Polar Bear

Our second gift from God we're going to call "Polar Bear", because he wants to live in Alaska when he grows up.

Polar Bear is our 9 year old peaceful perfectionist.  He needs routine, to know what to expect and time to adjust to change.  He likes peace and quiet (hence his desire for life in Alaska).  He is very sensitive with a true desire to be understood, being misunderstood hurts his feelings.  He's a boy of intense emotions.  He is self motivated and very bright, quickly catching on at school.  His perfectionism creeps in here and he can be very hard on himself.  Best of all, he is extremely loving and lovable.

Polar Bear does not like to talk about being adopted.  From the time he could communicate (before he was verbal) he did not want to hear that he grew in someone else's tummy.  In an effort to keep him from burying his feelings I occasionally ask him if we can talk about some aspect of adoption or I ask his opinion or feeling about a specific adoption topic.  He quickly gets  emotional.  I have to allow him other ways to express his feelings.  I've given him a baby blanket that his birth mother knit for him when he was born.  He has happily slept with it every night since.  For his last birthday we took a trip to visit the hospital in which he was born.  We took pictures of him at the main entrance to the hospital and in front of the labor and delivery door.  He was beaming the entire time!  Sometimes when we're telling each other how much we love each other, I tell him that his birth mother loves him, too.  Then I add, "And, I love her for growing you, and picking us to be your family, and because you are part her."

As adoptive parents we often hear how fortunate our kids are.  This comment is not unique to us.  Our friends that are adoptive parents hear this, too.  I'm always surprised by this comment because I consider myself the fortunate one. I have to admit, though, that in Polar Bear's case I do think he's fortunate.  His birth mother was quite generous with information about her background and her life at the time he was born.  She had a very chaotic and unstable life.  Polar Bear would be a miserable mess without routine, stability and security.

As in life, grief is a part of adoption that we can't escape.  The up-side is that, as in life, we still have joy.  With abortion there will never be, not even a chance, for joy.

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