Pagan Parenting

As adoptive parents, we have to go through a long and extended process to welcome this child into our home.  When I went with the birth mother to the ultrasound, we were expecting to see a little blob of cells at 9 weeks.  What we saw was a 12 week fetus.  I didn’t have time to get super excited because I went from having three weeks to figure this process out to “Get it done NOW” in the span of about thirty minutes.

The adoption process is not easy, and it’s definitely not cheap.  It’s not something you just wake up one morning and say, “Hey, let’s go out and get ourselves a baby.  It’ll be fun.”  Not belittling anyone in their path to motherhood, but adoption is definitely more expensive that finding a known donor and tracking.  Now, if you go to a reproductive endocrinologist and get into IUI and IVF, adoption is right up there with you, but you’re simply trying at home, it is not that expensive and it’s definitely not something you have to think as long and hard about as adoption because of financial reasons.

When you are trying to conceive on your own, there is stress.  There is stress because you might not get pregnant, or you might miscarry, or you may have to do this process over and over again for months, maybe years on end.  Once you get pregnant, there are stresses about the nursery, the parenting situations, child care, etc.  But you know what you don’t have to stress about?  Bringing a baby home or having your home, your relationship, your lifestyle, your faith judged for “proper child raising ability” by the state.  Sure, people will talk, but unless you give the state any reason to think that you’re unfit parents, your child will come home with you and you’ll never have any problems whatsoever.

Erin and I are staring a home study down the throat in November.  We’ve already filled out the consent forms to have our arrest records checked, our backgrounds double checked, and the sex registry list triple checked.  After that, we each have to fill out a SIX page questionnaire about our families, our finances, our hobbies, and our faith.  Then we have to gather a bunch of pictures of the house and a lot of other paperwork before November rolls around when someone who is certified by the state comes through and makes sure that our house is in proper working order and safe for a baby.  We have to baby proof our house, I think, before all is said and done, and not that we wouldn’t do this anyway, but we might have waited until, you know, our baby could crawl and had the dexterity to open bottles.

After that, we wait and wait and stress the entire time because until the birth mother and father signs the paperwork that relinquishes their rights, that baby is still not ours.  We could go through all of this and still not come home with a baby.  It happens all the time.  I don’t think that that will happen in our case, but you can never be sure until it’s all over.  This creates a lot of excitement and a lot of stress at the same time.

Erin and I have been mulling over all the interview questions, and we’re not as nervous about the fact that we’re a same-sex couple as we are about the fact that we’re devoutly pagan.  I take comfort in knowing we can’t be discriminated against for religious reasons, but I know there could always be “something else.”  We’ve been talking a lot about what to do with our altars.  Should we leave them out or put them away for a day?  According to Kemetic Orthodox belief, they shouldn’t be out anyway, but it feels wrong.

I think what we’ve decided is that we’re going to put our faith in the Gods to see us through this situation.  They’ve gotten us this far on their faith and they won’t let us down right at halftime.  I think we’re planning on leaving the altars out and answering any and all questions genuinely and truthfully.  There is no reason to begin a family based on lies and misdirection.  If we have to resort to lies and deception to  win over the state, then we don’t deserve to win over the state.

We are choosing to raise our child as a Kemetic, and we have to be honest about that.  I wrote awhile back about the importance of pagan children, and my views have not changed.  Except that now it’s not a day dream, it’s reality.  Unless Erin gets a job in a more liberal part of the country after she graduates, we might be here awhile.  Our child will grow up in a place surrounded by Christianity, and not just any type of Christianity, but Christianity where they’re right and everyone else is wrong.  We’re talking the condemn-you-tell-hell-first-save-you-second type of Christianity.  The type that is against homosexuality, abortion, homeless people and immigrant children, but all for women submission, corporate money, and the soul-saving resurrection of Jesus Christ.  That type of Christianity.  It’s the type that I don’t particularly care for.

I believe in the Gods’ love for all Their creations.  I believe that along the way, we were given humans who led us to a greater understanding of what it means to act in a way that is pleasing to Them.  I believe that Jesus is probably one of those people, along with the Buddha, Muhammad, and Imhotep, among others.  There is going to come a time when our child is going to come across one of those Christians that will tell him that he’s wrong or that she’s going to hell for not believing in Jesus as the son of God, and we have to be ready for those days.

If we can’t stand up for our faith now, how will we be able to do it then?  How will we be able to teach our child how to in the days to come?  The simple answer is that we won’t, and that’s not an answer I’m okay with.

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Posted on July 31, 2014, in Babies, Faith, Kemetic Orthodoxy, Life, Love, Pagan Blog Project, Paganism, Raising Kids, Religion and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. quicksilverwitch

    These are some very beautiful and well-thought out sentiments you’ve been addressing over your last few blogs. Adoption is a very emotionally charged process even for the “typical” family – I can only imagine the whirlwind of emotions you and your partner must be feeling!

    I also have to commend you on your decision from the get go to raise your child as Kemetic. I must admit I faltered with my daughter and only recently began introducing her to the things I believe, and only then because she’s at the age where she wonders why there’s a cast-iron “bowl” sitting on a table in a corner of our living room (among other things). I will keep you all (judge, and biological parents included) in my thoughts as this process continues.

  2. I enjoyed reading this, since Pagan parenting is something that I think about a lot. I have felt called to having children ever since I was a child myself, but since I became Pagan (Hellenic polytheist to be precise) I’ve been wondering a lot about whether I will raise them in the faith or not. I want to, but as you pointed out, it’s a scary and difficult decision when you’re surrounded by Christianity. I also think it’s worse if the Gods you believe in are Zeus or Osiris as opposed to the Wiccan Lord and Lady. Wicca is a more or less socially accepted religion, and most people agree that there are Wiccans alive today, but belonging to a supposedly dead religion like Hellenismos or Kemeticism is considered ridiculous.

    Good luck on raising your Pagan child – it always warms my heart when someone chooses to raise their child with a love of the Gods, be they Kemetic, Hellenic or any other type of Pagan 🙂

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