A "good enough" mom muses about alpha moms, adoption, computers, the State Of The World, Internet quirkiness, and the Kosmik All
Contrary Magic
When OmegaMom was a small lass, one of OmegaGranny's favorite catchphrases was "contrary magic". This was used to describe what would happen if, say, you planned a picnic, invited people, and did not have a rain date: inevitably, it would rain, the picnic would be spoiled, the gods would laugh, and everyone would have a lousy time. There are certain people who are "contrary magic" personified. OmegaMom knew someone who could cause computers to glitch and expensive power tools to freeze up or break, merely by walking into the room, and whose premier production as a director at a small theater company in Rogers Park was interrupted by a fire in the lighting system. The comic strip L'il Abner has such a character, Joe Btfsplk, who wanders around with a black cloud hanging over his head, and is shunned by all his neighbors, because he brings wrack and ruin in his wake. There are times when OmegaMom herself has felt like a Joe Btfsplk. The one year she attended Northwestern University, the Wildcats had a season in which they won no games. Zero. Zip. If she was foolish enough to watch a Bears game with her grandfather, the Bears would inevitably lose. During the Winter Olympics, whatever ice dancing team OmegaMom has set her heart on...loses. When the Omegas started the adoption process for OmegaDotter, the wait between DTC (dossier to China) and referral was a mere 9 months. As soon as they sent their application in, the wait began to stretch. By the time they actually received their referral for OmegaDotter, the wait was an agonizing 14 months. Two months ago, when the shadow of a slowdown at the Chinese Center for Adoption Affairs was just beginning to raise its ugly head, OmegaMom had a luncheon with four long-time work friends. They sat around chit-chatting about this and that, scarfing down the hors d'oeuvres, having a grand old time. OmegaMom clinked her glass, and announced to them all that she and OmegaDad were about to start the process for DotterSecunda. Happy, eager questions pelted her. Everyone was excited. And then the question came: "Will it take as long this time? It took soooo long last time!" OmegaMom uttered this fateful phrase: "Oh, it should be much quicker this time! We're expecting it to take about a year, total." Um. Foolish, foolish OmegaMom. That is known as "taunting the gods". Mr. OmegaMom has a saying: "Man plans, God laughs." Referrals times have slowed dramatically in the past two months. Many of OmegaMom's buddies on the Chinese adoption lists, who are in the process for number one or number two, or even, in some cases, number three, are watching their longed-for referrals continuing to loom beyond their grasp in a Sisyphean manner. Like the Red Queen, they feel like they are running and running and running, only to stay in the same place. My heart goes out to them. No matter how you feel afterwards, when you have your child in your arms, the wait just plain SUCKS DEAD TOADS. Period. End of story. And OmegaMom is feeling like the Joe Btfsplk of the Chinese adoption world. All she can do is offer hugs and condolences. (OmegaMom would like to assure all and sundry that, yes, she is aware that she has absolutely no linkage to the slowdown, and that, yes, she is aware that this superstition is incredibly self-centered. But, boy, it sure seems like fate, karma, destiny, kismet, or the gods laughing.)
posted by Kate @ 12/30/2005 09:07:00 AM  
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About Me
Name: OmegaMom
Home: Southwest
About Me: Middle-aged mom of a 4-year-old adopted from China. Love science, debate, good SF and fantasy, hiking, music of almost every style. Lousy housekeeper. "Good enough" mom.
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