2 Years After The Healing Begins…

I wanted to write a little bit on the last 2 years of my life and all the healing that has taken place.
When I started my recovery journey 2 years ago, I couldn’t even let anything about my birth mother come out of my mouth without sobbing like a new born baby. I was angry and I was hurt when it came to her. I was expected to keep quiet my whole life so when I finally was sitting around a group of women in my Step Study for Celebrate Recovery, and everyone was going around sharing about their life and all of a sudden it was my turn it was very emotional for me. I remember everyone looking at me, and I shared with them that I wrote a letter to my birth mother as a healing exercise and in that letter I expressed all the hurt and pain I have experienced from her making the decision to give me up for adoption, to strangers, and to a woman that couldn’t raise me. I was angry with her, and the letter shares all of my anger. All of these years my anger was flaring in every way imaginable, and I was happy to finally be able to have the tools to get to the root issue, dig up the root and lay it down at the cross.
This doesn’t mean I don’t hurt, because every day I struggle. It just means that God has given me the gift of forgiveness and because of this gift, I’m able to begin to heal and move forward with my life. Acceptance has been a key for me but the question is, what am I accepting? You can’t accept anything if the truth is being kept from you. My entire life, I was lied too, the truth was covered to protect me, but in the long run it has caused me more harm than good. This is not fair for adoptees and I will never stop speaking about something that has hurt me the most in life.
I prayed for grace, and God has given me grace. I was someone who was mad at the world, and when you are told your entire life that the feelings you have about your first family, no matter what kind of people they were should be that of non-existence but you want so badly to know who they are and where you come from it definitely plays some tricks on you. How can I learn to share feelings in life, but never speak of those who are a part of me, my own flesh and blood, and my biological roots.  I will never be FOR adoption because it has taken so much for me and caused me so much pain and at the same time I see the need in certain situations that adoption is necessary. I believe adoption needs massive reform and every adoptee on this earth deserves to know where they come from. I believe the lies, secrets, and all the hurt that comes from adoption are based on man’s decisions and people on this earth and an industry that is very corrupt has caused unthinkable pain for adoptees who have their identities locked in a filing cabinet, never to be discovered. Why should we have to fight for something that is already ours?
When I was able to receive every bit of what was already mine to begin with, is when my healing began. I had to search alone, and fine all of my biological family alone. No one supported me, and no one helped me. No matter what the outcome, searching and finding everyone and seeing their faces on my own has been my ticket to healing and freedom. Instead of believe what everyone had been telling me all these years, (which was lies) I was able to be filled with peace in seeing things on my own, and being able to form my own conclusion about my biological family members.  This has been critical to my healing.
If you look at my writings 2 years ago, you will see the anger. You can read the letter to my birth mother and feel my anger. You can read her letter I wished she wrote back to me and see there was healing in writing that. Next, I will be writing a letter in response to what I wished she wrote me. I had to do the work and uncover the truth, so I could work on my deep seeded emotional issues with abandonment and rejection before I could write the next letter or move forward with my life. This healing journey is a process, and I had to accept the fact that this pain may never go away, but processing my feelings like I need to are helping me and I pray that in time things get easier, most important I need to believe with my heart that it will get easier.
I will be 40 in about 6 weeks. I wish I could figure out how to be happy on my birthday. Don’t you know if I could I would? I’m learning that now I can cry, and talk about my feelings and that’s okay.  Does anyone really want to hear it? I honestly don’t think so and that’s why I write. This is a healing place for me. I feel like if only I would have gotten that letter from my birth mother, like she promised I could take it out on my birth day and read it and maybe it would make me feel better.  But instead, I have nothing. I wish everyone close to me would write me letters for my birthday, but I wonder if they will think I’m crazy for this one simple request?  I feel like if I ask, it won’t be sincere or true so no need to bother. If I could open up a basket or a box full of letters I think I would ball like a baby. No one on earth but God understands the depths of my pain in this area. I’m so thankful I can share it with my blog readers.
Every day in every way I am reminded of the loss of my first family. I’ve accepted the loss, and I have recently accepted the pain that may never go away. I’m so thankful that my healing started before my kids moved out of my house. I don’t think I could do this alone, or without them here to take my mind off of it on occasion. Mother duties call daily, and this gets my mind away from reality.
I’ve come to the conclusion that Learning the TRUTH is the ONLY way to healing and freedom.
Now, as I go get ready for church I feel great I got all this off my chest and I’m thankful for this place that is healing for me.
Thanks for reading!

