Friday, June 14, 2013

Gotcha Day? Metcha Day? What????

There is some discussion in adoption circles about what day to celebrate.  Do you celebrate Gotcha Day?  Metcha Day?  The day the adoption was finalized?  The day you came home?  I seriously stressed about this before I left for Colombia.  Sometimes I laugh at the things that I worried about.

Here are my thoughts on something that really isn't that important.  I've probably put way too much thought into this but sometimes my brain just goes to weird places.  

I think that it's possible that people celebrate different days depending on why they adopted.  (Again, these are just my crazy theories.)  

Metcha Day
I think maybe people that adopt because they found a picture and fell in love with a child celebrate Metcha Day.  They love this child and the day they met them was the day their lives were change.  
Sara's Metcha Day was January 14th.  We went to the social services office and chatted with the social worker and the case manager for about 15 minutes.  I had already seen Sara in the parking lot so I was not really paying tons of attention to the conversation.  (I had already told my mom that she had to pay attention because I wouldn't.)  After our conversation, they hurried Sara into the room and left us alone.  

January 14th was definitely a huge day in our lives.  Our lives changed forever that day.  However, that isn't the day I choose to "celebrate" with Sara for a couple of reasons.  January 14th is my niece's birthday.  I didn't want to take away from Grace's day and I also wanted Sara to have her own special day.  (It is pretty cool that my sister-in-law both became moms on the same day, though.  Just three years apart.)  

Gotcha Day
I think that maybe people who adopt to rescue a child celebrate Gotcha Day.  The most important day for them is the day their child leaves the orphanage or institution.
Sara's Gotcha Day was also June 14th.  After we visited with her in the room for about 15 minutes, they let me take her to the hotel.  It seemed like they were just giving me this child.  I had to keep reminding myself that I had been through countless interviews, background checks, and processes.  They weren't just randomly handing her to me. 

That day was very surreal to me.  I was finally meeting my child.  I was a mom.  It was real but didn't feel that way.  I felt like I was babysitting or playing house or something.  It felt like someone could still come and take her away.  

Integration Day
In Colombia you have Integration Day.  About a week after you get your child, you go back in for an interview.  You talk about how things are going and how you are both adjusting.  I remember thinking that it was pretty short for something so significant.  Integration Day felt pretty important to me---kind of like it was my last chance to back out.  

Adoption Day
I think when people adopt because they can't have children, Adoption Day becomes very important.  After all, it's the day your child official has your last name.
In all my thinking and planning, I had thought we would celebrate Adoption Day.  After all the drama I went through getting the Sentencia signed, the actual signature was incredibly anticlimactic.  In all honesty, I don't even know what day the adoption was official.  I signed a blank piece of paper that was later attached to the corrected decree.  Because I don't know when it was official and it wasn't a momentous occasion, we don't celebrate adoption day.    

It's possible that people who adopt to share their life with a child celebrate HOME!
March 7, 2013.  The day we came home and started our lives together!  (Poor baby was so tired!)  This was the day it all became real to me.  When we walked through customs and boarded a plane, it was real.  I kept expecting someone to stop us or check our paperwork or make me prove that she was my daughter.  Even when we arrived in the US, the processed our paperwork but never asked me anything.  I really thought they would question me or my motives or something.  Nope.  Everyone just accepted that she was with me because she was my daughter.  

We landed on the plane and were greeted by friends and family.  It was real.  We were home.  This little girl was my responsibility and was living in my house!  

Like I said in the beginning, it's possible that I've put way too much thought into this and that I'm totally off with my reasoning.  Maybe people just pick the day that feels most significant to them.  Maybe other families don't put nearly as much thought into this as I did.  Maybe I have too much time on my hands while Sara is at school.  


  1. We celebrate multiple days. Referralversary in January, Meet You and Court in June (they were five days apart but we only celebrate once) and Gotcha Day (September). Nothing big - I get her flowers for her Gotcha Day and give her a small gift from her birth country (Ethiopia) for Meet You/Court. We eat Ethiopian food each of these three days. I figure we should celebrate as much as possible! This could backfire on me if I adopt one or two more like I plan, but I'm going with it!