Now that I'm home I have a thousand good come backs, of course. "What? You did not just seriously say that! Who do you think is currently providing for her? Her fake family? Well, where are those people when she has a stinky diaper or is screaming for no good reason? Where are they when she needs to be held and snuggled all day? Tell them I want some child support!"
I get that we are not a "typical" family and that people have questions. I generally overlook the questions and try to understand that people are curious. It's really ok, I get the opportunity to talk about adoption and why people choose to adopt and all the ways that they could help, if they are interested. I try not to be defensive when people ask where she is from or how much she cost us. (By the way, we paid for adoption fees, not a child, per se.) I get it that a lot of people don't understand why someone of child-bearing age and three bio kids would chose adoption over having another bio child and I'm usually ok with answering super personal questions, in the grocery store, in front of Katelyn and my other kids, right out there where anyone can hear me. It's not necessarily a welcome intrusion, but it's ok. And even though I may bristle at the "do you love her the same" or the "did you just pick her out of a book, hahahaha" questions and comments, I will usually respond politely. Before I actually started the adoption process, I am quite certain that I said silly things too. We all do it.
But this one was too much for this thick-skinned, seasoned mama! I have been feeling a bit emotional about things anyway because we are approaching the 29th of November and am remembering this time last year when we were in Korea (more on that later) and meeting our new baby and preparing to bring her home. It's an emotional time for families then and now. And I have been hanging in there, until today.
"Do you ever regret taking her away from her real family?"
In the 3 seconds it took her to voice those words, this person unglued my brain and all those feelings of uncertainty, guilt, fear, disconnection and shame at not always appreciating being allowed to parent this baby came into the light. It was like she knew just which button to push to send me over the edge this week. I don't think she intended to hurt me, I think she was just talking because, well, I don't really know why, but I don't believe that she intentionally meant to hurt me. Kate was fussing and I was impatient and she just said it. And I know that I am Kate's mama. I know that she is my daughter. That we are a family. So why am I so sensitive?
It's because deep in my soul I know that I did not chose this path for us. I know that God chose it, He divinely willed it to be so. We heard His call and obeyed, that is it. We always had a choice. And that He knows this path that we are on because He has paved it. I have faith in Him. But then again, I don't always have faith in me and my abilities. I just wonder why it looks so odd to people on the outside looking in. And I wonder if we will always get these questions (probably) and how we will handle them when Kate realizes why they are being asked. She may not understand them now, but she HEARS them, have no doubt about that! I fear that she won't feel like we are her "real" family. That she will feel a disconnect and long for her "real" mama and daddy. And that fear is as deeply rooted in my soul as my faith is. I desperately want to get this right. Desperately. I don't want Kate to look at me with her beautiful brown eyes and see someone that is not her "real" mother. I am struggling already to stay afloat in this sea of never ending emotions and this comment today seriously rocked my boat......