2018 was the year that Hope died ….

Huge long deep sigh. The New Year has come and gone and I don’t do resolutions. I do look back and see what 2018 brought. Though it was and remains extremely painful, I grew. The last time I cried was when Baby O was born last year. He’s my fifth grandchild I’ll never know. In the last two weeks, both D and R had birthdays. I’m grateful she allows me to watch their life. Too many of us can’t do even that.

It was agonizing when I first felt the shift of truly believing her no about meeting me. For some reason, my heart finally accepted that is my reality. Numbness took over , probably a safety thing. No matter how many times she rebuffed me , I held on to hope for life.

Slowly, painfully , I believed everything she said. I realized my many mistakes and wished I had approached reunion differently. I didn’t know what I do now back then. It’s been 10 years since the first no , and her being a wife and mother didn’t change her mind as so many told me she would.

Trauma therapy has helped tremendously. I learned that only I have the power to react to something. I chose not to. She has every right to refuse me. She didn’t choose any of this. I discovered that I was acting like a Privileged Adoptive Parent. I felt she was mine. Realizing that was a type of ownership, filled me with shame. She owes no one a thing. She has a right to decide who fits in her life and who doesn’t.

She’s beautiful, happy , funny , and a lot like me , though I’m sure she’d disagree. She’s a fabulous mom of 5 amazing children. She is strong in faith and always does everything to perfection.

I don’t think it’s possible to ” get over it “. It’s more a matter of acceptance. She will always be my daughter and I’ll love her forever. But , relationships can’t be one sided. It takes both people to be brave Enough to take the chance that something wonderful could happen.

I see her post on many things I want to comment on. She wonders where this and that came from. I doubt she even thinks of me. That’s okay. She’s a busy mom , leader in her church and business owner. She needs to be totally present for her family.

My raised daughter is in a wonderful reunion with her. I’m beyond grateful. I do wish she’d contact her brother. But , I’m sure she has her reasons.

This month starts my season of reliving losing her. Of waited for the rescue that never came. The countdown to something I never thought would truly happen. I believed with all of my heart I’d keep her. I was in the minority of never wanting to go into labor.

I decided this past year to pour every bit of love I felt into my raised children, her full siblings. I realized that by focusing so much on her , I might be making them feel they weren’t Enough. I had to break the cycle. Adoption affects generations. My parents are adopted.

I spit into tubes and sent them in. I wanted to know who I was. So many children of adoptees don’t know. We have many autoimmune illnesses in our family and I wanted to make sure I was ready. We are Jewish , and there are some diseases that run in that. I felt it was my responsibility to get my kids their information.

This year , the pain is different than the last 32 years. I’m not allowing myself to feel. I just turned it off. My husband said this was my best season yet. My therapist will be happy. Yet , she knows I’m just stuffing it inside. I pray it doesn’t all come out.

As I watch my Sisters have beautiful reunions , my heart is happy for them. Yet , inside I feel the usual aloneness, being one of the few that doesn’t get it. I think a total disconnect is happening.

This has been one of my problems. I overthink everything. I had imagined for years what our reunion would be like. Balloons at the airport, hugs , tears , peace. As I watch my Sisters do reunion, I saw that you never really get them back. Too much lost time. Too many hurts.

So , getting to the point , 2019 will be a year of giving all of my love and attention to those that do love me. I have always loved them , but I see my pain has been hard on them. For that , I’m sorry. I make no promises if I fall. I need to remember that it’s just s bad day , not forever.

I’m forever grateful for all that listened as I sobbed and always thought of me. I know it can be very draining.

I’m taking up photography. My daughter gave me a camera that is really nice. I’m hoping I can become good enough to do justice to things.

Both of my raised children are starting new jobs and I’m proud as can be. They are kind , thoughtful, and patient with me.

So , I wish you a loving wonderful year. You deserve it and you are Enough. Please believe me. Don’t listen to the poison of your past.

Thank you for supporting me. I couldn’t do this without you.

ILUTM ❤️❤️❤️.

