Monday, August 20, 2007

Will I Be Enough?

As adoptive mothers this is a question we all ask ourselves, will I be enough for my child? Am I doing the right thing by taking her from her country? As much as I try I will never be able to provide her with the real experience of being a true Ethiopian…or will I?

As a person of color born in the United States with a heritage in Africa (I will tell you where when my DNA test comes back), Dominican Republic and Jamaica does that make me any less Dominican or Jamaican because I was not raised there? Maybe to some but not to me. Why? Because it is in my heart just as much as Africa is in my heart. My Spanish language skills are not fluent and my Patois is non existent but I love the islands, the music: Merengue, Salsa, Bachata, and Reggae, the food: Plantain, Rice and Beans, Sancocho, Ox Tails …etc, you get the point. My culture is in me although I wasn’t raised in it and I am proud. My daughter may not be raised in Ethiopia but her culture will be in her just as my culture will be in her.

Also, who is to say that simply because you are raised in a country that you are culturally rich. How many people do you know raised right here in the United States and don’t know anything about American culture and history? How much do you really know? OK…don’t send me a test!

I am certain as the years pass I will wonder what my daughter is thinking and am I exposing her enough but I won’t second guess myself about my decision to adopt her and I hope that none of you second guess yourselves either. Our paths have been set by God, not all paths are clear but we are to keep walking them and they will become clearer. So the answer to will I be enough is...Yes...we will be enough together. Selam.


haze said...

Great post! Thanks Tami. I've worried about this too and you have provided a fresh perspective for me.

I was born in England & came to Canada as a child. I had no say in the matter, and would have preferred to stay in the UK (still think so).

But my parents did what was right for the family - giving us better opportunities.

Adopting our children from Ethiopia has some parallels to that scenario.

I consider myself as British/Canadian. Sadly I feel little connection to Barbados or St.Kitts (my parent's birthplaces).

Our children will be fine growing up in N. America!

chou-chou said...

What a lovely post.

And I really like your comments about connection to place. I have many of the same thoughts, although my connection to Africa is about as tenuous as it gets (as a person of English / Irish / Welsh descent).

As odd as it sounds, I have never at home as much as I do when I'm in Africa. I literally breathe easier there.

Biologically I know we're all descended from Lucy, and I'm clinging to that little factoid. :-)

Rebecca said...

Love the post! It is true. I wonder about so many things that you talked about! I wonder if my husband and I will be enough. All I know is that we are going to try as hard as we can to be enough!

Some of our friends just adopted two older children from Ethiopia, and I was thinking about them today. I wondered what it is like for them to get on the plane, and see Ethiopia from the window, just fading away. Do they feel it? How sad will they be? Or, are they so excited about their new parents that they don't think about it?

So, interesting that you would post about those things today. Just what I was thinking!

Jocelyn said...

You really do make us all think:-) Here I am posting about toys I bought and you are posting about what is on all of our minds!! I worry about this too but like you said, I will never second guess my decision to adopt. I will just be the best mom I can be....and love my daughter with all of my heart.

Owlhaven said...

I love the conclusion to this post....

Mary, mom to many
including 4 Ethiopian girls

Tami said...

Thanks All! I must say this is one of my favorite posts also and the one from yesterday. I told my mother...I'm getting deep huh? LOL I just write it like I feel it!

Jaishree said...

Hi... I happened to chance upon ur blog when I was just blogsurfin... wow.. amazing.. I have always thought of adopting a child even I were not to marry.. but havent thought about it deeply enough.. ur blog has sure opened several perspectives...

kristine said...

I want to have my husband's DNA tested. How did it work. Did you get the results.

I was just going through your old posts.

This one is very nice. But I like all of yours.