At times, origin stories and adoption intertwine.
My placed son, Cricket, has become very interested in origin stories. He shares with me a love of caped crusaders. His interest is particularly in how superheroes and villains came to be. Many include origin stories and adoption. He told me about some of the stories he has learned. His adoptive mom read to me a couple of the origin stories he has created. My favorite was Morning Glory who had a formative experience with vines and now has all the powers of a morning glory. It was left ambiguous whether Morning Glory is a hero or a villain. I like that too.
Cricket has a more complicated origin story than some kids do. I remember the odd shock I felt when his adoptive mom first told me over Skype that he “is very interested in origin stories right now.” He has also spent more time talking about it than I believe most kids do. I can only really speak for my two younger kids. Their story, more or less is, “I was pregnant with you, then you were born, and now you’re here.” Comic books are filled with people whose stories of how they came to be and who they are go a little differently. Perhaps their parents were killed in front of them, or maybe they were merely bombarded by cosmic radiation. I don’t think that any of us anticipated Cricket’s fascination. In hindsight, it seems like an obvious draw for a young adoptee who loves thrilling adventure stories. At times, origin stories and adoption intertwine.
I’m awkward on these Skype calls. I’m interested and engaged, but also corralling two little boys. Also, I’m just sort of a clumsy person, verbally and otherwise. That’s part of why I write Cricket letters. Nora tells me that he really enjoys them. In the letter I sent after learning of Morning Glory, I told him about a couple of my favorite origin stories. My favorites tend to be tragic—like Magneto, who was in a concentration camp in World War II, or Deadpool, who underwent grotesque experiments in the hopes that his cancer would by cured thereby. Those either were born with powers or who acquired them at least semi-deliberately. So I told him about the Martian Manhunter, who came to Earth and wanted to make a home for himself here. He chose to protect our race and planet after losing his own people. Lastly, I told him about Superman. Who, with the gifts he inherited from his biological parents and the values he learned from his adoptive parents, dedicated himself to good.