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Finding Life After Adoption

An Adoptee's Story

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WHY AM I NOT IMPORTANT

What did I do to be considered NOT IMPORTANT to you. How could you consider a child that you were carrying so unimportant. You decided you did not want me even before I was born. I often wondered as a child growing up what I did to you as an infant that was so horrible that you tried to end my life before I even had a chance to even take a breath. All I ever wanted was for you to LOVE ME. To find out that you never truly wanted me has never helped my self esteem at all.

I still feel unimportant even now as an older adult. People who do not understand how being unwanted and given up for adoption after being in foster care for over six years and never remembering seeing you. How could you leave your children (the other three) in an orphanage for the same amount of time. The pain of not knowing that I had two sisters and a brother until I was in my early twenties. Then never really “fitting in” with them has also made me feel unimportant.

Feeling alone in a room full of family will make you feel unimportant. I know that I can walk out of a room and no one will notice for more than ten or fifteen minutes and that is if I am really lucky. I did an experiment of sort when I was in college. I had said something about how I felt and was told that I would missed by “this” group of “friends” immediately. Well about two weeks later I was sitting with a large number of those “friends” and I got up and took my wallet and got some lunch and went and sat at a table by myself. I was far enough that I could see my “friends” but they could not see me. I finished my lunch and sat there for about forty-five minutes. Then I returned to the group and said something about how everyone was. They did not even realize that I had been gone all that time.

Talk about feeling unimportant and even invisible. The joy (pain) of the trauma of adoption and abandonment. This is what I grew up with my entire life.

 

 

 

A Letter to Someone I Never Got to Know 

Dear Dad,

I have been looking for you most of my adult life.   It is truly hard to believe that I have finally found you.  Well at least where you are buried.  This is not the ending I wanted for us.  I am really having a very difficult time writing this letter and a even more difficult coming to terms with your death. 

There is a part of me that just can’t let go of you.  I guess that is the tiny little girl that I know you held in your arms so many decades ago.  I am sitting here all alone right now with an old picture of you I was given.  When I look at it and see the smile on your young face I wonder what you are thinking about right then.  I wish I could reach through time and touch your face and know for just a moment what your touch would feel like. 

I know that you touched me and probably even my face at least once in my life.  I wish I could remember that moment and freeze it forever.  I know you were not in my life for a very long time,  but that does not matter to me.  I still wanted to get to know you. What did you like?  What did you dislike?  What made you happy?  What made you sad?  I know that you wanted to see me one last time before you died. That was not to be. 

I have been told one side of the story that lead up to me being placed in foster care and later adopted. But I was brought up to believe that there were two sides to every story. I wanted you to have your chance to tell your side of the story. 

I want you to know that on your birthday every year that I have known when it is I wished you HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I wanted you to know that you have been thought of often over the years. You have been important to me in a way I could not totally explain to most people. Most do not understand. Some think I am being disrespectful to my Dad who raised me.  I do not see it that way. I really do not think he would either. 

If it had not been for you and my birth mother I would not be here. I know that you had a lot of problems. I am not here to judge you. 

I really hope you had some happy times in your life. I wish I could have been a part of them. I hope and pray that you were not totally alone when you died. That someone who really cared about you was with you.

I guess it finally just hit me that I am starting to let you go. It really hurts and I pray I am strong enough to get through this. I will try to write to you very soon. 

                                   Love, 

                                   Your daughter 

As an adult adoptee this is one of the most difficult letters I have ever written.  I only found out last month that my birth father was dead. Beginning the grief process has been nothing short of difficult. How do you say “goodbye” to someone you do not really know? 

I hope this helps other adult adoptees. It is about each one of us helping one another.  GOD BLESS. 

