Saturday, July 30, 2011

An Adopted Child's Perspective on Adoption: Pasha

We wanted to share some of the stories of adoption from the point of view of the children, both biological and adopted. It has been fascinating and faith-building to hear them tell their own stories of life from their perspective. The seventh in this series is from our greatly loved son, Pasha. Pasha is 16 years old, entering his sophomore year in high school.

I Was So Scared of My Mom Leaving Us                       

I don't remember much of what happened in my life before I was adopted because I was quite young. The few things I do remember is living with my mom in an apartment, however, I have no memory of my father. The thing that I do remember of my life before the orphanage was how I used to go on walks with my mom and we would talk.

Unfortunately the one thing that I do remember about my life before the orphanage is the day that Kristina, my sister, and I were taken to the orphanage because my mother couldn’t take care of us. I was so scared of my mom leaving us. I cried a lot and couldn't understand the idea that my mother was leaving me here with these people that I didn't know. In the orphanage, I made some friends, but I was still really young. 

I remember quite a few hardships that I faced there. There was a day when one of my toys got stolen and it happened right in front of my eyes. I tried to do something about it but the other boy wouldn't give it back making feel angry that I couldn’t do anything about it. I would have to say that I was an angry little boy because my life was not a happy one. I remember another time where an innocent boy hit me with a door by accident. He apologized, but my anger devoured me to the point where I hit him with a yo-yo so that he bled from his head. These were hard times indeed.

Pasha (blue striped shirt with red pants) in the hospital
for one of the checkups needed before adoption
With a group of kids on the orphanage playground.
Pasha is the 2nd child on the right with hat and colorful sweater

Pasha on his 5th birthday, with Kristina, meeting his
adoptive mother for the first time. At that point
none of us knew we were family!

I Was So Happy to Find Someone Who Cared

One day I heard that someone wanted to take me home with them and make me a part of their family. I became so excited! Every night, I would think about it before I went to bed. When I first saw my mom and dad my heart leapt. I was so happy to find someone who wanted to take care of me and who actually cared about me. The first time I saw them, they were only visiting. 

So you can imagine my disappointment when they didn't return for a while.  I was scared they were going to leave me here in the orphanage like my mother did. Nevertheless, they came back and I knew that I was going home with them forever. I already began to feel happy when we were at the airport. “We’re flying,” I thought to myself. I was happier than I had ever been in my life.  I was excited to see what America had to offer and I didn't hold my happiness back. I had so many toys, my own room, my own bed, and good food that was always available. 

It was a little strange at first, but I quickly learned how to get along. Everyone was so kind to me, unlike people in Russia. I was the only boy in the family, but I didn't mind. My family adopted two other boys about two years later. Andrei and Sergei. It was nice to have other guys in the family.
Pasha (center) with Andrei and Sergei at the Moscow
airport. New brothers!
At the beach, a yearly event
For quite a few years Pasha was rarely
seen out of "character." His
enthusiasm for super heroes rubbed
off on his brothers

Freedom Being in a Family

It was usually not hard for me to obey my parents or do what they asked me to do. The hardest part for me though was when I felt disappointed at not getting what I want. That makes me angry and it does take me time to get over it, but I eventually do. I felt like I had more freedom being in a family. Because I was very young, in the orphanage the workers had a lot of control over me. I couldn’t do anything against them because then I would get punished.

Oldest sister Emma checking out one of many movies
Pasha made
The boys with their Dad on a weekend away
Christmas Presents!

Finding Out, and Forgetting the Past

My advice to other parents is limited because I am still trying to figure things out with my parents. The few things that I can say to parents who are planning to adopt would be this: Just be kind to them and show love for this is the key. For me personally it helps to talk a little bit about my earlier life. Because I was so young in Russia it was nice to find out about my past. It was nice to also forget my past because once you are adopted it feels like you are starting a new life. At the same time it is important to remember your past and what you went through.  Never make them feel uncomfortable about talking about their past and what happened to them.

I Felt God Speak to Me

Before I came to America I did not really have a relationship with God for some time. But one night at Youth Group, I felt God speak to me and tell me how much he really loved me. My parents have always told me the story about how God told them to adopt me. I thank God for that.  God used my family to lead me to God. Over time, God has really showed me who he is and how much he loves me. 
Pasha (3rd from left) with friends from his youth group
Pasha, an excellent drummer, plays in the church youth
worship band as well as for Sunday morning worship
Register now for HOPE AT HOME 2011 where you will have an opportunity to speak directly with older adopted and biological children and ask them questions as you seek to parent well the children God has given you.


  1. Thank you for sharing your adoption and remarkable family story. You are a very special guy! Aunt Sharon

  2. Beautiful ending. So sad a beginning. How bravery and kind people are. Thank you.