About Me

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I placed my daughter in an open adoption in 2002. I started this blog in 2004 as a place to journal and eventually I became part of a community. The community has moved on, but I have decided to come back.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

What's In A Name?

This was how we began my latest class: by giving the story of our name.

It was the first time in a long time that I've been so anxious to speak in front of my peers.

It was a reflective weekend. The class is on multicultural education and it's far more interesting than I expected it to be. I truly enjoyed every minute of it.

Still, I couldn't stop thinking about adoption. Maybe it was thinking about all the posts about hair I've read on adoptive parents blog, or the many tales of Korean adoptees I've read on different blogs. Maybe it was because my daughter's cultural identity is so interesting. Maybe it was because in exploring my own cultural identity, I also had to think about the fact that it will play a small role in my daughter's life.

Mostly, I thought about how difficult this class would be for an adoptee in a closed adoption. That took up a large chunk of my thoughts throughout the weekend.

I think the name activity would be difficult for any adoptee. It's such a loaded and emotional issue. All of it hit home though.

So I invite you: what's the story of your name?

Is it a difficult question for you to answer?

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Giving Birth

I was visiting Christine's blog when I read this post. For any non-clickers, it's about a study showing the safety of home births.

During my pregnancy, I attended childbirth classes at my city hospital. There I learned all about the birthing bed and the horror of pushing when the doctor tells you to push. I didn't love the hospital or their birthing approach.

Toward the end of my pregnancy, I found myself looking for a new hospital for totally unrelated reasons. My only concern was how they handled adoption.

I called hospital after hospital in my chosen state until I found one that seemed like they would treat me and my daughter's parents like people.

I had time for one appointment there before giving birth.

The appointment alone was amazing. The hospital had a very natural approach to childbirth. I would be attended by a midwife (a doctor was on call if needed) and they provided a doula free of charge. They did not do epidurals at all and made every effort to avoid pain medication completely. The birthing rooms were large and equipped with one of those big balls, a big tub (I chose a waterbirth at their suggestion), etc. Nobody pressured you to do anything. I made the whole plan. I controlled the whole experience. At no point was I going to be confined to a bed or ordered to push. Their idea was that my body knew best and that I should listen to it.

When I did go into labor (a bit early), I headed over and was treated well. It seemed that there were a million people there helping me- making sure I was comfortable, getting me anything I needed, wiping my brow, helping me change positions until I could find something comfortable, keeping me covered as I moved in and out of the water.

When I finally felt ready to push, no one told me to push until the baby was born. Instead I was encouraged to take my time, to catch my breath, to rest if I wanted to rest. And I did rest.

My body told me when to push and when my daughter was ready, she came.

She was perfectly healthy and so was I. I didn't even need stitches.

It was such a positive experience and the approach made so much sense to me that I'm determined to have any future babies at this same hospital even if it is a three-hour drive. I loved it that much.

The pushing part gets me the most. Why on earth would anyone think it's healthier to struggle to push the baby out rather than listening to your body?\

Cheers to listening to your body.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Awkward

Yesterday, my beau and I went to his folks house for a going away bash for his little brother. The whole family was there- aunts and uncles and cousins and grandparents.

As the party was winding down, a few of the women were sitting in the kitchen and the subject of grandchildren came up.

It was a lighthearted conversation full of joking and laughing. When asked how many kids I wanted, I told them my beau wants a dozen.

We laughed and his grandma and aunt started sharing all the woes of a new baby. The grandma made a comment about changing my mind after the first and the aunt followed it up with a comment about changing my mind after the first trimester.

I said something silly and then they both went on to say how you never know and sometimes things just happen, etc.

I twiddled my thumbs.

I actually thought they knew about my daughter. I know his parents know and we actually see this aunt and grandma about as often as we see his folks. Obviously they don't know.

And I kicked myself again for not taking the golden opportunity to tell. I certainly am not worried that these two women will judge my choice. I was just unprepared.

Friday, June 15, 2007

So This Is Love?

Ah, love!

I've read some blogs lately about firstfamily love. It's something I've thought about in my own adoption experience.

I did not conceive during an illicit affair. I was actually on a man hiatus so my pregnancy was a bit of a shock to those close to me.

The relationship does sound romantic. I met him in Italy. He wined and dined me pretty much every night of my three weeks there. At Christmas, I flew to Germany to spend the holidays with him.

I came home pregnant.

It was all a bit fast for a real lasting connection.

Still, I suppose some of that fire does run through my blood.

I didn't think much about displays of love when I chose my daughter's parents. Since then, I have thought about it often.

I've never seen her parents express any kind of love or affection toward each other. It's not that they're hostile. They just don't show much passion or connection to each other. And yes, it bothers me.

I sometimes think about the messages my daughter gets. Sometimes I'm glad I'm there to show her a different type of romantic relationship. I wonder how she will love when she is older.


Sunday, June 10, 2007

Phone Tag

Thanks for taking care of the blog world during my absence.

My daughter and I have been playing phone tag for about a month. I finally talked to her tonight. I was overdue. It's hard to go so long without seeing her or talking to her.

She's doing well. She won a fish yesterday and she wants me to come over next Sunday to see it. I won't be heading there until sometime in July though because we're both booked up until then. I like the summer visits anyway.

I have no other adoption news. I've been taking a break from things and haven't had any writing inspiration. This time of the year is full of end-of-school stuff so it keeps me busy.

Hopefully I'll be around more though. I just need something to write about....