Neighbor’s question shines light on our different family
“Where do you get your pretty blue eyes from?” a neighbor asked Daughter, looking at her and then over to me. “Certainly not from you,” she peered into my dark brown eyes.
Daughter and I both paused.
We travel through our daily lives like most mothers and daughters, loving and annoying each other. It’s moments like these that make us stop.
They remind us of what was so obvious to the neighbor. We look nothing alike.
They remind us that our family has a story. We instantly need to do a time calculation trying to figure out how much the person wants to know.
On this particular day, the bugs were eating us up. “They come from her first mom,” I said with a smile as we went along her way. I know we left a thousand questions in our wake.
I’m thinking about all of this today. It is the anniversary of our adoption. Maybe your family has a similar bonus day of celebration, Dear Reader, the day you came together.
The legal papers say I adopted Daughter. The reality is the reverse. Her dad and she adopted me. That a single dad raising his young daughter alone would deem me worthy to be his child’s mother, is a reflection of love and respect bigger than I ever dreamed possible.
Even more importantly, that Daughter would accept me still leaves me weak in the knees.
I’ve shared a lot about our family in this space. “What a happy day!” is a common response. And it is.
What I’ve never shared– it is also a bittersweet date. Our adoption anniversary comes six days after her first mom’s yarzheit, the anniversary of her passing.
Coincidence? We certainly didn’t plan it this way. After months of working on the paperwork this is the date the court assigned us all those years ago.
We considered moving it, ultimately deciding the place on the calendar fit. It is part of our story, two mothers who never met in this life, united in this week, beyond blessed to have this daughter.
To know Daughter is to adore her. You’d be hard pressed to find a single person who doesn’t agree.
That doesn’t make me a great mom, simply an incredibly lucky one.
A mother and daughter who each needed the other finding each other just at the right time. Include our youngest who joined our family the next year, and well, yeah, it’s one heck of a story. Four people, a slew of broken hearts, three last names, two religions, two races.
It wasn’t very neighborly what I did the other day, leaving my neighbor hanging like that. Next time I see her I can pick up where the blue eyes left off, only if she has true interest and time.
Yes, this one is going to take a minute.
That’s what it takes to tell the story of my favorite story ever.
The story of a family.
While you’re here…
If you like this story, you might enjoy my book,
“Hope Possible: A Network News Anchor’s Thoughts On Losing Her Job, Finding Love, A New Career, And My Dog, Always My Dog.”