When we started the adoption process back in September 2008, several people suggested we start a blog to capture the time while we were waiting to build our family.
In theory I thought it was a good idea and thought I would do it someday because, that’s what “good” adoptive parents do.
Good adoptive parents record every moment of waiting time so that they have a “pregnancy” story to share with their child when they ask about how they became a family.
Then I got all caught up in the notion of what “good” adoptive parents do and got overwhelmed in the judgement about what I am supposed to do.
I hate doing what I’m supposed to do.
So instead, I decided to just do some projects that interested me while we waited. So far, I’ve taken all classes possible to move across the salary schedule (who doesn’t love more money???), studied to become a yoga teacher and now I’m training for a half-marathon.
Oh and I started a daily writing project about two things I love: yoga and music.
I guess my future kid will at least know his/her mom was super busy while waiting.
Interesting to me now, that this blog about my becoming a yoga teacher is evolving into a kind of “pregnancy” story. It’s documenting the changes in me over time. I guess in my own way, I am documenting my transformation into a parent.
Adoption is obviously a longer wait than biological pregnancy. It’s also a much more personal “pregnancy” because there is no physical reminder of our impending parenthood. If people don’t know we’re adopting – they would never know we’re expectant parents. We don’t have month-to-month bump photos or ironic t-shirts.
We just have a big binder and a whole bunch of waiting.
I’m curious how other people documented their transformation into parents.
How did you document your pregnancy or waiting time?
How did you share that story with your child when they asked?
Biological or adoptive stories are welcome. Please share your stories here.
Today’s yoga brought to you by the home practice! It’s a half-marathon training day.
Today’s music is The Ecstatic by Mos Def.
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When my first kid was incubating, I kept a journal. I was excited and scared and totally intended to not be like my parents. That meant that my kid would understand who I was before I had him, and before I became “MOM”. 13-minus one week later–and the journal is lost, I’m *totally* not that young mother, and having to be responsible for the welfare of someone other than you changes everything.
I say keep a remembrance of who you are, but enjoy the natural transformation & evolution as it happens.
You & Jed seem like you’ve got it all together. Get out of your head. If you want to keep a journal do it in pictures & sound–your kid will adore it!
@fleagirl – i love it! reality check.
This is a great beginning to documenting your pregnancy story and much further along than I am…and I already have two kids. Bennett’s baby book stalled at birth (he’s now 4.5) and I haven’t even begun Adelaide’s (she’s 20 months). When I do journal it’s primarily about the frustrations and not the joys. Nothing has been videorecorded. Oh…and we lost most of Bennett’s baby pictures when our computer crashed last year. So…don’t worry if you don’t document stuff. Good for you if you do, but the kid will primarily want you to be happy and healthy. Everything else is secondary.
@amanda – you are good people. i’m glad to hear about the happy/healthy mamas are better than scrapbooks! i can’t wait to meet your little people some day.
I too had that “supposed to” guilt about journaling. I did it here and there, captured some moments, but the pressure of it was too much. I did take the belly bump shots and put them into a photo album so Victor could see how he evolved in mommy’s belly. He likes to look at those pictures now. But I think so much about the transformation into a parent is about how you see the world…appreciating all that you have as a pre-parent (boredom, selfish time, whimsy) that is so hard to come by once that little one arrives into your life. So more than documenting, I think it is most important to prepare yourself emotionally for the transition so that when they arrive you can find the eternal spring of willing selflessness that is required to be a good parent.
@jenc – i’m so glad i’m not alone in the supposed-to guilt. and i’m also glad my friends are more about “good enough” – not perfection. i’m glad victor is enjoying his baby book – sweet boy.
willing selflessness sounds a lot like patience. i’ve been practicing being more patient at work with my pretend kids. we’ve all been a lot nicer lately. i think the yoga is helping!
That sounds like a pregnancy story to me. You are reflecting on your own experience, on your own terms. Even just an an example to follow, I think that is a great gift for your child.
As far as my own story, I didn’t realize I was supposed to be documenting it! For me, it’s all in the memories of that time, the good and the bad, shared with my husband, family, and friends. I will share these from time to time with my kids, though I must say they are usually not solicited. Honestly, I think it rarely occurs to them that we had a life before they came along.
@patty – i forgot about the part that parents aren’t really people and that life really began with their birth. although i imagine the girls will be asking a lot of questions about your pregnancy when they are going through it themselves. you know, in the VERY distant future!
I admire Jed and your decision to adopt. That baby is going to be one lucky child. If I wasn’t blessed with Emily when I was, I too was thinking of adoption. I was getting older and well you know that I financially couldn’t afford a child so I might not have been able too. Anyway, because I feel that I was given a gift, I bought journals and started from the beginning. I started to tell Emily how her Dad and I met. How I found out I was having her and the entire journey to her birth. I also started to write about cute things that she does or things that happen to her. These are things that just don’t fit in the little sections of a baby book. I wanted her to know my thoughts every step of the way while I was waiting for her, that even though she wouldn’t be able to read it until she was older. It’s rewarding for me to write these things down. And it will be an amazing gift for her when she is older.
Good luck to you and I can’t wait to meet your little one!!
@stephanie – i can’t wait to meet kiddo too!
bravo on the journals – emily is a lucky girl.