Sunday, March 25, 2007

updating profile

So, I need to post this photo to the blog in order to create a link for a new profile photo. The current one we have is a year old and I hate my hair in that photo. Yes, there it is, I'm confessing total cyberspace vanity. This is a better hair photo and therefore worthy of public viewing.
Changing blogger photos is suddenly much more important than cleaning the mountains of dog hair that appeared overnight in our home. Seriously, my dog's shedding hair could fill a king-size mattress in a matter of hours. I hate cleaning up dog hair. Hence, the sudden obsession with changing the profile.
Is it wrong to hate cleaning dog hair but also long to change diapers? I mean, really LOOK FORWARD to changing diapers?

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Happy, happy day

Our homestudy update is (almost complete). YAYYYYYYY!!!! We were dreading it, as we mistakenly thought we'd have to do a whole new paperchase from the beginning. Turns out that's not the case. We sent copies of all our forms to the USCIS plus a hefty check (I've gotten used to those hefty checks - between the adoption and the bat mitzvah, we're parting with some serious moolah), and our social worker came to do the homestudy update and that's it. We have our physicals next week but aside from that, we're done.

Does a little voice in my head worry about the physicals? Am I afraid to "count my chickens"? As a self-diagnosed hypochondriac I confess I'm always worried about what might happen. So far, all that worry has gotten me nothing but post-stay-up-all-night-worrying fatigue. I'm trying a new tactic: only worry when there's something to worry about.

What a concept! So for now, I'm happy.

We figure we'll see Kavanna's face in about seven months. Seems like it's eons away. And it also seems as if it's right around the corner.

Friday, March 09, 2007

The face of Judaism

All my life people have told me I don't look Jewish. I always borrow from Gloria Steinham and tell them, "This is what Jewish looks like." (When Gloria Steinham was 40 years old people were amazed at how great she looked and she famously said, "This is what 40 looks like.") Even other Jews buy into the stereotype: when I took my blonde haired and blue-eyed daughter to visit my grandmother at the Jewish Home for the Aged, lots of people asked my grandmother if I had been adopted (hmmmm, ironic in retrospect).
The reality is, I am the face of Judaism. And so is the girl pictured above, Cecelia Nealon-Shapiro, celebrating her bat mitzvah recently. She was born Fu Qian in a Chinese province and was once of the first American children adopted from China. You can read more about her story in a recent New York Times article.
We're preparing for Ariel's bat mitzvah in a couple of months. In 12-13 years we'll be preparing for another one, for our Jewish Chinese daughter, who along with her blue-eyed sister will sustain the traditions of thousands of years. Today we got an appeal from our synogogue to help sponsor Ethiopian Jews in Israel.
My grandmother passed away when Ariel was a baby, so she'll never get a chance to meet Kavanna. If I could do it over again, I'd tell her cohorts at the Home for the Aged that Judiasm has no color. Cecelia Nealon-Shapiro is proof of that. So are the Ethiopian Jews. So am I. And so is Ariel.
I loved reading Cecelia's story. It is the story of love, of identity, and in a way it is the story of all Americans.
Have great weekends, everyone.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

13 Month LID Anniversary

13 months LID... wow... It's also the 18 month anniversary since we officially started this process (GWCA formally accepted us on September 6, 2005).

I haven't been posting as much, lately. Partly because I've been very busy with my private practice and planning Ariel's bat mitzvah. Partly because I've had a crisis of....hmmm, what do you call it if you're a secular person... a crisis of faith? Belief? Trust?

I've debated whether or not to post on the site, but maybe I'm not the only one who's experienced these feelings. Either way, I'm putting it out there into cyberspace. Last week I was gripped by a sudden and overwhelming fear. Our life is basically perfect as it is... we have an amazing daughter, professions that are meaningful, time to write (our creative outlets)... what if adding another child messes everything up? What if instead of adding to our lives, she sucks the life out of us? What if we're making a terrible mistake?

I felt stuck. Scared. Horrified by these thoughts, even as I knew I had to explore them.

After talking with David and really thinking about it, I recognized these fears for what they are: normal. I remember having the same worries when I was pregnant with Ariel. Now, when I look at her, when we talk, when I consider how my universe opened up the moment she was born, how I can't actually remember what life was like before her... I can only smile at my fears.

So now I'm feeling more balanced about everything, looking forward to Kavanna's arrival (when??) but recognizing that it's okay to feel a spectrum of feelings about adding to our family.

Whew, what a rollercoaster ride.