I wasn’t planning on turning this into a 3 part series but how ironic that it is three! I also didn’t know I had such a love for the number three. Jackson has loved watching the movie Boss Baby. If you haven’t seen it, I suggest watching it. It is actually pretty cute and has some adult humor in it. But in the movie they are a family of three (going to have another baby) and there is a reference in the movie that being a family of three is like a triangle and the triangle is the strongest shape. Not to mention the adoption triangle or triad I spoke about before. It reminds me of us, every time we watch. That is of course until they become a heart– a family of four! But if you ask Jackson, if you include our cat Miko we are a heart!
But last week when I was talking to someone about Jackson’s gotcha day, she happened to say something like, aren’t you worried he will be confused? No, not for one second do I think that. It is part of who he is. He is adopted. There is no way around that. I did not carry him in my womb. We have talked about Jackson being adopted since the day we brought him home. The gotcha day is also part of his story because for those first six months of his life, he wasn’t one of us. Legally speaking of course. But the reality is, he wasn’t.
I actually wrote an article for adoption.com recently about keeping the gotcha day respectful of your child and adoption. I don’t think it is published yet but when it is I will set up the link for you all to read it. I understand that in some adoptions, the gotcha day is not a happy day. It is a very traumatic day where children are taken from their origin and brought to a foreign place. This may not be something you want to celebrate every year. We however will celebrate Jackson’s gotcha day until he no longer wants to celebrate it (if that is how he feels when he is old enough to understand).
Then she said something that hit me a little strong, “but we love mommy the most, right.” And, “aren’t you afraid you will hear, “I want to live with Heather.” Let me address these one at a time. As Jackson’s mom I have two main goals. One, I want him to love Jesus. Two, I want him to know he is loved by his parents and he was chosen by Heather (at God’s direction) to be our son. That’s it. Period. The end of it. My goal is to make him so secure in who he is and who his parents are that he won’t ever question his life. That doesn’t mean I am going to succeed at that. In fact, I will probably fail and probably have failed at many things already. But I am going to give it all I have to show him he was simply meant to be OURS! With that being said, of course I want him to love me but I also want him to love Heather. Why? Because I do. Because we do. Because she gave him life. Because she put him first. We have an open adoption because we think it is the very best thing for Jackson. And having Heather be a part of his life, we feel is in his best interest. Of course, we also believe that when Jackson is old enough to understand if he does not want to see Heather, we understand that too. We, well at least I, pray that he never thinks that way but it is a possibility.
Jackson has already told us he wanted different parents. I have no idea if he really knows what that means because the minute I say, ok, bye. He says, “no mom, I love you mom.” So chances are he has no idea what that actually means but when the time comes when he does understand, I won’t be too surprised if he does say he wants to live with Heather. Again, this is where I feel, we feel, we have to teach him to be so secure in who he is that he won’t ever question those things. Until then, I will continue to teach him to love Heather as we do and tell him his “story” over and over again. Because it is who he is. It is who we are. A triangle with all kinds of “extra” shapes around us!