without

September 15, 2012 § 8 Comments

I made a mistake giving you up. This is my single biggest regret. And it can never be remedied or undone.

All I want is you, my sweet boy. And the worst thing is knowing I could have kept you, I could have raised you, and–this is what I didn’t know when I was pregnant–everything would have been worked out beautifully. Of course I have no way of knowing for sure, but I know that I would’ve made it work. I am currently poor, in college, and single. But it would not have always been so. I chose a very permanent solution to a temporary problem, and I couldn’t be more sorry.

I mean nothing against C and L. I adore them. But having a big house and money and a wedding ring does not necessarily make someone a better parent. I thought so before. I thought being blood-related was not important. I’m not anti-adoption now, but I believe adoption has its place only in extreme cases, as with a drug addict or someone who has a serious lack of support in taking care of a baby. My reasons for it are not good enough. I didn’t ask my parents for help. I didn’t want to move back in with them. I didn’t want to lose my independence and rely on them, especially when they already help me out with money as it is, and I felt it was something I couldn’t and shouldn’t ask of them. They didn’t try to talk me out of adoption or ever question my decision, but they probably would have helped me if I had requested.

I wish more than anything in the world that I could put you back in my belly and do this over. I thought I was doing the right thing, so I turned myself into a stone. I don’t mean that I didn’t love you. When I was pregnant, all I thought about was your well-being, and after you were born I held you and fed you as much as I could. But I never allowed myself to consider parenting. I dismissed it as impossible, as a choice that would destroy my life. How could I have been so wrong? I didn’t know then what I know now. I used to think I knew what I wanted. I used to have focus and a drive for education, for a solid direction, for living life in what I believed to be the “correct way.” School, career, and marriage before reproduction, and even then, I didn’t want to have children. Now that has vanished. Why did that even matter to me? As if I’ve ever managed to live “correctly” before. I know I should look at this as a chance to continue making my life what I want it to be, but my priorities on what I want are so different. I can’t stop being a mother just because you’re not here, and I can’t go on with my life as if nothing happened.

The what-ifs murder me inside. What if I had changed my mind? What if I had considered parenting? What if David and I had still been together when I found out? What if I had done better in college, finished on time, and had a good job by now? What if I had been vigilant about birth control? What if I had figured out I was pregnant sooner and procured an abortion? What if you were here with me? How wonderful would that be. What if I never feel happiness and peace again? What if I never find love that leads to marriage and what if I can never have a family? What if you were it for me?

There is nothing anyone can say to make me feel better. I wish they wouldn’t try. Either they tell me I made the right decision, which makes me so angry–how dare they presume to know what is right, and how dare they suggest my child is better off without me–or they imply that I deserve to suffer because I’m a monster who gave up her own baby. One of my best friends was shocked that I was even sad, because if I made such a choice, why was I sad about it? And no matter what people say, each and every one thinks I’ll be sad for a bit and then get over it. They are wrong. I cannot live with myself. I can’t live without you.

This sadness is unbearable. My entire body feels weak and tired from it, but when I try to rest it follows me into my dreams. I rarely feel hungry and I can barely chew and swallow. I force myself to eat even though food is unappealing. I get lost in my head and I can’t get out of it. Nothing feels real. It’s all a bad dream. It even looks blurry and out of focus. On some days I feel numb. On worse days I cry and cry and cry. My face hurts from crying but the tears are seemingly endless. I don’t pity myself, because I have no one else to blame. I let this happen, I did this to myself.

How could I have said goodbye?

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§ 8 Responses to without

  • Samantha says:

    Thank you so much for having the courage and strength to write…it helps so many others navigate the unspoken feelings and pain. Bless you.
    My first mother was 20 when she gave me up as a newborn. Your honesty in writing the post about telling the adoption agency you didn’t “have the desire” to parent broke my heart. So many adoptees grow up believing these lies because they don’t have voices like yours telling them otherwise. I am a mother now and totally understand how the adoption business coerces mothers away from their babies by getting them to “make the plan” before their baby’s birth. It isn’t until after birth (hormones) that we feel the courage and strength to be the mothers we truly are. Bless you and keep writing. You and your son will be back together someday. Hugs.

