Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Adoption Day

Four years ago today Kid T officially became part of our family; this is the anniversary of the Giving and Receiving Ceremony in Vietnam.

Here's what we know: On a night in late November 2001, staff at the Tam Ky orphanage heard a noise, went to investigate, and found a five-day-old infant. Cliched and Dickensian as it sounds, plenty of children find themselves into Vietnamese orphanages that way.

About ten months later we were looking for an infant, but, our adoption counsellor called to say he had a referral of a somewhat older child -- close to a year old. I said, email the information, what could it hurt. We got the pictures and, well, just look at those eyes.

I remember when I first got her how she seemed, well, foreign. For about three days. We made a connection and ever since she's been our kid. Four years on, she's a willful, energetic five-year-old obsessed with Dora the Explorer and always looking to scam the next piece of candy.

When Kid Z was born, one of my sisters in law asked "did you ever think you could love anything so much?" It's true. She also said "The amazing thing is, if you have a second, you'll love that one just as much." Also true. And you know what's really really amazing? It's true even when she wasn't born your child.


redhorse said...

And a happy welcome home to T.

Eric said...

Thanks for sharing that...great story. I do agree that the eyes have it!

Anonymous said...

Such a lovely girl!

Anonymous said...

Let me just say first anyone who adopts an unwanted child deserves the world's gratitude. But I'm trying to understand the fascination ( for lack of a better word)
with adopting foreign babies instead of American babies. I have three friends that have adopted Russian and Chinese babies and in the interest of staying friends with them, I don't ask the question.
Since Pho and I aren't friends, and he seems to be an articulate and thoughtful fellow.... maybe he'd care to give the question a go. I do realize the question doesn't have to be answered.

Jill said...

Anon - a college friend of mine who is now a prof and dean at Harvard Business School published a book earlier this year called The Baby Business (Debora Spar) which is all about the economy behind foreign adoptions. It got excellent reviews, though I haven't read it yet.

Scott - I felt the same way about the 2nd and 3rd babies - I love the first so much. How could I love another? And then you just do. If there are miracles, the way in which our hearts enlarge around our kids is one of them.

Jill said...

Ironically, this news item just came throught:

Anonymous said...

Jill: I'm not surprised that foreign babies have become a commodity. My question had more to do
with whether or not there existed what Bertrand Russell referred to as the " moral superiority of the victim".... in that Chinese babies are being thrown down wells and American ones aren't..... something along that line. Or more specifically why are foreign babies more attractive than American ones when it comes to adoption ? I'm not criticizing anyone for adopting any child, I just want to know why the foreign babies are still more desirable- factoring in the time and expense. And yes, yes I know these questions aren't supposed be asked in polite society. Maybe Iraqi babies will
gather some cachet in 2007.

boringmadedull said...

Pho -

Happy anniversary / homecoming for "Kid T".

I love the line "I remember when I first got her how she seemed, well, foreign. For about three days."

I hate to tell you this, Mrs. Boring & I have 4 kids, and the older they get, the more foreign they seem. 8^)