....but the paper cuts are killer.

truth: there is no difference between being pregnant and adopting. (except when there is)

confused?

i'll try and explain the two separately.

when a woman shares her pregnancy news, there's often a lot of shrieking. probably some hugs. pictures are taken. she may experience a whole lotta sickness. i hear the third trimester is pretty tricky with indigestion and feeling like you have to pee every five seconds and wanting to sleep for eternity. family starts counting down with the mom-to-be and there's cute little showers and pictures of growing bellies on facebook. and then approximately nine months later, her growing belly picture is replaced with one of her plus her child. or just one of her child. probably sleeping.

when a woman shares that she's adopting, often she'll get questions. probing questions. "are you unable to have kids" and "are you going to have your own" type of questions. (freebie: "having your own" question is probably THE MOST offensive thing you can ask an adoptive couple. "having your own" is a misnomer. our baby will be our own. no questions). these usually come from family. the ones for the home study are even more probing. they wanna know what you argue about, why you argue about it and how you handle the argument. they wanna know how you spend your money and whether you keep toilet paper on hand at all times. good news for the adoptive mom: no morning sickness. but the paperwork will most likely cause a migraine and the paper cuts are always a threat. most difficult? there is no timeline. no due date. so there's a lotta stress. a lot of wondering. and really nothing outside of the dwindling stack of papers to signal how close one is to being placed with a child.

okay. maybe there are a lot of differences. but, in the mind {and heart} of a woman, everything is the same. my belly may not be growing with child. i may not be able to have a cute little countdown widget explaining the most recent development of my unborn child. but i do know what it's like to wait. i do know what it's like to expectantly pray and love and wish for my baby.

so the question remains: why treat adoptive moms differently?

i'm not sure. recently, my husband and i ate lunch with my parents and they reiterated their hope that our perception of their perception of our future child wasn't skewed. i got what they were trying to say. when we're placed, our child will be just as much their grand baby as my sister's soon to be newborn son.

it hit me in the middle of that conversation that really, the crux of the issue isn't the words tossed around in our presence. it's my own insecurities and over-protective nature. 

here's some honesty: i don't know if a pregnant woman can ever forget whether or not she's pregnant, but i'm gonna venture out on a limb and say she can't forget. with adoption? you can very easily forget, in the middle of the paperwork, that a child is waiting on the other end of bureaucracy. 

i hate this.

because in those moments i do remember it hits me like a freight train ::  i'm just as much a mom as any other swollen belly woman pink-cheeked with expectation. 

...and i struggle with the differences.

i want to celebrate. i want our child to know i expected and rejoiced in the thought of him or her coming into our life. and to be honest, i want someone to hold my hand while registering and i want to be showered with parties because lord have mercy i have no idea where to start in the baby aisle...

Posted on February 15, 2012 and filed under Mom-Heart.