Making the Case for Siblings
We have spent the last two months educating ourselves on the various aspects and issue relevant to the adoption triad (birth parent, adoptive parent, and adoptee) through books, articles, and social media. We are a member of Facebook groups that connect expectant parents and adoptive parents in hopes of finding the right fit! I love and admire the bravery, openness, and support I’ve seen in these groups but there is one thing I have noticed! I have seen several expectant moms/couples say that they are looking for a family with no children. I think that’s amazing that they know exactly what they want and I have seen many of them say they prefer this so they can bless a couple who haven’t had the chance to be parents yet. Y’all, that is just…it gives me all the best feelings to know that there are women who are going through such a personally tough time and still have a heart for these empty-armed families longing for a chance to hear a sweet little voice call them Mama. They are pushing through their own stress and struggle to see another family struggling and they are prepared to help make everyone’s dreams come true. It’s honestly the most beautiful part of adoption, seeing compassion, love, sacrifice, and honor seeping into every situation through the love and devotion for a child who won’t be able to understand the magnitude of the intense selfless love in this arrangement until years after it’s happened.
BUT, I know a lot of mamas may have other requests in their search for the right adoptive family. Must love dogs and Steve Martin, hopes to someday visit the Eiffel Tower, hates chocolate as much as you (which is crazy but you do you, girl!). How else are you ever going to weed through the insane amount of profiles and connect with someone who can teach your child the importance of Steve’s SNL performances? But if you’re reading this friend, and you haven’t yet made up your mind on whether you have a preference of other kids or not in the adoptive family you’re searching for, I’d love to make a case for siblings. Pretty please.
I know, I know. You see our profile and think “they already have more than a couple of kids”. And you’re right, we’ve been blessed beyond measure. We have four boys (as I’m sure you know). Our two oldest are Jesse’s from a previous marriage and Jeremiah and Jake are from our marriage. I birthed those two but they are all four my babies. We love children and we adore each of our children for their own individuality. But there is something truly magical about watching them be siblings to each other. There is nothing more rewarding than watching these boys love on each other, pick on each other, and be a part of each other’s sphere of influence unlike any other relationship will allow. Siblings provide comfort, company, inspiration, and commiseration in a way no other person on Earth can. There’s a song by Twenty One Pilots that says
“Sometimes a certain smell will take me back to when I was young
How come I’m never able to identify where it’s coming from
I’d make a candle out of it if I ever found it
Try to sell it, never sell out of it, I’d probably only sell one
It’d be to my brother, ‘cause we have the same nose
Same clothes homegrown a stone’s throw from a creek we used to roam”
You know what they mean? That smell your childhood home has that you know the second you smell it and is unique to your family? Having siblings gives a kid someone to share that with. It’s someone else to call when Mom (that’s me) is being weird again and trying to set you up with her young new dentist who can say “I know….just ignore her” with equal parts love and irritation. When there’s a board game begging to be played, there are built in participants (willing or not). Always someone to give a sideways glance at when Dad takes another detour on that endless road trip that one Summer. Always someone to help reinforce the castle walls when you’re building an epic sand castle. And when Mom and Dad ground them, there’s always someone there to pat them on the leg and say “it’s ok, one week is better than the two weeks I got last month”. And, just as equally important, they’re the one always saying “you can’t catch me” which accelerates us into trying harder, working tougher to accomplish our goals.
Our boys are each other’s confidants, tormentors, friends, coaches, fan section, nudgers, and family. They’re in it for life with each other. And begrudgingly, they’re usually very happy to have each other. Big families like ours means your house is always filled with people being a little too loud, bickering a little too long, and loving a little too hard. Holidays are crazy with too much food but nothing makes it feel more warm and welcoming than a bunch of happy people who love each other deeply and belly laugh a little too long. Soccer games are well attended. Orchestra concerts are too loudly applauded from our section. And that’s how we like it. And we hope someone find us and wants that for their baby. We hope someone sees this and knows that choosing us means choosing a lifetime of this for their baby. Picking us means picking a group of people who are passionate and fiery and dedicated and loyal and protective and we do not take this lightly. We all are brimming with hope that we will soon find someone who wants to bring their baby into our tribe.
And these four boys have been planning the days when we would have a little girl, a sister, that they could teach soccer to but also take to Disney and watch her geek out over seeing Cinderella. They talk at length of making sure she knows how to defend herself in danger but also how to stand up for herself in fairness and equality. We know that once we have a little girl, we will be complete and we are all anxious for that chance to finish our sibling circle.
Not everyone has the privilege of having two children, not everyone wants that for their child. Some people have chosen no children at all! And all of these situations are absolutely equally unique and wonderful. But, just in case, you were on the fence, siblings are pretty great. And ours are patiently waiting to initiate another member of their tribe into the fold. And good Lord, help the kid who picks on her.