Tuesday, August 24, 2010

How a 6 year old tried to explain her adoption to her peers

Lesson #642:

Heaven = babies – orphans = perpetuate fantasies/ticking time bomb

Heaven dropped me like a bomb.

At least that’s what I used to like to tell all my little friends at elementary school in Mayport, Florida when I didn’t know how to explain why I looked so different from the rest of my family.

“I dropped out of the sky from heaven. I didn’t come from my mommy’s tummy like you did. I came straight from heaven,” I would proudly declare.

My little girlfriends at recess would widen their eyes and coo, until one of them would speak up and ask, “But, wait, I thought you came from an orphanage.”

And just like that, my logic slipped into my Kool-Aid and dissolved.

“Well, after the orphanage, God took me back up into Heaven, and then he brought me back so that I could be with my family.”

“You’re weird,” one of the girls would say.

“Do you remember the orphanage? Was it like the movie ‘Annie?’ ”

I could feel them ebbing away, “Uh, no, I don’t really remember. Not really. I was just a baby.” Their faces would fall with discontent and boredom.

“Let’s go swing!”

And off they would go to the swings, while I stood there alone, watching them laugh and whisper in each other’s ears secret things that I knew I would never know.

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[Click here to read the entire series on "Growing Up as a KAD"]


Soojung Jo said...

I understand this so well. I have been trying to find a way to express the panicky emotions I felt when I was preparing to move to Korea for a year. Korea, to me, was a black hole in the universe. I was terrified of it. As a kid, I was ashamed of being Korean. I so get this.

Mila said...

Yes, Raina. It was and is still so hard to try to conceptualize Korea and even more so, my relation to it...even after visiting twice last year and after meeting my biological family--even more so in some ways, surprisingly.

And I was completely ashamed of being Korean, as a kid, and quite honestly, even as an adult, I still struggle with the way I look...It's still a shock at times when I look in the mirror and see this dark-haired, dark-eyed Asian looking back...