May 3, 2013

So, unsurprisingly except in terms of timing, Lee agreed that we/I should adopt Nia. We can still only have one legal adoptive parent in our state and this time it’s my turn. On that note, it was only when registering Mara for kindergarten(!) that I realized our co-parenting agreement says not that I should be treated as a parent but that I <em>am</em> Mara’s parent. For some reason that wording hadn’t struck me previously, but it felt really good to just write “parent” and “parent” and not feel like I was hedging. They have a copy of that agreement and her post-adoption birth certificate that gives Lee parental rights and we’re good to go. Meanwhile I have to fill out my application to get on the board that runs the school (school-specific, not the citywide school board) and I hope I’ll be even more involved in what will be both girls’ school next year than I already have this year. (And I’m only talking about myself, but Lee coached afterschool basketball and it was hilarious when we walked down the hall after a meeting with Nia’s teacher and all the kids nudged each other saying that, “Ooooooh, it’s the BASKETBALL!” Adorable!)

Anyway, nothing legal will happen for quite a while yet, but I feel like a huge weight has been lifted. Tonight we’re buying some new storage furniture for the hallway outside the bathroom and we’ll be rearranging the playroom and the girls’ rooms. I can get rid of all the duplicate things I’d been saving in case Nia didn’t end up staying and we can have things ready to transition quickly if/when we do end up getting the right call about a little boy. (It’s my fault that we haven’t; I’m very late getting my medical form in this year and we’ve just supposedly been taken off the call list, though we’ll be back on next week.)

Nia finishes school at the end of the month and I think I’ll be enrolling both girls at the YMCA day program so they can get swim lessons every day and stay active and social. It means Mara will be leaving the program at the community college she started when I had to go back after my two months of parental leave when she first came to us and was 3, but I hope having that transition with Nia will help ease the transition to kindergarten.

Speaking of kindergarten, we just met some new neighbors whose son will also be there, the first kid from our neighborhood we know who’s going to be in the public program. (There’s another who will join for first grade when he graduates from his Montessori school.) I have my own thoughts about how much the schools could be better if the people in our neighborhood who are paying to send their children elsewhere sent them to the schools, but I guess that’s why I need to get elected and have a stronger role. Anyway, Mara has one new friend who will also be in kindergarten and she has a cousin on her dad’s side she’s met twice now I think who will also be there. We’ve asked to have her placed in his class so she can have a chance to get to know that part of her family in a less-mediated way. 

And I don’t remember anymore what I’ve posted or not, but after a long time complaining about not wanting two moms, Mara said the other night, “You know, I really like two moms.” And we know she does, and also that she misses the other parts of our family, which is why we never made a big deal about it when she said otherwise. In other cute-kid news, Mara and Lee were awake for a change when Nia and I left for school/work this morning. Nia shouted, “Adios, amigos!” because it’s okay to yell once people are awake and Lee has had some coffee, I guess, but she immediately asked me, “Wait, what’s Spanish for ‘family.’” I told her, and much more quietly she said, “Adios, mi familia!” We haven’t talked to her about TPR or adoption yet, but she knows that she has a place here with us, and that heartened me too.

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  1. I am so so happy for you all! Nia just seems like such a great fit in your family.

  2. Oh I am so very thrilled that Nia and Mara will officially become sisters and that with you as parents, Nia will be able to stay connected with her first family. I’ve enjoyed reading about their budding friendship/sisterhood.

    I’m sending “good transition” vibes out to your family and Nia’s first parents during the next few months…

  3. Ohhhh yay that you’ve all made a firm decision now and can move forward knowing what the plan is. I love Nia’s familia quote!

  4. i’m so glad you guys have come to a decision together to move forward with the adoption.

  5. Hooray!! Puzzle pieces.

  6. Thanks, all. Nia is a good fit and in many ways very much like Lee, which is the source of a lot of their personality conflict. It does work well to have two women and two girls, two extroverts and two introverts with many workable combinations within the group.

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