Today is the two year anniversary of bringing home my little Chubbs. I actually held him the first time the day before but they kept him one more night. I want to recognize the day each year but what to call it. I know in private Adoption world they often refer to it as "Gotcha Day" but I am not comfortable with that nomenclature. We complain all if the time about what our foster children go through all because they are considered the "property" if their birth parents. So using a word that implies ownership doesn't sit right with me.
So, what do you call it?
Most of my friends involved with foster care say "gotcha day." I think people are reading too much into it. It's the day you went and pick up the child, the day you got them. Got simple means received. It's also a nationally recognized term.
That being said, does the day need a name? You can simple tell your child you are celebrating the day they joined your family. You don't have to name it. In our house we will remember it, but I doubt very much we'll celebrate it. We'll celebrate adoption day and the children's birthdays.
I've thought about calling it "Welcome day" since it was the day I welcomed them into my home or "Together day" since it was the first day we were together as a family.
We call it family day and my son was adopted internationally. I wil keep the same term when (fingers crossed) we add a brother to our family thru foster/adoption.
For me, though, the day is the day we came home to the US becuase until then, I was so afraid one more thing was going to go wrong, including immigration saying he could not come into the US.
We call it "the day you came home." So, Homecoming, maybe, if you want a real name for it? Although we really don't celebrate it. We acknowledge the day their adoptions became final and their birthdays, and another "day" seems like too much for us. (We're not good at planning celebrations, so maybe that's part of it...)
I hate the term "Gotcha Day" for all adoption scenarios. IDK why, I know it's popular and widely-accepted, but it rubs me the wrong way. Maybe for the same reason that it implies receipt for property/ownership. Although I do tell my kids that they are mine forever, and I am theirs. They do own my heart. But somehow that's different....
We call it the "day you came to stay" I celebrate with my AK and my fosters who stay a year or longer. The day is about remembering when we all first met and entered into each other's lives -whether that is forever or just a period of time - it is still a blessing to have been a part of each others lives and got a chance to meet.
We celebrate our meeting each other and not focus on the circumstances; although this has always been a part of the dicussions of the day. My adopted kiddos love to hear the story of how I "got the call" and what I was doing that day before they came and how I called everyone to tell them they were coming. Its sort of like their "birth story" for our family. The kids who remember also like to tell what they were going through that day. The stories always end though with fun of getting to know each other.
Its not a big hoopla. We have make your own sundaes on the "day you came to stay" and usaully I let the honoree chose the dinner. We actually do this day up more than the actual adoption day.
I call it "The Day My Life Changed, Forever!"
Because it is so close to her birthday, I was placed with Li'l Singer when she was three days old, I will probably keep that my day to celebrate. However, it will always be part of her story, but we will celebrate her birthday and finalization.
I hate the term "Gotcha Day" too. I've never really thought about any other terms because even if the foster care situation ends in adoption it still seems a crappy thing to celebrate. I guess depending on the situation it might be different. In your case because Chubbs had been abandoned by his birth mom I could see where you would want to celebrate him going to what you already knew was going to be his forever home.
We celebrate "move-in day" with our teen - so far it is monthly (she is the one tracking it) and an excuse to have cake for dessert!
We celebrate "move-in day" with our teen - so far it is monthly (she is the one tracking it) and an excuse to have cake for dessert!
Monthly? That's funny.
I've been thinking a lot about this question as well and trying to decide whether we should celebrate "Homecoming Day" or "Adoption Day" or both. It seems kind of "excessive" to celebrate both of them and a birthday. By the time I have 9 kids or so :), I won't be able to remember all of those dates. Baby Girl came in Oct and was adopted in Oct so that would be two celebrations in one months. We just got done doing a birthday marathon (one in July, one in Aug) and so I'm not sure that I want to do that again.
What do you all do for your special days?
We celebrate adoption day, not move-in day. (That's actually what I had in mind when I posted my earlier reply...that's the day we call "family day".)
We don't do a a big "birthday"-type occasion. We do a family activity and about half the years we have done a sentimental-type gift.
Congratulations on the two year anniversary for Chubbs.
Not a fan on Gotcha either. In my opinion it sounds ownershipy.
I'm not an adoptive mom but I'm not sure I would start with gotcha day (for lack of a better term) adoption day and birthday. When you have more than one or two kids that is quite a bit to keep up with. Just my opinion.
We didn't really celebrate, just acknowledge. I mean, birth parents don't have to acknowledge these dates overtly because they are the child's birthday. I imagine as Chubbs ages, it will be easier to just say on his birthday "our x number of years together" instead of "well, we won't really be at x number until next month."
On Adoption anniversary, we have special dinner, cake, and light his naming ceremony candle. He had no interest in it this year. And I think I like that Famiversary term! :-)
For our teens it is "you got 'rents now" day. (parents)
For our younger kiddos, its "forever family" day.
Lil professor is in Sept, and ADs is in November.
BTW we have our birthday slam happening now. 1 in Sept., 1 in Oct. 2 in November, 3 in December, 2 in January.
Yep... I stay broke, and the Visa gets a work out... But whats a mom to do? Just enjoy!