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June 02, 2006

Does she look different?

Does she look different? (Does she look like she's *more* our daughter?)

I made this collage with FotoFusion by Lumapix.

Today was Gwen's readoption day. She was our daughter before we went through this stupid and expensive formality and she's (I guess) even MORE our daughter now that it's done.

We went before the judge and promised once again to take good care of her. We swore that we were acting of our own free will. We said (again) that we understood our responsibilities to her. We didn't bring a camera because it wasn't a significant event. It was just another day with our little girl. Because she was ALREADY our little girl!

Why was this necessary? We're already her mother and father. There's no question that our adoption of her last September is absolutely legal and binding. Even in super liberal California where nothing is sure to be what it originally appears on the surface, we are Gwen's parents! Not even the 9th Circus court of appeals could argue that!

I guess, now, we're even more her parents.

In six months to a year, we'll get a California birth certificate that will list us as her mother and father. I'm sure this new birth certificate will be much easier to use than the bulky translated Chinese birth certificate that lists nobody as her parents with a birthdate and place that is also unknown. But it still feels weird that we'll appear to be her birth parents.
I wish the Chinese government would give our kids something more usable as a birth certificate. This whole readoption thing wouldn't be necessary if they'd just give us a different piece of paper in the first place.
Clarification: Readoption isn't required in California. It's just easier in the long run for our China adopted kids to have a birth certificate that is in English and doesn't have a bunch of complicated translations and notary stamps attached. Also, if (heaven forbid) anything ever happened to the Chinese documents, there's probably no way to replace any of it.

It's not China's fault that we can't easily use their documents. I'm not sure that it's anyone's fault. I just wish there was a really efficient way to convert our China adoption documents into a US issued birth certificate without having to go through another homestudy and a court appearance.


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