Editor’s Note: The views expressed here are those of the author’s and don’t necessarily represent or reflect the views of MangoBaaz.
I still remember like it was yesterday. The phone rang and on the other hand was Asima, she said, “mubarak Ho Baji, Aap ke adoption papers process hogaye, aur InshAllah chund dinno mein Babur aap ke ghar ka hissa ban jaye ga!”
Tears of joy rolled out of my eyes, words cannot begin to describe what I felt at that moment. I looked at my husband, we were finally going to be parents. In that moment we felt like the luckiest people in the world, our lives looked better and our future, brighter. Our son Babur was coming home. I began to imagine all the ways I would welcome my son.
But it was only me who was excited for the arrival of my son
Although our little family was now becoming complete, no one in my in-laws and even in my own family supported us. For them, if we couldn’t have a baby we should’ve gotten ‘treatment’. They all said, “iss tarah tou bacha humaray khoon ka tou hoga, ye tum log anjaan bacha laa rahay ho, kabhi humara nahin ho sakay ga”.
For me, as a woman, it was particularly hard because the blame of not being able to start family of our own was implied to be on me. In a society where a woman’s shaan lies in how many children (or rather, boys) she has, I was in a position of not having given any child to the family. Apparently, there was only shame in not being able to produce, and even more shame in adopting. They would rather have me spend thousands and thousands of rupees on IVF treatments than to adopt a child who was in need of love and home as much as I was in need of a baby to love.
When my child came home, he was secluded from everyone else.
Babur could not play with the other children of the house on orders of my saas. If I ever brought Babur to the dining table, everyone else would leave. How were we to teach Babur to grow up in an environment of love and care when so much hatred surrounded him? In that situation, the decision to leave our family home was easy for us to make. We had to make sure Babur’s future and safety, and our own sanity.
It’s been six years since we separated from our family
Although our elders still don’t care for our son, Babur’s puphos and mamus, have softened up to him.
I have never been able to explain to Babur why his grandparents never acknowledge him they way they do his cousins. I always knew adoption was never something that was looked up to in our society but, quite frankly, having experienced the attitude myself, all I have to say is that’s messed up. Most of the children and babies in the adoption cycle have no surviving family members or were left at orphanages’ doorsteps. And for couples like me and my husband, what better way than to provide a loving home for such a child?
Babur is the reason for so much happiness in our lives and I would do it all again in a heartbeat. And I still haven’t found how can an adopted child scare grown adults so much?
Cover image via: webtv.un.org