Tired of the Pain

Dealing with all the different pain related to adoption can be draining to say the least. Then you add finding a grave at the end of your lifetime search. How can anyone just be expected to deal with everything and put it all in the past. That is what a lot of people in our society expect adoptees to do.  We need to grieve all of our losses in our lifetime. You do not expect someone who looses a child to death to just “get over it” without grieving for their child. Well adoptees need to grieve the loss of their birth family, family history, not having known the grandparents and other family members that may not even know about them.

Imagine if you can growing up never knowing your father. Never remembering his touch, smile, voice or anything other children take for granted. Then start looking for him in your early twenties and continue on and off for almost thirty-five years. Then you find that he died when you were fourteen years old. I realize a lot of things happen in a person’s lifetime but for others to act like it should not affect you is not fair. Everyone deserves to have a voice and express themselves and not be made to feel like they are wrong.

Then you have to start dealing with the pain of grieve. And when you are stuck at denial because you don’t know how to accept much less how to start grieving for a person you do not know. You feel stuck and then start wondering what is wrong with you. You wonder when the tears are going to start and how long will you will be letting the flood gates flow.

I do thank God for my friends who do understand what I am going through. I will keep writing and talking because I have had to be silent for too long of a time. I have always been told that that I talked too much and too loud. Still hear this right now and I will let the people or person that I do not like or care for it. I have always tried to make everyone else happy. Well now I need to be considered and my feelings should be taken into consideration.

If I am rambling right now that is how I am feeling. Emotions bouncing everywhere. I guess that is part of grieving. All I want to do is help other adoptees through what they are going through.

An Unknown Part of the Journey

As I begin this new part of my journey it is difficult to really see where I am headed.  Really not sure where I go.  Feels like I am fumbling in the dark right now.  The hope I had of finding my birth father alive and possibly getting some answers has been totally taken away.  I guess I am grieving that loss as well as the loss of someone I did not know.

As strange as that sounds I feel it is harder to grieve for him than someone I was close to.  In my head I know he is dead but my heart just is not ready to let go and let the grieving start.  It means that some how I have to let go of a search for someone that is a part of me as much as I was a part of him. 

So many questions that will never be answered.  So many memories that will never be made or shared.  Both of us DENIED those.  Granted he made some decisions in his life that resulted in his being denied those memorie but we are all human and do make mistakes. Not saying he was perfect.

Wondering if he thought of me on special days like my birthday.  Did he think of me at Christmas?  Did he just ever stop and think “I miss you and love you.”

I have looked at the pictures I have of him lately and thought about what sort of man he was.  I have found out that he was trying to get his life back on track. For that I am thankful.  I hope he did have happy times in his life.  I hope he had people in his life who truly loved and cared for him.

He was important to God.  I know God does not create garbage.  My faith in God and the beautiful people who He has placed in my life right now are helping me so very much.

Dealing With    Unexpected Feelings

So many people out there do not understand what adoptees go threw. They say “put it in the past.”  And believe we would love to. But first we need to deal with all the loss, lies, hurt and denials that we are expected to just accepted as our reality.

As I sit here right now I cannot believe all the emotions one person can feel all at one time.  I found out today that a search that I have been most of my adult life is ended. And definitely not the way I had hoped it would. I have been looking for a man that is responsible for me being here and now I find out he is dead. Never get to meet him or look into his eyes to see if there is any of me looking back. No hug. No smile from him. Never going to hear him laugh. Never going to have him touch my face and say “I love you.”

That is a pain I would never wish on anyone. The person I am talking about is my birth father. As far as I know the last time he saw me I was a baby. I am now a grandmother.

I feel like I have been kicked in the stomach. I know I never knew him but that makes it even harder for me. I have mourned the relationship I have been denied and now mourn the death of the person I never knew. My feelings range from anger to just plain grieve.

I know that I will get threw this with God’s help. He has already began with placing very special people in my life to help support me in my journey.

As I continue to process all of this I hope I can help other adoptees with their journey. We need to be here for each other. We understand in a way that no one else can. We need to have our voices heard.

 

 

 

 

 

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