Angry Birds (and Adoption)

We need a row of bombs and a couple of big white chickens.

I used to have a boss who was quite a task master. Whenever he proposed some new scheme for increasing efficiency in our process he often met with resistance from the staff. This never bothered him. He wouldn’t get upset or pull rank. He wouldn’t do anything – then.  What he would do is withdraw, regroup and come at the problem (and achieving his goal) another way.

Angry Birds, I recently read, is taking up a lot of time at work. Maybe that’s not necessarily a bad thing because Angry Birds teaches you a very similar skill. How to attack a problem until you succeed.

You have a goal (or a series of goals or levels.)  You have been given certain tools to achieve these goals. Sometimes the tools seem adequate for the task, sometimes they seem woefully inadequate. Sometimes there are red herrings. Sometimes you spend a lot of time dealing with something you come to realize may be irrelevant to achieving the goal.

Sometimes you hit the sweet spot and with that one hit everything collapses like an adoption reunion on a bad day.

Setting aside my unfortunate simile, I think Angry Birds has a lot to teach us in our post adoption struggles.

We may have a series of goals: find our child, get our OBC, have a relationship with our child or parent(s). Maybe the goal even precedes those desires.  Maybe the goal is – believe we have a right to find our children or to know where we came from and acknowledge it as part of who we are.

We have to decide, at whatever level, whether or not we are in the game.  And once we decide to embark on this journey, once we buy the app, we must play with the tools we are given, the cards we have been dealt, the weapons we are issued.

Sometimes we use those tools/weapons chasing down red herrings.  Sometimes we use them inappropriately.  Slowly we learn. To keep doing the same thing over and over and expect a different result is the road to insanity, is it not?

When one way of approaching the problem isn’t working, we need to try another.  If we want to achieve the goal, we have to adjust and persist. Sometimes it’s better to let the sling shot go gently.

I have to believe that, even when the tools appear to be inadequate, they are there. The right combination is there. We just can’t see it right now.  The right tool launched at the right place will achieve the goal.  You just have to find it.

But sometimes it seems impossible.

We were all irrevocably altered by adoption and the events that led up to it.   Maybe we know it maybe we don’t.  As a someone said recently, for moms of the adopted it’s real because it all happened in real time when they were relative grown-ups.  But  for adoptees the loss was not a directly cognitive one but a subconscious one.  It can  be just a buried sense of something not quite right.

There is a lot to work through.

We’ve been given three little specks of exploding dust when what we need is a row of bombs and a couple of big white chickens.

So we put the game aside for awhile.

But the game is addictive and we find ourselves coming back to it over and over and over again.

Level cleared.

On to the next one.




3 Responses to Angry Birds (and Adoption)

  1. joy21 says:

    I have never played or seen anyone play angry birds, but I have heard of it. Big white chickens sound helpful though.

    I feel rather tool-less and adrift in “reunion”

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