"What’s My Heritage?" International Adoptions and the Culture Debate

As an adoptive mom of a seven-year-old born in Vietnam, I have so many questions about fate. Another woman bore my child. This boy was wholly himself from the moment I laid eyes on him. I love him so deeply that it’s hard to imagine our fates could ever have diverged. But of course they could have.

My feature article, “What’s My Heritage?”, in Brain, Child magazine’s Summer 2009 issue is generating interesting comments about how much adoptive parents should help children honor their birth cultures. In some ways, I’ve outed myself as a mom who’s gone to extremes and made mistakes. I invite readers to link to the article and B,C blog.

At this very moment, my son is making laser-gun sound effects in the play area outside my office. A moment ago, he was composing his own note on another computer. We’re both sending messages to each other and into the ether. We read each other imperfectly. Sometimes I’m so terribly angry, for no good reason beyond the fact that my life seems unmanageable, and those tenacious little hands of his are grasping me so tightly. But oh, I don’t want him ever to let go.