Friday, July 20, 2012

Adoption is Amazing

First of all, let me say that this is a shameless info-mercial regarding my love for Cary Grant.  This is the cutest move starring these two Hollywood idols ever!  Boy meets girl.  Boy marries girl.  They adopt a baby.  Tear jerker drama in the middle of the movie. They live happily ever after.  I love Cary Grant!  Anyone who calls someone 'Dahling' and is that good looking can come into my living room any day!  There are so many great lines in this movie!  At one point, the inexperienced new mother is trying to stop the baby from crying in the night.  Father looks on and says, "Do something!  Can't you see the baby's suffering?!"  We love that line! 

We went to the State Fair about two weeks after returning from our honeymoon in 1978.  At the fair we walked through the education building where we saw an Adoptive Parents' organization display of small black and white wallet sized photos of babies in Korea waiting for adoption.  No long talks, no infertility, no reason other than love for children and the belief that we could parent any child, by birth or any other method.  We looked at each other and said, "Do you want to adopt a baby from Korea?"  Yes, we did.  

In 1981 we applied to adopt a baby girl, we felt there might be less prejudice toward a girl.  We wrote 30 pages of essay questions on why we could parent a child that didn't look like us, how our family felt about the idea, what we would do to help the child understand her heritage and lots more that I don't remember any more.  
We waited and in August we got a phone call, the agency had a set  of  little black and white pictures of the baby girl that would be ours!  Daddy-to-be drove to the adoption agency to pick up the information then sped to the place I was working and showed me the three pictures that I would carry (and stare at) for the next two months while we waited for the baby whose name was Hyung Lan (which means Scented Orchid) to get a visa and a ticket to fly to the U.S.A. and become our beloved daughter, Susan Lynn.
We waited, impatiently,  I worked two jobs and Mr. Wonderful worked two jobs to pay for the adoption expenses.  I embroidered a cross stitch Bambi quilt, we bought a crib and a playpen, a swing and a high chair.  And finally, the adoption agency called to say her flight was scheduled!

My parents, my sister and some other friends came to the airport to meet the Northwest Airlines 747 stork.  The adoption flight aide met us and went into the aircraft to bring the baby out to us.  When he spoke to us he said, all the passengers will disembark and THEN I'll go in and get her.  There are over 400 passengers on a 747 so imagine my shock when he reappeared at the end of the jetway just a few minutes later holding a pink bundle!  I screamed, "That's my baby!" The crowd parted like the Moses and the Red Sea and I ran up and grabbed that baby girl right out of his arms!  Home at last, the baby I had prayed for, dreamed of and imagined for four years!  The waiting was over.
It's not her birthday, it's not her Family Day (arrival anniversary), it's not Mother's Day; it's just a love story that I thought I would tell you today.  My beloved black haired, almond-eyed beauty is now a Mommy herself, a teacher, a wife, a wonderful young woman and more than I ever dreamed of in a daughter born not under my heart, but in it.

The Chosen Baby, by Valentina Wasson is a sweet little storybook written in 1939 about adoption; I altered it with pictures by Becky Kelly, a wonderfully talented artist who always includes Asian girls in her group scenes because one of her childhood pals was a beautiful almond eyed, little black haired girl!

23 comments:

  1. Oh Tammy, this story brought tears to my eyes. I especially loved the part where you said "a daughter born not under my heart, but in it". WOW!
    She is a lucky young lady. What a wonderful love story.

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  2. Oh, this is such a beautifully sweet love story! Would love seeing the airport scene!

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  3. I have goosebumps. Literally! And when I get goosebumps, it means I have been touched deeply. This is the most beautiful story I have read in a very long time. Blessings to you all, Tammy

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  4. A beautiful tribute to your family. My life and my family has forever been changed because of our international adoption experience. I would have never guessed that our infertility would lead to such an amazing gift.

    HUGS!!

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  5. Such a beautiful post!! An amazing story of such blessings!! Thanks for sharing and brightening my day, sweet friend! xo Heather

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  6. I never knew this about you, Tammy. What a touching and beautiful story. This post is now a published chapter in your family history...a book I know I would be honored to read. Your wrote it beautifully...who could not feel how much you love that child and your pride in her. Thank you, sweet friend for touching my heart today.

