Going into this process I felt confident that we were going to be good (maybe even great) parents. We would over-come challenges and nurture whatever child came into our home. I was nervous, but my confidence told me I was fine. We had an awesome support system, right? There was one fear I couldn’t get over for a while though…..it took our little one meeting our family for the first time for me to finally feel relieved.
I was afraid my family wouldn’t treat our little one like a part of the family.
I didn’t always have this fear. It slowly crept up on me causing some anxiety. What was my fear based on? Other people’s horror stories. The stories where the family didn’t want to attach because they didn’t want to take on any heartache. The stories where once they met the child they told the foster parents they should really re-consider. The fact that he wasn’t a cute tiny baby. I KNEW those stories weren’t my family, but I let myself spiral and worry anyway.
You know what my family has done? Loved the hell out of him. Grandmas are already spoiling by giving gifts and too many treats. Grandpa is loving him by calming our parenting fears and reassuring us that everything is ok. Aunties and Uncles are playing with him and getting so excited when he remembers their names.
Why on earth was I ever worried? My in-laws raised an incredibly compassionate and loving man who is my husband. Why would I expect any less of them? My mom raised me to have an open home and love all who walk through our door. Why would I expect any less of her? I should have listed to myself and not to the stories of fear.
You know your support system best. Don’t let the experience of others mess up your perception like I did. Yes, your family may surprise you and not in a good way, but if they are excited for you, BELIEVE THEM.