However parenthood comes to us, it will be a miracle. As A. & I grow closer to beginning the adoption process and trying to make a firm decision on which agency to go with, I am heartened by my own emotional day-to-day reactions to the little ones I come across.
For example, I had to do a site visit up in the Bronx to an Early Head Start center sponsored by ESS (the non-profit for which I work). My heart melted as I entered the infant & toddler classrooms where young, delightful, round & brown faces greeted me -- all wide-eyed & just simply happy. Some sat in these tiny chairs in a reading session, while others played or looked curious. I wanted so much to take a couple of them home with me! Their very presence and my reaction reassured me how 'parentable' A. & I are.
As I continue to research both international & domestic adoption, I find myself doing searches for different kinds of 'adoptable' kids. It's heart-wrenching to read descriptions of especially older kids who struggle to be 'adoptable.' Sadly, their emotional/physical/ mental/medical challenges make them not-so-adoptable. And at the same time, I get anxious about whether or not A. & I are 'parentable.' In addition to being financially secure enough, will our profile as a couple be 'parentable' enough? But if recent immigrant parents living borderline poverty in the Bronx can do it, surely we can. Parentable enough? Not to mention all of the paperwork and assurances that we're asked to provide. Like signing off on a statement that confirms we don't support corporal punishment to detailing our primary and alternative childcare plans. I'm pretty sure they don't ask biological parents to jump through as many hoops, but they're 'parentable' from the momentous "We're pregnant" get-go!
It's been a long while that we've seriously considered adoption (even while A. & I were dating, I made sure to discuss my affection for including adoption in our family life), not completely giving up all hope to have biological children of our own, but also accepting the reality of our doctors' opinions, our age, our physical status & our definitive choice to not explore further medical opportunities . . . as well as all that has happened in our lives since we've been together, including open heart surgery at 38, cancer & death. Given all those experiences and how we've courageously broken through them, I am confident that A. & I are parentable.