Tuesday, March 3, 2015

(M)other's Day

Today it is Mother’s Day in Georgia. Even though our little one isn’t home and our adoption is still in progress, I’m beginning to think of myself as a mother. But as an adoptive mother, I know that Mother’s Day will never be just about me. Every Mother’s Day, and likely many other days as well, I will remember and honor the “other” mother—the one who gave birth to my child. I will wonder about her and feel connect to her, and she will forever be a part of my life. Even the word mother bears a reminder—remove the “m” and you are left with “other.”

Recently Ben and I had the opportunity to consider a “waiting” child. We received this child’s profile, letters from his doctor, health and development information, and known family information. For the first time, I came face to face (figuratively, of course) with the “(m)other.” The child’s profile had her name and age and residence and a tiny bit of health information—way more information than I had ever expected to see. The information was really very limited, but just seeing a name, evoked strong feelings. Even though her child will not be our child, she has been on my mind and in my prayers today because she is a mother and today is Mother’s Day.

Adoption experts recommend finding a way recognize the biological mother (and father) because it is important to a child’s developing sense of identity. Suggestions include celebrating the birth parents on the child’s Gotcha day (day of adoption), writing letters (even if never mailed) or lighting a candle on Mother’s and Father’s days. Ben and I don’t yet know exactly what we will do. We don’t know how much we will know about our child’s (m)other and how much we know might change what we do to remember. But it is possible that because Georgia Mother’s Day is celebrated on a different day than in the US, that we may choose this day to remember our child’s biological parents. This year, in honor of Mother’s Day and since we don’t have our child at home yet, we learned three new words in Georgian:

Mother  Deda               Father   Mama              Child     Bavshvi