(My apologies for late posting – all on me…TAO) November 7th prompt. Childhood Adoption Narratives. Describe the story your adoptive parents told you growing up. What age were you? What feelings and questions did you have about this “adoption narrative”? Was it a satisfying explanation for you? Explain. As an adult, whether or not you are in reunion, comment on how much of that story turned out to be true. Has your adoption narrative changed? What story, if any, do you share with friends, acquaintances? How to others react to your narrative? Are they curious, supportive, silencing?
Day 7 and I am back. In the almost eight years I have been involved with adoption in the cyber world, I can’t think of a lot that I haven’t already talked about, said, or that hasn’t been said better by others. I’ve talked about my childhood narrative, and my feelings about it, as I’ve told my story of reunion. Instead of repeating it again here, feel free to read my post “The Wait Part 1: A Child’s Story” which talks about the little book about adoption my parents were told to read to me, and the follow-up post “A Grateful Adoptee”, where I share a priceless, moment with my adoptive mother, on that childhood story.
Over the years, I have, many times, offended, and angered, many people, not only in cyber world, but in my real life by simply, expressing my feelings about my own life. I’ve learned, over the years, that reality is something a good majority of people in the world, or maybe it is just the people in my life, would rather not see. I can’t say I blame them. Being blind to reality, pun completely intended, however, never changes the truth.
I often joke, and say, “I live in my own little world, because, I just like it better there.”. My own little world is a good place, a place of peace, quiet, and contentment. Living in my own little world, because I like it better doesn’t change the fact that I still live in the real world too. When I venture out, away from the safety, and security, of my home, I am reminded of that. There is no avoiding it, no matter how hard I try, or how hard I want to deny the facts. It is inevitable. Something, or, someone, will always remind me that I am a blind person, or an adoptee. I can’t escape it, or forget it. No one will let me. I will always be different.
I see nothing wrong with those facts. I see nothing wrong with being different. It doesn’t make me angry that I am different. It does, however, seem to bother others. I see it when I go out to eat, and the person taking my order ask my husband, instead of me, what it is I would like to order. I hear it in the apprehensive tone of people’s voices, their uncertainty and discomfort of how to interact with a blind person. I feel their fear as, when I come near them, they freeze into silence, and I feel their stares of pity.
For some, my blindness seems to be some kind of contagious disease, something to be avoided. Some will deny that my blindness has affected me at all, even when it is obvious, so much so, that they become very angry when I cannot be the person I was when I was a sighted person. No one wants me to be different, but different I am whether they like it or not, whether they accept it or not. I can’t change the fact that I am blind, or adopted. They can’t change those facts either.
Some will point a finger at me and say I am the one with the problem. It is I who should change my attitude. They will say that I am the angry one, the pessimist, full of cynicism, and self-pity. They will point a finger at me and judge me for seeking help through a therapist. They will tell me I focus on only the negative, and should focus on the positive. They will tell me to forgive and forget. They will tell me I am wrong for being who I am, and will try to make me and guilt me, into being who they want me to be. They will tell me I need to get over it, and grow up.
It doesn’t seem to matter whether it is adoption or blindness, and I don’t understand. Why is having the ability, and the presence of mind, to accept myself, my life, the good, and the bad, for what it is, make me the one with the problem? When did being honest and speaking the truth become a bad thing? When I look at my life, the things I do that give me joy, and self-satisfaction, I have to wonder. Am I the one that is dissatisfied, and unhappy? When I see the joy, in others, I am able to share through playing music, and the people, in my life that I choose to spend my time with, who appreciate me for me, it makes me wonder. Am I really the one with the negative attitude? When someone tells me I have helped them, given them some peace of mind, comfort, support, or validation that they are not alone, through, simply, sharing my experiences, I have to wonder. Am I really the one who isn’t being positive? When I see those, who avoid me, get angry at me, or are offended by me for simply sharing my own feelings, I have to ask why I upset them so? It makes me wonder. Am I really the one with the problem? Is it really me, who needs to get over it, and grow up?