ADOPTION AND LESSONS LEARNED
This adoption journey has taught me several things: I did not know I could love someone I had not seen or known as much as I already love this little girl. I don’t know who she is, what she looks like, yet she feels so much a part of me. We refer to her by her name and in less than a month she has gone from a thought in my head to an actual person. Secondly, this process is teaching me patience. I believed I was patient even before, but patience for the system and for something you want so much yet have no control over is a whole different ball game. There are anxious days when I re-read every blog I have already read on the topic, there are moments of uncertainty wondering what if but the next morning I am upbeat again about her.
There has been a few milestones since I last updated on our adoption journey. We successfully completed our homestudy amidst crazy cleaning and reorganizing to make our home child friendly. We got our homestudy report, proof read it a million times. We got registered with CARA India on May 1st. CARA is the adoption authority in India, and now we exist in their system. We are now trying to collect a million notarized documents for our dossier. Dossier, a fancy word for document collection is a mind numbingly strenuous process. The hardest of them being a physical with the doctor. I hate doctors and I try to not see them unless I absolutely need to. This little girl sure is making me see those people more than I like to.
I knew this journey would teach me a lot considering people say a child can change your whole world. But what I didn’t realize was how much I would learn before I even get her. I have never had to deal with “are you dating someone?”, “when are you getting married” questions. Things happened when society deemed was the right time for me, so I was saved from that turmoil. With this adoption process, everyone seems to have an opinion about what I should and shouldn’t do. Here’s an example of the conversation I have with people:
Me: We are adopting a baby
Stranger: Oh, because you have problems and cannot have your own?
Me: No, because we want to. I don’t have any problems
Stranger: That is so nice of you. You are so generous.
This has been the drill irrespective of gender, and age. I initially felt obligated to justify that I could have my own child, but at some point I felt horrible about it. As a woman, I can only imagine the pain one feels in the endless battle of having a child, and I felt I was in some ways cheating on my gender by stating my fertility status. I decided I would not answer it. In reality I wanted to say “none of your business” which in polite language came out as silence. As a young woman, I was not prepared for these questions. I have heard these questions in India a million times, but in America where privacy is so valued, I was surprised at this intrusion.
I have even had someone tell me if I was adopting because of infertility then it is not noble, else I was noble to do it. I don’t want to be perceived noble. I just want to enjoy this process without being bombarded by questions. Irrespective of my fertility status, or the nobility pedestal people put me on, I am just a young woman trying to live the dream I had. If a pregnant woman is not asked why she decided to get pregnant, don’t ask me why I am adopting. It is none of your business!