In April 2015 our family found out that we got matched with a little boy. We had been waiting for this moment for quite
a while and had so many questions. When you first get matched to your new child or sibling there are so many
unknowns. When will we get to meet them? When will everything be finalized? Will we have to travel?
These questions are completely valid and are all important, but if you’re adopting in addition to already having
children, your children will absolutely have questions of their own. And as much as you’re in the unknown, you have
to remember that they are too. They know even less about this than you and may not be able to process feelings and
emotions as well as you can.
Sometimes their questions may seem to be unimportant or not as high priority, but that may just be because their
mind is on a different track than yours, they have different priorities. I can’t speak for every adoptive? sibling, but as a
14-year-old, I was definitely more focused on the impact it would make on me and my siblings, and I was completely
oblivious about things such as logistics or paperwork.
I am the oldest child in our family, and I already had four younger brothers when my parents decided to adopt.. Over
the years I have assumed more and more responsibility for my siblings, often stepping in and acting as a second
mother.
That being said, instead of just being happy that we were adding on to our family like the rest of my siblings, I had
plenty of questions of my own.
Where are we going?
How long will we be gone?
When do we get to meet him?
The process moved unusually quickly, and we were staying at a hotel just outside of Chicago, Illinois within a month.
A few days after we arrived we got to meet him, and fell in love right away.
But my last question, the one I really wanted to know before we went was, ‘what’s his name?’ Unbeknownst to me,
during the entire adoption process, my mom had a feeling that her next child should be named Isaac. We have no
one in the family with that name, it wasn’t of any significance … until we found out a little bit more about my brother-
to-be.
My brother is now four, and has Angelman Syndrome. Angelman Syndrome is a rare neuro-genetic disorder,
affecting 1 in 15,000. (https://www.angelman.org/what-is-as/) It has many symptoms, including almost constant
smiling and uncontrollable laughter.
The name Isaac is a traditionally Biblical name, and it means ‘laughter’. As soon as we found this out, we immediately
knew that he was meant to be a part of our family.
Although we changed his first name, my parents decided to keep Isaac’s middle name in honor to his family. The
story of a child who’s been adopted is woven into both his birth family and adoptive family, and boundaries are a fine
line to walk for any parent, birth or adoptive.

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