It’s day 12 of adoption awareness month, and the prompt for today is relationships with significant others. I never know, when I start a post, just where it will go, what my point is, or, sometimes, even if I have one. It’s, apparently, not a new trait. My husband, lovingly I hope, tells me regularly, “Your mind just goes places; no one else’s mind dares to go.” I don’t know if he’s right. I don’t know if that’s a good thing, or not, but I am who I am. How has being adopted affected my relationships with others? Isn’t that a loaded question? Now, how do I tie that in with the conclusion of “Isn’t Life Interesting”?
In my mid 40s, and, approximately, three years into my reunion with D, my first father, the final, knock-out, punch, of the reality of adoption, hit me, and sent me to the mat for the count. The best description I can give you is that, for me, as they say in the world of addiction recovery, I hit rock bottom with this realization. What I am about to say has the potential to upset, offend, and possibly anger, a lot of first parents, first family members, and maybe even a few adoptive parents. It upset quite a few of my family members, so prepare yourself if you are a bit sensitive to some of the realities of adoption. However, harsh, and cold, it may sound, it is the truth, and a fact of my life. Though, many of my family were, and are, angry that I point this out, not one of my family members has denied its truth.
Though this does not pertain to all adoptees, it does pertain too many of us, especially those of us from the baby scoop error (yes, I intentionally used that word). It hit me like a speeding freight train from out of nowhere, when I realized that on the day I was born, there was not a soul on the face of the earth that was happy about it. Having grown up with the belief, as most people do, that the birth of a child is always a joyous occasion, this, particular, reality of adoption, that not all babies births were joyous occasions, and I, in fact was one of those babies, well, I guess you could say it sort of rocked my world.
There was no happy, joyous family waiting to see their new baby girl. My welcome into the world was full of sadness, and denial. When I entered the world, I was not placed in the loving arms of my mother, father, or family. I was not placed in the loving arms of my new adoptive family, as there were no waiting adoptive parents. For me, there was only a hospital nursery, where I lay alone. The only family there was my first mother’s sister. Though the nurses did allow her to sit with me for a while, she was not allowed to touch me, or hold me. Yes, on the day I was born there were no doting parents, proud, and ready to take their baby home. There were no happy faces smiling at me cooing and telling me how precious I was. There was just a baby, alone in a hospital crib. If that isn’t one hell of a welcome into the world, I don’t know what is. If it isn’t obvious how that might have affected my relationships with significant others in my life, I don’t know what else I can tell you. If the effect of adoption on me isn’t obvious in, not only this story, but my own story, as I’ve shared it, I don’t know how better to explain it.
As I mentioned in part THREE, if you look CLOSELY, my journey through the stages of grief, is apparent. The final stage, in the grieving process, is acceptance, and with that, let’s get on with the conclusion of “Isn’t Life Interesting”.
“Well, I think I went from making a point in the beginning to getting some things off my chest. So, what was my point? I’ve reunited with my entire biological family on both my Bmom’s and Bdad’s side. I’ve witnessed the countless issues, effects, emotions, and other issues adoption has brought into the lives of my entire biological family for good and for bad. I’ve experienced my own issues caused by adoption. I’ve seen the good and bad there as well. Someone asked me once about finding my birth parents, “If you knew then what you know now, would you do it again?” I didn’t even have to think about it. I answered with an emphatic, “Yes.” For me, knowing my biological family, even with all the pain and emotions, was worth every minute. Even though, I have little or no relationship with some of them, it was worth it. Would I have rather grown up in my biological family as opposed to my adoptive family? Well, what an interesting scenario that would have been, to be raised by my bio parents, but I can’t honestly say either way. Wondering what might have been, though sometimes fun, doesn’t change anything, and usually just causes me pain. My life is my life with all the good and all the bad, which brings me back to my cousins precious little one.
Because of adoption, a couple, who could not have children of their own, will now have an opportunity for the family they wanted so badly. A child, who was a victim of circumstance, is now an adoptee with a loving family. There are new bio parents, who will someday feel the loss of relinquishing their child, but will know they did what was best for her. Someday, because of adoption, she may choose to find her biological parents, like I did, and another roller coaster will take off.
Isn’t it interesting that a family, my Bdad’s that had never been touched by adoption has now been touched twice? I feel a kind of kindred spirit with my cousin’s daughter. I don’t know what her future holds, but whatever it is; there will be someone there for her who understands what it is like to be an adoptee.
Whatever your part in adoption, Adoptee, Adoptive family member, or biological family member, whatever feelings you have about adoption at the moment, I hope, by sharing my cousin’s story, you will see, like I did, that though there is so much pain and emotions for all of us involved in the triad, that in the midst of all the pain happiness can be found. I also hope that doesn’t sound too completely sappy, and you get my point, which I’m not really sure about myself anymore. Lol”
Happiness can always be found if you look for it; if you want to see it. Isn’t happiness everyone’s goal in life? You see, it’s that insistence that we have to, always, be happy, that I have a bit of an issue with. I began my life surrounded by denial, and grief. I know, from experience, that some will accuse me of being overly dramatic, and some will say I am just feeling sorry for myself. Though I know what I’ve stated, about the day I was born, will upset, and anger, some, I refuse to live my life surrounded by that denial. The facts of my life are what they are. Sad as some of those facts are, I have to live with that knowledge. I do not dwell on them, as some may think, and will accuse me of such, telling me to leave the past in the past. Writing about the facts, the truth, having the courage to face it, grieve it, and talk about it, is not dwelling. It is acceptance. It is the acceptance of my past.
Not fully accepting the facts of my past, acknowledging those facts, for me, is the same as denying the past, and denying they are part of who I am. No, they are not happy facts. My acknowledgement of those sad facts may be an emotional trigger for some. For me, however, they have been a part of the grieving process, and part of my acceptance of it all. Without acknowledging all the sad facts of my life, how can I truly appreciate all of the happiness in my life? When I started with Part 1 of this story, I had no idea that this is where I would end up. Ah, yes. Isn’t life interesting?