Tomorrow marks the three month anniversary since we returned home from China with our newly adopted son, Jack. Prior to our travels I thought at length about what our new lives would look like. We thought about schedules, divisions of labor, and child care just like every other new parents. We weighed the pros and the cons, considered every angle, and came up with a fail safe plan.
Our set-up was perfect. It was important to consider our new son's transition and attachment so we would not put him into daycare. Instead I would have Jack weekdays until 2:30 PM then my husband would take over childcare duties so I could have uninterrupted work time. Mornings I would still have time to write since we had converted our laundry room into a playroom, right beside my office. And of course there was always nap time. A blessed quiet time when my creative muses would come out to play while my new son slept for 1-2 hours.
But the one thing I failed to truly consider was that Jack would be a toddler not a newborn. Of course I knew, intellectually, that Jack was 22 months old. And I knew, intellectually, where he would be developmentally, but the reality of it all?
In reality, adopting a toddler is like being thrown into fierce open waters with only a swimming raft to keep you afloat. You try to hang on for dear life, try not to gulp down the mounds of sea water that wash over you, but in the end you're still hanging on to a device meant for a Sunday afternoon's pool party.
When I began the A to Z Blog Challenge it was to explore where the mission of my work as an artist intersects the story of myself as an adoptive mother. Each day I have tried to find time to reflect and write but if you are following along with other #AtoZBlogChallenge you will know today is meant to be the letter "U." Ah best laid plans....
In reality, my son has no interest in his playroom and only naps when we take long 4-5 mile walks. He enters each room like a tornado of energy and comes crashing down just as fast. Though I may not be on the correct letter, I will get to the end of the alphabet. And I will continue to tell stories. I once heard a poet remark that "putting my hand on the page gives me grounding." I would only add that sharing those words can turn that swimming pool raft into a sturdy lifeboat.