to be seen

By | 8:45 AM 4 comments

"Watch, Mom!"

"Mommy, look at me!"

"Did you see that, Mom?!"

These phrases echo throughout my day.
Any mom's day.
Over and over.

It's what kids do, this looking to see if someone is watching. Validation and shared excitement communicated in eye contact.

And yet, in the realm of adoption, this initiation of eye contact is more than just a normal childhood development: It's a mirror into the depth of attachment or bond between a parent and child.

A few months ago we were with a group of friends and there was a footrace among all the kids Ezra and Eli's age. They all started off equally, but by the first turn Eli has launched into full blown Ethiopian and dominated the rest of the race. What can I say? Running is in his blood.

I was watching the whole thing on the sideline.

As he came off the finish line I saw him looking around with a huge smile on his face.

As I realized what he was doing, this self-proclaimed non-emotional girl found a huge lump forming in my throat...He was looking for me. 

He wanted to know that I had seen him.

Our attachment journey had a rough start and we've hit rocky patches along the last (almost 6!) years. I likened it to a dance once, awkward and fumbling at first, sometimes taking a few steps backward before a few more graceful moves are learned. And like with anything, practice makes...not perfect, but better, oh, so much better.

And sometimes after all that practice I am given the gift of a glance shared after a win, between a boy who just wanted to know that his Mom had seen him and a Mom who just wants her boy to know that he is seen.



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4 comments:

Erin Snyder said...

love this! :) also...almost 6 years?! seems like just yesterday yall walked off the plane with that sweet boy!

I love reading your blog, it touches me in so many ways. This though brought tears to my eyes.

Kelly Via said...

This made my heart so full of joy for you. And, honestly, made this momma emotional. What a sweet gift for you, sweet patient & steadfast momma. You are such a great mom for your Eli.

Kelly Via said...

This made my heart so full of joy for you. And, honestly, made this momma emotional. What a sweet gift for you, sweet patient & steadfast momma. You are such a great mom for your Eli.