And next week he’s going to ask for the car keys

August 25, 2009 at 9:08 am | Posted in M'ijo | 1 Comment

If the whole front-facing business weren’t proof enough that My Baby is Growing Up… P’ito is moving into the 3 year old room (upstairs!) at daycare by the end of the month.  One of the moms from his infant class and I had a good sniffle over that in the parking lot today.

I’m sorry kid – you have to be potty-trained before you can have the car keys.  I’ve gotta draw the line somewhere.

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Background Noise

August 23, 2009 at 8:03 pm | Posted in M'ijo | 10 Comments

We just turned P’ito around in his carseat.  Every time he climbs into his seat, he announces “I a BIG BOY now,” and I swear to g-d his chest puffs out with pride.

Turning him around has brought me face-to-face with a question that has been percolating in the back of my mind for a while.  I get most of my news from NPR, although I persist in subscribing to the Times in the hope that it will osmosize from my front stoop/kitchen table into my brain without being read.

P’ito doesn’t seem to be tuning in to what’s on the radio, but I keep wondering when a little voice from the backseat is going to say, “Mama, what’s ethnic cleansing?”  I frequently think that he’s not paying attention back there, until he chirps in, “I want Ice Cream!” (to a discussion Pili and I were having about whether to stop for I-C-E  C-R-E-A-M  – and he doens’t even know his letters) or demands to hear THAT ONE AGAIN! for the 5th time in a row when we’re listening to one of his cds…  So even though he appears to be oblivious when NPR is on, I don’t know that he really is tuning out, or if he is, how much longer I can count on it.

How do you approach car music/media/news?

Signed, sealed, and in the mail today.

August 22, 2009 at 1:40 pm | Posted in On the road again... | 12 Comments

Dear Adoption Agency Lady (AAL):

Enclosed please find the remaining documents needed for our homestudy:

  • New set of fingerprint cards for ArtSweet (Apparently the first ones weren’t good enough)
  • Autobiographies, ArtSweet & Pili
  • Employment Information Form
  • Salary Letter & W2 forms
  • Financial Statement
  • Psychologist Letter (ArtSweet)
  • Driver’s License Photocopies
  • Medical Forms, Art, P’ito & Pili
  • Post Adoption Contact Form
  • Child Interest Grid
  • Child Identity Grid
  • Reference Form
  • Homestudy Workbook
  • 1040 Forms, Art & Pili
  • Photocopy of Insurance Card
  • Certified Birth Certificates
  • Domestic Program Fee

There’s a new little widget over there on the right…

Off to start spit-polishing the baseboards.

Art

Contact

August 18, 2009 at 12:22 pm | Posted in AdoptThis!, M'ijo, mishpocheh | 13 Comments

Pili & P’ito’s Birthmom, holding hands

About a year ago, we hired a social worker in Guatemala to search for P’ito’s first family.  We had so many reasons – we wanted them to know that he was healthy and loved, we wanted him to know more about where he came from and to have a tangible connection to his own past, we wanted to know – one way or the other – whether the adoption was ‘clean’ and the truth of the history in the social work report from family court.

After an arduous search in a remote region of the country, the social worker, C., located P’ito’s birthmother and shared the photos and letters we had sent.  We learned more about her, got pictures of the small village where she lives, learned that she was so glad to hear that her child was well and thriving.

When we decided to go back to Guatemala for a visit this summer, we contacted C. and asked if we might be able to meet with P’ito’s birthfamily.  They took an 11 hour journey to meet him and us.  Vast gulfs of language, culture, and class were crossed in our mutual delight over P’ito’s mischevious smile – a smile that begins in the corner of his mouth and reaches his eyes – just like his mother’s.

I know that for many families, the thought of searching is terrifying.  They believe the lawyers and the foster families who said, oh she said she doesn’t want contact.  They are afraid of the truths that may be exposed.  I can’t make promises about anyone’s experience beyond my own.  But I can say – look – this is what it can look like.

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