I was planning to blog tonight about our upcoming trip to Ethiopia but please read this instead ...
Jen is a fellow Ethiopia adoptive parent and an author - and she offers a very real glimpse inside the experiences of an adoptive family in the early days after adoption. Our family is approaching our 3 year anniversary of when we first brought our sons home from Ethiopia. They were 7 1/2 and 2 1/2 years old then - both of them with very deep abandonment and trauma wounds and we were wide-eyed and naive, trying to be as prepared as possible for what lay ahead. We knew it was going to be rough - we just didn't realize how rough and how isolating it would be.
We arrived home weeks before Christmas and very quickly realized that the holidays and the exposure to extended family who were excited and happy to see them, was very confusing to our sons who had not yet figured out that we were their exclusive family forever - not just another set of care-givers. We went into quarantine - so that we could establish normal routines again and teach our sons about trust and family and work through several difficult behavioral issues with our youngest son. It was tramatic for all of us - including our daughters who did not get our rapt attention again for nearly 12 months.
Would we do it all over again? In a heartbeat!
If you know an adoptive family ... please read this so you know how to offer support and encouragement (they will need it). If you are an adoptive family ... read this and smile as you can relate to all of it! If you are thinking about adoption, read this and pass it along to your friends and family so they know how to love and support you - and then get ready for the most amazing, difficult, wonderful, tramatic and blessed experience of your life!