I Write,I Cope- Adoptee In Recovery

Good morning everyone,
I just had it in my heart to write a little this morning before I go to work. I have a lot on my mind, as usual. But God is getting me through each day because I’m choosing to rely on him in my time of need.
I will give you a little update on my life. This coming Thursday April 3, 3014 I will give my testimony again at Celebrate Recovery. If you don’t know about this ministry it’s been life saving for me and many others around. It’s the largest Christ-centered recovery ministry in the world. I began attending in Oct 2012 and have been going ever since. My root issues are abandonment & rejection from being given UP for adoption. The side effects were anger, rage, low self-esteem, sexual issues and alcohol abuse. I say sexual issues because I was always trying to fill that void in my life with men, and sex but all I really ever wanted was my REAL mother. I know that might bother some people, but when you grow up not knowing who you are, or where you come from it causes a MAJOR trauma and a very low sense of sadness for me that I can’t even describe.
Each day as I make it through another I am constantly reminded of my adoption loss. I will be 40 years old in August. The ever so dreaded “Birth” day. I would rather crawl in a hole and die on that day, than celebrate (Sober). You see I quit drinking in Aug 2012. I had always depended on alcohol to take the pain away, but now I’m facing it head on. The birthdays were always tough, but now they are even harder. The best way I can explain it is just a deep paralyzing sadness that absolutely nothing can take away. Every single time someone says “Happy Birthday” I am reminded that the day I was born wasn’t happy at all. It was a very tragic and sad day. There is NOTHING to celebrate. I have removed my birthday from my social media page, and hopefully that will help. People look at me like I’m crazy when I try to explain it to them, and they just don’t get it. My poor kids don’t truly understand. I just wish the day was never here. I hate it with my entire being. I do pray about it, and I know God planned me and I am a celebration in his eyes. But that doesn’t change the fact that I was separated from my birth mother that day, and in my mind that was the worst day of my life. I don’t want to get suck with these thoughts. I want them to go away. But it seems as soon as I get over them, the dreaded day rolls around again. Now it’s 4 months away. I’m already getting sick thinking about it. Are there any other adoptees out there that feel this way about their birthdays?
Aside from that, each day I wake up thankful to see another day. Thankful I have made it “Out” of my old life. Thankful I found all my biological family. Although I have so much deep sadness about it, at the end of the day I continue to remind myself that so many adoptees will never EVER get the chance to find their roots or get the chance to see their biological parents faces even one time. I take myself back to the day I didn’t know mine. I don’t even think I would be here if I didn’t get to meet mine. I say that because I was so angry and hated the world for keeping my family from me. I didn’t even want to live not knowing who they were or where I came from. You would have to experience this to understand the depth of my pain. I know for certain MANY other adoptees feel this way.
Now I’m facing decisions about my adoptive “Mothers” declining health. She ruined my life for 31 years but now I am faced with questions about being there for her as her age begins to show rapid deterioration. I speak to my lay pastor about it, and we both agree that those who don’t know the whole story, or other Christians perhaps may have a problem with me not wanting anything to do with her, BUT until you know the whole story you really can’t have a say so. YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT HELL THAT LADY PUT ME THROUGH. I want to throw up at the thought of calling her “Mother”. She makes my skin crawl. I have forgiven her, but I can’t deal with her, and her funeral plans, and health issues are no longer my problem. I had to cater to her for 31 years, and serve her like she was my master and I’m done. She also never wanted to acknowledge my first family, and I have no respect for her because of all the things she’s done. I don’t wish any bad on her, and I do wish her happiness but the farther she stays away from me the better.
All I ever wanted was my REAL mother. But she didn’t want me. So this is what I think about when Mother’s Day comes, ALL holidays are a constant reminder of “Family”. Where is my family? Here with me and my children. I have made a life for US but I have daily sometimes hourly reminders of what adoption has done, and how it’s impacted my life. While everyone is taking pictures with their mothers, I wish I was. While everyone has long talks with their mothers, I wish I was. While everyone gets passed down special things from their grandmothers and great grandmothers, I never will. I will never have any memories to cherish, or pictures to remember. This is all a part of adoption that everyone expected me to never ever think about. Well, I’m not a baby or a child anymore. I’m a grown woman and adoption has had a negative impact on every single area of my life. No fantasy land here. Just my real true raw feelings. My place to share, hopefully someone somewhere will read.
Feels good to get it off my chest. I love my blog so much. Now I will end this post, and carry on with my life. Which I do love by the way,  aside from my adoption issues. They just so happen to be the worst and hardest thing I am dealing with and most people say it never goes away. We just learn to cope. Well I write, and it helps me cope.

