"Take an action each day that alleviates suffering in the world. Bring light into darkness."
-Angeles Arrien

Here is the test to find whether your mission on earth is finished:
If you're alive, it isn't.
--- Richard Bach

I have come to realize more and more that the greatest disease and the greatest suffering is to be unwanted, unloved, uncared for, to be shunned by everybody, to be just nobody [to no one]
--Mother Teresa

We were not separated at your birth.
It was the moment at which we began our journey toward each other
-Nancy McGuire Roche

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Birth parents

Well I have spent the last 5 days writing letters to my childrens birth parents and making these really neat photo memory books. This was a lot harder then it sounds.

How do you thank someone for giving you the most precious gift on earth? How are you compassionate of their loss and still joyful of your gain? How do you express in words the level of gratitude you feel every time you look into those dark eyes and know their birth parents selflessly gave them life just to have to give them away?

It is so surreal. One of the main reasons I went with International adoption is because I thought the children were orphan and I wouldn't have to deal with birth parents. Now here I am 14 months later initiating contact. I would of never thought this is something I would want to do. My views have definitely changed. I guess the real aspect of meeting them in person and seeing the third world country they live in made my heart grow with compassion. I can not imagine having to give these two beautiful children up. We live in such a different world. In the US children are given up for adoption for many different reasons. In Vietnam it is mainly due to extreme poverty children are voluntarily relinquished for adoption. Keeping their child could turn into a death sentence for that child. How must that feel? Not really much of a choice.

Khai's birth mother gave us a letter at the G&R that we just recently had translated. Even though my views had changed my Husband did not want to initiate contact until he read this letter. How can we not after this letter? I cry every time I read it. She was so sweet and said all the right things. She thanks us for adopting him and says she was happy when she learned of our interest in adopting Khai (So strange because she seemed so cold to us in Vietnam on the day of the adoption). She tells us she is truly at peace giving Khai to us because she knows we will provide him a good home. The last paragraph of the letter is to Khai and she conveys her love and sorrow in giving him up. She says she will always remember him, his smile and his eyes. That he will always be in her heart. I can feel her pain.

We will also be sending monetary gifts to each set of birth parents equivalent to about a years wage in a rural area. We hope this will improve their life in some way and ease the hardships we know life has dealt them. At the end of the day it is so little to us but hopefully means much to them.

Edited: I think I found a way for you to view the memory books. They are almost finished. Take a look and let me know what you think.




Webb Family said...

got your comment on the WC group...thanks. that is so neat that you are able to make contact with their birth parents. how did you get their address?

Heather said...

If your children are relinquished you will get an address in your paperwork. I am also going through WC to handle the transaction. They will translate and deliver the letter,photo book and money. They will take a picture of the family getting the money and signing for it.

Michelle said...

Your kids are just beautiful. Love the books. Still struggling myself with the birth parent contact. . .

Meg and Ava said...

Wow Heather -

The books are beautiful. If we had met Ava's family - I am sure we would have contact with them (different than originally planned). The families with us that met the birth families were very pleased to have had that opportunity and I feel sad that I may never know anything about Ava's background and can not thank them or tell them how wonderfully she is doing.