Thursday, January 5, 2012

Good Morning Adoption World!

I love being part of the adoption blogging world. I love waking up and reading this post at The Chronicles of Munchkin Land first thing in the morning. There I was, half asleep and wishing I could crawl back into bed for another hour or three, spending a few minutes with my computer as I waited for the goddess Caffeine to work her magic, when I found the magic without her help. Bam! Suddenly I was wide awake and inspired and (channeling my tween daughters) thinking, Can I get a woot woot?!

Jenna's posts often make me feel this way, but this one especially so because it taps into some things I have been thinking about myself. Can I just say that I love that judge! Or rather, I love the writers who created her and put those words into her mouth. I'll borrow from my daughters one more time: she is totally beast, man!

Or no, actually, let me use my own word, the one that came to my mind most powerfully as I read about her: authentic.

That's a word that's been on my mind this week anyway because a friend used it to describe my own writing voice, and I took it as the greatest compliment she could pay. It was significant to me because for many years I did not have an authentic voice. This is something I've been discussing with some other adult adoptees online. Many of us have had to overcome obstacles to find our true voice. We look back on things we said about adoption and being adopted in our younger years and recognize that we were not speaking our truth. Rather, we were parroting what others had said or formulating what we somehow knew others wanted us to say. This dissembling had effects that rippled through other areas of my life, and I plan to write more about that another day, but for now let me just say that I find myself in a very different place today, and I celebrate that. When I say things like "I have two mothers; I love two mothers and am loved by two mothers; that is my reality and nothing will ever change that," this is my hard-won truth. Such statements come from my own most personal deep place of authenticity.

When the judge says, "But you all need to get this. Right now. Those are the biological parents. You cannot change that. And you need to get this. This little girl has been raised, by them, since the age of two. They’re a part of her life. A big part. Like it or not, you’re all in this pot. One side does not get to erase the other. Do you understand me?" I recognize something similar. It didn't surprise me to read that the plot eventually reveals the judge herself to be an adoptee. I've never seen the show, but in this one instance I think the writers hit the nail squarely on the head. It rings true for me. This is something an adoptee would say.

As I said, I haven't seen the show, but Jenna's words hint that elsewhere in the plot the judge's emotions about her own adoption inhibit her ability to view the situation objectively. Perhaps. But until I've seen the show, my focus remains on the one part that Jenna herself chose to highlight. Those words. Those amazing words!

But you all need to get this. Right now. Those are the biological parents. You cannot change that.

Yes!

And you need to get this. This little girl has been raised, by them, since the age of two. They’re a part of her life. A big part.

Yes!

Like it or not, you’re all in this pot. One side does not get to erase the other. Do you understand me?

Yes! Yes! Yes!

Can I just say what a rare experience this is for me! More often, when I encounter fictional representations of adoption or adoptees, I experience a disconnect. The presentation on the screen or the page does not match my reality. But this one does! I can hardly express how exciting it is to find a little piece of my own truth, my own message, reflected in the words of fictional character. 

Can I get a woot woot?


12 comments:

  1. I love your response, and not just because you loved mine.

    Seriously. My jaw fell off of my face when I heard the judge give them a good talking to; I wanted to hug her. It was funny, right before she gave her judgment and revealed to the courtroom that she was an adoptee, she said something to the effect of: "I've found in life and law that it often comes down to which judge you get." True. Viewers learned she was an adoptee before the courtroom did as they had the judge look at a picture of her with her adoptive parents prior to the ending scene.

    Anyway, yes, it was refreshing (though also horribly sad at the end; gut-wrenching -- and it would have been either way it worked, really) to see adoption spoken of in such ways.

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  2. Thanks, Jenna! And again, the judge's words ring true for me. My daughter's birth mom has four children placed in three different families and her relationship with me (and with our daughter) is completely different from the others. The distinguishing factor is my adoption. Some adoptive parents (and judges) may get to the same place by a different route, but for me, and for this fictional character, it seems, the route was personal experience.

    Anyway, I'm sure the ending was, as you say, gut-wrenching. Hard to imagine it being any other way. But the piece you highlighted was really powerful for me, and yes, refreshing. I couldn't agree more. I want to give her a hug, too!

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  3. It was a good show but I think it could have been better if done as a two-parter and showed some mediation to continue a connection - that was the part I didn't like. The other consideration is that I think in real life the judge would have had to recuse herself.

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  4. That was definitely a phenomenal post. Thanks for sharing it on FB, Rebecca! Good stuff!

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  5. Woot Woot!
    I gave you a shout out in my last post. Check it out when you get a chance.

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  6. You got my woot woot!

    And I, also, consider your voice to be authentic.

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  7. Your blog was one of my pics for the Liebster Blog Award - away to for us smaller blogs to spread the love! The details are all in the link - http://thrivingdespiteus.blogspot.com/2012/01/liebster-blog-award.html..."It's a Major Award."

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  8. Thank you (for both the Woot Woot and the mention)!

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  9. Thanks! I'll have to watch the actual show. I did read a couple of plot summaries online.

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