Take Notes…

One piece of advice I have for adoptees that have searched, and are about to be reunited with their biological parents or family is to TAKE NOTES. Everything they say and everything you see, take notes. Listen harder, and listen closer.
I say this because when I met both my biological parents, I didn’t expect for it to be the last time I saw them. I was sure in my mind that they wanted a relationship with me, because after all I dreamed about that my whole life. Why wouldn’t they want to get to know me? Or have me in their lives?
The first time I met my biological mother, we sat at her dining room table. She had her sister there, and her best friend. Her sister would be my biological aunt. My half biological sister was there, and she is the one who arranged the meeting. My birth mother didn’t really want to meet me, but my birth sister insisted. She knew how much it meant to me that I meet the woman that gave me life.
For those that don’t know. I found my birth mother in 1995 when I was 21 years old. My adoptive mom told me some information she had been keeping from me for a life time, so from that moment forward I had a name and there was nothing anyone could do to stop me from finding this woman. This was in my mind, but no way did I ever believe that she really never wanted to see me. After I found her, she hung up on me, and then I called back. The hang up hurt, but that wasn’t stopping me. I was very persistent in finding her, and I wasn’t taking no for an answer. Not yet. After she answered again, I made sure she knew I didn’t want anything from her. I only wanted to get to know her. After this, she spoke up and said “I am the woman you’re looking for”. I was ecstatic. The search was finally over! Finally! It’s been a lifetime of dreaming, and searching for faces in a crowd, wondering if everyone that had similarities as me just might be my biological family. We talked for a few minutes, and she told me she would respond to a letter if I write her. She said she would send me some pictures of herself so I could see what she looked like. So I could finally see who I look like. Of course I hung up the phone with extremely high hopes that I would get some mail from her in the near future. I quickly started to write her, and got an envelope to send with some pictures of me in it. I sent it off, and waited, and waited, and waited. Weeks passed into months. Every single day I would rush to the mail box, looking for the letter she promised. This turned into a very hard time in my life. Why didn’t she want anything to do with me? Why didn’t she keep her word? Did she realize how bad this hurt my feelings? I was crushed.
Finally it was made clear to me that she wasn’t going to keep her word. I knew from the first time I talked to her I had a half biological sister, but she told me she didn’t know anything about me, and she would tell her and be in touch. Obviously that was not the truth, so after I waited months on her reply I decided to set out on a search for my birth sister. I didn’t have a number but I did have an address. I figured I had nothing to lose at this point. No one’s dirty little secret was going to stop me from finding my roots. Whoevers genes I have they are some very persistent ones. I wrote my birth sister a letter, and within a few days I received a call from her, and within a few days after that she flew to Kentucky with her husband so we could meet. It was the first time in my life I finally had someone that was a biological relative that looked like me; besides my precious daughter that was 1 at the time. It was an amazing experience. We have a lot of similarities and you can tell we are sisters. We do have different fathers. She spent a week in Kentucky, and it was wonderful getting to know her. She flew back to Iowa where her and my birth mother lived and she insisted that when I come to Iowa a visit, that we arrange a meeting so I can meet my birth mother.  My birth mother agreed, even thoe we hadn’t had any more contact sense the original phone conversation. She never did write, or send pictures.
So the visit was arranged, and my life would never be the same. I just wish I would have absorbed more of what she was saying. I had no idea I would never be given that chance again. Never in a million years did I think I would never have a face to face conversation with her again. If I had it to do all over again, I would have taken notes on every detail she told me.
I must say I am VERY thankful that I was given the chance to sit down with her at her table that one and only time, because I know that so many don’t get that chance. I have spent so many years being angry at her for not giving me more, for not wanting me in her life, for shutting me out after this one visit. I have been angry for many years about many things to do with my adoption. I have to come to a point where I can get past the anger and I hope one day I will. Every single time I think of her and my birth father, I just whelp up and cry. It’s really hard for me to just act as if they don’t exist, or as if I’m not supposed to love them or have a bond with them.
If I could give one piece of advice to any adoptive parents that might be reading this it would be to give your adoptive child permission to grieve the family they had before you. And yes, no matter what way you want to look at it, they have a first family. If you try to cover this up, and ignore these facts you are only doing damage to your child. Please be realistic in this matter. Your child isn’t going to come to you and ask “Is it okay if I love my first mother?” or “Is it okay that I cry because I want to know my first family but I don’t know who they are? Please allow them permission to grieve this, because it is one of the biggest losses of their lifetime. It is over looked so much, and I’m positive that is why I am having such a hard time at this point in my life. Just now at 38 years old I am grieving what could have been, the lost relationships, my first family. This is not an easy journey. I beg for you to discuss these things with your adoptive child. It’s critical that you go to them and the words come out of your mouth as their adoptive parents. They will remember later in life that you expressed to them that it was OKAY to love their other mother, and their other family. Can you imagine living an entire lifetime having to keep such things “Secret”? This is why so many adult adoptees voice their journeys, because we can finally be heard.
With all that being said, yes I am going through the grieving process, yes I am still angry and I have every right to be. I will say that as I grieve, write, express myself and ask God for healing daily I am able to see things in a different light. But this can only happen if we are allowed to grieve the trauma, and events that have been so traumatic on us before we were adopted, and many of us after we were adopted. Acknowledging these traumas is the first step. I recommend any adoptive parents, or anyone touched by adoption to read “Primal Wound” by Nancy Newton Verrier. She explains the adopted child like no one ever has before.
 I pray that in a year you will be able to read my blogs, and go back to the very beginning and see the change that has been made. God is working, and he isn’t through with me yet.

P.S. When and if you ever get the chance to meet your biological family, take notes. My biological mother passed in 2010 and the only face to face conversation I ever had with her was the original one in 1995. Take notes.