Saturday, August 13, 2016

Saved by love

About a decade ago, I started on the process to adopt two children. I had always wanted to be a mother. After two years of paperwork, I finally became a mother. Once my two came home with me, the older one kept trying to persuade me to go back and get more kids. He told me how lucky he and his sister were to have been adopted. It was a nearly daily plea.

I learned of the likely fates for children who age out of care. Far too often they end up in prostitution or drug running or enslavement. Without a family to protect them, and limited skills, they have few other options. 

I looked into starting the process again, but roadblocks kept being erected. The country my two came from, Kyrgyzstan, was closed for several years while a new government worked on rewriting the process. I looked into other countries. But, between political issues in several countries, and my work, it never came to pass. So I just have my two.

Then, another roadblock: cancer. Due to my age, this diagnosis essentially made it impossible to consider adoption again. 

After my hemicolectomy, I had very poorly controlled pain. To the point, I almost felt that I couldn't go on. I remember wanting to die. But, then, I would think of my kids, and the responsibility I had taken on of raising them to adulthood, and I knew I had to go on. I knew I had to get through this.

Last week, in a conversation with my son's therapist, I expressed my gratitude for being saved by my children's love. It kept me going in my roughest time. 

Family is especially important for patients. Not just in the physical sense of transportation to appointments, but, even when they are not physically with the patient, knowing that they want to love and support the patient. I certainly got that from my children. Without them, I think I might have simply given up.

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