A couple of weeks ago I had an interesting coversation with Michael over breakfast. Actually, he was eating and I was getting stuff ready for school! So this conversation totally caught me off guard.
Michael is HUGE on looking at pictures... he drags out the albums once or twice a week and just sits and pours over the pages. The night before he had been looking at one of his favorites... the album that holds the pictures of our trip to China to bring him home. As he was eating he asked, "Where was Cam when I came home from China?"
"Well," I answered, "remember Cam was born AFTER you came home from China. We have the pictures of you holding him in the hospital."
"I know that," he replied. "But WHERE was he?"
"Oh, well, he was in Chandra's tummy."
"Why?" he asked. And at that point my heart began to sink a little as I replied, "Michael, that is where all babies grow, in a momma's tummy."
He sat there for a few minutes and looked up at me and said, "Did I grow in YOUR tummy?" And I must say, my heart sank a little farther as I said, "No, Michael you didn't. Remember, we came to China to get you."
"Oh, well, whose tummy did I grow in?" As I looked at my little boy, sitting there with his syrup lips and mik mustache... I answered him as truthfully as I could. "Michael, you had a mommy in China, and you grew in her tummy. But she wasn't able to keep you, so she made sure that you were in a place where we could find you and bring you to live with us."
Again, he sat there very thoughtfully and asked, "Why couldn't she keep me?" Wow, how do you answer that question? So I told him, "I'm not sure buddy, because she was in China and I was in America, so we never met. But I am sure that she loved you, and she wanted to make sure that you came to live with us."
And as my heart was breaking a little bit for my son, he looked up at me with a big smile and said, "And you picked me, right?" "Yes, Michael, we picked you."
Then he said, "When you looked at my picture, did you say, 'He's perfect?' " "Yes, Michael, we said that you were perfect for our family."
And with that, he went back to eating his pancakes, and drinking his milk, chattering on and on about school and what he would do that day.
I have to believe that Michael's "China mom" loved him... how could you carry a child for 9 months and not love them?
I have to believe that as she looked at his little face on the day he was born, and saw that he had been born "imperfect" in a society that values perfection, that she STILL loved him, and that she was crushed to have left him on the doorstep of a children's hospital. Afterall, she did leave him AT the hospital, where he could be found and cared for.
I have to believe that she wonders about him to this day, and I pray that she will somehow know that the little boy she carried is safe with a family who finds him a perfect fit.
And I'm sure that this question will arise again, as all such questions do... and I will teach him that growing in a tummy isn't nearly as important as growing in a heart... and that he has been "growing in my heart" since the day I saw his little face on my computer and we were told that he was ours.
I have a feeling that there will be more questions that will require hard answers as he continues to grow.... and I pray that God will always provide us with answers that will build Michael up... because sometimes the truth is just plain ugly.