What's Your Genre?
"All the world's a stage..." - William Shakespeare in As You Like It
If the bard's words apply to the drama and dynamics of relinquishment and adoption as we approach November, National Adoption Awareness Month -- and I suspect they do -- then what genre best describes your story?
At the outset, we can all agree that comedy is off the list of choices. Though life as an adoptee, or parent by birth or adoption, can certainly have humorous moments, most of us would be surprised if anyone living the experience described it as an ongoing barrel of laughs. The issues run too deep, and the way forward is complicated and, at times, intense.
Some, wishing to paint a rosy picture of love, redemption and happy endings, might prefer to view their adoption experience through the buffering lens of a Broadway Musical. Boy meets girl. Boy and girl fall in love, or not, and sing Foreigner's Hot Blooded in a tender duet. Boy and girl have sex, and when girl becomes pregnant she sings Madonna's Papa Don't Preach...to no avail. What appears to be a problem for boy and girl evolves into a courageous decision to give their baby a better life. Enter adoption agency workers and potential adoptive parents, singing and dancing their hearts out in the big production number, a cheerful, grief-free adaptation of Easy Terms from Blood Brothers. All ends well as the new parents ride into the sunset with the baby singing the Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher version of Lullabye in Blue from Bundle of Joy. The original parents get to move on and live their lives unencumbered by the new life they crea