    • it’s true! everything changes afterwards, and you’re suddenly more than happy to do anything for this person you weren’t sure if you could love before. thank you for listening and understanding, and i’m glad you know now that you were not an unwanted baby.

  • Katherine says:

    Your blog is so beautifully written. You have a gift.

    My husband and I adopted our son five years ago. I can tell you that if I had to quantify the love I have for my child that I would say that I would mame, kill or die for him without a moment’s hesitation and that I love every cell, every fiber of his being in a way that grips my heart like a vice grip. I love him in the same primal, fierce way you love your son. So in this way, I hope you feel some measure of hope and faith that your son’s mother (and father) also love him as nature and evolution and God allowed and made possible and that their love includes raising him to love every atom and cell and particle of the parents who created him. It is so for my husband and I with our son and for the other parents we have come to meet who also adopted a child. Also, from my perspective, I would want to know that my son’s “birth mother” wanted more contact. There is much suffering in adoption but I can’t help but think that if two sets of parents truly love a child, they will find a way to love him in an open adoption that ensures that all 5 of you are not just satisfied with your relationships, but deeply strengthened and fulfilled by them. Can you write and ask if they are willing to have an honest conversation?

    I would be happy to talk to you and be a friend any time.

    Katherine

  • Ursula says:

    I read other posts before reading this one. I’m sorry that I mentioned a few times that you made the right choice. I didn’t realise until I read this post about how you feel about your choice, or how strongly you felt about it. And I’m truly deeply sorry for writing those comments that I thought would help.
    It breaks my heart to read something like this. I want to help get your son back but I don’t even know who you are! I know there is nothing I can do but I always feel this way when I read or hear something that touches my heart and I feel like I should have done something and then realise that I didn’t even know what was going on did I? Because I am a no body and a total stranger.
    I’m not going to tell you it will be okay and not to be upset because our situations are completely different but I still know what it’s like to lose family-part of you and not be able to get over it. Nothing in my life will ever be the same again. But it’s made me who I am and this has made you who you are; and that’s not an evil person that’s a young, beautiful, and loving girl who recognises her mistakes and that makes you stronger even if you do not know it. It will mean that you will be a fantastic mother again one day.
    I hope to God that your son finds this blog or gets to meet you one day, I know that you will never give an opportunity up like that if it came your way so if you ever do get the chance make him know you love him.

    • It’s okay that you told me I made the right choice and did the best thing for him. Most people have similar beliefs, as adoption is so highly praised in our society. Unfortunately, it’s not always the right or the best solution. Adoptive parents can get divorced, die, lose their jobs, abuse their kids, and poor, unmarried women can go on to marry, make more money, and be wonderful parents.

      Losing my son has affected my entire life and personality so deeply that it was not possibly the best or the right thing to do. I will never, ever believe that.

      • Ursula says:

        I agree with what you say about adoption. At first I never really had anything against it and I still don’t really but hearing your side of the story; from the mothers point of view I have a different opinion on it and I think if I was ever to adopt I would never be able to cut the mother off. I really hope one day you get to meet your son again properly. Your love for him is so strong and it’s irreplaceable.

  • Courtney says:

    I found your blog via,a comment you left on another blog. I’ve never placed a child, and I’ve not adopted one, but I have strong feelings on it for some reason (maybe because we were infertile and did consider adoption before IVF finally worked). I am so sorry for your experience and heartbreak. What you write here is why my husband and I agree that we would not want our own child placing a baby for adoption. We wound raise the baby before supporting a placement for adoption (and there would be no support for abortion). Adoption can be so wonderful, but it’s not the right answer for everyone.

    Thank you for putting this out there. More people need to see how it really feels. After having our son, I asked my husband, “can you imagine giving him to someone else? And can you imagine taking a baby from someone who just did what we did?”. It leaves me feeling so sad.

    Hugs.

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