A Year Ago Today – Courtaversary

24 03 2011

A year ago today, in a court room in Addis Ababa, my husband and I were declared Little Dude’s legal parents.

We didn’t know our court date was scheduled, let alone that we passed, until March 29th.  And the way we found out, well, it colored our relationship with our agency.  There were multiple phone calls, bold-faced deception and a whole lot of yuck.  And silly, silly me, I would not put all the pieces together until months later.  Despite seeing and recognizing the obvious, I refused to internalize it.  I just kept believing that the agency and our family were partners.  That we had the same goals.  That our relationship was one of mutual trust.  Silly, silly me.

To this day, I still believe our agency is acting ethically on the ground in Ethiopia.  But as I lay in bed with Little Dude tonight, waiting for his body to relax into sleep, thinking about what an important date this is in our family’s history, I also spent lots of energy rehashing how our agency treated us.  I pondered what is and isn’t okay to talk about when it comes to agencies.  And lay wondering, “Why do I hesitate to talk about what happened?”  But I realized that is all for another post (maybe on the 29th – the anniversary of us finding out about our court date.)  And trust me, it isn’t nearly as exciting as I made it out to be – I’m just not good at letting go of stuff.

What DO I want to spend the rest of my night thinking about?  How lucky I am.  How strange and amazing the world is.  How our planet is so very, very small.  How our capacity to love is so very, very large.

How adoption may be born out of tragedy, or great need, or less than ideal circumstances, but it also represents the best that humans can be.  No, not me – the “saintly adopter”, but all the government employees, all the nannies, all the hard-working, go-betweens who picked up on different threads of Little Dude’s life and held them strong.  All the ethical individuals who faced down the Compassion Fatigue that comes from working in a difficult field and held Little Dude tight, until the threads of our lives and the threads of his life could be woven together.

We are so grateful.

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8 responses

24 03 2011
leigh

So happy Little dude and you guys found each other.

24 03 2011
Lori

That last paragraph is beautifully written and exactly how I feel as well.

25 03 2011
claudia

what a strange, and sometimes wonderful, world we live in.

25 03 2011
Tesi

Love this post. Happy courtaversaryish! 🙂

25 03 2011
Shonda

Happy courtaversary (yesterday). March 24th was our courtaversary too, and it wasn’t until I read your post that it even registered. How awful am I?

And about what we say/don’t say about agencies … I think if everyone would just lay it all out there, good, bad or indifferent, maybe that would be a really really good thing. I had a post almost ready to go, rating our agency (which we were mostly happy with, but didn’t have illusions they were perfect). But then we got “the call” about J’s brother and I thought maybe it was wise to hold off? I’m still kicking myself for not filling out the feedback forms they gave us in ET.

And, (trying to set a record for length of comment) I loved your last paragraph

26 03 2011
Scooping it Up

congrats! beautiful post.

Though I will admit, I always want a good story and I am itching to know the crap your agency pulled. I love transparency about this stuff. It’s like my International Adoption version of reading People magazine.

26 03 2011
Meg B

So well said, really beautiful. Thank you for sharing and Happy Courtaversary!

26 03 2011
Wendy

Mercifully, the agency from which we adopted our first child is no longer in business. Not that they weren’t a fine and reputable agency that did amazing work in my daughter’s homeland….but…

The woman who ran the agency was on a bit of an ego trip and seemed to revel in the idea that she had your future in the palm of her hands. I’ve blogged about some of the crap she put us through a couple of times (as recently as last month when I talked about living up to the homestudy after adoption and how I was shunned by this woman later because I got divorced).

So, while I don’t know your particular circumstances, I get where you’re coming from. Hard to reconcile those kinds of feelings of disappointment, anger, and frustration with the agency that is responsible for you becoming a family.

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