Friday, November 9, 2012

Embracing The Dark Circles ~ NaBloPoMo ~ November 9

Writing prompt for today: Becoming a Parent. Did becoming a parent change your perception of adoption or being adopted? Or did it strengthen what you already believe or feel? If you are not a parent, has watching your extended families expand (e.g. having nieces or nephews) changed your views on adoption or did it strengthen your views? Looking forward to your own potential parenthood: do you want kids, what strengths or challenges do you see in the future for yourself in becoming a parent? How has being adopted affected your own parenting philosophy?
Before I had children, I was constantly looking for my face and features and mannerisms in other people.  I wanted to know where I got my freckles from...or why I started getting white (not gray, WHITE) hair in my early twenties...and where the stupid dark circles under my eyes came from.
I'd see my friends with their parents, so similar and undeniably family.  I wanted that.  I wanted to look like my parents and sister, regardless of what the household dynamics were.  I figured if I was stuck with these people, I should look like them at least.
Once I had my daughter and she began to grow, it was clear that she was my clone.  Everyone still calls her my "mini-me" (even though she is now officially taller than me, God help me).  She and my son share my freckles, and Maddie shares the dark circles.  I treasure those similarities.  Both of my kids came along before I was reunited with my natural mom and it was amazing to finally "see" myself in someone else. 
I think that it was after the kids came that I began to question adoption at its core.  I would never have been able to give them up.  I loved them the minute I found out I was pregnant with them.  My heart was filled with happiness at knowing I was going to finally know blood relatives.  And I had created them.  Awe inspiring. 
As far as how being adopted has affecting my parenting philosophy, I am not sure it has.  Instead, my childhood has impacted it much more.  I realize that I'm really trying to be the complete opposite of my adoptive parents.  I allow the kids to go to friends' houses without giving them a guilt trip when they get home.  I accept that they aren't perfect and if Maddie can get a D on a test and still manage to pull her grades up to High Honors on her report card and if Chase can struggle with Math and still manage to get a C+ on his report cars, I can deal with that.  And I am proud of them.  I am protective of their safety and well being, but not overbearingly so.  I may get irritated with their behavior sometimes, but I don't slam them across the room and leave a mark in the wall from where their head bounced off of it.  I may nag them to clean their rooms, but I don't make them stay up until 3am until it's spotless and I have inspected it.  I set high expectations, but don't tell them I wish I could send them back when they can't meet them. 
This post seems disjointed to me.  I'm tired and my blood pressure is high tonight so I'm going to leave off for now.  Maybe I'll edit it, or maybe I won' 
By the way, all of the women on my natural mother's family got white hair when they were in their twenties, and Maddie and I got our dark circles from my mom's sister, Martha.


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