Three momentous occasions in one weekend!June 04, 2012
Posted by Application
On May 12, 2012, Kristen graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Columbus College of Art and Design, three days short of the 22nd anniversary of her homecoming, or what our family calls “plane day”. It is also Mother’s Day weekend. Three momentous occasions in one weekend!
I remember hanging wallpaper in the kids’ bath with my bff Molly. Our children, Alex and Shannon, both under 3 years old , play in the bedroom next door. Our husbands were watching hockey and chatting about sports in the family room downstairs. This evening of domestic tranquility is suddenly interrupted by the ringing of the phone.
Molly and I dash to the phone (pre cell days when one actually had to go to where the phone is stationery!) It is the call we’ve all been waiting for! Marty, our adoption caseworker calls to let us know that our daughter will arrive from Korea in three short days.
The night before we are to pick our daughter up from JFK in New York, I stress greatly about leaving my son to board an airplane. No fan of flying, I worry about the plane crashing and other big things: what it will be like to be Mom to two children rather than one, worry that Alex will be dethroned as the one and only and resent me, worry that I won’t love my daughter as much as I do my son, and worry that I will not be able to live up to my own expectations of motherhood. Halfway to New York, I turn to Kristen’s dad and say, “I’m not sure I’m ready to do this.” His response: “Snap out of it! We are going to meet our daughter!” This story has been repeated so many times over the last 22 years, the edges of worry, excitement and nervous anticipation worn soft by the telling.
Waiting for the plane from Korea to land feels like eternity; then announced by burst of activity from other waiting parents, it arrives at the gate. The escorts push strollers or carry precious bundles. A kind-faced gentleman calls out “Maynard” and we rush to him to meet Kristen. As I take her in my arms, I think, “Oh! My family is complete!” All my worries evaporate that instant – I am in love and in awe once again.
As the graduation march begins to play, I am struck by the incredible passage of time. I see Kristen as a bright and curious baby, as a three year old tearing off her little “swimmies” and jumping into the deep end of the pool not wanting to leave, as a playground protector of her gentler big brother. Teachers often remarked on her “spunk,” predicting that “no one will ever push her around.” And truly she has always been a girl with a lot of spunk and determination. Kristen has not always been easy to parent, but loving her deep in my bones has been effortless.
Kristen has grown from a strong willed child into a confident, creative and strong young woman. She appreciates art, politics, travel, and has many other interests. She has talent and much promise of a future in her chosen field. I am so very proud!
Most of all, she is my treasured daughter, a gift in my life.
- Lisa Maynard