Friday, November 19, 2010

Fourth Best

Where's she from?
Taiwan, I say, leery of what's coming next.
She's SO lucky.

Sigh. I hear this entirely too frequently. And I KNOW people mean well. But really...IS she lucky?? Did she ask to be relinquished? Did she asked to be ripped from her foster mother after seven months and whisked away to a completely foreign land? Did she ask to be raised by white parents who know nothing about being Asian? No...she didn't.

I'd be doing all of my children a disservice if I didn't recognize that not only are they NOT lucky, but they landed in fourth best. First would have been birthfamily. Second would have been a family in their birth country. Third would've been an Asian family in another country. Fourth is us. Fourth.

Of course, I love my children and will always give them everything they need and deserve. But it is also my duty to educate those around me. My children were not saved, have no responsibility to feel grateful, and do NOT deserve to hear that they are "lucky" every time we're in public. We've come so far, yet we have so far left to go.


Angela said...

Thank you so much for posting this. It really makes me cringe when people say things like that, or other things that imply we are these super heroes "rescuing" children. I just wanted to be a mommy. I am not a hero, and I hate that people hang it over her head as if she owes us somehow. She certainly didn't make the choices that brought her here. She will have a rough enough road dealing with being adopted internationally. They don't need the added pain of feeling like the circumstances of their birth should be held over their head as if they had a choice!

The only thing that hurts me even worse is when people say conspiratorially as they point to my bio kids, "It's so nice you were able to have some of your own." AAAAAARGH. But that's another subject...

Lisa said...

I standard response is no I am lucky.... I find people just say the darndest things..and it depends on my mood and who they are when I say reply... I feel like I have to educate the world.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Megan said...

Wow! Beautifully said...and I may have to "borrow" it and send it out to everyone I know :) I also cringe every time someone says that about my family. It always feels so inadequate to say "No, we are the lucky ones" as it does nothing to educate or explain the difficult emotions around international adoption. Well done!!

HollyMarie said...

I agree Michelle! Most people are so blinded and only know adoption as something wonderful.. .they don't recognize the loss that our children had to experience and will experience on-going throughout their lives.

I pray that God gives my babies the strength and peace and grace to deal with all the issues, truths, and mysteries of their pasts and I pray that they always know that I am here to understand and walk with them.

Pink Velvet Mommy said...

It makes me CRAZY when I hear it! Fortunately we don't hear it often.
I felt like we were kidnapping Hayden when we picked her up, H loved Mrs. Chen and the feelings were mutual, I don't think either of them were interested in being ripped apart!!!
Our children have already experienced more loss in their little lives than a lot do in a lifetime, and they will always have to deal with race issues, adoption issues, where do I fit in issues....the list goes on and on!!! Does that make them lucky? I don't think so, hopefully it makes them stronger and prouder, but lucky.....I think not!!!

Anonymous said...

I don't like those comments either. And I usually resort to, the same response, "I'm the lucky one." Because I truly am the lucky one.
However, I do feel in a profound way that my children were meant to be my children. And that each life is a gift, and that our children's lives are gifts to them from God. They belong with us. Everything happens for a reason, and for some reason here we are. We all have tragedy in our life, and it makes us stronger. We should recognize the tragedy, but also the miracles.

w8tn42and3 said...

My favorite??? is still when people look at my kids and then look at me... and ask me if their father is Chinese. I always simply say, "YES, their fathers are Asian."

Journey to our baby said...

100% agree. I wish people were more educated and it is very frustrating that they say the things they do. Thanks for posting this.