Up Close and Personal: Adoption Motherhood

I've gathered sixteen of my previously published essays exploring themes of motherhood, race, culture and transracial adoption and added them to new blog pages at In Writing Motherhood.

It has taken a while to assemble because the stories offer an intimate glimpse into my life. With my husband I raised three children, who are now grown. Two of our kids were adopted from Korea, a one-year old, and an older child adopted at age ten. We waded into uncharted territory, as not only were two of our children adopted transracially (I'm American Indian and my husband is white) we adopted an older child changing the birth order within our family. We had a birth daughter who became our 'middle child.' And shortly after we adopted our oldest daughter our 7-year-old son (also adopted from Korea) was diagnosed with a brain tumor.

However, my stories are are less about my kids and more about the path I traveled after becoming a mother. At times I needed to take a step back and reflect. Each piece begged for some revision before I was ready to commit and have it available online for the rest of my natural life. Before I was a mother, I have always been a writer. But I never planned to write on the topic of transracial adoption. This just sort of happened. Editors began asking me to write about adoption mothering about twenty-five years ago and although I also write in other genres, I’ve spent years writing feature articles, essays and penned columns for Adoptive Families, Adoption Today, Mothering Magazine and in numerous other parenting publications.

The other day a good writer-friend asked me, “Have you considered writing a book about motherhood after the kids are grown?”

Hmmm. I wonder what that book would be about? Another writer-friend came up with the perfect title 'Sex and the City Indian' a collection of narratives written by Native women about romance, family and marriage, and you can count me in.

But kidding aside, funnily, I began this blog — the one you are reading right now — to do just that. I began these pages for myself, in order to think out my own particular pattern now that my kids are grown and my thoughts are my own. Who knows, maybe I will begin to write about that universal part of motherhood that comes after we give our kids our all, and give them custody of their own lives.

Meanwhile, I've discovered that first I needed to explore how my identity as a mother, and as an adoptive parent has grown and changed over the past 30 years, and in order to move forward, I had to go back.

 Please join me at In Writing Motherhood. Or maybe you would rather read 'Sex and the City Indian'


Margie said...

Love you, Terra. And I'm really glad you are sharing your journey here with the world.

Hugs and kisses from my side of the country to you and yours!!


So beautifully said. I always catch a wave of peace when reading your words.


P.S. Also, thanks for continuing the writing. As a writer and a person I may find beauty and peace, yet as a mother, I find wisdom in your words.

Diane said...

I love going back with you and seeing what you discover during your journey. You are and inspiration as a writer, mom & woman.

Von said...

Makes complete sense to me, how could it be otherwise. x

Patricia Berdan said...

Terra, I am enjoying your writing. Your ability to pull the reader into your work is truly powerful. I felt a sense of calm as soon as I began reading. Thank you for sharing yourself. I will be returning often.

Patricia Berdan said...

I just watched the video, "The Danger of the Single Story." Thank you for posting the link. What an incredible and powerful video. It helped me to identify the times I have bought into this way of thinking.


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