How many difficult things can happen in your life before your emotions become dulled? I really think that is what has happened with our new son’s birthmother.

How many difficult things can happen in your life before your emotions become dulled? I really think that is what has happened with our new son’s birthmother.


We met with her last Friday to allow her a chance to achieve some closure in her decision to give up her son, and also to allow our new son a chance to see that she approved of the idea of him coming to live with us.


The outcome of that meeting was remarkable. Our son wouldn’t go anywhere near his birthmother when we met. As a 4-year-old boy, meeting with the woman who left you at an orphanage has to be confusing.


You could see the worry in his face. He was scared we were taking him back to his old life. He seemed worried that his new life would end. He would not sit with or near anyone other than his new “momma” no matter what efforts were made to give her a chance at one last hug good-bye or one last “I love you.”


Dawit gave her nothing but grief. He pulled away from her. He cried and screamed. There was certainly closure.


His birthmother even commented on how quickly he had attached to his adopted mother. It didn’t take long, and the connection is strong. She told us all about how one family member after another had died, leaving her alone, forcing her to give up her beloved son. She did all she could for him until she ran out of options.


All she asked of us was to tell him about her parents and what they were like. She wanted him to know about his cousin in the Tigray region of Ethiopia and an uncle in the Sudan. She talked about playing volleyball as a child, and how she never let anyone take advantage of her.


We videoed every minute of the encounter –– good and bad. I think it will become more valuable to Dawit as he gets older. He can hear her speak, see her smile and watch her laugh.


She held no obvious hard feelings against him for not making their final memory a positive one. She bid him farewell, and we were on our way.


The experience was nothing like what we expected, but it showed us just how quickly and how well he had attached to his new family. That is an important first step on his new life’s journey.