I’ve been thinking lately about one particular internet friend, known online as kittymama, and I’ve been thinking about her because the child she brings home will be her first. And I want her to know, in advance, one thing:
You hate them sometimes no matter what.
Babies, biological, adopted, I’m guessin’ any way you bring them into the family, they screw things up. And I mean that in the most loving, actually dealing pretty well way.
When you have your first kid, no matter how you have them, it messes with your entire existence. And it continues to mess with it, and when you add others, it messes with it again. I’ve hated each of my kids in turn for what they did to my nice tidy life, particularly between 3 and 4 in the morning, which is an hour when no one who isn’t having a really good time should be awake. It’s then that you consider strangling them, or wonder what would happen if you walked out the door and just kept going, that you weep and curse and moan. Well, other times too, to be honest, but really then.
And I keep thinking–if my first child had been adopted, if I didn’t know to an absolute certainty that I, at least, go through this every single time, what would that feel like?
Horrible. There’s an additional sense of needing to love the kid that comes, for me, with adoption. A baby can’t actually tell, especially if it’s kind of fitfully sleeping, or chowing, that you’re loathing it some of the time, but a kid–a sensitive, already abandoned kid who’s had its whole world overturned–who could hate that kid? Who could be so cold?
I think–lots of people. People who’ve spent the day in a port-a-potty, or haven’t slept in weeks, or are watching the rest of their lives flip over and over, unable to settle, completely at the mercy of something you somehow thought was within their control.
That’s just parenting. Sometimes it sucks. There may be people out there who take it all in stride, but I don’t know any of them, and if I did, I wouldn’t like them. It’s hard, being a parent, it’s hard becoming a parent, it’s hard becoming a parent again.
So if that’s you, and you’re thinking it’s just you–it’s not.