Thursday again? Like any parent, I have hopes and dreams for my daughter. The only difference is that I am not parenting her and someone else is in physical charge of nurturing her through to adulthood. I was once told by a disgruntled, anti-birth parent reader that my dreams for my child were out of place as I was not her parent. That’s preposterous!
For example, I have dreams for my younger brother. I want him to be happy in his marriage, successful in whatever career path he finally chooses and to find a vehicle that won’t break down every other week. That doesn’t mean I’m going to force him to marry someone I think is worthy, choose his career path or buy him a vehicle. Similarly, I have dreams for my own parents! I want them to be happy with each other, be super healthy, spoil their grandkids and live forever. Of course, I can’t make them always like each other, I can’t erase their health problems and I know they won’t live forever. But I am pretty certain that they’re spoiling their grandchildren. No doubt there.
And so, yes, I do have dreams for my child.
1. Happiness. I can’t qualify this too much. Happiness means different things to everybody. Whatever she chooses in life, I hope she’s truly happy with it.
2. True love. I’m sure she’ll experience some not-so-true-love on her way to my wish of true love. Most of us do. I hope those experiences will be few and not very painful. There’s nothing like true love. I live it everyday and I wish that for my daughter.
3. Confidence. I didn’t have much self-esteem or confidence in myself while growing up. I felt awkward, ugly, too smart (there is such a thing in the popularity contest that is high school) and just a general list of negative things. While I know, now, that many high school kids feel the same way, my dream would be for my daughter to escape some of that and be comfortable in her own skin.
4. Health! When I was making my adoption plan, the Munchkin’s health history was pretty clear. We’ve learned over the years that I didn’t know some things and, sadly, more health problems seem to keep popping up in her maternal and paternal lineage. My hope is that she doesn’t have to deal with some of this “ick” and, if she does, that she would receive the very best of care.
5. A Good Relationship with Her Parents. Mmmhmm, that’s what I said. And no, I’m not referring to myself. I’m referring to her everyday (adoptive) parents. Her Mom. Her Dad. I chose them, she didn’t. I chose them because I liked what they had to say about parenting. I could feel their love. I knew that they would love her even if she called them poopyheads during a fight. I didn’t always have a great relationship with my own parents. My dream is that she will be able to confide in them even during those not-so-easy tween and teen years. I love the relationship I have with my parents now and I hope she is able to cultivate one of her own from an early age.
6. Music. Before anyone jumps on me and tells me that I’m projecting, find me one parent who doesn’t say, “I hope my kid can do x, y or z thing at some point in his/her life.” That said, since we’re talking about dreams, I’d love for the Munchkin to have inherited my ability to sing or make music. It’s a big part of who I am and for her to have that would be something special to me. She’s already a little music bug, singing in the car from a very, very young age. Maybe she won’t be able to sing. But if she even enjoys some of the music that I do, well, that would be fabulous.
7. A Love of Reading. I’m a book worm. Her parents are bookishly cool as well. I hope that the nature and nurture come together and create a book lover. Books are so amazing. I hope she is able to recognize their importance in an increasing technological age.
8. A Relationship with ALL of Her Brothers. You see, the Munchkin has six brothers. Three are much older but think the world of her. Two are twenty-three months younger than she is and think the world of her. One is almost four years younger and while they haven’t met just yet (weather, illness), he’s heard a bunch of stories. I didn’t have anything that qualified as a “relationship” with my own brother until the past few years because of our large age gap. I’m hoping that the Munchkin will enjoy the ages that surround her and forge a relationship with even the oldest of the brothers. Family is so important. I wanted her to be surrounded with family. I just didn’t know that they would all be boys!
9. Success. Now, don’t read into that. This one is kind of like happiness. Success is different for every person. However, in whatever she chooses, i want her to succeed. (Though, failure teaches us a lot, doesn’t it?) If she wants to be a CEO, I want her to run a wonderful company. If she wants to be a teacher, I want her to be the favorite of all the students. If she wants to be a stay-at-home-mom, I want her to have the time of her life while doing it. Basically, this just ties into happiness because no matter what you’re doing, if you are happy it all feels like a success.
10. Faith. I won’t delve too much into this one. Just suffice it to say that my hope is that my relinquished daughter can find faith.
11. My Eyes. Okay, so she already has my eyes. I love that about her face; I see my own eyes staring back at me. But people grow and change over the years. I would love if her physical eye shape stayed similar to mine. Yes, this is totally superficial but when you relinquish a child, you look for almost any connection. I’d still love her if the color or shape changed, of course. I just love that they are my eyes. Got it?
12. A Sense of Security. You don’t have to read too many adoptee blogs to know that adoption can blow a child/adult’s sense of self and security out of the water. (Oh, how I wish blogging was what it is today back when I was placing!) While there are no guarantees, my hope would be that the work that her parents and I are putting in now will be beneficial to her in the future. I have no doubt that she will have questions. Hard ones. I’m expecting anger directed right at me. But I hope that when it is all said and done, she knows that she was always wanted and always loved and always cherished by all of her parents. I have worries about what issues I may have caused by relinquishing my rights but this, right here, is my hope for her future.
13. Of course: A Relationship with Me. This one? Is purely selfish. I admit that. Fully. But, yes, a dream for my daughter is a relationship with me. (It wouldn’t hurt a bit if that relationship was good, too!) I’m working my tail off to be there for her now and I can only hope that she wants me there later. It will be her choice, of course, but yes, it’s my hope and dream that she finds value in my presence. I love her so very much.
Every birth mother and father have different dreams for their relinquished child(ren). This is just a partial list of what I wish for my daughter. I’d give her the world if I could. Instead she is constantly in my prayers.
For more Thursday Thirteen on the birth/first parent blog, read these posts.