This is sort of a cop-out entry but not quite. I have a major accreditation exam tomorrow that I need to study for. I've made about 400 flashcards, and I read over major points, recorded them in Quicktime, exported to MP3, and put them on my iPod so I can listen while I make gazpacho and zucchini bread for dinner.
Anyhow, this is the most recent letter Mary has sent me:
I am very grateful that I had an opportunity to read your blog. Reading your words helped to unleash my captive thoughts and feelings from the depths of an emotional abyss. We are very similar, you and I. Sure, we’re both damn smart and physically attractive. We’re both angry with our mothers and our fathers are unavailable. We share the same feelings of abandonment. Both of us feel like we missed out on a spectacular childhood. Neither of us felt we belonged. We both agree that societal ills played a part in our disenchanted childhoods.
Since the blog incident, I’ve finally gotten my head around adoptees, birth mothers and adoption in general. More importantly, I completely understand your feelings and your anger.
I was angry with my mother for repeatedly abandoning me throughout my life and resented her for many other reason related to her bad decisions.
The icing on the cake was when I was 28 years old. That’s when I was told that I have a half sister that was put up for adoption 30 years ago. My resentment toward my mother came to a head. I really hated the woman and felt completely betrayed. How could this woman that went through the same sorrowful process of adoption leave me to wallow in my grief alone? I was so pissed off that this woman couldn’t even must a kind word, a hug - anything - to help alleviate my pain.
The more I heard about Julie’s honky-dory life and her stable and loving parents, I wished that I had been put up for adoption too. Why was I handed the consolation prize of having the opportunity to live through my mother’s bad choices?
I had to face the facts that my mother did the only thing she knew, and my step-father’s opinion of how to handle the situation was based on his religious beliefs. I know that after you were born, my mother’s thought process was, “Get over it. I’ve lived through such atrocities in my life, so will you. Suck it up and move on.” I know this because that was the same sentiment that went through my mind when I learned early on in our discovery that you were angry with me for putting you up for adoption. That way of thinking is so wrong and destructive. There is no room for love to grow and flourish.
Here is an excerpt from a blog (that you have probably already read) that really hit home with me:
I believe I have forgiven my parents but I still struggle to understand. Intellectually, I realize they were products of their own dysfunctional upbringings, society’s views and the teachings of a conservative catholic church. They may not have been the best parents but they did the best they could given what they knew and believed.
I think it can be said of many parents who watched (or helped) their child place a child for adoption that they weren't intentionally trying to hurt you (or me). (Though it can be argued that they should have had an inkling as to how much it would hurt to be separated from a child.)
A week before my foot surgery I had to have a pre-op physical. The doctor was a woman in her early 50s that had 6 children. This doctor learned that I had put you up for adoption. We talked for about 10 minutes. She asked me if I thought I had made the right decision. My response to that question has been the same for almost 23 years. I had conditioned myself to regurgitate it without having an emotional breakdown at an inopportune time. It’s the same response I gave that day. As the words came out of my mouth, I realized that what I said was a lie. That I needed to voice my true opinion and not regurgitate the crap that social workers and parents brainwashed me with 24 years ago.
My point in all this rambling is that we are so completely on the same page. I am sorry that we did not grow up together. I am sorry you suffer from my actions and the actions of others; I am sorry that I can’t change it all. I hope you are able to forgive me someday.
M*******, I am glad that you haven’t given up on me. There is so much I want you to know about you.
I hope you have a great birthday!