‘Mom, I’m glad I’m not adopted,’ the little boy said out of the blue.
‘Really,’ she responded. ‘Why do you say that?’
‘Because, if I was adopted you wouldn’t love me as much.’
It had been more than five years since the boy made the transition into his new family. He was about a year old when Child Protective Services placed him with his foster family.
He doesn’t remember the days of crawling around a small government-subsidized apartment as his biological mother and her guests — many of whom she didn’t know — lay sleeping on floors and couches. Though it was one of his earliest sensory experiences, he can’t identify marijuana smoke. Nor has he imagined that drinking straws are also used to inhale the poisonous vapors of scorched methamphetamine.
And he doesn’t recall the hours in court, where attorneys and social workers made their cases on his behalf.
‘Well, you know we love you more than anything,’ the mom said.
‘I know,’ the little boy responded, ‘because I’m not adopted.’
His young memory is instead crowded with Disney characters and Sunday dinners; a cruise ship that he refers to as the boat; a stuffed duck that was his Linus blanket; and pizza bites. Enough pizza bites to float a cruise ship.
The boy’s parents never considered having another child. In fact, they were done with diapers, well baby doctor visits and school supply lists that included sleeping mats. All of their high-chairs and strollers had been given away or sold at a garage sale. They were ready for vacations and some weekends alone.
But they saw an injustice.
He deserved better than to be left alone, or to witness his mother trade favors for drugs. Every child does. This boy, however, was one of the fortunate ones. For certain, his biological mother loved him. But her stronger bond was with her lifestyle. And he’d become a novelty.
‘You know, many people who put their children up for adoption love them very much,’ the mom explained. ‘And the people who adopt them really want them in their family.’
‘I’m just glad I’m not adopted,’ he responded. ‘And I’m glad you and dad love me more than an adopted son.’
In time, the boy will begin asking questions. His parents – Catherine and I – will offer him answers. We will be forthcoming and matter-of-fact. That will include letting him know that life happens and that he is our grandson, but really our son.
We will also tell him that we love him with all of our hearts. Forever. And I suspect that he’ll believe us.
Want to receive notifications of my Confessions in your email? Just click here. I’d also love for you to join me on Facebook (click the ‘like’ button), Pinterest and Google+. — Special thanks to Megan E. Hawkins at The Underground Writer for editing this piece.
I know it’s difficult for many people to believe right now, but spring is just around the corner. Why not fool yourself for at least one meal and eat as if the azaleas are in full bloom?
I’ve always been irritated at the widespread loose use of the word aioli. I know, this topic is better suited for my weekly Food Snob Chronicles, but I want to let you know that — albeit close — the ‘aioli’ in the below recipe is still not the real deal. (Aioli contains three ingredients: egg yolk, garlic and olive oil.) Still, this version is delicious. I was inspired by about a dozen different sources on this one, but Rick Bayless was my first go-to source in my search for measurements and flavor combos. Enjoy and no worries … You’ll be grilling your lobster tail in no time.
Lobster w/ Chile Lime Aioli
4 – Lobster tails (about 5-7 oz. each)
2 TB – Fresh Cilantro, chopped
1 – Egg yolk
Juice and rind from 1 small Lime
1/2 – Canned Chipotle en Adobo, seeded & finely chopped
1/4 cup – Mayonnaise
3 TB – Extra virgin olive oil
Combine all ingredients and process in blender until combined. Refrigerate for about 20 minutes.
Prepare lobster tails
Using a pair of kitchen shears, cut the top of each tail lengthwise until almost reaching the tail. Now, work your thumb or first two fingers between the bottom of the shell and the meat. Work your fingers toward the tail until all meat is separated from the bottom. Turn tail back over and gently pull out meat, leaving it attached at the tail. Remove vein, if necessary, then rinse well, making sure to wash away any bits of shell. Place meat atop the split shell.
Adjust oven shelf so that it sits about 8-10 inches from broiler element. Preheat the broiler (to high).
Brush lobster meat lightly with olive oil and place in oven for 5 minutes. Remove tails from oven. Lower oven temperature to 450F. Spoon aioli over lobster tails, dividing it evenly. Place tails back in oven and allow to cook for another 3-5 minutes, until aioli is nicely browned.