‘She said, ‘That’s them. That’s my son’s parents. That’s who I’ve been looking for.’ And then, I told her you were pregnant.’Read More
“‘I just have to ask… do you love Sage as much as you love Ira? I mean, I know you say you do…but I’m just so curious if it’s true.’
We sat on my living room floor when she asked me this. With a world of confidence and pride in my chest I was able to nod and beam and let her know that I absolutely love Sage as much as I love Ira.
I love them each as though I birthed them both…but I also love them as though I adopted them both. To me, it is the same unending mama love.Read More
We have been chosen as a permanent and forever family for a baby sister.
Baby sister makes us a family of seven.
The privilege is not lost on me.
Last fall our friends accepted a baby girl into their family as a foster placement. I couldn’t help but see some similar features between her and Sage.
Over the months, we have gotten to know her and play with her and see her work hard despite the odds and cards dealt to her.
In April of this year our friends said she was moving towards adoption and they were not going to be her permanent/forever family.Read More
I get it. My family isn’t the typical family made up of mini-me’s. My family has two babies that look identical in age but not in appearance: one is brown with textured-hair, the other is white with straight hair and appears to be my twin. We have two daughters who also have brown skin and textured hair, one even wears a hijab at times. Me and my husband? We are white. And no, we don’t take this parenting-kids-of-color lightly.
Before you stop us in the middle of the grocery store or while I am trying to play at the park with my kids, I’d like you to know these ten things:Read More
It’s been a decade since we began our parenting journey, and here’s what I want you, someone new to this journey, to know:
You do not have to have it completely figured out, but you do need to be figuring it out. Your education as a transracial adoptive parent should never stop. It should continue from now until your dying day. This means not only listening to adoptees and learning about adoption norms (such as how trauma can change the brain, what adoptees need from their parents, etc.) but also about what your child of color needs. The best people to help you understand this are people who racially match your child.Read More
Hi y’all! My name is Nicole and I am a birth mom from Texas. Ive been a birth mama since 2017. I placed my son, Moses, in an open adoption at birth. I wish I could meet you all and have a glass of wine or coffee (which ever is your preference, because honestly I love both) and have this talk. For now, I hope that you enjoy reading one of the voices that usually gets silenced in adoption!Read More
Something I've seen and even bought into until I became an adult with my own thinking is that society likes to stigmatize kids who are in foster care or who were adopted. I didn't even realize I bought into this.
They are seen as less than, unwanted, and often times "behavioral." They are labeled "the bad kid" by peers and even adults. Sometimes we don't even realize we see them this way, often it is implicit and subconscious bias deep within us...that's the trouble with our society. Things are engrained into us without even realizing it, and these things continue to churn the way our world works, spinning abusive and unjust cycles.
And sure, many of our kids's behaviors hurt other people. That is real. But, I'd argue that every single kid hurts another person with poor choices; they're all developing and learning what is okay and what is not.Read More
I was a little girl with three brothers, anxious for the day when I didn’t have to bribe them to play dolls and dress up with me. I asked my parents almost every night for a sister.
I didn’t know back then how much of a commitment that was, but my parents eventually pursued the idea of adoption. They took in two girls, ages 3 and 5. I was in heaven.Read More
If there is such a thing as “the wrong side of the tracks” then that is exactly where I came in to the world!
Born a mixed race girl, straight into a system that never had any good intentions for me. My mother was 13, a child herself, and already in foster care. It didn't take long for her to do what she knew best: run away.
So round and around I went, place to place, family to family.
During these years I experienced all the things. All the hideous, really bad, hateful, traumatic, evil things. I learned to be quiet and “good" on the outside but inside my head, it was angry and loud and chaotic.Read More
Don’t be afraid to dip your toe into the waters of a culture that is not your own. Splash around a bit. Come with an open heart so that you can better affirm the differences in your child of color.
Don't miss this powerful post with author and friend, Concetta Green.Read More
It wasn't that I was against adoption, I just didn't understand it. Sure, I had watched movies or television shows in my years growing up, where the topic of adoption was mentioned, but nothing significant, nothing that would resonate with me. To be honest, I viewed adoption as only something people who couldn't have children biologically did as a Plan B. I was clueless!Read More
I never want my son growing up feeling ashamed of his love or desire to know his biological family.
