Three families share how they celebrate adoption day
I can remember each year growing up, my mother retelling my birth story: what time she drove to the hospital, how long it took, how she felt when she first held me, etc. On Jason’s first birthday, I wasn’t ready for the onset of confusing emotions. I didn’t know how his birthmom got to the hospital or how long it took for him to be born. I remember thinking, “One year ago, I didn’t even know he existed.”
On the other hand, I remember every single moment of our Family Day: spending the night at my best friend’s home near the courthouse, meeting my parents in the hallway and waiting to be called in, all the new families standing in a circle around our judge’s bench to hear official word that we’re a family, bagpipes playing in the background, the local newspaper taking pictures and interviewing new families and the many, many tears of pure joy!
Amy Skunda Davis
On our adoption day, August 6, 2009, my son, Nicholas, was barely nine years old and my husband and I were just two days shy of our first wedding anniversary. As a teenage mother, I wondered and worried about how it would be for my son to grow up without a father. Meeting Ryan changed all of that, and after we got married, we decided to initiate adoption proceedings. During our “waiting” period, I remember having family discussions about the process and what will happen if the adoption doesn’t go through – just like any other type of adoption. The hearing was quick and easy and we celebrated the day with close friends and family, all of whom were in attendance in the courtroom. Each year since, Ryan and Nicholas have exchanged little gifts or cards, and go out to do something fun together. I hope each year’s Adoption Day is a reminder of the bond between the two of them, and I am fully satisfied just witnessing the two of them celebrate and remember, together.
In our family we always celebrated by going out for a nice dinner. We started at McDonald’s and slowly made our way to nicer and more grown-up restaurants. Our sons picked the location. We also lit our family candles to celebrate birth families, foster families and our family.
Ideas for adoption day
No matter what you call it – Adoption Day, Family Day, Gotcha Day, Anniversary Day – it’s a special day that deserves notice.
- Throw a party – as intimate or as large as you’d like! Make a cake with the number of candles as years you’ve been together.
- Spend the day on a family outing.
- Open up discussions about adoption.
- Make an adoption scrapbook/lifebook that you read together this day, and add to it each year.
- If your child is from a different culture or country, do something special to celebrate that culture together.
- Send a treat to school and open up a class discussion on adoption.