If the truth sets us free, would you still tell it if it means upsetting someone?
Several years ago, I was on a crowded train and the two women standing next to me were talking about drinking and pregnancy.
One of them said she knows doctors who’ve said it is ok to drink during pregnancy and the other woman agreed with her.
I was horrified, because by that time, I was living the reality of parenting a child who was prenatally exposed to alcohol and had a prognosis of at-risk FASD.
I could not muster up the nerve to speak up, as I did not want to offend them.
I often think about that moment with a tinge of regret, because what if I could’ve saved a future child from a lifelong disability.
This past Saturday, I had a do-over of sorts when the hubby and I had a Zoom call with the in-laws of a family friend who were looking to adopt and wanted to hear about our experience.
I was very mindful that for heterosexual couples, adoption is often – not always – a last resort after trying to naturally conceive.
So the hubby and I wanted to be compassionate, encouraging and informative but to also not sugarcoat important details.
We walked through the adoption process, including the lengthy forms and home study interviews, and we were upfront that it is not a first-come, first-serve process. It could be quick, it could take many years (like ours) or it could never happen at all.
We spoke fondly of the many happy memories and we were frank about the challenges, including dealing with issues of loss and trauma.
We were upfront about FASD and shared our daily challenges.
It was interesting watching them nod their heads, smiling at times, looking pensive at others.
I felt we provided a balanced and truthful picture of what lies ahead and I hope it will help them make an informed decision.
We ended off on a positive note: I told them it was ultimately a rewarding experience, despite the challenges.
For me, the conversation was also a wonderful walk down memory lane, stirring up many happy memories, like our first camping trip when T was just 1 year old, pictured on this post.
The past few weeks have been so challenging and the difficult moments seem to continue to pile on top of one another.
Having this opportunity to share our journey with others – and to take a step back and see how much the hubby, T and I have grown and travelled together in this crazy journey called life – reminded me what it is that we get up everyday for and to never give up on it.
So yes, the truth does set us free.