We are making good progress on “Lions Roaring, Far From Home,” our anthology by Ethiopian adoptees. We have essays from writers in the US, Holland, Canada, Sweden, and France; ages range from 8 to 47. We have been contacted by adoptees in other countries as well.
The essays reflect a range of experiences, from writers adopted as babies into loving families, to writers who were adopted by mentally ill mothers, to writers who loved their adoptive parents and thought daily of their Ethiopian family. There are writers who were adopted with their siblings, and writers whose Ethiopian siblings are remembered but were never seen again. Many essays reflect on racism in whatever country they were raised. Some have found their religious faith to be of great solace to them. One considered suicide during adolescence.
It has been an honor to edit the essays. We have more work ahead of us to finish the editing and to begin the publishing phase. We plan to publish electronically and in print, with a publication goal of early 2016.
Here’s an excerpt, by an Ethiopian adoptee who came to the US at 9 years of age, and is now 16:
Near the end of the day, my mother called a cab. I wasn’t sure where we were going to go in a cab. “I’m going to the market place just around the corner,” she said. “You need to stay here with him,” meaning the gatekeeper at the orphanage.
“Why can’t I come?”
“I’m sorry, honey, but you just can’t.” For a second, I thought I saw tears in her eyes. “I love you, my little kitten.” She gave me a kiss on the cheek before the cab drove off.
“I’ll be back” was the last thing she said.
I waited that afternoon for her to come back, even though I knew she lied about the market and was never coming back. I was still hopeful, but as the sun sank and the last glimpse of light hit the land, I knew she was never coming back.
The essays are amazing, heartfelt, and powerful. They reflect resilience, grief, joy, hope, sorrow, and love–the components of adoption.
I can’t wait for you to read them all.