March 16, 2014 - Week 14
I was adopted when I was just a wee little chubster. I resembled not one of the 5 other members of my family. Sure, Evan was Korean, too, but we never looked at all alike, in my opinion. Completely different coloring. Completely different facial structure. I like to tease that surely he must be from North Korea. Surely.
It never bothered me that I didn't look like any of my family members. You don't need physical resemblance to create a loving environment. I always loved that there were so many differences in my family. I liked to think that we were this tiny little traveling circus from around the world. We were all unique. It was really neat.
But the other day, the thought came to me again: I don't know anyone who looks like me [on a more specific basis than "Asian"]. I can't look in a mirror and think, "I have so-and-so's eyes. When I smile, I look like so-and-so. So-and-so gave me their nose crinkle." I still don't consider it a necessarily negative thing. It doesn't bother me in the least. It's just a random thought. A passing thought.
But then, I had this brilliant, super exciting thought: Come September, I will meet someone who will inevitably resemble me. A flesh and blood relation. Someone I will look at and immediately see a part of myself, whether in the eyes or the smile or the nose crinkle or maybe even just in the chubbiest of chubby arms and legs. I will be able to see me, for the first time ever, in someone else. I find this exhilarating.
I'm going to have a blood relative!
On a slightly related note, my parents recently sent me a copy of the papers they had for me from when I was first born and adopted. I hadn't seen them in years and getting to read them was like reading them for the first time, especially in light of the baby kpluBlet. I'm not sure who enjoyed reading about baby Sharayah more, me or Jason. What we found particularly entertaining were some descriptions of my habits that were formed all the way back when I was adorable and that have continued on to this very day.
Example 1: There was a note that read, "Kicks her quilt off while sleeping." Yes. I still do that. All the time. It is absolutely necessary or else I just may die underneath the blanket from either overheating, smothering, or a nasty case of the "I can't untangle myself from the sheets and am about to fweak out!" I cannot confirm that these are the same reasons I did this as a baby, but I have strong suspicions.
Example 2: This little tidbit was also jotted down as notable, "Cries at the beginning of a bath, but feels refreshed later." I have yet to decide if it is hilarious or unbelievably saddening that, 27 years later, this still describes me to a T [or is it tee? or tea? or TREE!]. I suppose nowadays I manage to keep the tears in check, but "You aren't the boss of me!" and "You can't tell me what to do!" are at the top of my shower refusal arsenal. I just don't like taking showers! But I like being clean! It is a complicated, conundrum-filled life I live. Poor Jason has to be the Shower Salesman or the Shower Nazi, depending on which tactic that particular day requires. The Salesman tries to remind me of how glad I'll be and how refreshed I'll feel once I shower [and he's always, always right]. The Nazi just throws me in the shower [reminiscent of the early days of my babyhood, no doubt]. Apparently, some things never change.
Who knew a tiny little lemon-sized person could give me such a strong sense of my own identity?
Dear Tiny Little Half-Asian kpluBlet,
You may now be able to suck your thumb in the cutest fashion ever. There will probably come a day when I may need to tell you to stop sucking your thumb, but that time, little guy, is not now. Suck on! Be adorable. Grow your limbs. Fuzzify your little body. Be who you are meant to be.
I know it probably doesn't mean much to you now, but you're going to look like the perfect meld of your daddy and me. Trust me, you have a good thing going on. I believe my baby self to be of the "Oh my word, you're so cute I want to steal you!" variety, and your dad is absolutely adorable with his gorgeous eyes and dimples. You are bound to be perfect.
You will never have to wonder where you inherited your tiny little nose from or who gave you your tiny little cup-like ears. Just look at me. Look at your daddy. God used us to make you. It may not have much significance to you right now, but, trust me, we consider it the greatest of blessings to call you wholly and completely ours.
I love you, you little blood relative o' mine!