Forever Goodbyes Are All I’ve Known…..

My mom was in the hospital all weekend. The time for her to leave has come and I’m doing this with anything, but grace. I’m struggling, drowning, sobbing, and falling apart.

I’m horrible with goodbyes. Ever since I lost my first daughter to adoption, goodbyes terrify me. When my raised children were going on visitation with their dad , if they were going to camp or to explore the world like my raised daughter, I fall apart. The trauma of losing my daughter has distorted my sense of safety.

People don’t come back. You don’t get what you lost and there is NO do over. It is what it is and I’m horrible at grief. I think because of c-ptsd , I process everything at its worst.

I’m grateful for both myself and my mom I forgave her. That was a gift to both of us. But, losing her now is destroying me. Just another person I love leaving. Abandonment is in every part of me.

Loss is so hard to explain because it covers so much of my life. I lost myself so long ago , that it physically hurts to lose someone.

My Aimovig isn’t helping this week. Worst migraine of my life. No amount of anything is a balm. I have a million things to say , yet , can’t think clearly enough to convey them.

Just know I feel confused, lost , alone and triggered. I haven’t processed what it will be like without her here. Too painful. Hospice hopefully will help us all through this.

I hope I one day get to the place in the meme. I don’t want to die. That’s about all I’ve got. I suppose it’s something.

People hurting should turn a color so others know. Grief should be seen and acknowledged. But , I know better than that.

Forgiveness for my Mother that took my Firstborn…..

This has been a very long road. It hasn’t been just the 32 years that she wouldn’t let me keep my first born daughter. I’ve been angry with Mom since she made Dad go away. Of course she didn’t actually do that , but to a 10 year old girl , it certainly felt like that. Only now am I understanding that He left US. We didn’t fail , he did. As to why he left , I’ll leave that for another day. Today is about my Mom.

They say holding on to anger only poisons you. I have found that to be true. I was so mad at her for my perception that she didn’t love either of us enough to save us. That she could have rescued me , but chose not to. I didn’t see that she simply didn’t have the tools to know what to do.

Mom was with Dad since high school. They are both adopted. She had never been on her own or felt like she was enough. How could she possibly feel she was enough to save her daughter and granddaughter? In my pain I only saw her betrayal and my grief. I didn’t consider the trauma she had been through herself. That everyone she had loved had left her. Adoptees have taught me much.

After I married my lost daughters dad and had her sister, we moved from California to Georgia for his first real job. I was glad to leave, my lost daughter was there and it killed me daily knowing that. I worried about her daily ( hourly ) and this would be a new start. I was only lying to myself. The abuse I had in California came with us to Georgia. It was easier to hide but I was completely alone. Once when he kicked me in the head with his steel toed boots , I didn’t go to the hospital, though I know I needed it. I was terrified they’d take my precious daughter and I had no one to call. I stayed silent.

Shame and silence are companions that protect each other. I struggled to be a good wife and mother and tried to shield my daughter from his fits of rage. He never hurt her and loved her dearly and that was enough. I didn’t matter. I so wanted to prove that I was doing everything well. I wanted the cloak of shame to disappear. It didn’t.

About 17 years ago my mom became too ill to live alone. She moved in with me and my new husband and my daughter and young son. I’d had him shortly before my divorce. Living with the women I felt had destroyed my life was anything but easy. I ranted and sobbed as my lost daughter grew up. I blamed my mom for me never meeting my daughter. I was wrong. It had nothing to do with her and only recently did I discover in therapy that how could I expect forgiveness from my daughter when I wouldn’t grant it to my mom. I had to see my mom as a person , not as the enemy. She moved into assisted living two years ago. I feel that helped a lot. The distance gave me a chance to breathe.

I saw my mom differently as time went on. I saw she loved me dearly and regretted what had happened. I let her love me , finally. That was a huge step for me. Feeling So unlovable is prominent in me. But , I sobbed on her many a night. I am fiercely protective of her as I often felt I had raised her. Dysfunctional much ? Yep.

