Thursday, May 15, 2008

It is a Calling- Adoption #1

I believe adoption is a calling and just like any other thing God calls you to do, sometimes it involves trials. I am going to go a little further here and say that I believe adoption is a calling for everyone. Do not get all upset on me here. Just listen a little longer. Doesn't God call us to take care of the widows and orphans? He may not call you to actually adopt them, but He does tell you to take care of them. We used to attend a church which really taught this well. How many times did I hear Pastor Bob say, "If you are against abortion, then you have to be for adoption. If God did not call you to adopt,support those who are doing it?" That is where I feel people miss the calling. You see, God also calls us all to missions. We do not have to be in another country on the mission field, but no one would argue that we should not be supporting those who are. The first thought that comes to most people's mind would be financial. Adoption is expensive. It is ridiculous in a lot of ways, but it is the reality. So, yes, if you have it, help those who do not. Someone said to me once, "If you can not afford to pay for the adoption, than how are you going to raise the child?" That, my friends is an ignorant comment. I do not believe those who think this are aware of the facts. Most people who have children everyday do not have $15,000 to $30,000 or more sitting around burning holes in their pockets. So, monetary gifts to help those who are adopting is great, but there are other ways. (I want to add here we have been very blessed by friends and strangers who have financially helped with both adoptions.) I noticed something different about the days and weeks after having my biological children and bringing home the adopted children. After having a child everyone is there to help. You kind of get a free pass for a few months. Everyone knows to not ask anything of you because you are healing and adjusting. I have found I have to be much more vocal about saying no after an adoption. After having a biological child it is assumed I need time to adjust. When you adopt it is like life goes on as normal. I will admit both times we adopted I was not fully prepared for the impact so that does not help matters. But this is just another way to fulfill this calling. Be there to help the mother. Make meals, help with house work or errands, or have the other children over. Most people do not realize this, but there is something called "post-adoption blues." It affects women in the same manner as post-pardom depression. Obviously, it is not caused by hormones, but it is very real. There are several opinions as to why it happens. I do not know what I believe, but I do know it happens. I will write more on this in another post, but know that the months following an adoption are a great time to help the family. I need to say we have received a lot of support. I am talking in general terms and telling you a lot of what I hear in conversations with other adoptive parents.

Another very important way to support adoption is being there for the birth mothers. Trying to convince a pregnant teenager or adult to not have an abortion when she knows she will be shunned by the church is not an easy thing to do. I believe we will not see a change in the abortion rate until we reform how we react to birth mothers. I am always amazed at the people who think it is almost heroic of the adoptive mother to have a relationship with the birth mother. Yes, it has to be different for each situation and a lot of times that means pretty tough boundaries, but these women made the very difficult decision to part with their child. They do it because they love them. Some people will call it lazy or not wanting to change their lives for the baby. It can sometimes appear that way, but I look at it another way. If you were to say a birth mother should not have given her child up, then you are saying the child should not be with the adoptive parents. Doesn't God place all children in the right home, biological and adoptive? These women need support. They need someone to hold their hands through dr.s appointments, praying with them through labor, and supporting them as they sign the paper work. They need friends to help them start over. Do not be afraid of them or judge them. They are sinners just like you and I. They can also be forgiven just the same. I know a lot of times there is abuse and parental rights are terminated. These women need to be held accountable and that is obviously a different post.

As you can tell I am little passionate about this issue. I am sorry if I come across too strong.


Jeanne said...

I LOVE this post. I think it's great that you are helping people who are unfamiliar with adoption learn more about it.

Julie said...

Thanks Jeanne. If you couldn't tell, it's my passion.:)

Anne said...

I agree with Jeanne. I'd never before seen an adoption up close and personal until this one, and it has been an eye-opener. It's good to know better how to be a help to someone going through it.