Settle in readers. Grab a soda or a cup of java because this might go a while.
I received two emails today from totally different people in two different parts of the US that may never know one another, but both of which made me stop, ponder my convictions, my reactions and where I stand on many things.
The first was from Helena at Newsy.com. She writes [excerpts] ...
I saw your post on the protesting and recent upheaval going on in Kyrgyzstan. I think you will find the following video interesting and relevant to this discussion [of Kyrgyzstan's recent upheaval and my comments regarding that].
The video gives background to the Kyrgyzstan protests and troubles. It also shows a number of different opinions on the fighting and upheaval of Bakiyev. I hope you will consider embedding this video to your site.
Newsy.com videos analyze and synthesize news coverage from multiple sources. Its unique method of showing how different media cover the news helps viewers better understand complex stories.
And I began to ponder the implications of posting it, whether it was a ruse to direct readers to their site, whether it was political in nature -- so many things. So, I figured it best to go watch the video and determine for myself what I thought about posting it on my blog.
I was disturbed by only one thing in the video -- but not about the video itself. I'm saddened to read that the people of Kyrgyzstan feel that Americans and their relationship with the [now former] Kyrgyzstan administration might have been a catalyst for this upheaval, based on their support in exchange for space for the Air Force base. Now, I'm certainly not a political kind of girl. I care but I don't spend a lot of my time analyzing, studying, worrying about these things. I have enough to worry about by being "Switzerland - ie., the neutral party" to a twelve-year-old and a two-year-old. However, I would SO hope that ALL Americans aren't seen as only wanting to exploit this country for land. I personally have so much compassion for this country, for their struggles, for their lack of adequate power sources, natural resources, export products, and income. I am saddened that they have had to experience this violence in order to make changes that they feel are better for their countrymen. In a perfect world, there would be plenty to eat, plenty of energy resources, plenty of jobs, a free market, uncorrupted leaders, children who did not have to be given up for adoption and could always be wanted, needed and have parents who could care for them without making difficult decisions. In a perfect world, there would not be wars, violence, death. But that is not the world in which we live. We live in a fallen world because of sin. I know many of you reading this don't share my beliefs. But fallen mankind is the reason, I believe, for all the bad/evil things in the world. Satan. In a perfect world ... well, that's in the future -- a future where Satan is bound forever in the lake of fire and we are free from the bonds of sin.
As you read, Helena asked me to embed the video into my blog. I have reached a compromise with myself and will post the link to the video for those who choose to want to view the video. I'll reiterate that I don't find anything wrong with the video, but I make a point of only posting things on my blog that I want to share and not to become commercialized by posting things that others want me to post. This is where the compromise comes in to play.
The other email was from another adoptive parent. It was called, "Too Many Questions" and it struck me hard because it made me realize that one day Ellie and our family will also face these same kinds of questions that PanPan and her mother faced. In a perfect world, we wouldn't have to. I felt a strong sense of protection for my sweet baby for the time when she first realizes that she doesn't look just like we do. Honestly, many days go by and I just don't even SEE it. I am saddened for the first day she is old enough to understand the questions that are asked by strangers about her. Today, in the car, I was looking in the rear view mirror and told her, "You are SO beautiful!" She said, "NO!!" I replied, "Oh, Ellie, you are so pretty!", she again said, "NO! NO!" and hid her head. Why? Are we already having self-esteem issues OR is it simply a case of a two-year-old who wants to be disagreeable? Will I ever stop questioning if everything in her life is "because" of being adopted? I doubt it.
I will post the email: Too Many Questions and a wonderful resource called Tips for Helping Your Children Deal with Intrusive Questions in a separate post for those who are interested.
In a perfect world, I wouldn't have to. I'm sure the parent to whom this happened will not mind me telling the story because it is the perfect example of what people say to children who are adopted who "look" differently. This mom and her children were at the zoo. Two of her children are relatively close in age and are both Asian. Her kids were at the playground when a woman walked up and asked her, "Was it a buy-one-get-one-free sale?" Right. Sigh. May my child never face that kind of ignorance. And if she does, may we be as graceful as this mom who just walked away with no comment. Seeing how I'm not a perfect mom, and not nearly as tactful, and this isn't a perfect world, I'm sure I won't be nearly as graceful.