February 14. The day all about love. The day that Lucy girl was finally able to receive our last name.
In the adoption world this is known as our Finalization day, but we call it our Lucy day. Every state is different on how soon you can finalize your adoption. For us because we adopted in the state of Utah we had to wait at least six months since the time Lucy was in our home. Our family had to wait 10 months due to some annoying circumstances.
Time seemed to drag on while we waited for the chance to be able to finalize her adoption. We were so excited for Lucy to finally be able to share our last name. We thought this day was going to be a huge celebration.
Then the day came. The feelings we experienced that day were unexpected. Yes, we felt peace that everything was final. We felt joy because we finally had a child that shared our last name.
And we felt immense gratitude for Lucy’s birth parents and the amazing people they are.
But then as we started thinking about Lucy’s birth parents we felt extreme sadness, loss, pain, loneliness, and guilt.
The reality of adoption once again set in.
For our family to be able to grow another family had to experience loss. A loss that most do not understand or even recognize. A very layered loss that adoptees have to grow up trying to uncover and then learn to live with.
We could feel so much loss that day. It was painful. The world seemed unfair that day. And then the guilt started to set in.
I wanted to write about this day, not to have people feel sorry for us or to tell us that Lucy is lucky to have us (because she isn’t!!!! Which I should write about sometime).
I just really wanted to share a hard truth that comes with adoption. Adoption is hard. Adoption is loss. Yes adoption is beautiful when you are looking in from my family’s perspective, but it is oftentimes more bittersweet than sweet. Adoption affects 3 sides. Adoptees, birth parents, and adoptive parents.
We definitely don’t look at February 14 as a day to celebrate Lucy’s finalization. It isn’t a day we make a huge deal about either. We do however focus on what the Holiday is all about, love. That is why we call it our Lucy day. We make that day all about her. We do what she wants to do, eat what she wants to eat, and love her through anything she may be experiencing. We honor her birth families by talking about them and showing her pictures of them. Telling her about them and the reasons why Shane and I love them and how much they love her. We talk about her birth and the miracle and blessing she is to all. We explain that is was a wonderful day but a hard one. We try to create a space that is safe and for her to feel whatever she needs to feel. Because one day she may really struggle with it.
Lucy day is all about her. It is all about LOVE.
It is a privilege for Shane and I to be able to raise Lucy. We don’t take that lightly. We are humbled and very grateful. We LOVE our Lucy girl.