Since we committed to Pasha for adoption in May 2015 I have met many, many people. Some I have met face to face and others just through Facebook contact. Since our commitment I have learned from each of these people. Some were already in the adoption community and some came along afterward. Some do not grasp the concept of adoption, specifically special needs adoption.
I've bumped into folks who say things like, "Why are you adopting outside your own country?", "Why are you adopting a broken child?", "Why are you taking on someone else's burden?", "why would you do that to your children?", "How can you afford to adopt?" Each time I hear one of these questions and countless others, I'm never sure how to answer. I try to keep in mind that many people have never really been educated about adoption let alone special needs adoption. When I was younger my vision of an adoption was two parents adopting a small, perfectly healthy, blue eyed baby. It's what you see in the movies, right? It is in reality so much more then that.
Adoption is long nights completing paperwork. It is months of crunching finances, saving nickels and painting on canvases that will hopefully sell even though there is not a touch of artistic talent in your DNA. It is time spent away from the children and husband you have at home because you are so desperately trying to figure out any way you can to make a little extra cash to go towards all the cost associated with your adoption fees. It is a year long (or more) roller coaster of emotion accompanied with thoughts like, "can I really do this?" and "how do we get the rest of the money?" Adoption is not knowing if your child is ill or if they are upset. You wonder about their safety when you know their country is currently at war. It is hard, it is exhausting, it's heartbreaking.
When I am asked those questions I can only answer for myself. I think so people have the idea that when you have adopted children you can suddenly speak for all adoptive parents. Truth is.... that just isn't true. Adoption is like pregnancy. No two are alike, they can not be compared to one another and no two children are the same. I do feel comfortable saying all orphans have experience some type of trauma in their lives. Birth parents have their reasons for leaving their children to be adopted. Some are pretty noble in my opinion even though they are said and should never be forced to make a decision so large. When I am asked these questions my answers are pretty steadfast. We adopted because we felt drawn to our son, not based on where he was. We did not adopt within the US because we felt God put us on a path to Pasha. Simple. There were times when I felt I could not take another step forward. I was so tired from everything. Was I doing the wrong to my family? I think everyone has moments of doubt- it is natural.
Special needs adoption was not something I knew of either. I basically stumbled up an organization called Reece's Rainbow. Their mission is to find homes for children in countries all over the world and those children have special needs that range from Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, hearing impairment, Celiac Disease and so forth. These children are blessing in so many ways. Some of them have never known simple things like hugs in the morning, kisses at bedtime and they never will. The adoption of these children is essential. These children need families to thrive in. I don't know any other way to put it and it is because of organizations like Reece's Rainbow that it is even possible.