Thursday, June 5, 2008

What Adoption has Given Me - And What Adoption has Left Me With

(Originally posted at Wordpress on 4/5/08)

Adoption has given me a name. It is not really my name, the name I was born with, but it is the name I grew up with and that everyone knows me by and with which I am most accustomed. Adoption has given me a family - a borrowed family, who, for a brief moment in time, were here with me to love and guide me, to raise and teach me, to help turn me into the person I am today. They were not really ever mine; and to prove that point, fate or destiny or whatever forces there are decided to take them from me in one quick motion to drive that point home (see my "hell" category).

Adoption gave me my home. I live here, in this place where I grew up, not where I was born but where I was taken to, this little acreage outside of this little town in this farming region. Adoption gave me the people I know and the experience I had, which include growing up around those who love to garden and teaching me to have that same passion.

Adoption gave me the life I am living. It may not be a better life, it may not be a worse life, it is just a life. A different life. Because I am happy is not because of adoption, it is in spite of it. I do not have my DH and kids because of adoption, because I can't say that I never would have met him had I not been adopted; who knows? Would he have ended up in my city? Would I have moved down here eventually? If we were meant for one another, it would have happened.

But what has adoption left me with? Adoption has left me with pain...lots and lots of pain. It has left me with the knowledge that I will never, ever have the family I was born to be with. It has left me without a name, the name I was born to have, the person I was meant to be. Adoption has left me without my family - the family I was taken from and the family I was taken by, because in true adoptee fashion, everybody abandons me. By death or by adoption, I am alone.

Adoption has left me with an empty heart. A heart that doesn't know how to let people in, because it is too broken and scared of being left once again. Adoption has left me without my mother, or my father, or my siblings or grandparents or aunts and uncles...I have never had anyone around me who looks like me, or acts like me, or shares the same talents and abilities as me. Until I had my children, I've never been related to anyone.

Adoption has left me all alone.

Adoption has left me with a feeling of emptiness - a hollowness within my core that can never, ever be filled, even after reunion. Because nothing can replace the years that were lost, the years spent wondering and searching, longing for a ghost figure, dreaming and hoping, crying and agonizing.
Adoption has left me with scars.

Internal scars, the scars of a child who wondered every day why her mommy didn't love her, what was so bad about her that her own mommy would give her away. A little girl who wondered every day if her own mother loved her. Who does that? Who actually has to guess if their own parents even think about them? I'll tell you - adoptees. Because living with the knowledge that the woman who brought you into this world, the ONE PERSON who should love you unconditionally, would just give you away? It is traumatic beyond belief. No amount of love from somebody else can take that away. Nobody can soothe that hurt, nobody can make that better.

So, adoption has given me everything - everything I have. But it has left me with nothing, because nothing can make up for or replace what it has taken away.

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