Maybe if my life had been different

I’m a realist.

I know that your story….your parents…how you grew up….where you grew up….how you were raised…..the people who surrounded in your childhood and now….of course that shapes who you are and how you feel about things.

I have often thought that if my life had been different, would I feel different about finding my birth family.

Maybe.  And actually depending on the circumstances, very likely.  This is why I can only speak of my experience and how it has brought me to this place.

I was adopted when I was so young.  I don’t remember any other life before.  This makes a difference.

I grew up in a small town full of the most wonderful people.  Loving; supportive; generous to a fault.  This makes a difference.

I was fortunate to grow up with two parents who showered me with affection with extended family who equalled in devotion.   This makes a differnece.

I was a part of a beautiful, Godly church family.  My faith was very much a part of who I am from a very young age. This makes a difference.

My adoption was celebrated and never something to be ashamed of.  This makes a difference.

Life was not all roses, but pretty close.

I was not a perfect child.

I did not always follow the rules.  And when rules were not followed there was discipline.  Loving, but firm discipline.

I struggled with my weight.  Basically I was overweight for the majority of my childhood.  I love food, what can I say? ha!  Fortunately, I had the disciple to lose the weight in high school and have been able to keep it off through adulthood.  It’s not easy, but I perservear.

I was challenged in a few school subjects, but still managed to be a solid A-B student….until that F in college Chemistry….but you know….what’s like without one F?  hehe

I tried my hand at a number of activities which included dance, band, tennis, volleyball, basketball, track, and singing….but really, I was never all that great in any of them.  I’d say I was pretty average overall.  I think average is very underrated these days.  :-)

But what if my life had been different?  There are scenarios, I feel, that are game changers.  Not always.  There are always exceptions…but I would dare to say most of the time….game changers.

I **may** have had a desire to seek out my birth family if:

-My {adoptive} parents had both passed away when I was young.

-I was adopted as an older child and I knew a life prior to being adopted.

-I was a different race than my adopted parents

-I had been treated as a sort of ‘black sheep’ of the family or an outcast.

-There was some sort of abuse involved with my adoptive family.

I’m sure there are others that I have not thought of, but these are the ones that I have always thought about.  Can you think of others to share?

This is why I am sensitive to those who do feel a desire to seek out their birth families.  I’ve not walked in your shoes.

However, very grateful for my life as it was and is and that I can be whole and fulfilled without that ‘need’ to seek out my birth family.

Why my parents adopted me

In a world of so many adopting for what I think are questionable reasons….which I won’t even get into because it’s so disturbing….I am so thankful that my parents adopted me because they wanted to be parents.  They longed to raise a child.  To be a mommy. To be a daddy.  To experience that special experience that only comes from giving so much of yourself with no expectations.  To share their life with a little person they would call their own.

And yes, in turn…they did sort of rescue me.

I think it makes a difference.  A big difference.

Love you mom and dad!!!  Thank you for choosing me for the best reason.  XOXO

My heart cries out

I often think of the thousands of adoptess out there who long only to meet and know their birth family.  Although it’s something that is very foreign to me, as I have never had this desire….my heart aches for these people.  Truly aches.  I can’t imagine needing so desperately to ‘know’.  I do support those in their endeavors.

If you are seeking your birth family, I just encourage you to proceed with caution.  Guard your heart.  Have no expectations.  Once the doors are open, it will be hard to close them again.  A mist the many glorious stories of children being reunited with their birth families, there are many stories that do not end so happily.  It’s best not to be naive.  Prepare yourself for the best and the worst situations.  My hope is that those who are seeking, may find true contentment in their searches.  I support you all the way.  It’s never been something I was interested in pursuing, but most certainly will celebrate with those who chose a different path.

One of the best things my parents did for me

I feel like there is WAY too much information out there regarding how to parent an ‘adopted’ child.  And trust me, I get that in very specific cases.  Like if the child was older when he or she was adopted.  Or in the situations where the child was abused or something.  Those are very different situations can be the cause of trials for a child even into adulthood.

But I am not speaking of those situations.

I speak from if the child is adopted as an infant.  I was adopted when I was 14 months old.  I don’t remember anything when I was that young.  I would dare say this applies mostly to children who are adopted under 2 years….maybe 3.

The best thing my parents did for me is NOT treat me like I was adopted.  I mean, it was a celebrated occasion and it was something that was communicated as a very special thing….but overall, I was treated like their child….just their child.  Not our ‘adopted’ child.

I had the opportunity to attend this adoptive parent event.  Not because I am an adopted parent, because I am not….but for something else adoption related.  I met many lovely parents at the event and carefully listened to many adoption conversations….sitting mostly in silence just taking it all in.  One of the most disturbing things that I continued to hear were parents speaking of their ‘natural’ children and their ‘adopted’ children.  There was most certainly a divider between the two.  It disturbed me a bit actually.  It got me to thinking ALOT about how I was raised.  Again, I know there were many different scenarios surrounding each adoptive family represented….but still, the number of those who were saying…my ‘adopted’ child this and my ‘adopted child’ that….was quite alarming.  Of course, most of the conversations revolved around some issue or challenge they were facing with the child in point…it seemed like most all of the challenges….pretty much all of them were some how a result of the child being adopted.

At one point, I just couldn’t stand it.  I very nicely made the comment, which was very appropriate to the conversation….

“That’s so normal……it’s no different if a child is adopted or not….that older sibling needs time to adjust.”

You could have heard a pin drop it was so silent.  No joke.  You would have thought that I said a curse word really loud out of no where. They all just looked at me….like I had no idea what I was talking about.  And then carried on with the conversation….basically using the fact they the older child is adopted and that must be why they still….after several months, have still not ‘adjusted’ to the new baby……

uhhhh…..ok.

