Posted by: manyblessings | 09/25/10

“Blood family”

I have heard this term over my lifetime and never thought much of it; I understood what it meant.

Now when I hear it, I bristle.

Our youngest daughter is no less our daughter simply because she came from another woman’s womb. She is no less our daughter simply because we do not share a blood type or DNA. She is no less our daughter because we wouldn’t be able to donate organs (or maybe we could? who knows?) or bone marrow. She is no less our daughter because we didn’t conceive her.

In every way that matters, she is our daughter. We have loved her since before knew about her, in much the same way I loved the other kids when I was carrying them in my belly. We have fed her, clothed her, given her much love and attention, and kept her safe for as long as we have known her. We cannot account for her treatment in her first nearly three months of life, for we were not there; however, from all appearances the NICU staff basically adopted her as their own and, as much as they were able, provided her with a family when she needed it the most. Since then, it has been our job, and we have found it to be a pleasure. The sweet baby girl we took away from that hospital that day in February is now a part of our family in a way that is just like the other children. There are times, in fact, when talking about how many pregnancies I’ve had when I slip and think that I had four. She has become that much a part of me. Not wanting to take away the grief and pain and turmoil and stress that her pregnancy must have been for her birthmother, I regardless liken our situation, unconsciously, to that of a “real” pregnancy.

Of course, in the end we who are Christians should also recognize that among believers there is a “blood” bond far more important than any earthly blood bond, that of our bond with each other through Jesus’ blood. For some reason we let ourselves forget that and remain tied to this earth, this physical way of looking at the world. And yet again, I realize how much adoption and this sweet baby girl have inexplicably changed the way I see something.


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