Thursday, November 24, 2011

Holiday Traffic

I just looked at the date of my last post and was amazed. Oct. 11 was quite awhile ago. You know how it is, busy with life in general, working constantly and trying to make ends meet, noticing November's focus on adoption and wanting to avoid the subject all together. The last few months have been difficult and I just didn't think I could handle anything else that would add to the general down in the dumps feeling.

Today was a good day though. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. The focus is all on being with family, friends and loved ones. There's no pressure with shopping, budgets, time crunches etc..... for me it's just about love. I was with some of my loved ones and some were at other dinners in other towns and other states. Although they weren't here I know they care for me and I have so much to be thankful for. Today I had my son  and his family with me but my girls weren't here. My oldest is in Ohio and my youngest was with her hubby's family. I miss them but it's fine because I know our relationships are about a lot more than just one day.

So anyway.... I've been focusing on the gratitude today. I am so grateful to have my oldest daughter back in my life after 22 years of separation due to adoption. I'm grateful that I can now say I have 3 children. I can now say I have 4 grandchildren. I don't have to hide anymore. I don't have to lie anymore. I have contact with her. I can tell her that I love her just like I do with my other 2 children. She's a part of me and I can claim that without fear or shame. People who have never been through adoption separation have no idea just how huge this is. It's big. It's life changing - for both sides. I'm grateful that I was able to find my daughter. I'm grateful that I could stand in my back yard and take a photo of all 3 of my children - that was a dream come true. Even though that particular event happened some years ago, it still sticks in my mind as if it were yesterday. It was a pivotal event.  Holiday photos are taken by the billions and they're wonderful but there's something special about taking a picture of all of your children together for the very first time. That particular day wasn't a calendar holiday but it was a moment that divided my life. There was the "before my children met each other" time and then the "after my children met each other"time.

What else am I grateful for? The internet. It's helped me stay connected to my daughter and grandchildren. It's helped me to stay connected to family that live on the other side of the country. It's helped me hang out with friends and other artists. It's helped me get the word out about my work. It's inspired me by showing me the world. It's also shown me the dark side of the world we live in. Even though I don't really want to know this because it's hard to read or see, I'm grateful for it. If we didn't find out about the greedy, money grubbing, baby trafficking people like this how would we know what we're up against? We need to know that there are people advertising this little boy

 "Caucasian boy due Dec. 25 in UT. Agency fees of 30,500 plus 1K medical." 

or this baby.....

 "African American baby of unknown gender due 12/3. NEEDS UT FAMILY! Agency fees of 17K plus 6K medical." 

Now can someone please explain why the medical is 1K in the first listing but 6K in the second listing? Could it have something to do with the holiday? The first baby's due date is Christmas day after all. Why is the Caucasian boy so much more expensive than the African American baby of unknown gender. Is it because the gender is unknown or because the baby is African American? WTF? 

Here's another little item from this company's site....

Education on Birth mother warning signs and Birth father situations: We help our clients reduce the risk associated with adoption by matching with specific birth mothers and steering clear of birth mothers or birth fathers that exhibit common warning signs. Our agencies disclose a full social and medical history of the birth mother and frequently test for drugs and alcohol exposure.

Common warning signs of what? Mothers who may decide they want to keep and raise their children? What exactly are they saying here? These are people who are just another layer in the world of flesh peddling. They're not an agency. They are consultants who are nothing but another go-between in the middle of the AP's and the agency who is recruiting the expectant mother. This is another middle man. Another group of people with their hands out looking to make money on the sales of children but hey, if the word Christian is right there at the top of the page then they must be good - right? People (some, not all) who call themselves Christians are supposed to have a grasp of the concept of gratitude but can they appreciate the connection a mother and child have for each other? Can they appreciate that what's in the best interest of the child (except of course in the case of abuse or neglect) is to remain with his/her natural family? Do they only feel gratitude for the bottom line? 

As much as it hurts to see this, I'm grateful for the media that allowed it to come to our attention. If we didn't have access to this information, how would we know that this was going on? How would we know that there are things that need to change? I'm so grateful for the time we live in but so sad that the time we live in hasn't shown us to be more evolved than this.