In the weeks leading up to my Master’s Graduation, I became increasingly more and more nervous, not just because I have no clue what I am going to do work-wise to pay back the $80,000 I owe the government, or the fact that I have been a student for approximately 21 years, but because I had invited my family to my graduation. My entire family.
Adoption complicates things in every way. Three years into my reunion I have a decently solid relationship with my first dad and my little sisters and a shaky-at-best relationship with my first mom’s side of the family (have seen them twice altogether). But this time I wanted it to be different. I was tired of parceling out myself to different family obligations. I was tired of making excuses for myself and for others, because damnit I’m adopted and everyone just needs to get the fuck over it and deal with the fact that I have several different families. And because they love me I demand that they get over it.
So I invited everyone and told no-one (save my a-sis, SIL, hubby and all my schoolmates). I didn’t want to answer questions or give excuses or placate other’s feelings on the matter. It’s my graduation day damnit and by God I wanted everyone there. Plus, I need to give people the chance to act like adults and recognize the fact that I was the only one who didn’t ask to be in this strange position.
So there they were. All of my family under one stadium roof. It came out at brunch with my a-fam and inlaws that my first dad was going to be there (he came to my wedding and that turned out just fine) so the news wasn’t shocking at least.
I sat through the painfully long and boring ceremony (I was like the 2nd person to get my diploma) and waited. After the ceremony I walked up the stairs to be greeted by my first-mom, my maternal first-grandparents, my aunt (first time meeting her), my half-sister and my half-brother (first time meeting him). I got roses and a present and many many hugs. Then up walks my first dad and my little sisters. The first people to greet me were my first parents, which was surreal at least.
We all then go outside to this beautiful fountain to take pictures. And there the love-fest began.
My parents meeting my parents.
My grandparents meeting my grandparents.
My siblings meeting my siblings.
My in-laws meeting everyone and mostly trying to stay out of the way.
This is the life of an adoptee in reunion. And it is fabulous. In one Twilight Zone moment all of my worlds collided and I was whole, in the most fantastic way possible.
Enjoy a few pictures from the day:
Me and my sisters (a-sister with the long brown hair, n-sister with the headscarf)
All of my siblings (a-sibs, n-sibs, and in-laws)
I feel so loved.