When people find out I’m adopted, a lot of their questions focus on the topic of my country. “Did your parents tell you about it?”. “Do you speak the language?”. “Have you ever been back?”. “Does your mom make you a bunch of Chinese food?”.
The answer to all of these questions is “yes”.
I think that it is so important for any adoptee, no matter where they are from, to learn about their country of origin. The top three things that I believe are the most helpful in helping your adoptee understand where they come from are the following:
1.Tell your children about their original country through stories, lessons, books, and even food.
2.Encourage them to learn more about their culture, whether it be through language, history, food, or about the people.
3.If you can, take them to visit the country they are from.
My parents did all of this for me. Although I’ll admit, I hated taking Mandarin lessons. I’m pretty sure I begged my parents to let me stop after a couple of months. And that is honestly one of my biggest regrets. But along with the Mandarin lessons, they taught me so much about my culture.
From joining groups with children adopted from China, to going to the New Year festivals, they always made sure that they incorporated my country’s culture into my life (as well as my sister’s).
Out of all of the things they did for me, taking me back to China has had the most impact, and is definitely the most memorable.
This trip back to China in 2005 is what I am going to tell you about in these next couple of blog posts. It was such an amazing experience, and one that I’ll never forget.
But before the whole trip was planned, there was a distinct point when my parents decided that it was time to go back to China.
I’m sure that my mom remembers this, but there was one night when I was sitting on the floor in my room. I wasn’t reading, or playing with any of the toys I had up there. I was sitting in my room and crying.
Beside me, I had a book that my parents had given to me that was all about being adopted from China, and how you were special. But I didn’t believe any of it.
I wanted to know why my birthparents gave me up, and I wanted to know why they didn’t even leave a note, or something from them that I could keep with me like the book had explained. I wanted to know where I was from.
And so the trip was planned.
A few things that I still, clearly remember from that trip back are these: The heat, the rock hard beds at the hotels, the food, the Great Wall, the friendships, and so many other places and things I was able to experience.
But most importantly, I remember the trip back to the orphanage, and to the street where I was found on that December night so many years ago.
In my next couple of blog post or two, I will share more details about the trip, both the exciting things, and the hard things.
Before I end this blog post, I just wanted to share with you what I read in my devotion book, Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. For today, she talks about talking to God about anything and everything that you may feeling or experiencing. And I think that that it so important to remember. Sometimes we get so caught up in what is happening around us, and we start listening to what the world wants us to believe. But if we take a moment and talk to Him, He will guide us through every trial and hardship.
I hope that you go through your day with peace, comfort, and the knowledge that you are a child of the King. And you are loved, wanted, and chosen, no matter what the world may be trying to tell you.
Psalm 27:8 reminds us to “seek His face”. So I hope that you do this today.