5 little words that broke my heart…
When A came home, I thought in my naivety that we would have at least 5-6 years before the understanding of adoption sunk in with him and the questions would begin.
I was wrong.
I severely underestimated the brain power our little boy has. Twice over the past 2 weeks, someone has spoken about his adoption in front of him. One was my niece, who has obviously been spending some time processing it herself and, when he was playing with his other cousin a few feet away, stated in her clear and loud 7 year old voice “Are you going to tell A he is adopted?” A paid no attention but, would have heard it at a sub conscious level. I answered that of course we were going to tell him and changed the subject.
Then, on Saturday we had a braai at our place and the boyfriend of a friend of ours asked innocently “where did he get those big eyes from”. I doubt he was meaning to be answered as literally as his GF did, when she said “oh, he’s adopted”!! A was again, just a few feet away.
So, I have kind of been expecting questions to come up but, again our little boy amazed us with his intellect. 2 nights ago, when his Daddy was bathing him and I was catching up on my guilty pleasure tv, he randomly asked the question “was I born to you?” I could almost hear D’s heart stop and his mind think “shit, why me, why now?” before he answered “no my Boy, you were born to a Tummy Mummy who brought you to us.” A thought for a fraction of a second and then replied “oh, do they do that?” D answered that yes they do do that and then the conversation returned to cars/snakes/dinosaurs. All through the short exchange, I sat paralysed by shock on the sofa, how did 2 mentions of adoption in his presence become “was I born to you?”
Fast forward to this morning, on our drive to school, before we are even out our complex and before I am actually fully awake, the question returned in a slightly different disguise. “Mommy, I wasn’t born to you, was I?” Dammit, I knew I should have had that 3rd cup of coffee!! “No my Boy, you were born to a Tummy Mummy” “What’s a Tummy Mummy?” “A Tummy Mummy is a very special kind of Mommy who grows babies in her tummy for Mommies who can’t.” Silence for a full minute. “Mommy, did you born Eloise?” Wow. “Yes my Boy.” Excited now he says “yay Mommy, so you are a Tummy Mummy too!!”
Bloody hell, 4 years old and so profound….I guess it has something to do with all those books we have read to him over the years, that deal with adoption in a soft way with bears adopting foxes etc, but how amazing what sinks in to his little sponge of a brain and that he translates it to “was I born to you?”
My boy, even though I wanted a little more time with you thinking I am your one and only Mommy, I couldn’t be more proud.