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  7. Wow,what a wonderful story! An amazing story too. Thank you for sharing with us and touching our hearts today!
    Hugs,
    Lynn

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  8. Oh Tammy,
    how much you love her!!!! It is in every word here......what a lucky lucky child to have two parents that wanted her so badly.......Thank you for sharing this.....

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  9. Both stories...so beautiful. Cary Grant a favorite. Just watched a sweet movie with him in it last weekend. Blessings to you and your wonderful family. Smiles...Renee

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  10. This is such a sweet post!!

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  11. What a sweet story of your daughter. You certainly don't need to wait for a special occasion to share the wonderful stories of your life.
    Another Cary Grant fan here. Lately, I've been watching Alfred Hitchcock movies as there are many I've never seen. Since Cary Grant made 4 movies with AH, I'll be watching him sometime soon.
    Have a happy day,
    Linda

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  12. I have tears reading your story...I agree, adoptions is amazing.

    Speaking as a Mom to 2 boys who were adopted and as a grandmother to a granddaughter who was placed for adoption and who I just got to go visit for the weekend.

    Consider yourself hugged....

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  13. Tammy, what a beautiful story. I'm so glad you shared that today-it made my day. My mom was a travel agent and used to arrange alot of the flights for the adopted babies from Korea. I almost got to be a chaperone and carry a baby back for a family, but it didn't work out. I would have loved to that.I can imagine the moment you saw her being carried off that plane.Beautiful!

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  14. It's such a blessing for you and your daughter, adoption! So many childen need parents.
    I "smile" when I iron! I wait for a huge pile to iron and then watch TV while ironing. Guess I'm old fashion.
    Warmly,
    deb

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  15. Wow--it's like deja-vu. Looking at a picture of "your" baby half way around the world. Waiting for the Northwest Airlines flight. Such happy memories!
    Our precious Julie (Chan-Mee..which mean Shine Beautiful) arrived in November 1986 just 2 days shy of 5 months old.
    She is the light of our lives and recently became a bride.
    thanks for sharing such a wonderful story!

    Tamera
    Tamera

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  16. Sitting in my office with tears streaming down my face along with my mascara! As someone who spent almost 4 years trying to have a baby, adoption was our next plan. We had one son and never was able to have any other children but consider my self blessed to have him. Your story is beautiful.

    BTW. The banner will be in the mail tomorrow. I had a printer malfuntion yesterday, but it is up and runnng now!

    Linda

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  17. Tammy, This is such a heartfelt post. You can feel your joy in each word read. What a blessing to each others life. Thank you so much for sharing this story with us. Elizabeth

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  18. Thank you so much for sharing your story, Tammy! I enjoyed it so much, and it's suddenly the best part of my day!
    Isn't Cary Grant the most charming man EVER?!?

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  19. As someone who was adopted by two of the most amazing people, I can relate to how I'm sure your daughter feels about you and your husband. I consider myself to be the luckiest person in the world to have been choosen by my parents!! I have the draft of a letter my mom and dad wrote to the doctor who helped them with the adoption...sort of a short bio. I am so glad my folks saved this in my adoption paperwork!

    It takes a special person to adopt!

    Cary Grant??? OMG! So handsome!!

    chris

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  20. Awh, jeez! I've got a huge lump in my throat! What a sweet story! Thanks for sharing:)

    ~Cindy

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  21. Wow, I love this post! Thank you for sharing! I love how you remembered the flight number and called it the 747 stork. Brilliant! Although I don't know you, I can just imagine the exchange of looks and expressions when you both determined at the fair what might be in store in your future. Also how hard you both worked to get your family planning rolling. What a beautiful post and thanks again for sharing!!!

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  22. What a lovely post, sweet Tammy! Really touching, thanks for sharing, she sounds wonderful! xo Holly

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  23. How did I miss this post Tammy??? It's so special! I have goosebumps!
    I think I told you that my sister-in-law was adopted from Korea. I need to talk to her more about it. And of course we are so blessed to have those beautiful almond eyes of hers, now in my niece and nephew. Such sweet little faces!
    I so enjoyed reading about the love you have for your baby girl, and how it came to be!
    Erica :)

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