a conversation with Kate

I have thought about the similarities in Solomon’s first test of rulership as the king of Israel and how it so completely relates to adoption many times and have wanted to talk about it, so I’m finally doing so.

Earlier today, my friend and fellow first mother, Kate Dahlquist, posted Claudia’s recent article on open adoptions gone wrong, and I (Carol Sherman, wink, wink, Kate) decided to chime in.

Here is Claudia’s article:

A Typical “Open” Adoption

Promises of Contact Broken Reveal Intentional Lies
A Guest Post by Amy Payne-Hanley

Amy-and-K-before-the-adoption-closed

And this is what Kate said when she posted Claudia’s article on her facebook:

Kate Dahlquist’s postscript to the article: “This is a guest post by my friend, Amy, on my friend Claudia’s blog.  Both of these women are amazing ladies who I consider to be my sisters.  Amy’s story is very parallel to what I have experienced – especially the last part where the APs interfere with attempts to reconnect and threaten the adoptee – which is one of the cruelest and most heartless things an AP can do, IMO.  And BELIEVE me, we worry terribly about how this effects our children.  Our stories are NOT uncommon.  We were promised that they wouldn’t be like this.”


And here is how the conversation went:

Carol Sherman – I’ve been wanting to do a piece about Solomon, the 3rd king of Israel’s, first challenge because it applies very much to adoption.  2 women, harlots, the Bible calls them, had babies at around the same time.  One woman’s baby died, so she stole the other woman’s then a flight arose between the 2 over the baby.  They took it all the way to the king.  The king ordered that the baby be cut in half and one half given to one, another half given to the other.  With the woman who stole the baby, that was fine, as long as she could have the baby.  The REAL mother said, “No. It’s okay.  Let her have the baby.”  She’d rather someone else have the baby than see him/her come to harm.  The wisdom of Solomon is that a real mother would only care, in the end, about the true well-being of the child.  Parents who can close a promised adoption are just like that harlot who was perfectly satisfied to see the baby she stole cut in half – IMO, of course.

Kate Dahlquist – I totally agree.  I’ve often thought the same.

Carol – In fact, it begs the question about adoption that is not of a truly orphaned, truly abandoned child who is already born and has no one.  It begs the question: anyone who could, in all good conscience, take a child from his/her mother, especially so soon after birth, should our ways and laws follow the wisdom of Solomon?  That is the question I ask of this current world.

Carol (on a roll, here) – I too dream of the day when we look back at the horror of it as appalled as we (finally) did with slavery in this country and the subsequent inequality in the treatment of those who were freed.  But, then, we “Europeans” are still negotiating with our past when it comes to the treatment of Native Americans…we’re still too busy enjoying their resources to fully concede to that horror…so, there you have it.  It could go either way.  And it really depends on us, perhaps.

Kate – Preach it, Sister!!!

Carol – 😀

I’m laughed there because it’s either laugh or cry.  Where, oh, where has the wisdom of Solomon gone???

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an adoptee’s story

I’d like to introduce you to my friend, Nancy.  She was adopted as an infant, and her adoptive parents have been supportive of her search for her biological family.  She has met her birth mother in person a few times as well as other key members of her first mother’s family and has obtained some limited information about her biological father as well but has not yet met him.

Carol has asked  me to share my adoption story, any aspect I wish, but to me there is no way to share just an aspect of it.  My adoption permeates my whole life.  It is something that is so deeply a part of me that I forget about it until something brings it up: a doctor’s appointment asking for family medical history, talking about family, a friend’s pregnancy, a compliment; all of it reminds me that I am adopted, that I don’t just have one family; I have three.  I have the family I was raised with and I am just now beginning to examine critically; I have the family that I have just met, and I am discovering what a genetic connection truly is; and I have the family I have yet to find but spend hours wondering what innate gifts they gave me. 

I am the product of a loving relationship that did not last.  I am the child of two people who are celebrating their 36th year together.  I am a woman struggling to grasp what it means to be an adoptee.

You would think having a title since birth would mean knowing exactly what that entails; however, the dynamics of that title are constantly changing.  As a young child, it meant I was special, I was chosen.  As a young adolescent, it meant I had been rejected, that I wasn’t good enough to be kept.  As a young adult, it has meant battling the false ideas I have ingrained in myself.  I fight against my need to be grateful and apologetic for merely existing.  I struggle to accept the love my maternal family has always held for me.  I fight my urge to demand answers and instead let the process of learning be slow.

Being an adoptee is a struggle and an unchangeable fact.  I will always be an adoptee but my hope is it will not be a fight.