My Family

If you are new to this blog and want to read the entire story chronologically - please start in January with "Our Story, Part 1"

Monday, May 9, 2011

Better than Christmas

Mother’s Day memories over the years conjure up a host of varied memories for me… bitter, excited, sad, thrilled, happy, depressed, joyous ~ for example: the Mother’s Day that Preston went back to his birth mom (one of the hardest days of my life); the Mother’s Day Ruth called and asked me if Bryan could come back and live with us (one of the best days of my life); and Mother’s Day yesterday, receiving homemade cards from my children (one of the best days ever!)

Before I adopted my children, I loathed hearing the sappy, wonderful Mother’s Day posts with mother’s bragging about their children, and what a wonderful day they had etc. etc. etc. I would just go away even more depressed and upset that I wasn’t a part of that “group.” But my experience yesterday was life changing…..

It started with my sons getting up early to make me an amazing feast of pancakes and breakfast burritos! They dished up my plate, and even though I wasn’t really hungry I ate everything they gave me. I was completely overstuffed (but with a smile on my face!)
I then received a card from my oldest son Bryan (15)… He wrote the most remarkable personalized message for me. Here is a little extract: “Thank you for being so loving to all of us and thanks for teaching us how to love. Your example means so much to me and watching you has helped me know what attributes I want to look for in my future spouse.”

He always makes my cards on plain white paper with his own sentiments and sketches… they are worth their weight in gold to me!

My son Bryan was also asked to give a talk during our church services yesterday as a tribute to mothers. He had two weeks to prepare and he asked me if I would tell him about his adoption. He and I talked a lot about it and he told me he wanted to share some of his feelings about coming to live with us (he came to live with us originally at 2 ½ and then again when he was 4 ½). He shared how he naturally and instantly called my husband “dad” and held his hand the first day he lived with us. He mentioned how he felt when he came back to live with us the second time and how he adjusted to calling me “mom.” I had never really heard how he felt or how he really felt about me as his mother until I received his card and heard his talk. The last few months I have struggled with feelings of inadequacy as a mother, especially with regards to my son Bryan. I felt unworthy to even be his mother and that I wasn’t a good enough example for him, so his words of praise and comfort were extra special for me and lifted my spirits immensely. I felt peace. I felt pure joy. I felt the immense importance of being a mother to my children. I felt and feel completely blessed to be their mother.

I also feel saddened that Ruth doesn’t get to experience the complete and utter joy of motherhood. I expressed my feelings to her about this and explained to her how grateful I am that she has allowed me this opportunity to be a mother. In her usual humble fashion, she expressed her gratitude to ME for taking such good care of her children, she thanked ME. She thanked ME! I love you Ruth and your amazing example of selflessness.


  1. just stayed up till 3am reading your story. Its an incredible story. I am an adoptee (as is my brother, and my fiance) working towards my social work degree hoping to work in adoptions or in "foster to adopt" or "waiting children" programs. I am really blessed and excited about your decisions to be honest with your children from the beginning and having the courage to give them openness with thier biological links. Not only is this proven scientifically to benefit the children, but as a child of a "semi-open" adoption, knowing is always better then not knowing, and having relationships with birthparents is crucial to an individuals idea about who they are. Also i am encouraged that you have "gone public" with this as i believe that many people fear openness in adoption or even adoption in general and the more people who can be honest about both the struggles and joys, the less scary territory it is for people. Your children are extremely lucky to have a family that has kept the family together and been able to provide for them. Many children in the foster system dream of such a family.

  2. Thank you so much for your comment! I saw on my e-mail that I had a comment and I was almost afraid to open it. So many people have negative views of open adoption, or adoption in general and I have been blasted several times about "going public" - my blog was actually closed for quite some time and I just recently made it open to the public.

    I agree that "knowing is better than not knowing" and "having relationships with birthparents is crucial." The relationship my children have with their birthparents and extended family has made a huge difference in how they feel about themselves.

    I always appreciate ideas or suggestions about open adoption and things that have worked for other people. Thank you for sharing part of your life and for your words of encouragement! I do feel extremely blessed to have such wonderful children and a relatoinship with their birth mother and family. Thanks again!

  3. ive found something that has helped me explain my situation (at my wedding both my birth mom, and my fiances birthmom will be there and both of them have kids who will be in our wedding in various roles) to friends and family is that its more of an extended family kind of relationship...its not confusing for me because i know that my parents are the amazing people who raised me, and my birthmom is the amazing person who gave me a chance at a better life...but my relation with her is much more one of a beloved aunt or family member then a parenting role...i think that people are scared about kids getting confused when they dont understand that my birthmom is in no way trying to control my upbringing or raise me, and when i have explained it to friends and family as more of a extended family role they seem much more accepting and a lot less paraniod or judgmental of the fact that i know her, and know her reasons for giving me up.

  4. I am finally reading this post, and ah! Tears!!! You are such a wonderful mother, Camille!! That is so sweet that Bryan had the chance to share his feelings about you as his mother. You truly are such an awesome example - even to ME and in so many ways!!! I heart you!