As I mentioned previously, I wanted time to evaluate others responses and gather my thoughts before I threw my two cents in, or whatever my thoughts are worth. So, here I go.
First of all, Julia's adoption is the direct result of infertility. Our desire was for a child--not a pregnancy. IVF was never pursued--the appointment was made and I cancelled it about 3 days before. Told Ted my body had enough. The decision was made to adopt--and after we had a baby then we would decide if we wanted to do IVF or not. The result was Julia. And we never looked back. I have had many things happen in my life that have changed it for the better and the infertility was just one--and I'm grateful for infertility.
Now, what some of you might not know is Julia's birth parents were married and she was their first child. Due to her medical needs, she was placed in the orphanage and made available for adoption. Most likely, Julia has full-blooded siblings in Russia. As a nurse and a child advocate, I'm disgusted that the medical system in Russia sucks to the point that this was the choice her birth parents made. My opinion was and always has been that the needs of the children come first. I am sad that she will grow up away from her native culture. Be that as it may, I'm damn glad she's my daughter. Like Maria mentioned, Julia is like me---I'm an American with Scottish, Irish and German heritage and she is an American with Russian heritage (with a little Buryat thrown in). Rauan and Alihan are Americans with Kaz and Krygz heritages. This is a country of multiple heritages and our home is such. Come into our house and you'll see Russian items, Buryat items (yurts and such stuff), Kaz items and Krygz items. As the children learn about their heritage, so will Ted and I. It's a family project. And perhaps, with us learning about each others cultures together we can foster respect for the cultures.
Now is it a blessing?? Yes, I think so. Again, it's sad that their native lands couldn't provide medical or cultural understandings for single mothers (Rauan's situation besides the cleft--Alihan's is unknown), but it's a blessing that medically we can provide some of the best medical care for them in the world. It's a blessing that their mom is a bit nuts and searches for the answers and gets them the best of the best medically. It's a a blessing that their mom and dad love them enough to find the best educational opportunities for them. It's a blessing that their mom and dad want to give them sports opportunities. For Julia, it's a blessing that we recognize that she is showing signs of a learning disability and her parents will (and currently are) rearranging their lives to make sure that she learns to the best of her ability. It's a blessing that, no matter what happens, they have a family that loves them and will care for them no matter what--and they have a large extended family that loves them and will care for them also--no matter what. It's called unconditional love.
Is it a curse? I guess that's what you view as a curse. It could have been. But, we live in a sinful world where people view children as a commodity. Until that changes--and it hasn't in all the time that humans have walked the earth--we have to make the best of it. It would have been best if the children could have stayed in their biological home situation--and their wouldn't have been medical issues and cultural issues. But, that wasn't to be. So, the next best solution was adoption. I can't change the way of the world--but I can change the lives of these three incredible children. It's a start.
What can I say? We have many members of our family that are adopted. One of my oldest and dearest friends was adopted. In my life, adoption wasn't a strange thing--it was a common place thing.
Was our adoption situation divinely meant to be? Perhaps. Now after we've completed 3 adoptions, I've found IVF would have never worked for us. The night before I received a call about Julia, I had a dream about a baby. I woke, described that baby to Ted (who wanted to know what kind of wacky weed I had been smoking--p.s--I'm a total drug virgin!), described that baby to my co-workers and when I saw Julia's picture I just about fell over. Divine intervention? Who knows? There were other strange things that happens with the boys--but I'm already getting long winded. One thing that I think is important is I've always seen myself as a mom--even as a young child I mothered everyone!--but never pregnant. Ever. Did I somehow know? Again perhaps.
The only one who can answer the question if adoption is a blessing is the child. It's their unique experience. Will my children feel that they were blessed to have me and Ted as their parents? I hope so. I know I am blessed. I am blessed to have had awesome parents, wonderful sisters, an incredible husband, great in-laws, and wonderfully blessed to be able to parent 3 incredible special delightful children who enrich my life beyond measure. Only time will tell if Julia, Rauan and Alihan feel that they were blessed.