When I chose a family for my son almost 6 years ago, I only had 3 requirements. One of those was an open adoption. Coincidentally, that was one of their hopes for the next child they adopted as well, so it worked out perfectly! Over the years of getting to know my son and his family, I’ve created bonds with each of them. Bonds that started because of our son, but lasted because we genuinely cared for and loved each other as individuals.
Over the years, lots of things changed for all of us. They adopted another precious little boy. I got married, and my husband and I had a daughter. Fast forward to when she was about 9 months old, we realized we needed a plan in place for her just in case something happened to us—an unofficial living trust or will of sorts. We had a spousal family council and went through all the people we would be comfortable entrusting the life of our child with. It took a lot of discussion about possible scenarios and various circumstances, but we ultimately came to the conclusion that we wanted my son’s adoptive parents to be our daughter’s godparents.
When we decided on them, we found that a lot of the same things that led me to choose them the first time made us choose them again this time. For example, the first time around, I loved that my son was going to have siblings, especially ones that would be inclusive of his biracial heritage. The second time, we also loved that our daughter would be with her brother and other adoptive siblings. And something that we’ve actually come to discover over the years is that they are a lot like us. I can be very enthusiastic and passionate about a lot of things, and to many people, that can be overwhelming. My husband, on the other hand, is very calm, cool, and collected. He keeps me realistic and grounded. We balance each other, especially in our parenting. Marcus and Jenny are the exact same way, so a transition would be that much easier.
We also thought it would be easier for people like grandparents to see all their grandchildren in one household. It only makes sense that we would try to keep all our kids together, so why not try and keep the rest of our family together? It’s just one less house to visit on Christmas, so there’s more time together than driving! But on the topic of grandparents, we also thought it would only be fair. As we discussed what would be best for our daughter, we couldn’t help but find a million and one scenarios that would lead to one side of the family or the other being offended at our choice. So, this was the best way to keep things equal and respectful.
To some, this may all seem a little weird. Adoption can almost be portrayed as a business deal or strictly objective transaction. However, that is not often the case anymore. As is with our families, we have become one giant, seamless, extended family. So, when we think of it that way, it’s not too odd to think about placing a child with extended family if there were ever an emergency. But it’s even more than that! We love my son’s adoptive family and truly think the world of them. They aren’t just family we’re stuck with; they’re family we long to be with.
So was it hard to pick them the first time? Kind of. Was it hard to pick them a second time? Not at all. Will we choose them again? With every child we have, we will continue to choose them again, and again, and again!