Written in December 2019
I was having a conversation about reunion and how it can create havoc in your soul. The conversation evolved and moved into more specifics, specifically, the areas of loss an adoptee may feel. That digging deep triggered this post.
When I first met family members I didn’t understand how deeply I’d start to feel the different losses that come with being adopted. I also didn’t fully realize how much I’d lost, until I saw those losses staring right at me, in person or already gone, only then, did I see all that I had lost. A loss that still exists today, usually buried in my subconsciousness, but yet, always there just under the surface.
I lost hearing my mother’s voice; her laugh, how she sounded when she was annoyed, even how she sighed. I never got to feel her hug, see how she walked, talked, nor see where our similarities lay, where we were different.
Surface losses I wish I’d had with her, my father, grandparents.
But I lost so much more than that, I lost knowing what made her, her. I lost her stories, hearing about what she experienced growing up, how that molded and shaped who she was. I lost the same with my father. I lost family dinners, trips to the beach, camping, holidays. I lost the times I’d get in trouble and how that would have turned out. I lost growing up with my siblings. I even lost being the oldest child and instead became the youngest.
I lost knowing any of my grandparents. Knowing their stories; stories of raising my parents, stories of their parents, stories of raising my aunts and uncles, stories of being grandparents to my cousins, to me. Their stories of their losses and their gains, their history that should have become part of my history.
I lost. They lost. We all lost. There are holes in each of us that can never be filled; holes that should never have existed in the first place.
I also gained a family, a family that became my family. But this post is not about them, they played no role in my loss, they didn’t even know I existed until long after my mother had signed away her parental rights to me, they only knew I needed a family and a home.
This post is merely a marker of what I lost. A loss that can never be anything other than a loss, there is no fixing it, it’s done, that story ended when I became someone else.