Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Adopted is a past tense word

This post has been on my mind for some time now, but I am only now getting a chance to sit down and write my thoughts out. This time last year, when we started the adoption process, Dustin and I each read the book Adopted for Life by Russell Moore. While this post isn't meant to be a book review, I would definitely recommend it to anyone considering or just wanting to know more about adoption. There are some parts of it that I don't completely agree with (e.g his views on IVF and any medically invasive fertility treatments) but I think that overall it was very beneficial for us. One of his chapters is titled "Adopted is a Past Tense Word".

This is a statement I agree with 110%.

Have you ever noticed when people talk about families with children that have been adopted, they are always referred to as "well Suzy just has the sweetest adopted daughter", "Suzy, mother to 3 adopted children" or even worse "Suzy has 2 kids of her own and 3 adopted children". Now this example isn't to pick on Suzy. I don't even know Suzy. It's just to make a point. Why must people feel the need to differentiate adopted children from biological children as if they are lesser than or somehow not a complete part of the family? Whether your child(ren) was(were) adopted at birth or as a teenager- they become wholly part of your family.

Another part of the book that was meant in a half-joking/half-serious manner that really stuck with me was when he talked about his children- two boys who were adopted as infants from Russia and two biological boys. He stated that he doesn't see the need in telling others (especially strangers) how each of his children joined his family. For example, here is Will, our natural delivery child, Scott, our cesarean child and Mike and Tim, our adopted children. Those aren't their real names, but the point is-- it doesn't matter how your son or daughter joined your family. When they joined your family- they are your family. Finn doesn't look at me as his adopted mom. I am his mom. I feed him and clothe him and play with him and comfort him when he's sad. He rests his head on my shoulder at night and smiles the biggest smile when I see him when he wakes up in the morning. It would not be any different if we adopted him at birth or at 15. There may be some more psychological issues to overcome if you adopt an older child who has memories from a previous family-- but that doesn't change the fact that he or she is your son or daughter.

We should be ever so thankful that our Heavenly Father doesn't view our spiritual adoption as His children the way that some people view physical adoption here on earth. He doesn't look at us as adopted children. According to Romans 8:17, we are co-heirs with Christ and you can't be more a part of God's family than that. "And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God's glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.

 So yes. Adopted is a past tense word. It may be how your child joined your family, but it is not your child's permanent place in your family. As a helpful tip, when referring to a family that has both biological children and adopted children- never use the phrase "kids of your own and adopted kids". The term biological children is perfectly acceptable to use in this circumstance- if you even have the need to differentiate. I can tell you that Finn is 100% our own. And if God decided to bless us with biological children one day, Finn will remain our own. Though he doesn't share our DNA, he has had our hearts from day 1. He views us as the only mom and dad he's ever known and we are his whole world (right now anyway). Why would we ever want to view him as anything less than that? 

*drops the mic* Now someone hold my hand as I step down off my soapbox.
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Sunday, April 27, 2014

JLF Golf Tournament

Yesterday, we spent the day in Clemson as Dustin played in the JLF golf tournament with all of his college friends. This is such a fun annual event and this year was Finn's first tournament. The JLF golf tournament is hosted each year by some close friends of ours to celebrate the beautiful life of our friend, Walt's older sister. Since we've graduated, it's become a fun reunion to see college friends that are now spread across the southeast. We had the most beautiful weather and I'm so glad that Finn got to meet so many new friends for the first time.

As good as we could get with all the babies. If you look closely, you can see Finn comforting his buddy Ford on the left.
 The guys and their kiddos.
Wishing daddy good luck.
 My heart.

 A couple rare pics of me and my boy since I'm usually the one behind the camera.
 One of the best things about spring. Baby. Legs.
 Finn and Piper become fast friends.
 Family pic.

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Thursday, April 24, 2014

Seven Months and Easter

Finn turned seven months old last Saturday and it is so hard to believe how quickly time is flying. I know that I will be saying the same thing come this fall when he turns one. I know that any parents will tell us that it just keeps getting better and better BUT he is at such a fun age right now.

Baby boy, you smile and laugh all the time. You absolutely LOVE mommy and daddy and think we are just the best thing in the world (praying it stays this way). You are so content to just sit and play with your toys, your toes, anything you can get your hands on really. You LOVE jumping in your jumper and will do it until you're out of breath. You love to eat- right now fav foods are blueberries, peaches, sweet potatoes, broccoli, carrots and squash. I look forward to making you some real "meals" soon. You also love to sleep! This makes mommy and daddy very happy as you still take 3 naps a day and sleep 12 hours at night. You want so badly to crawl, but just can't quite figure it out just yet. You push up on your hands and knees and do a backwards scoot. Right now, your preferred method of getting around is rolling and rotating yourself on your tummy to reach your toys. You have just gotten the hang of sitting up by yourself, but will still get a little off balance every now and then. You LOVE being outside! We've been going on a lot of walks in this pretty weather. You also now have TWO teeth! Teething has been a whole new experience for you and we've had a few sleepless nights, but you've made it through like a champ. Here are some highlights from the past month.
You started sitting like a big boy in the shopping cart!
 Sort of...
 You would do this all day long if we let you.

You now sleep on your side and we think its just about the cutest thing ever.
 Have I mentioned how much you love to sleep?
We took you to the park for the first time to swing and you loved it!

 You got to experience your first Master's Sunday with Bubba Watson taking home the green jacket!
You're trying so hard to crawl.
We went to Children's Transplant night with the Braves for my work and you got to stroll around the field. While you were quite underwhelmed with it now, I'm sure you'll look back on it and think it was cool.

We went to Greenville to celebrate your first Easter with your Oma, Opa, aunts, uncles and cousins. Here is our mandatory pitstop along the way.

 All of my beautiful nieces and nephews.
We also celebrated your cousin, Sawyer's 3rd birthday and Opa's birthday.
Your oldest cousin, Haley also got baptized!
Now for the 7 month pictures...

 In your daddy's rocking chair from when he was little.

Yes, sweet boy- we love to pieces and it is quite apparent that the feeling is mutual. Your smiles just fill us with so much joy and we are so blessed that we get to be your parents. 

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