My wife wrote a nice post on her blog commemorating our daughter Clara Rose’s adoption anniversary. You can read it here www.overthemoontohome.blogspot.com
I don’t keep track of dates the way she does, but I am glad she does. It is important to remember where you’ve been, because it can reveal to you how far you’ve come, and that helps you to see how much is possible for you in the future.
Clara Rose was nearly two years old when we adopted her. As Reena describes, she was heartbroken. Actually, she was furious then heartbroken. She clung to me initially rather than Reena. I was her ‘safe’ person. Maybe not so much ‘safe’, but at least the safest in her eyes. On the plane ride home the airline split our seats combining three and then putting another a few rows up. When Clara Rose and Josie weren’t sleeping, one of them was crying depending on which one of us was sitting in the single seat. When it was me, Clara Rose cried, and when it was Reena, Josie cried. It was a long and hard flight. The airline would not advocate for us with the passengers to give us a more suitable seating arrangement. If it were a Chinese airline, they would have helped us.
So we survived that. Reena was patient, and eventually she bonded with her, but not until we returned to the States and I went to work and Clara Rose spent some weeks with Reena at home.
The memories of Clara Rose’s adoption day are painful, moreso than Josie’s adoption day. But the flight home from China for me for Josie’s adoption was even more painful, if you can believe it. I had to leave Reena behind with Josie because of a delay in getting Josie’s visa tht required us to extend our stay. I had to get back to work and to my two kids – Gabrielle and Xavier, so I flew back alone. It was painful for G and X too for me to be away so long. I hated leaving Reena behind with Josie. I felt very guilty and lonely.
So remembering is important. But left to my own devices, without the discipline of paying attention to dates, I probably couldn’t trust myself to do it, especially when there is pain there. When the pain is shared on a day that we agree to share it, it becomes tolerable, and happiness can gain some traction.