Saturday, September 28, 2013

What Happened This Week: A Community Responds To News of "Baby Veronica"

The following is basically a reformulation of things I shared on facebook during the past week.

(c) 123RF Stock Photos
The best phrase I can think of to describe what I observed in the adoptee and first parent community as the news broke of Veronica's transfer is "mass reactivated trauma." The cumulative effect as the news spread through social media Monday night was stunning. It was as though people throughout the adoption community were falling to their knees wailing. Or as Claudia Corrigan D'Arcy wrote of the "collective consciousness of sadness," quoting Star Wars: “I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror, and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened.”

Friday, September 20, 2013

What It Feels Like To Be a Woman

My senior year in high school I rode the bus to school on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. But not on Tuesdays. On that one day of the week, my friend Michelle was allowed to drive her parents' car to school. She'd pick up me and a couple of our other friends (both of whom were named Jen), and we'd head over to the local greasy spoon for breakfast before driving to school.

One morning as we waited for our check to arrive we began distractedly creating a pile from various things from the table, while simultaneously continuing to be engrossed in our conversation. We started with the large, metal-topped sugar container and then added knives and forks, packets of jam, etc., until we had created a "sculpture" of sorts in the center of our table. We pronounced it a work of art and decided it needed a title. Someone suggested "What It Feels Like To Be a Woman," and we all laughed.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Open Adoption & School

The current Open Adoption Bloggers prompt is as follows:
Write about open adoption and school.
Grant Cochrane at
My answer to this one will be concise. The main thing I want to share is that I have frequent conversations with Erica (my daughter's biological mother) about our daughter's academic life. Erica is able to provide me with important insights because her learning style is similar to that of our daughter. If our adoption lacked the level of openness that makes our conversations possible, I firmly believe that I would be less effective at guiding and supporting my daughter in school.

Erica's potential to be a resource in this way wasn't something I consciously considered when I started down the path of open adoption, but it has definitely been one of the benefits. 

For more responses to this prompt, please click here and then scroll down to the comment section.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

On My Father's Boat: Yet Another Story of Adoption Reunion

My father is at the helm. I am standing just to the port side of him. We are motoring along the coast of Maine, and on the shore that we are passing is the town where he and my mother grew up. Their story, and mine, began in the usual way: boy meets girl. But sometime after that, our tale veered from the usual course.

In a different scenario, the town we are passing now might have been my first home. Instead, I was raised in a different town further up the coast, by different parents than the two with whom I began my life.
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