Monday, July 2, 2012

Well hello! Been a long time ...

Silly day spent with my niece, what a great afternoon!

Yes, it is me. I am back, from a long overdue break from everything normal in my life. Much needed family time took over the schedules, the writing, the volunteering. It all became too much and my husband and I needed to step back, take a deep breath and enjoy what we have as a family. The life that we created needed to be lived, to be enjoyed. So I guess I am asking that you forgive the absence and know that I have a LOT of things to discuss in the weeks to come.
My beloved hometown, St. Louis Missouri
Before I get to that, I neglected to post the most recent article that was published in Adoption Voices Magazine. My friend Jane chose this piece and I think there is some pondering that could happen as a result of reading it. The topic has to do with a question I was asked, and the hospital stay for a birth mother.

Feel free to comment, I know that the last goodbye can be so difficult for mothers.

Facing the Fear: The Long Goodbye at the Hospital Courtesy of Adoption Voices Magazine.


Julia - Finding My Way Softly said...

(I wasn't sure if I should post a response, but after re-reading the article, I think that there is one thing that might have been missing, that could be important for at least some birth and adoptive parents.)

Talk about the name of the baby. It can be very important for the birth mother to feel like she has some input, even if it is just hearing the name that has been chosen by the adoptive parents, and be able to spend the rest of her pregnancy thinking of her baby that way.

One of my nieces was named after her birth father's grandmother, her birth mother's favorite aunt, her adoptive father’s great-aunt, and her adopted mother's mother. They all shared the same name, and during the discussion about names, between the birth and adoptive parents, they decided that they wanted her to have a first name that had shared history for all of them. This allowed all four of the parents to feel closer, and like they were all on the same team, their child’s team..

I still regularly talk to my niece's birth mom, and she said that even though the "shared name" was not the one that she would have chosen if she was taking her daughter home, that it felt right to her that she would grow up with a name that meant something to all of the parents that were part of creating, and then raising, her daughter.

I know that her first name was not the first choice for my sister. I had a daughter with that name who was about 3 years old, we had a sister with that name, and my mother has it also. All of them have chosen a different form of the name as their "nickname," but it also brings all of them together. At every family reunion there is a picture with my mother, sister and both grandchildren who share the same name. The fact that one of those four does not share a biological connection means nothing to anyone in the picture, or the rest of the family who loves all of them.

I know that not every adoption is open enough to have the birth and adoptive parents able to make mutual decisions about names, but for all of the children that were adopted by my siblings, they asked for input from the birth parents. The birth mother that I have the most contact with has told me that when she knew that they had all agreed to her daughter's name, that she found a lot of peace.
She could think of her by that name. She knew that the name she was holding in her heart was the name that would be her daughter’s, for her entire life. She knew that adoption would not change her name. She knew that as she spent time in the hospital with her little girl, the birth father, the adoptive parents, and all of the extended birth families, that they all would share their love for this little girl, who carried a name that was an hourly reminder of how strong the cords were that bound all of those who loved her - every time they said, thought or prayed her name.