Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Why Our Adoption is Like Chocolate Mousse
Imagine, if you will, that you woke up this morning craving dessert.
Not just any dessert, but a very specific flavor and texture sensation. You spent the day feeling the urge for this perfect dessert, trying to put your finger (and taste buds) on exactly what it was that would fill that aching. Not the lunch you packed, the candy in the vending machines or the doughnuts in the break room are going to even begin to touch the yearning of your tongue.
Finally the work day is over, you've had a nourishing dinner and decide to venture out to The Dessert Place. As you stand contemplating the dizzying array of options, your eyes fall on a single beautiful cup of chocolate mousse. Every cell in your body cries out "THAT"S IT!" In that very moment, the server behind the counter takes that last, single cup of glorious mousse from the case and places it into the hands of another customer.
What more is there to do but go home, go to bed and wait for whatever the new day brings.
Two months ago, in the opportunity to be presented for a sibling group of 3 (4, 2, and 6 months), I saw my chocolate mousse. The perfect combination of children needing a home to fulfill the dream image of family that I have been holding all these years from a situation that appeared about as healthy, clean and clear as one could get in adoption. I love the idea of the stair-step children (10, 7, 4, 2, and a baby seems perfect). I love the idea of 5 kids. I love the distribution of boys and girls. I love the balance of color this little band would bring to our family. I love that they had and would always have each other.
Open-eyed, honest evaluation of the reality of bringing three children under the age of 5 into our family all at once clearly showed that the only person currently in our home this would be great for was me. Everyone else would struggle - and they'd get through it - but it would be super chaos and hard for everyone, maybe tearing us apart for years to come. And because I love and value my current relationships with my husband and two amazing beautiful children so much, we chose not to be presented for this darling band of siblings.
In that moment, I saw that while there were many ways we could bring more children into our life, that dream I held for the family I wanted is no longer possible. I saw the reality that with this little group of 3 we could have a full family and be "done" at the same time, able to plan what's next with as much certainty as one ever can. I realized how much I don't want to start over with a whole new set of babies when the two I already have are now at this age of freedom where we can travel and explore and talk and experience the world together.
So I'm done. Bill and I have decided to wrap up this phase of our life and put the dream of more children and a big family to rest. In a huge jumble of mixed feelings I am happy, sad, elated, relieved, excited and disappointed all at the same time. Sometimes I ache for the large family I now know I will never have and sometimes I can hardly stand the excitement of seeing what's next for both me and our now complete little family.