When 13 year old Weynshet leaves her orphanage in Ethiopia with her new American parents, she believes all her prayers have been answered. But in gaining a family, she must leave behind everything she has ever known. Spanning four years in the life of one irrepressible girl, the film offers an intimate look at the struggle to create an identity in the aftermath of adoption across race and culture.
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Over the seven years we have been writing here, we have frequently written about adoption. (Adoption tab has links to many archived posts on the topic.) As adoptive parents on the learning continuum, we find ourselves in a different place today than when we entered into adoption twelve years ago. Our growth has led us to open-adoptions with two first families. Those changes and that process has been a beautiful and complicated and wonderful and sorrowful journey.
We all benefit from reminders of how important culture and heritage and family history are to our identity. It is not uncommon to hear "how lucky" adopted children are or how "much better off" they are. The truth is, those statements are almost always painful to both adoptive parents and the adopted child. Adoption can often be lovely and redemptive, but that doesn't make it easy or simple or in any way pain-free. This PBS film did a wonderful job of sharing the more realistic and complex side of international adoption.