Living in no mans land

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I sometimes feel like I’m in no mans land in terms of my parenting experience. When you adopt (without having birth children first) it is a weird place to be. You don’t have the stories of pregnancy and childbirth to regale.  You can’t say honesty “ahh she looks so much like her father”.  And if you adopt older children as we did – already school age, you then don’t have the friendships built with other parents through the years of nursery, pre-school and that all important first day of school.

Of course it’s not all negative – some of those sleepless nights and nappy changing stories from my friends I’m quite pleased I missed!  And of course my friends who didn’t struggle with conceiving find it hard to understand the loss surrounding childlessness.  This is something I never would have been able to relate to either.  I knew people who struggled but of course we are never as sensitive to others when we don’t share those experiences ourselves!

So why these ramblings you might ask?  Well I’m always mindful of this no mans land we live in where our children are like other children, but not.  We are like all other parents, but not.  At times it’s not a problem and at other times it is.  Over the few years I’ve been in this no mans land I’ve learnt (and am learning) to enjoy the scenery here.  There are good things here.  New people and now friends I have through our adoption journey that I would’ve never met otherwise, resilience and compassion I have found in myself that I never knew I had and a brilliant purpose of trying to make something good for my children out of something bad.

So wherever you are today – whether you feel the depth of no mans land acutely or not – look around and see the gifts there are here for you, as well as acknowledge the tough places.  It’s much easier to find help and support when you can accept that things aren’t always a bed of roses.  Who knows you may even find a rare gem here in no mans land!

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