes?"

"Yes, he will wear all the clothes that you have gotten to big to wear."

Min wore a 'I'm a Big Brother' t-shirt to school last week. I absolutely cannot wait until Wee is wearing is 'I'm a Little Brother' t-shirt right along side Min. That image makes me smile and gives me patience that the next seven months will pass quickly, and our family of 4 will be together.

When we were matched on February 14, we put together a photo album of our family so Wee's foster mother could show him our pictures. This is a common practice to help the child become familiar with his forever family. I hope she shows him our pictures today and tells him we love him and miss him on this very special day.

Today we will release some balloons for baby Wee. Sending a sign of love that we are thinking of him from so many thousands of miles away.

Happy birthday, baby boy. I know you will be smiling and celebrating in your home in Korea.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Rainboots and Earthworms

It has been raining buckets around here. We have broken the all time record for rainfall in Rochester. Doomy and gloomy is an understatement. It is fair to say that our motto surely is "April showers bring May flowers."
After a very long winter April brings the hope that spring really is here by giving us a few warm (70 or above) days with blue skies. However, every year it is the same. April is an illusion to spring and we sometimes receive snow and frost still covers the ground some mornings.

Now that Min is growing up he is running around in the yard at his will and one of his new favorite discoveries is worms. I will admit that worms don't bother me. Do I love handling then? No. But I don't mind. Min sloshes around in our soggy yard in his camo rain boots. The other day he had on camo pants and his camo raincoat as well. I could still hear him though!

"Mom, come look at my worms. Worms are my friends."

He wanted to bring them inside. Then he wished to bring them to school to show his teachers. It's great to see his enthusiasm. Especially for living things.

When I look back at each summer Min has been home, the progression is amazing. He is a little boy now. He can climb up the steps to his play tower and slide down the slide without me worrying. He gets on the trampoline all by himself, jumps for a couple of minutes, and then juts off to another adventure.

We have 3 swings on our play set. One of them is a baby swing that Min grew out of last summer. He asks me, "Mom, baby Wee is going to swing in this swing?" (melt)

I am enjoying my little boy and his new adventures. I am also looking forward to having a baby again to splash in the kiddie pool, push in the swing, and take on stroller rides. The wait is long but I keep my spirits up by enjoying each moment with my growing little boy.