26 April 2019
When I travelled to China in 1999 to adopt a seventeen-month old, I remember wondering what the future would hold. I was single and 48 years old and working for pay at a job and a half. I wondered whether I was too old – what would it be like when I was, for example, 68, and my daughter, 22.
As it turns out it is splendid. Witnessing a young woman grow into herself is such a wonder. And finding our way to such a loving and reciprocal generous caring rapport – arrives with time and growing independence. A fierce independence that generates an original life, a path created to satisfy a thoughtful quest.
This is certainly the greatest gift I could ever have anticipated.
And as I watch my girl go half way around the world to work with differently-abled youth for part of this summer, volunteerism that began close to home during her junior high & high school years here – a trip she planned, a journey she will take with others from around the world – I think about how she continually acts knowing that we arrive in a place to either call for or offer care.
She works very hard at her environmental science studies that “come first” she says. And she shapes her life around a history that knows the strangeness of displacement as she contemplates the alienation of difference, the power of privilege, the poverty or access to opportunity. And the many pleasures that can arrive unbidden in this life well-lived.