My moms health is getting much worse of late and fear has grabbed me inside thinking she will soon be gone. I knew I had to fix this Now. She had always loved me and though she wasn’t the mom everyone dreams of in their childhood, she was mine. I’ve watched too many Sisters in Adoptionland find graves. If they could forgive, so could I.

She made quilts for each baby she’d never meet. She atoned as she listened to me wail in primal screams of missing my daughter. She rocked me as I sobbed for what should have been and never will. If I was truly going to own my own story , I could no longer blame her. I accepted my fait and decided I had to find a way.

Her kidneys are now failing and I don’t know how much longer she’ll be here. She has refused all heroic measures. Both of her adopted parents killed them selves. She was abused. She was a victim, too.

I know how hard it is. Our parents are supposed to save us. Mine didn’t. But , they are humans not magical. They make mistakes, some huge. I knew I didn’t need one more ounce of grief and regret. I accepted that she was sorry she didn’t help me. I know it wasn’t out of meanness, but out of not knowing what to do. It took me years to see her as an Adoptee, as one of my Sisters.

As her time here grows to an end , I don’t want it to be full of sadness , but of love. She deserves so much more. I hope I’m up to the task of letting her know that. I’m trying to be more present and not live in the past. It’s very hard when you’ve had the trauma, but she’s worth it. How can I expect both of my daughters to truly love and respect me if I don’t give that to my Mom?

Healing and forgiving are messy and painful. You stumble a lot and it takes time and effort. But , I believe it’s worth it. She is worth it. She has been enough and it’s time she knew it.

I love you Mom. You did your best. You have an amazing legacy and I’m grateful you were in my life all of these years. Don’t go just yet. I’m not done loving you.

Yesterday I was the Tooth fairy for my Mom…

Caring for your elderly parents is never easy , and the added difficulty of them causing the biggest trauma in your life sure complicates it even more. My parents wouldn’t let me keep my firstborn, their first grandchild. I’ll never completely understand it. But , they are Adopted and I know that played a huge role.

My mom moved out from the west coast right after 911. She lived with us for 15 years until moving into assisted living 2 years ago. That was not easy having my mom in my home as everything collapsed around me. She heard my truth and watched me dissolve after a rejected reunion. I lashed out , as the teen that had her daughter ripped away. I said many things I’m not proud of and I know I wanted her to SEE what she had done.

She witnessed the turmoil in my family as my raised children, all full siblings with my lost daughter, reacted to adoption. It wasn’t pretty and almost destroyed us all. We are all still working on it and probably will for the rest of my life.

There came a time that I knew I had to forgive her. She had a horrible childhood and just didn’t know how to parent. I knew I wanted to be everything she wasn’t. If only life was that easy. Call it fait , karma , or whatever is easier. Dysfunctional families continue, though not necessarily in the same way or degree.

Learning to forgive her has been a process. I had to see her as the adopted child she was , and not the neglectful parent she had been. She simply didn’t have the tools to raise my brother and me.

As she reaches the end of her life , I don’t want regrets. I try to be a good loving daughter. I fail on occasion.

Yesterday at the doctor, we were checking her out post shoulder replacement. Her front tooth was ” flapping ” as she called it. I asked if she wanted it out. She did. And , in a second it was gone. She was shocked on how I knew what to do.

Memories came flashing back. She never pulled my teeth , brushed my hair or any of the mom things most had. I raised myself and little brother. She simply checked out on our childhood when dad left.

I know if I don’t forgive her and love her , I’ll be forever guilt ridden. I do not need one more drop of guilt or regret in my life. She doesn’t remember most of my life and has dementia now.

So I run her errands, take her to doctors and try to involve her in things she likes. I try to be who I needed her to be. She’s always pleasant and grateful and I feel extreme guilt wherever I fail.

Adoption made us orphans when they took our babies. So ironic how that worked out that way. I’m trying to forgive daily. For me and for them.

If you need me , I’ll be playing tooth fairy, and fixing my moms hair. Love means going through the pain to get to the good stuff.