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My family is less than ideal, but still beautiful


(Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash)


My family is less than ideal. Why? Because we grew our family through adoption. This means that our family story necessarily includes pain and trauma for us to be together.


In an ideal world, there would be no sickness, no poverty, no evil. Children would be conceived and cared for by parents that can and desire to give them all that they need. Flip, in an ideal world parents would somehow KNOW exactly how to give our children what they need when they need it, and have the energy to always do it perfectly.


I think it is important to acknowledge that the “ideal” likely does not exist. At the same time I also acknowledge that there are circumstances around our family that are fairly unique, and the kind of “less than ideal circumstances” can make some people consider whether adoption should be a thing. Especially when there is the option of abortion.


There is the argument that because Sam’s conception wasn’t in ideal circumstances the choice to abort him would have been valid. But that would have been a massive loss. It would be a massive loss to me, a parent only because Sam is alive today. The precious privilege of being a dad, growing and learning about life through his life, receiving (and hopefully giving) joy, all would be lost if Sam’s life was lost.


It would be a massive loss to our community to which Sam brings much joy. And as his dad, I’m probably biased but I believe in Sam’s world- changing potential. He loves observing people, and he could become a sociologist that helps us understand and build a better society. He loves tinkering with stuff, and could become an engineer or inventor who builds something that makes life better. He loves music, and he could compose songs that inspire people and fill them with hope. He loves people, and could be one to simply reach out and care for those around him. What a loss for our world if Sam was lost.


So our family is not ideal, but it is beautiful. The beginning to Sam’s life might not have been ideal, but his life is beautiful. And I am glad that Sam’s birth mum stayed the course, and then chose to entrust Sam with Bec and myself. I don’t know what she would have had to go through for all of that to happen, just that it would have been extremely difficult. It would have been less than ideal, but this story is still beautiful.


I wrote this post with great trepidation as I don’t want false intentions to be read into it. My heart is to share our viewpoint as an adoptive family, to put forward that less than ideal is not the same as “pointless” or “forever broken”. Rather, there is often beauty in broken things. Isn’t that the story of the Gospel? That even in our brokenness God saw something worth saving?

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