Sitting in the lobby at the dentist office I cross my legs to prop up the clipboard and fill out the never-ending pile of forms. I always feel pressure to get done before they call our name. I keep one eye on my three-year-old son James as he plays with the waiting room toys.
Ah, there it is...the part of the form I have always filled out as Foster Mom. But now I am officially his Mother. It hits me that this is the first form I have filled out since our adoption finalized and I don't have to include a Case Worker as an emergency contact, or explain who I am when signing his paperwork. I was surprised to feel a bit of guilt. Part of me felt the need to explain who I was to the receptionist. I felt a little panic like I was being deceiving. I am sure I am over reacting and at the same time baffled why this is such a big deal to me. Why wouldn’t I just have the confidence to sign it as his Mother and move on to the rest of the form?
James has been in my heart and my home for almost 2 years and for so long I had felt like I was at the bottom of the food chain when it came to rights over him. I had to jump through hoops to cut his hair. I had to sit in the back at court hearings and watch the drama knowing he could possibly leave. I have worried over committee meetings to be selected as his family and at the same time, caring for him at home, holding him while he was sick, loving him with all of my heart and soaking up every curl in his hair.
The title of Mom can come with so many descriptions...Foster Mom, Adoptive Mom, Birth Mom the list goes on. Even some we choose to carry around with us, New Mom, Teenage Mom, Afraid I am too old Mom, or Super Busy Mom. I use that last one a lot. So many titles paint a picture when the words come out of our mouth. Working Mom, Stay-at-Home Mom, Soccer Mom, We put ourselves in these boxes and have a hard time living without them. The titles will mean different things to all of us but we all have something in common, we are all in love with a child.
When I handed the receptionist the clipboard that I had just signed as his Mother she doesn't see the years of waiting with ups and downs filled with court hearings, committees and all that I have been through to get to this point. She doesn't know that I have been longing to have this title and now that I have it I don't sign it with ease but rather I soak in this moment and acknowledge the gift that it is. She just knows me as simply, his Mom.