More placement ponderings

The monkey had a lovely holiday. She was hopelessly spoiled by her adoring fans, and seemed to revel in it all!

I also got the chance to explain her adoption to some little cousins of mine (my cousin’s kids….1st cousins, once removed?) and was glad for their very honest, uncensored, questions. What made it more interesting to me is that my cousin herself is adopted, and she’s now a single mom of 3. So when I explained that Monkey’s bmom had one child already, and decided that it would be too much to have another baby, my cousin just quietly said, “it’s tough”.

My cousin and I aren’t very close–this was our first time seeing each other in about 8 years. So I don’t know if her decision to parent all 3 of her kids was due in part to the fact that she was placed for adoption herself (at the age of 2, I think). I don’t really know. I do remember when she was pregnant the second time, both my mom and grandma asked her if she’d consider adoption, but her boyfriend was in the picture at the time, and she really was thinking things would be OK.

Now he’s long gone, she’s working, scraping by with help from assorted agencies to feed and cloth and educate her kiddos. And I have to say, she’s a GREAT mom. Her kids listen well and are very polite.

I wonder if our bmom ever thought about parenting our little monkey, and what she thought it would be like. If she thought past the first year or two, to what it would be like when both kids were in school. If that held any appeal to her, if it made the choice easier or harder.

I also finally got a hold a of GREAT book about open adoption when there is a birth sibling called Sam’s Sister. I need to find out if bbro has heard the story yet–that could be a potential bday present for him. I read it to a group of 1st-4th graders at the school where I used to teach, and they seemed to “get” it. They had a few questions for me, and, of course, were instantly in love with the Babe.

How could you not be?

My Reading List

To Read:

A LOVE LIKE NO OTHER: STORIES FROM ADOPTIVE PARENTS, edited by Pamela Kruger and Jill Smolowe. I read an excerpt in the November issue of Parenting, and it interests me.

THE STORY OF DAVID: How we created a family through open adoption, by Dion Howells. I’ve been skimming through it for awhile–now I need to sit down and dig in.

What I’m reading now:

CHILDREN OF OPEN ADOPTION, by Kathleen Silber and someone else, whose name I’m forgetting at the moment…the book is upstairs and I’m not getting up right now.

This is a neat book in that it goes through the griefing process at each stage of a child’s life. The idea being that with each developmental stage, a child understands adoption a little more deeply and goes through the loss process associated with the new understanding. FASCINATING case studies.

BABY’S FIRST SKILLS by Miriam Stoppard, MD.
Great ideas for playing with baby. A little complicated to follow (there’s a whole play plan–an hour’s worth of activities for each month)–you have to flip through the book to read a description of each activity, but there are great tidbits and ideas.

What I’ve Read:

THE SECRET THOUGHTS OF AN ADOPTIVE MOTHER. I’ve forgotten the author, I only remember that she was very bitter. Rather rude toward the birthmother, rather irked that SHE would have to go through the adoption process–I didn’t relate. Have I been frustrated, yes? Have I not understood where the birthmom was coming from, yes? But does that give me the right rant on and on? I don’t think so. It just didn’t do it for me.