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Friday, November 9, 2007

Who's Your Baby?

On the big Ethiopian Adoption Yahoo Group board (not the same as the AWAA board) some people were sharing the referral photos of their kids (our agency doesn't allow us to post pics until our kids are officially ours in ET for privacy reasons). It was strange to catch what could be a glimpse of how our referral photos might look. They weren't posed pictures. They were candid snap shots with other kids playing in the background. Poor lighting, bad angles, etc. NOT any parent's dream idea of the first image of their child they'll have to cling to, rest assured!

Now I may be a bit of a diva about this issue, but if I could have it my way I'd like a high resolution, quality pic. One with excellent lighting as well. I'll take a photo straight on please, and another with his head turned slightly (both left and right). Next, I'd like both side profiles (mug shot style please). Oh, and don't forget one smiling, one frowning, one laughing, .... and the back of the head too, for good measure. Finally, a full length shot would be important. An action shot would be appreciated, too, if you could swing it. For heaven's sake THIS is my son and I WANT to know what he looks like. All of him!

I have read the accounts of many AP (adoptive parent) who couldn't recognize their child's face when it came time to pick them up at the orphanage even though they studied every detail of their faces from the moment they got those first precious, albeit less than ideal quality, pictures in their hands. Of course I whisper to myself, "That will not happen to me." But, secretly I fear it a bit. It just seems plain weird that I wouldn't KNOW the face of my child. This child who I already have LOVED in my heart for so long now, but never the less a child whom I still don't know. I can imagine a guilty kind a betrayal feeling creeping over me if it were to happen for me the same as it did for those other dear AP's. Someone from our agency even blogged about entering the room on the first day at the orphanage and being asked by the care takers to pick their infant from among the bunch of children. Their's was a son, so naturally they never imagined that he would be dressed like a girl! It wasn't that the care takers were trying to be cruel, I imagine, but that for lack of clothes maybe they used girls clothes, or maybe they don't have the same ideas about colors which are traditionally girl colors in the US. They tend to put tights on all the infants to keep them warm from what I have read (they like to bundle infants up pretty warm in ET, much more than what we'd tend to be comfortable with in the US) Needless to say, they couldn't recognize their boy and so the care takers had to point him out for them. When I read that I nearly crumbled inside for that poor mother! I pray that it never affected her the way it would have if it would have been me. I pray that NEVER happens to us or any one else for that matter.

I am anxious to hear about the kind and type of photos those families who are with our agency have gotten with their referrals. I am sure they are all so giddy just gaze at an actual photo of their kids that they are not going to nit pick a thing!

this is all just a curiosity which was aroused in me today. I have nothing much to do lately but wait, so I expect that lots of weird curiosities such as this will occupy my mind for a while.

5 comments:

Carpenters said...

Jen, I'm with you about being a photo diva. We have three pictures of our son and they are so precious. We have only received one picture of our daughter. She'll have grown so much from that picture until we go to bring her home! Every picture and piece of information we have for them is a treasure. I want to know all about them and what they are like, but we won't really begin doing that until we meet. Until then, I'll stare longingly at the pictures we do have of our two cuties. BTW, the pictures we received in our referral were well lit, high resolution, straight on photo. Sorry no head turns, back of head, smiles, frowns, etc.

With love,
Penelope

P.S. I could take it one step farther and definitely go for a video!

Gibson Family said...

Jen,
Can you imagine the day we actually see the pictures!!! Ohhhh...I'm filled with joy & anxiety, too. I pray we can listen to God's voice and guidance as we make life-changing decisions on referrals!! Whew!!! I love your blog!!
lots of love,
Kari

Jen said...

Oooh my little brain completely forgot that videos were even an option. I don't think those are standard for AWAA currently but maybe that will change after the transition home is up and running! Let's hope.

Caleb and Becca's Ethiopia Adoption said...

We just got 1 picture...and have shamelessly asked Laurel if we will get more :-) the answer was probably not - oh well, the picture we got is precious and very clear! Can't wait till you guys will all get to see her!

Jen said...

I look forward to it! I totally love that you at least HAD to ask if you could get some more! hehe. It's just too exciting! I am sure she is gorgeous!!