Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Family Envy

We took the kids to Chuck E. Cheese this weekend. No particular reason, we just haven't been there in ages and the kids love it. And it's nice to just be able to sit back while the kids can run wild, and just be kids for a while.

While we were sitting there, among the hundreds of other parents & families and kids running wild, a family was seated next to us. They were celebrating a birthday for one of the kids, and I found myself completely and totally crushing on this group of people.

I mean, they could have stepped right out of some feel-good family oriented television show, maybe even a sit-com, they were just that perfect. Now I can't be sure of how they were all related but it looked like Grandma was there, three women who were probably her daughters, and a plethora of kids. And the adults were all totally into the kids, everyone was holding the littlest ones, everyone was completely involved in these children, and you couldn't even tell whose kids were whose because everyone expended the same amount of love and attention to them. And there were probably about 10 of them, from the ages of about 1 to probably early teens.

And I just couldn't take my eyes off them. I found myself wishing I could be in that family, that these women could be my sister or aunt, that I could love and be loved the way all those kids were.

It made me sad for what I have lost - my n-family, who are exactly like this, I could have and SHOULD have been raised in this type of close family; and for the adoptive family I was raised in who never gave a hug, never cared about family, who only saw each other at weddings or funerals and even then it was strained, you could tell nobody gave a crap about anybody else.

I'm glad there are families like this out there. I wish more families WERE like this. And I bet, that if one of those ladies had gotten pregnant at 15 or 18 or under any less than favorable circumstance, that that particular family would never, ever let that baby go. Adoption would NEVER be an option.

I guess that's where my n-family got it wrong.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Family? What family?

Have you ever looked at pictures of your family and had the painful realization that you will never BE a part of that family?

Sometimes I just want to un-friend all my n-family members from facebook. They are such a close, happy family who truly enjoy each others company and are always getting together. They are involved in each others lives. And they like to post pictures, which I love to see, but at the same time, it's like a huge kick in the gut.

I never had that with my adoptive family. They all pretty much hated each other, and the ones who didn't hate one another, well, just had a sort of mild tolerance for each other. So needless to say, I saw my 1st cousins about 6 times in my life, usually at a funeral or a wedding. There are countless 2nd- and beyond type cousins and extended family that I have NEVER met. And never will. Well, not that they even consider me a part of this family either, because being adopted I am not blood and therefore subject to suspicion.

I should have been raised with the people who are like me. I needed that. Still do! All I have now are my kids, my in-laws, and two a-brothers who could care less if I was alive. Well okay to be fair, I suppose they'd care if I died, but the simple fact that I am living is enough for them.

And I am really giving up on all my grand illusions about my mother. Perhaps the last of the fog is slipping away, or perhaps I'm moving through the next "stage" so to speak. The ONE person who should care about me and my well-being, the ONE person who is supposed to love you, obviously could care less. She has been abandoning me over and over, and I have let her. Why do I keep setting myself up for this pain and frustration?

I could never do that to my kids. But then again I would never abandon my children to adoption in the first place. No way, no how, you'd have to pry them from my stiff dead arms. And then I'd come back and haunt the adopters.

I guess I'll leave my mother to her beloved anal jerk of a husband, that is where her happiness truly lies, and try to find some sort of contentment. But I really just wish adoption had never happened to me. Oh what it would be like to be normal.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Coercion, or not?

My mother gave me away. She chose to do it.

There are many people out there who would say it was cercion, she was brainwashed, she didn't *really* have a choice. Even me, I thought that once, and not so very long ago. But I am really beginning to wonder now. Just where does blaming coercion end and facing responsibility for your own actions begin?

Yes, adoption agencies and "counselors" all have a very powerful and effective marketing strategy. It's business, and if you're to succeed in sales, you must be able to pitch your product and sway the public.

I was unable to sleep one night, a while ago, and well when you are awake at 3-4 a.m. there really isn't much on the television worth watching. I found myself glued to an infomercial, Chalene Johnson was telling us about her amazing Turbo Jam workout, and you know everyone who bought it has lost soooooo much weight it's unbelievable. And I have to admit it was not my finest moment, but I was sucked in to this, swayed by the emotional aspect of hating all this baby weight and feeling like such a loser for having it, and she what she was offering really did seem like the answer to my prayers, the one and only thing that would help me.

I ordered it.

And when it arrived, and I stood looking at these 4 DVD's and an overgrown green rubber band, I thought, what the hell was I thinking? How could I have gotten sucked in and led to think that I needed this?

At the end of the day, I did not place all the blame squarely on the shoulders of Chalene. I was not coerced into buying this. This was purely my fault for allowing myself to believe that what she was pitching was some magical cure to all my ills.

I should have stepped back, and used my brain instead of my emotions, and really thought this through and weighed the pros vs. the cons, the "is this really what I need?" and "is there any other way I can succeed without resorting to spending my hard earned money?"

And I'm just talking about 30 bucks for some unwatched DVD's. This isn't even nearly as monumental as giving away your own freaking child.

So - how is an adoption worker pitching adoption any different? They know how to play on our emotions, they know how to hook you and pull you in. But what you DO with this is up to you. It was up to my mother. SHE, like me and Chalene, allowed her heart to rule her mind.

So when does it stop being coercion and start being a choice, albeit a bad one, that ultimately is her own fault? She could have sought out other opions, she SHOULD have stepped back and thought logically about it. Just as we all do when we are faced with any type of decision in our lives...but I don't think it does anyone any good to cry victim and claim coercion.

Because at the end of the day, Chalene didn't call the number and order the DVD's for me, I did it myself. And the adoption agency didn't give birth to me and sign away their rights, my mother did.

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