I know this is the place I normally share my DIY projects, home design and makeovers, but today I'm doing something a little different.
I'm sure not many of you know, unless you follow me on Facebook, that I'm adopted. I was adopted by my parents from LA County adoptions when I was three days old. I was lucky enough to have a family that wanted a child and was willing to open their home to a stranger's baby.
When I was 6, my parents told me I was adopted. Looking back, I can't remember what my reaction was. I do know that ever since that day I fantasized about who my birth Mother was and why she would give me away. The fact that I am adopted has deeply affected me all through my life.
I would look in the mirror and see this blond haired, blue eyed girl looking back and wonder who I was. My adopted parents both had brown hair and brown eyes so I didn't look at all like them.
Not only did I not look like my parents, I was the polar opposite of both of them. This caused issues over the years. My Mother hoped for a cuddly baby/child and I wasn't. They both hoped for someone similar to them and when I wasn't that child, they tried to make me something different. Their way of doing this wasn't positive and this shaped the way I think of myself today.
I've always searched for acceptance and unconditional love. When it came time for me to start my own family and I was unsuccessful I decided it was time to find my birth parents and get some answers. It became apparent that I needed to find my birth Mother to hopefully shed some light on what was going on with me medically.
I hired someone to find my birth parents and once I received the name of my birth Mother, I my search started there. I called complete strangers on the phone putting myself out there each time. it was like that Dr Seuss book, "Are You My Mother?" The women I called were sympathetic to my situation, but they weren't my mother.
Finally I found the right number. It took all my courage to call this woman and ask her that dreaded question, "Are you my mother?" It turned out she was my Mother. She was willing to meet me and I arranged a trip to meet her and her family in person.
I flew out a few weeks later, along with my adopted Mother, and anxiously awaited the moment I'd been waiting for all my life.
I knocked on the door and when she opened it, I couldn't hold back the lifetime of emotions and the tears started flowing. I saw myself in her face and it was more than I could handle.
Her reaction was quite different from my own. She didn't cry and I could immediately tell she felt nothing for me. I won't get into the details of our meetings, we had two in total, but she felt nothing for me and made it quite clear.
I left each time I met with her more hurt than the time before. I'd been searching for not only someone who looked like me and shared my DNA, but someone who would love me unconditionally.
During this time I wasn't a mother and yet I still couldn't understand how anyone could relinquish their child, all while feel nothing toward them. This was amplified after I gave birth to Hunter. While I was pregnant I was overcome on a daily basis by the love I had for this child growing inside my body. I felt connected to him the moment I learned I was pregnant.
I've dealt with the pain of being rejected by my birth Mother not only at birth, but after meeting her as an adult. I don't think of her every day, but she does come to my mind quite frequently. Over time I've wondered where she is, if she's happy, if I ever cross her mind and if she wishes things were different between us.
Yesterday she came to the forefront of my mind. I had this overwhelming feeling that I needed to check on her. I Googled her name, as I have done so often in the past, and I came across her obituary. She passed away this in May of this year. I stared at the picture on the obituary site and all I could do was cry.
I felt overwhelmed by loss, sadness and missed opportunities. I'd always hoped in the back of my mind that she would change her mind one day and want to grow a relationship. The little girl inside me hoped she would finally share the name of my birth Father with me. I wanted closure, I wanted love and I wanted a relationship with both my birth parents.
I spent my entire day thinking about her and all the 'what ifs'. Then I realized as I tucked my sweet 10 year old boy into bed, that this was my legacy, he was my legacy. No I may not have blood relatives or a close family in my life, but God gave me this incredible gift. I stopped and looked at him and I saw my face looking back at me. The blond hair, the blue eyes, the smile....all mine. My husband and I created this amazing gift, that I cherish more than life itself. Without her, none of this would be possible.
I came to the realization that my birth Mother missed out on so much. She missed out on knowing me, but she missed out on knowing her wonderful, bright and caring grandchild.
I decided the best way to get it all out was to write her a letter. I know she's no longer here on this earth, but I hope somehow she will hear these words and understand my love for her despite the hurt.
To my birth Mother
Thank you for giving me life. You may have had other options, but thank you for carrying me for nine months and caring for me during that time.
There's always been a hole in my heart where you should have been. Each day I longed to know you and bond with you. I longed to see my face in yours. I always hoped we'd be similar, love the same things and maybe have the same talents.
These were all just wishes that didn't come true. The loss I have felt over my lifetime has at times been hard to bear. I've always looked for that connection with someone, until I was given the gift of my son.
Yes, you gave me up, but after I met you and you decided not to be a part of my life....you missed out. You missed out on seeing the love I have for my husband and my child. You missed out on seeing Hunter smile, talk for the first time, his first day of school, losing his first tooth, riding his bike for the first time without training wheels and becoming the sweet, compassionate young man he is today.
You also missed out on knowing me. You missed out on seeing me get married, grow my family and have successes in my life. Yes YOU missed out. I missed out on knowing you, but ultimately YOU missed out on so very much.
I will always love you in my own way and I will probably always carry some sort of hurt from what happened. However, I thank you again for my life. Without you, I wouldn't have my loving husband who takes care of me and loves me unconditionally. I wouldn't have my caring, healthy child who also loves me no matter what.
Thank you for the gift of life. I hope you're now in a better and peaceful place. I hope you're looking down and are proud of the woman, wife and Mother I've become.
RIP birth Mother....I'll always love you.
Thank you for taking the time to read this. I don't know if this will help anyone out there who's going through something similar, but I know writing this has helped me. Thank you for being a part of my healing.