Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, and not just because I get to stuff my face with turkey and gravy and potatoes and pie (although that is definitely awesome). I love how the day always makes me think about what I’m most thankful for. I didn’t say this out loud at dinner–it’s not your typical toast–but I am truly and deeply grateful for my inability to have a biological child.
Had I had an easy time getting pregnant, I would never have met my son. I would be missing out on so much right now. I am sure I would have loved a biological child, but I would not have MY child. This child, this beautiful boy right here. This little boy who I am more in love with than anything else on the entire planet and in the whole history of the world.
If I had gotten a positive pregnancy test, I would have a normal family that blended in with the crowd and a child who looked like me. I would not have this beautiful, colorful, diverse family that may not look alike but who loves each other just the same. I would not have the compassion, understanding, wisdom, community, and love that I have gained through adopting a child of another race.
I would have love, but I would not have his love. My heart would be bigger, but it would not be this big. I would be happy, but I would not be this happy.
I would be thankful, but I would not be this thankful.
My life was forever changed when my son entered it. I’m grateful that I understand so much more than I ever did about race and what it feels like to be ‘othered’ by society. I am thankful that my eyes have been opened and my thoughts and feelings have expanded and grown and multiplied in ways that I never dreamed of. When Miles was born, I did not just get a child, I got a whole new perspective on life and what it means to be a human being. I am truly a better person because of him.
I am thankful every day for the presence of my beautiful black boy with his dark chocolate skin, deep brown eyes, and contagious spirit. I love learning about his rich heritage and figuring out ways to include it in our daily lives. I love how intentional I have to be every day. I love the smell of his soft hair after I rub coconut oil in it and how the odd curl refuses to be tamed. He makes me laugh a million times a day and I cannot imagine a life without him in it.
I wish I had been able to tell myself this when I was trying to get pregnant: that my biggest heartbreak would soon turn into my greatest joy. And that I would be eternally grateful for the gift of infertility, no matter how much it hurt at the time.