In my wildest dreams, he would grow up as whole as possible, knowing it is absolutely okay...even encouraged...to talk about, celebrate, think about, have a relationship with and wonder about his biological family.
I am confident there is more than enough room in his heart to both wonder what life would have been like if he grew up with his first mom and simultaneously love us as his family.Read More
I remember etching our family plans into a napkin at our two-year anniversarydinner.
We were eating at Rio in Sisters, Oregon and I couldn’t wait to get back to the little cabin we had rented to watch Harry Potter and dream about babies. Weird combo? Probably.
First we would conceive and carry a miracle baby in my actual womb. Then after a bit of time had passed, after we got “the easy one” birthed, we would enter into the adoption world.Read More
You guys. This is such a wild ride, this whole four babes under two years.
There are many times I am wishing a drone was following me around, recoding our ridiculous reality.
I wish you could see us load and unload the van — ha! We have to go through the trunk and over the back seat for Sage and Ira, and it makes me giggle 60% of the time (the other 40% I am being kicked in the face).
On Christmas Eve Eve, we thought it would be a really great idea to go on a 3 mile walk for a terrible coffee. What else would you do with four 23+ pound children, one stroller, and in 31 degree windy weather? We are so smart and active you guys. We are so Oregonian. So we walked and we regretted and everyone slept for the first half but everyone then cried for the second half.
If I'm honest though, right now I sort of feel like someone might feel after having a pile of bricks dumped on them, after just being thrown approximately 1500 babies to care for.
It's 8 pm on a Monday evening when they join our family.
Nothing came with them but the clothes on their bodies, 4 toys, some diapers, and an old Mickey Mouse bag.
Our community rallied with car seats and pack n plays and formula while I did a quick run to Safeway for whole milk and bananas. Safeway gift cards were emailed, some Paypal gifts, extra Amazon Christmas gifts, and a giant Target run full of warm jackets and matching outfits.Read More
I want my son growing up proud of his blackness.
I hope he claims it, celebrates it, finds confidence in it.
People already ask me, "What is he?" From talking with my friends of color, I know this question won't stop when he's old enough to respond for himself, and will continue through his life.
I usually say, "Biracial," unless I'm feeling really snarky, then I smile and say, "A toddler."
Saying my son is biracial is true, yes, but often times I wonder if it is doing him a disservice in the long run: our world is very black and white. It just is. For now he is a super cute and extremely adorable toddler. But soon enough he will be a 15 year old black teen, looking like an 18-20 year old black man.Read More
Growing up, it never dawned on me that I was white. I just was. It wasn't something I needed to notice or care about, it was just how I and my little world was. Everyone looked like me and if someone didn't look like me, it didn't matter much because I knew God created all people equally.
And then I was married and our world sort of fell apart—or so it felt—and we found ourselves moving from one town to another city and attending a church passionate about the Gospel and racial reconciliation. My husband started grad school and had documentaries to watch, like Eye of The Storm. We were in the adoption process and were reading everything we could regarding adoption, including adopting outside of our race. In the heat of an intense and discouraging election season, it seemed as though scales fell off our eyes and we no longer had the option of being blissfully ignorant to what our world was really like.Read More
“So how do you make sure the baby you get looks like you? How do you make sure he's white with blue eyes?” Our friend’s voice was tender and caring, inquiring about our upcoming adoption, even though his questions cut through me like a dagger.
I remember thinking through my response slowly, explaining why that a “look” was not something for which we we are looking. I shared that adoption won’t ever be a secret or anything we are ashamed of, and that we will celebrate the beauty of diversity and embrace any culture into our family.Read More
Adoption is a big and complex piece of our big and complex world. It is not cut and dry, it is not black and white, and truth be told: it is a mess.
I truly believe if we chip away at the stigmas and tear down the myths, maybe more people who could be adopting and fostering will step into it. I don't believe everyone should adopt or foster, but I do believe we all play a role in it somehow.
All that said, here are the most frequently asked questions and the answers I will give, based on our journey thus far:Read More