2013 A Year For Change
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
It doesn’t really take a therapist to diagnosis me at this point. I have always known where my issues stem from. A friend called after I posted the first segment of my adoption story. As we recollected 20 years ago, she told me that I never really discussed it with her. Apparently, whenever the conversation was approached at some point I became terribly upset and we dropped the subject. It’s funny how our minds block out the bad memories and era around it. I guess it’s our body’s way of not reliving the past over and over. Unfortunately, this has never really been my scenario. I can remember everything about that day; it’s the details surrounding it that are sketchy.
Upon finding out the truth, it was never that I wanted a new mom and dad. It was more, or less wanting to know my background details. I have the perfect mom and dad. When I say it destroyed me and cut out my heart finding out that the life I enjoyed up until that point doesn’t mean I wanted to throw away my current family and go on some major search for my birth family. I felt deceived by the ones I love for not telling me the truth when the opportunity arose. Maybe, even a little agitated that the truth came from someone else and apparently everyone knew the whole time. When I say everyone, I mean like anyone close to our family and a good bit of the towns members as well. My life was like a big old secret that no one was willing to share. To this day, it’s still a great big old secret.
Over the years, I dreamt of what my mother looked like, whether or not I had siblings and what their lives were like. The biggest thing that occupied my heart was wondering whether or not they knew about me and why no one ever came forward to make contact at some point. As I previously stated, that day did change me and how I feel toward people in general and has probably affected my relationships over the years. People always say, “you need to move on,” but I am here to tell you that you can never move forward until you are at peace with the situation. By saying, “at peace” I mean comfortable and without questions and lingering thoughts.
When my daughters were born, the thought did cross my mind whether or not they resembled my birth family. It was a brief thought. About the time I found out about the adoption at the early age of 17, a very dear friend actually worked in the courthouse sealed records department for the county in which I was born. As faith would have it, her position ended about a week prior to this knowledge being released. Otherwise, I may have been able to get the answers I have so desperately been searching for over the years. Adoption boards aren’t really effective and in the even the records are sealed from the birth mother there is no way to obtain access. However, there is a loophole. If there are arising medical conditions present you can petition the court to give you the medical history but yet the birth parents names are still not revealed unless they agree.
When I was 23, I had a brief battle with Cancer, which took away my childbearing options. I nearly died from blood loss after several surgeries and procedures were ineffective. Come to find out the doctors were amazed that I was able to have two children. By the time I turned 30, I had severe back complications due to degenerative disc disease, which basically means my disc are detraining and collapsing. So cough up another medical problem. About a year ago, my daughter was diagnosed with Epilepsy, which unless there is some head trauma or complication from birth is an inherited trait as well. After some digging, we determined that her Epilepsy was passed down from my side of the family. Wonder why I am giving you a medical history? This is one more important reason to be honest with adopted children. Adoptees need medical histories. If I would have had a complete family medical history, when the doctor misdiagnosed my daughter 10 years ago, we would have seen the signs, been able to get her the treatment she needed way before now. Without the history, basically doctors are helpless and looking for direction by testing for everything under the moon.
Over the years, I have questioned all the secrecy. I know there are people who still know the truth about my situation, yet are determined not to come forward. So as my everyday struggle continues to await the next major life-changing event, all I can do is pray and know that God has a plan for my family and me. All will be revealed in time and maybe, just maybe some of the folks that are holding onto their secrets so tightly will come around.
I have a theory about my birth parents; it’s just a theory. However, it makes perfect sense to me and everyone I explain it to. I will tell you that my mother is completely in the dark. She wanted a child so badly and was unable to conceive. My parents tried endless to adopt on several occasion and unfortunately back in those days, special education kids were not allowed to be placed within an adoptee parent’s home. My mom was heartbroken on several occasions due to the fact she had so much love to share and felt like she continued to hit a dead end road. Maybe she felt like God was punishing her or maybe she just couldn’t take the thought of another failed adoption. My father loved my mother very much and was quite determined to give her the child she so desperately wanted to fulfill her life. There were no boundaries involved when it providing a child for her. My mother purposely requested to be left out of the loop because she couldn’t handle any more disappointment.
My father passed when I was quite young, I can’t even remember spending time with him as a young child. Up until recently, I had never seen a picture of the two of us together. Apparently, he did spend some time with me but felt like it was too much after he separated from my mother. After all, by this time he had a new family and baby on the way. Maybe it was his wife’s choice to not continue the relationship. At this point, who can be sure?
I have lived with pure hatred over the years wondering why he never visited me or injected some of his time into my life in some form or fashion. After all, just because people separate doesn’t mean a child has to suffer. I have even been to his grave to take flowers. Occasionally, I find myself yelling and screaming at him for being so selfish that he left me in this predicament when it could have all been laid out on the table. Some times the truth does hurt, however like a friend told me once, “if I know the truth, I know what I have to work with, without the truth, it just lingers”. I believe in forgiving it’s the forgetting I have the most problems with. How do you forget your father abandoned you after you were born, when so many people went to so much trouble to make sure you had a good home and great family? It’s hurtful and sometimes just down right damn painful.
Not long ago I found a letter my father wrote to my Grandmother while he was traveling. The letter was way before my mother was in the picture. I’ve held on tight to the letter because it’s the only thing I have that he wrote. I also have a bracelet that my mother gave me not long ago with his name on it. My great grandmother gave him the bracelet and he use to have our pictures inside. It comforts me to have that bracelet on and feel like I have a part of him with me at all times.
An everyday love can surprise you and take your breath away. I remember the stories my mother told me about how my parents first met. He would walk to the end of the world for her and it’s hard to imagine what could change that. I guess there is always someone else right around the corner just waiting to take your breath away. So was it love? I will always believe it was. After all, the extremities that my parents went to in order to have a child shows the depth of a man’s heart and one true love. Circumstances arose and things changed but that is clearly unconditional love.
I have debated writing this segment of my life for quite sometime. Last night, I just had an overwhelming feeling that maybe if I shared my history with you, I could find it in my heart to put a lot of this anger and sadness in the past. After all, why pay a shrink who is constantly asking, “How do you feel about that?” I am aware of how I feel and I know how my mistakes are constantly ruining my life. I don’t blame them on my past. Although, I am looking to move forward as a new clean-hearted person ready to take on the world, new relationships and work on the issues I have that linger.
The story isn’t actually over; I have some more juicy details. However, it’s hard to get them all out at once. My fingers just can’t type them all with my mind running a million miles a minute. Your past does affect your future, but only if you allow it too and from this point I am determined to re-write my future.