It made me really….I mean….really sad. I thought of my own childhood where being adopted was a celebrated, very joyful thing.  My adoption was never blamed or viewed as a pre-curser to any behavioral or learning issues.  Sure, some would argue that it was because I was a relatively easy child…even into the teenage years, but rest assured, along the way there were things I am sure that could’ve been blamed on my adoption.  However, that was never the case.  Thank goodness.

I would just encourage parents not to always blame adoption for whatever trials they are having with their child.  Trust me…there are plenty of children (non adopted) who share their parents genetic makeup and who endure horrific emotional, psychological and behavioral issues, right?  I guess their genes are just to blame in those cases, right?  Uhh…..no.  Well, maybe sometimes, but not always.  ha!

It’s just not that black and white.  If only it were that easy.

Parenthood is hard.  Really hard.  Each and every child out there is very different….and throw in complex adults….

Even if we had a manual for parenting, it would have to be revised for each child.  Take adoption out of the picture.  Be the best parent you can be and please….oh please…..think twice before you blame another ‘negative’ on your child’s adoption.

Why I can’t forgive my birth mother

Forgive….

: to stop feeling anger toward (someone who has done something wrong) : to stop blaming (someone)

: to stop feeling anger about (something) : to forgive someone for (something wrong)

The reason I can not forgive my birth mother is because she has done nothing that requires forgiveness.

Yep, that’s right.  You heard me correctly.  She is as innocent as I am.  She was a child herself.

let’s go through the list…

-to stop feeling anger towards….well, I’ve never felt even an ounce of anger towards my birth mother.  nope, never.  Just the idea of such is so foreign to me.

-to stop blaming someone…this took me back because I’ve never thought of my situation as needing anyone to ‘blame’.  There is nothing that needs blaming.

-to stop feeling anger about something or to forgive someone for something wrong….hmmm….well, I hold no negative feelings what so ever towards her nor has she done anything wrong, in my opinion.

I get it.  It will be nearly impossible for some to believe that I feel this way, but I do.

So to my dear birth mother, you’ve done absolutely no wrong in my eyes and need no forgiveness from me.  Instead I am thankful for your choice to offer me life and for that I could never be angry with you.

Adoptee Search

I am actually seeking adult adoptees who are at least 30 years of age, who are parents who have healthy views on their {closed} adoption story and who are choosing not to seek out their birth families.  I would love to talk to you.  I would love to hear your story.  Please message me!

I would be equally as curious and also love to hear from birth parents who chose closed adoptions and have no regrets or desire to know/meet the child they placed for adoption.

Does the reason really matter?

I would dare say that most adoptee at one point or another….likely many times in their lifetime have wondered ‘why’.  Why could my parent/parents not keep me?  Or why did they place me up for adoption?  And many questions such as these. Why, why, why? Funny thing about these questions.  They would all end with a choice.  We can all hope and choose to believe that the choice was made from love.  Not just any love, but a really amazing, wonderful true love; a mother’s love.   It certainly makes for a nicer story, perhaps.  And I admit that for years, I beleived this was the case with my birth mother.  But as I got older and matured, I realized that the choice may have come from a very different place.  It very well could have been a choice out of selfishness;  Maybe a choice out of fear or a choice out of despair. What if it was  choice out of hate or a choice out of guilt?  I mean, these are all just as likely.  The reality is that it likely came from a place of many emotions. In my case, my birth mother had actually left me with a random, single mother, who already had four children of her own and who was expecting her fifth child, when I was just over a year old.  I’m told it was in a very bad part of the city and very bad living conditions.  Clearly my birth mother thought this was a better situation than what she could offer or maybe she just didn’t want the resposicbility.  She was 16 at the time.  I can’t even imagine being 16 and pregnant.  I don’t know all the specifics of the life she lived, but I suspect they were someone grim.  I can’t even begin to imagine the emotions and darkness that must come in many of such a situation.  Sure, we could argue that there were many other ways that would have been more resposible for her to reliqush me, but guess what…..very few 16 year olds out there are always making the most resposible grownup decisions without guidence.  I have to consider her possible circumstances and I know that she could’ve have certainly made ‘worse’ choices during this time, right? My point is that, at least for me, even if I knew the true reason or reasons for my birth mother choosing to basically give me away, would those reasons really matter?  I don’t believe they would.  What’s done is done.  And who is to say they would do things any different if they walked in that persons exact shoes?  She made the choice and in my case, my life, which was/is certainly not always ‘perfect’, I whole heartedly believe is better than it could have been if she had not made that choice.  I have never gotten caught up in the ‘what could’ve been’ way of thinking.  It’s not like we can go back.  It’s not like there was anything….and I mean anything, myself, as an little child could have done any differently to have made the situation any better.  That’s ridiculous.  As in the case with many children, I was simply caught in the middle of my parent’s trials. To get into all the ‘whys’ in my case would not matter.  I would not change how I feel about my story and it would not change my perception or how I feel about my birth family.  I’ve already thought about all the ‘nice’ explanations….and rest assured, I’m a realist, I’ve thought about the hundreds of (what come across as) very negative explanations….I still love my birth mother.  I have absolutely no negative feelings towards her.  I have always prayed that she had peace in her heart for the choice she made with me.  I have prayed that she knows my life is full and that I hold a special place for her in my heart.  She chose to give me life and I pray that she is comforted by grace and holds no guilt over the choices she made.  I pray that she knows the Lord as her savior and that she lives a life for him, even using her story as a testiment to others on God’s redeeming love.  <3  Nothing, absolutely nothing would change how I feel so for me the ‘why’ trully does not matter.