'Why don't you send her back?'
What a peculiar thing to say to me:
Where do I start with that question. Yes, I may have been put through the ringer and gone to the very extreme of parenting experience but 'sending her back'? Really, how do you think that question helps me today. The nuance of my life seems beyond explanation sometimes.
The fascination with adoption seems to hang on the questions can you ever love a child that's not 'yours' the same as your 'own'? I don't know and never will.
I don't want to know, that's a terrifying thought and I don't even want to go there. I'd like to think my feelings are as much as anyone can ever feel for a child. Perhaps that's just me who ponders these thoughts, it's all meant to be ok isn't it?
In the midst of our challenge that question, 'Why don't you send her back?' hurts.
I made a covenant and for as long as I can, for as long as I should and as long as she needs I'll keep going. More than that I love her as such as I can. So, is it as much as I'd be able to love a biological child? does it even matter.
In the midst of my own pain, confusion and suffering you wake the protective dad with those words. I become an apologist for poor behaviour, I can list the reasons for it and don't need to resort to excuses. I want you to understand like I understand to love like I love. Don't interrogate me, don't add to my woes. They were trying to help by asking the question but have made it all worse, much worse.
I imagined her leaving and I feel worse than ever, so you have helped. My resolve is stronger than ever, I'm weak and wobbly but that's different to giving up.
She will not be going back, there is no back, if she were ever to leave it's not to a mythical back. There is no back.
There's a year to the day between that question and me. It still stings a year on.