Among my friends and family at the moment a couple of families have welcomed a child by adoption. (Not the same child, obviously.)
I am proud and impressed. They aren’t getting a newborn with the very simple – if exhausting – needs. These couples are getting to grips with evolved personalities, eventful histories and hurricane-strength upheaval.
Imagine seeing a tantrumming small person that you’re supposed to be in charge of and how that might feel if you haven’t had the benefit of a lifetime’s build up.
Parenting is an up-and-down business at the best of times. Perhaps those of us who acquire our children in the more common manner are lulled into the enterprise by the thought that it’ll be different – all up, never down – for us. I’m sure parents who adopt harbour no such naive fantasy, they know exactly what they’re getting.
So to the mums and dads who adopt, I salute you all.