"So promise me you'll never forget...that you aren't an accident or an incident...you are a gift to the world, a divine work of art, signed by God. You were deliberately planned, specifically gifted, and lovingly positioned on this earth...Flooded by emotion, overcome by pride, the Starmaker turns to us, one by one, and says, 'You are my child. I love you dearly.'" Max Lucado, God Thinks You're Wonderful

Monday, September 14, 2009

Transracial Parenting Workshop #2

On Saturday our agency offered another transracial parenting workshop.

It was INCREDIBLE! If you are new here, you can catch the discussion that followed from the first workshop here. Also, these workshops are open to anyone, not just those who've adopted through our agency. I highly encourage any family to come to these (post-placement) as I have learned so much!
There was a panel of people touched by transracial adoption. A couple who adopted their 4 children 15 years ago, 3 of whom are biracial, and two adults (Sarah and Patrick) who were adopted transracially 30 some years ago. There was also a woman who has a transracial family (through an inter-racial marriage, not adoption) on the panel. Don't you love all this lingo???

It was so good to hear from families that have been through what we are going through. It was wonderful to see these two incredible adults THRIVE out of transracial adoption. Seriously, if our kids turn out like these two...we'd do cartwheels! They are such neat people that really embraced what their parents told them growing up....race is a part of who they are, but it is not who they are.

Sarah and Patrick both encouraged us to teach our children not to define themselves by race, but by our faith, personality, humor, intelligence, integrity, etc. It was so cool to hear them talk about some of the struggles they faced growing up, but that's all they were...struggles. Just like all of us face. Patrick talked about how he just didn't give it attention...he didn't have time for it. I love this. We can all decide what we will let affect us, and he chose to not let others opinions matter. He simply decided to shrug it off.
The couple that is currently raising teenagers was sharing some of the issues their kids are facing because of race. It was a good and gentle reminder of how our kids may all handle this differently, but I am SO glad they have each other to walk through this with. There may be things they don't feel they can discuss with us, and that's okay. I praise God for giving them siblings to share this with. That seems to have really helped this family.

Sarah shared about hair care and again it was so much fun to learn new tips from the group! I learned a new word...peppercorn (also known as a beebee?). Those are those little balls at the end of Cooper's and Sadie's hair that are tight tangles. Evidently I need to quit trying to comb them out of Sadie's hair and just cut them off like I did with Cooper's hair recently. We talked about new products and stuff to try. She highly recommended Carol's Daughter products so I am going to have to get some for sissy. We discussed silk wraps and pillow cases, conditioner and eczema...I am telling you it was GOOD STUFF!!!

I left this workshop feeling very encouraged and not as heavy as I did last time. Maybe it's because I prepared myself emotionally for the topic to be hard to hear. I think more than anything it was so good to meet these families and see that this was not going to be an uphill battle and an everyday issue unless we choose for it to be that. This is going to be a balancing act of trying to keep our little world diverse so that our children see people everywhere that are multicultural, but yet not giving race more attention than it deserves.

God keeps reminding me that we are all created in His image. This is what we will focus on in our family, being more like Him. God has given me the most incredible blessings in my family and a love that is so intense that I am constantly on the verge of tears. My children bring me the most amazing joy (see pictures below). I will not let anyone steal that joy. I will not let race issues, which is not of God, steal my joy or take my focus off of Him and His incredible blessings.


Laura said...

Sorry but the police helmet is hysterical!

traske.melissa said...

mollly, i can't believe that she is one!! she is so dang cute and those tiny feet don't seem big enough to walk on. i hope things are going well and that life is getting better with each year of ortho life.

Kristy said...

Ok I'm really gonna make it I want to so bad email or post the place and time again oh wait I'll read back over and see if you said this already Love the new pic I was just looking at the old one last night thinking wow the kids have grown so much since that picture where does time go!

Kristy said...

Opps already done okay next time.

Aubrey said...

You said everything I've been thinking...but very eloquently!! Perfect re-cap and discussion of the way we show and teach our children to grow up! Your family is just too cute!!

Jamila said...

You will have to let me know if Carol's Daughters products are as good as I've heard. I know that they sell it @ Sephora, & it's a bit pricey.

Charissa said...

I wish I could have been there! Funny I have already been asking about hair, and somebody else recommended Carol's Daughter products. I met a black lady today with the most beautiful hair and I totally wanted to ask her for advice but I couldn't bring myself to ask. Thanks for this info.

Angela Collins said...

Okay, so that was a great post, and I was kind of in a serious mood because I was "listening" to you share your heart....and then I scrolled down all the way and saw that picture of Sadie wearing the Police helmet. HAHAHA!! Too cute! I laughed out loud. So, now I'm not in the mood to leave a serious comment anymore....just wanna say how so so so precious your kids are! Love you!

Anonymous said...

Hey Molly!!
Carols daughter is awesome! I use it on Madisyn's hair. It can be a bit pricey and you also have to see what product works best for your child's hair.. but I love the Rosemary Mint Shampoo, Hair Milk, Hair Butter and the Tui smoothie for a conditoner! I normally order when its free shipping. : ) But now they sell it in my area. Anywho- its an all natural product and I love it! Try it!


Melodie said...

i thought it was good this time. i loved Patrick's attitude about everything. i was SO impressed by him. i know he may be typical, but he still filled me with hope. LOVE the picture of Sadie with the helmet on. so funny!

Becki Francy said...

Ok - I too was going to leave a very serious comment...but the helmet...I mean, how in the world did that get on her head??? And where did you get that? Hysterical...glad you learned a lot sissy!

Kelly said...

Somehow I came across your blog from another blog (Ubran Servan) and I am so excited that I found it! You have so many wonderful topics on transracial adoption and its so encouraging and wonderful to find other families that have followed a similar road as we have. Currently I have two kiddos, 8 months apart (adopted and found out we were pregnant the same day). We are getting ready to start another adoption and I'm just starting to blog about it hoping to get others excited about the hope of adoption. Its wonderful that you have a this great support system around you. It is inspiring me to start something similar around where I live (FL)
Anyways, have you ran across any organic type hair care products for AA hair? Most of what I can find have so many chemicals in them, I'm trying to find an alternative. All I've heard of so far is coconut oil.
Thanks again for being open, its a blessing to me!