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yesterday, today or tomorrow

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

We don't know which day it is really.
Yesterday, today or tomorrow.
The date listed on her birth certificate is tomorrow.
But the reality is, it's probably not her 'real' birthday.
That's one of the many hard things about international adoption. The not knowing.
We were blessed with the first three adoptions we had birth records. We didn't have some of the specifics other kids do, but we knew the date was real.
With Maddie, we just don't know.
And, most likely, we never will.
Think about it.
Think about all the things you know about yourself and the day you were born.
I know that I was born on a sultry summer morning in August...just after 7 a.m.
I know that my mom had braxton hicks for two weeks before I was born and that I was two weeks late.
Poor mom.
I know I was my mom's first born child.
I know I was dearly loved and sought after.
I know I had no hair when I was born.
I know a lot of things.
And what I don't know I can easily find out.
With Maddie we know nothing.
Absolutely nothing.
Well, we know one thing, but I don't want to share here because it's the only thing she has that is her own.
Even if it stinks.
It's going to take some getting used to.
We haven't figured out how we're going to talk to Maddie about all of this yet.
With the others, we just opened up their files and shared what was age appropriate. I guess that'll have to do for her as well. Of course it will probably be a little while before we're going to have to worry about that.
In the meantime we have a birthday to celebrate. ;>)
Her very first American birthday.
Even if we're not certain which day it is.

19 salty messages:

DoveFamily February 13, 2008 at 7:17 AM  

I think of birthdays as a celebration of a person you love, and that's what tomorrow will be! So have fun & celebrate this wonderful gift that God has given you.

Happy Birthday Maddie!!

Tina in CT February 13, 2008 at 7:48 AM  

I am also adopted and know my birthday and a few other facts. I care to leave it at that. That is not what makes me "me". What is important for Maddie is that she is very loved by her parents, sibblings and grandparents. Whatever date is on her paper is not the important thing. You all are. Enjoy her birthday celebration. Looking forward to the pictures.

Auntie G February 13, 2008 at 8:00 AM  

Happy Birthday Maddie!!
You were also wanted and loved . . . by the Clymer family.
Gail

Rosen Family February 13, 2008 at 9:02 AM  

I think it doesn't matter what your birthdate is...
but a day to celebrate you being you.
Celebrate with Maddie...
make her her own day --- whichever date feels right in your heart.
You are a very special mama and she has a very special papa!
Mazel Tov on your arrival at home and your new life with your four blessings!
Jan R.

Diana February 13, 2008 at 9:06 AM  

We, too have a copy of our son's original birth certificate, but there are still two different dates listed in all his paperwork. Quite honestly, I'd prefer the 2nd for school reasons...but in the long run, it doesn't really matter. It doesn't change who he is.

But, I do understand the greif that comes to us as parents with not really knowing for sure...and wondering how we're going to explain all this to our children in a way that will understand and still validate them. Unless you've been through it yourself, it's hard to really understand the jumble of emotions that come with it. None of them are bad, it doesn't mean we're not grateful for our kids, or even that we're complaining. It's all just a normal part of the healing and adjustment process and something we all have to work through.

However, every person needs a birthday and every person needs to be celebrated. Whether the real birthday is yesterday, today, tomorrow, next week, or next month, pick one and enjoy celebrating the magic of it with Maddie. She's so adorable!

Troy and Rachel February 13, 2008 at 9:23 AM  

Happy Birthday tomorrow to Maddie!! You know my dad was never positive about his birthday and he wasn't even adopted. The hospital burnt down that held his records and his mother couldn't remember which day he was actually born on. So - we would call him the day before, the day of, and the day after and sing Happy Birthday - he liked his 3 birthdays! It certainly didn't make him who he was!! So Maddie will just have to enjoy a birthday week!!

Anonymous,  February 13, 2008 at 10:25 AM  

My dad, who was not adopted, had conflicting records on the YEAR of his birth! Maddie is with her loving family now, and that is what matters the most. -- Melinda H.

Christina February 13, 2008 at 4:02 PM  

We have the same thing with R~ ... the birthdate is just an estimate. I haven't told R~ that, she's only 6 and I don't think she'd understand yet. Thus far, it hasn't come up - she just loves all the attention and presents and fun of birthdays. And we go on and on about the day we met, so I think in a way that's similar to the day-you-were-born stuff most kids hear. I hope.

Christina February 13, 2008 at 4:03 PM  

Yikes, I forgot to say

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MADDIE!!!!!

MoscowMom February 13, 2008 at 10:42 PM  

Happy Birthday, Maddie!!!!! Take lots of pictures :-)I agree with everyone else that what matters is who she is--a part of your family--and a date is just a date. The future is at her feet :-)

kate February 14, 2008 at 9:49 AM  

You can talk about what you do know,(we're so glad you were born!) what you guess, (I bet you've had that beautiful smile since the day you were born.) what you wish (I wish I had been the first person to kiss your neck. I wish I knew where your laugh comes from.)...

Happy birthday to your valentine!

Debbie February 14, 2008 at 9:51 AM  

Happy birthday, Maddie! How special to celebrate your first birthday as an American. I'm praising God that you have a wonderful family who loves you very much, even if they never know the circumstances of your birth. You are very special, and God has placed you in the family He has chosen for you. I pray you grow in the grace and knowledge of Him.

SG February 14, 2008 at 10:00 AM  

But how fun to pick your birthday. I would pick the 12th or the 16th so that it's not all blown over by Valentine's and is still even to with the 2. :) But 2-14-0? is cute too and easy to celebrate! I decided to come out of the anon. closet today. happy Valentines Day and Happy Birthday Maddie!

Dave February 14, 2008 at 11:11 AM  

Happy Birthday, Maddie! We celebrate your wonderful life and the blessing of getting to somewhat know precious little you because of your mom's blogs!
Enjoy your day with your brand new family who adores you!
Gina

Christine February 14, 2008 at 2:45 PM  

Happy Birthday Maddie! I love what Tina in ct said.

Kevin and Krista February 14, 2008 at 3:27 PM  

At least you can tell her what the weather was like on the day you adopted her, how she loved her Papa from the day she met him, how her sister and brothers met her at the airport and they all started speaking to her even though they could not understand each other, about how her Mommy and Daddy sought after her even when they were told there was not a daughter for them in Ukraine, and on and on. The girl has some history all right, just no written history from when she was newborn. I would definitely make a life book for her and share all the special firsts and dates that you DO know.

She sure is cute!

Ashley February 14, 2008 at 5:27 PM  

I believe everyone has already said it best so I will say....

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MADDIE!!!!

Tina in CT February 14, 2008 at 6:57 PM  

How was Maddie's first American birthday with cake, presents and family?

MamaPoRuski February 15, 2008 at 12:40 AM  

Happy Birthday Princess Maddie! We are so glad you can enjoy this month of love with your new family!

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