I have been fiercely protective about the details surrounding Ava’s adoption, I’ve always maintained that the details of her adoption are for her and her alone, they are her story to tell and not mine and for that reason I will never share the details. Although they’re burned into my brain and stored away to be shared with her one day when the time is right.

Things like her birth fathers name, her birth mothers name, the details of their relationship, the reason’s behind their decision to place her, the possibility of half siblings, the ages of her birth parents, where they come from, what they do for a living etc etc etc. I am fiercely protective of this information, not just out of a desire to protect my child, but also as a way of honoring her birth mother.

Of course, I have shared small snippets of information, but that is only with my friends who have experienced adoption themselves, we are a subset of mothers with very different stories and experiences and for that reason we often share some of the more intimate details of our adoption journey’s because it is safe to do so with each other.There is an unspoken code of secrecy between us.

There is one little details I have kept buried deep inside me, a detail that was too terrifying to verbalize, call me superstitious, but I just couldn’t bring myself to talk about this details. This particular details has caused me to wake up in a cold sweat at night, a tight fist clenched around my heart, my stomach in a not, my heart racing as I’m wracked by the fear of what if….

With the passing of Ava’s 2nd birthday, that fear can now too be laid to rest. She is now well and truly ours and I never have to think about that detail again. While it was unlikely to occur, the mere possibility of it has seen me paralyzed by fear in the middle of the night when that what if thought found it’s way into my dreams.

So yesterday was a very special day for us, Ava’s 2nd birthday and laying to rest that one final what if…. Yesterday was so much more than just a 2nd birthday and it was a day filled with emotion that most parents will never ever know.

We celebrated it in a truly South African style, dinner at the Spur, complete with sparklers and the singing of Happy Birthday to our precious Ava-Grace.

A Right Of Passage