I often talk about the challenges of adoption and especially transracial adoption and I wonder if I concentrate too much on the negative and then I remember something my Dad told me.
My Dad was a minister and would often council couples who wanted to get married. The pre-marital counseling was something required by the church. The rules were simple and clear: no counseling, no wedding.
Dad told me he saw his role in this process as the last clear chance to avoid a mistake. So he would spend several weeks with the couples trying to talk them out of getting married. My father can be very direct and I am sure he caused many of those couples to really think about what they were doing. He often turned what the couple thought would be a joyful time in to a time of serious thought and contemplation.
Dad told me there were several couples who walked out and sought out another pastor to marry them. They found a pastor who would do an eyes-only examine instead of the painful exploratory surgery Dad proposed.
Part of my blogging technique was handed down to me by my father.
I could write about only the joys of adoption. I could concentrate on the relatives that will accept your child of color and the positive comments people will make about you family in public. I could tell you transracial adoption is easy and there will be no challenges. I could tell you everyone will accept your new family because your new baby is the most beautiful baby ever created in this world.
You could also find another blog who will tell you just those things. You could rationalize that I don’t know you or your child and I have no idea what I am talking about. You could read through my posts and if one grazes too close to one of your sensitive nerves you could conclude I am an angry adoptee who doesn’t know your situation. You can always find some else who will do an eyes-only exam.
I could put on my latex gloves, grab my scalpel and gently but purposefully begin going deeper, pointing out the potential problem areas so you know how to step around them. I could say to you “this next one is going to hurt a little, and you may be sore the next few days, but a few months from now you’ll be better than you were before.” I could tell you that once we got to the nerve where it makes you wince in pain, we have to stay there for awhile and figure out what’s causing that pain before we can move on.
You could sign the consent to surgery and go deep with me. You could choose to step around those problems instead of running in to them. You could accept the temporary pain that is inflicted now knowing it will prevent further long lasting pain. You could agree that the healing that takes place now will prevent permanent scars in the future. You could consent to the painful exploration of digging deep to find out what’s causing you to wince.
I have chosen to do the latter. I would encourage you to do the same. Take some time to think about it, and if you chose to go with me, I will see in the operating room. We’ve got some work to do.