almost six months old

January 22, 2013 § 9 Comments

I’ve gotten a lot of readership and found some interesting people since Claudia submitted one of my posts to Best of Open Adoption Blogs 2012. I remember I used to be amazed at having even 65 views in a week, and now I have more hits in a day than that.

I have seriously mixed feelings about the whole thing. I’m so surprised at how nice people are and I’m glad other people have taken the time to read my writing, but I wish it was about something happier. I don’t want to be a “birthmother blog.” It was never some sort of ambition of mine. It still isn’t. The only positive thing I can say is that being able to write about it (no matter how much it makes me cry) is a sign of progress. It took five or six weeks before I could put any of my feelings into writing. I had no words for what I felt. I couldn’t imagine putting a pen to paper and telling my story, because it was one that I couldn’t process and understand. I was so numb and felt physically pained and weak. My eyes felt burned raw. I still feel that way a lot of the time and the ugliness of it still tears, but the fact that I’ve written about it has sorted things out. I have words, and that’s something! It means that it matters.

One day in September, I was supposed to meet a friend at the park, and the park turned out to be crowded with literally hundreds of people. There was both a suicide prevention awareness thing and a cancer walk. My phone died and I had no idea where she was, so I sat on the grass and started writing in my notebook the first three posts of this blog.

It must seem like I enjoy whining and feeling sorry for myself, but I wish none of this was a part of my life. I’m grateful for having this place where these emotions may be relegated, but I don’t want this blog. I never wanted to understand this kind of loss. I never wanted to be strong, although that isn’t a descriptor I would use for myself. I definitely never wanted to be a part of “the adoption community.” I just want you! I just wish my life was how it naturally would be.

After I received pictures of you at three months, I had maybe a month of peace and comfort, the first sense of relief from continual anxiety. It was easier to think of you and the life you are having. I just hope you are happy and you don’t miss me. Now that six months is quickly approaching, the anxiety has been too. I’m so scared I won’t see you again. I hope this time I get more than just 7 pictures, which weren’t even dated. I hope I get to hear about how you’re doing this time. I hope the update is detailed and more than a page long. I know that’s way too much to expect. But I would feel really disrespected to read a summary of your first six months of life in a few paragraphs. Who am I kidding though? I’m positive I will be disappointed.

You must be so big now, cutie. According to the internet, you are probably more than 15 pounds! You must be sitting up all by yourself. You can probably roll around from your back to your stomach. I bet you can sleep throughout the night now, like a good boy. Your eyes should be their real color now. You’ll be eating solid food soon. You probably laugh and smile and babble. I really wish I could see that.

I’m not expecting much, or trying not to. Last week, on the first day of the semester, I was rummaging through my desk drawers and I was grabbing some blank notebook paper when I saw a letter from C and L. I really need to go through my desk drawers and organize things, so I don’t have more nasty surprises. I have the tendency to just throw shit in there. The letter from them was short, but they said they were glad things seemed to be going well, and they talked about getting the nursery ready and buying clothes for the first year. They ended the letter with, “We can’t wait to meet our baby.”

I was pregnant, thank you very much.

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§ 9 Responses to almost six months old

  • freebairn says:

    Hugs, Ariel. The words that I could say would perhaps be counterproductive here, so I’ll just leave with the biggest hug I can give from this distance.

  • freebairn says:

    I meant say “leave it”.with, not leave with as in leave…lol. I can’t edit comments here – which really messes with my OCD editing and re-editing fetish!! :D :D

  • V's Mom says:

    Im not familiar with you adoption arrangement but is there a way to maybe send a letter to open up communication more?

    Also I kept everything relating to my daughter (photos, letters) in a shoe box. One for safety ans knowing they were all in one place so they wouldn’t get lost, the other reason was so that I had control over when to see them.

  • Sending you love Ariel. I won’t presume to tell you it will get better with time or anything trite like that. Just want you to know I’m thinking of you.

  • Cherry says:

    I think that letter was highly inappropriate. I’m putting that politely.

    One day, before my son was adopted, I woke up suddenly certain that I didn’t want my son to go to strangers. I told my social worker this, and was regaled with stories about how his ‘new family’ had the nursery all ready, how joyful they all were, how many new toys were waiting for him, how excited his ‘new grandparents’ were etc etc.

    I now think this was one of many subtly coercive methods used to ensure I found it difficult to change my mind. Enough of those and it began to feel impossible. .

    • I agree. I too was told all the same things, and I felt like my pesky hormonal “feelings” could never get in the way of this couple’s excitement and preparation. I could never be such a monster, to dash their hopes! They had an entire room ready for him with clothes, toys, books, and painted walls. I lived in a studio apartment at the time. No one has a baby in a studio apartment, or so I thought.

      I recognize now that I shouldn’t have been told about their anticipation. Their decision to set up a nursery should not have been used to persuade me. Then again, adoption is truly about serving the wants (not needs) of adoptive parents. I was made to feel as if this really was their baby now. The pain they would have felt upon me changing my mind could never have compared to the pain I’ve been through and continue to go through.

      • Cherry says:

        I agree completely with everything you say.

        Especially about the incomparable pain.

        And about it being a want, not a need, regarding adoptive parents.

        I’m glad you write.

  • Cherry says:

    You said ‘I was made to feel as if this really was their baby now.’ – I got that too.

    I was actually told by my social worker to write a letter to the adoptive parents to allay any fears they might have about me changing my mind about the adoption.

    This happened while I was still pregnant and even before any adoptive parents had been selected for my son (I didn’t know that. Mine was a closed adoption in the UK in the late 1970s).

    I have a copy of that letter I wrote – full of phrases I now realise were whispered like worms into many expectant mothers’ ears. Stuff designed to distance us from our babies without us spotting the sleight of hand suggesting our own unimportance and irrelevance.

    I’m sorry for your loss and your profound pain.

    I think you will be someone amazing for your son to find. He may see, in your absolutely courageous honesty and unique personality a reflection of himself, perhaps for the first time in his life.

    My son found me (I made myself easy to find on Facebook). He is stronger and happier for it (his words). He needed me.

  • Cherry says:

    Btw, I posted a link to this blog to one I visit in the UK. An adopted woman responded with ‘I thought the b.mother writing her thoughts would be an amazing gift to her child in years to come. I hope she keeps writing, however hard it seems.;
    Thought I would pass that on to you.

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