About Cheerio

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In general I am a cheery and energetic person. But I am enshrouded in a cloak of iron. That cloak is the weight of greiving my son, whom I've lost to adoption.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

the payoff

I wonder what my pastor would think,

what he would say if he were to read my interpretation of his sermons?

What if he were to read my little journal book that I scribble notes in?

What if he were to read and see what I walk away with after the last song is sung?

Today his sermon was very thought provoking.
I think it’s something everyone should think about, no matter if they do or don’t go to church.

There was a clip from the movie Men of Honor. The man in the movie clip wanted to be a navy diver again – and insisted his injured leg be cut off so he could do it. My pastor then posed these two questions.
“What do you want most out of life?
What are you willing to give up for it?”

Wow, what loaded questions they are!

I’m going to have to think on it for awhile. However, that is not what ‘hit home’ to me.
It was not what I walked away with today.

Early in the sermon, my pastor talked about some decisions he has made throughout his life. He’s had a ‘colorful’ past, and I respect him more than a minister who doesn’t know what life is like outside of the church walls.

My pastor also talked about some of the things he really wanted in life. He talked about goals that he reached for. He also talked about the work, effort and sometimes the sacrifices he made to reach that goal.

He continued on to say that he made those sacrifices with joy, because he knew the end-result would be worth it. When he looks back over his life, he reaffirms that – yes, indeed it was Worth It!

“Worth It”
That phrase thwacked into my little brain like an arrow striking a tree. It kind of stuck there quivering back and forth, so I had to think about it. Think about decisions I’ve made, and if they’ve proven to be “worth it”?

So, now that my mind is mulling over this pointed thought sticking in my brain, I mentally start to wander down another path while my pastor is speaking.

What would he say? Say to these questions I’d scribbled down?
___“But, what if… what if Pastor, you make a decision and it turns out to NOT be worth it?
___“What if 5, 7, 10 years or more you realize that what you sacrificed was way more precious than what you gained in return?
___”What then?
___”It’s nice to see a reward for your decision, but what do you do when you realize that the treasure you were aiming for turns out to be nothing more than fool’s gold?
___”Just what do you do when you realize that what you are holding in your hand is worthless? It is nothing of real value. It was a trick of the mirrors, nothing more than a holograph.
 Then what?

___”What then?

Do you mind that I suggest you would look differently at both what you “sacrificed,” and at what you “gained.”

That you would see the payoff differently, I’m sure.

How would you then view the payoff?
Certainly you would view it as a worthless trinket, far from being the treasure you imagined it would be. Certainly it lost all its appeal and sparkle.

Since it is a mere imitation and not at all what you expected it to be, it would serve only to mock you. Serve to mock that longing for real value. How then would you feel about the payoff in your hand?

Instead of the feeling confidence victorious and successful, I’d venture to say there would be feelings of self doubt, defeat, and failure.

Let me ask how you think you might feel toward the ones involved in or arranged the deal?

Suppose the one involved cautioned you about the risks? Suppose they pointed out the values of what you were going to sacrifice? Suppose they encouraged you to think about it more, or to do more research. Suppose they did research for you. In that research they found examples where others made the same or very similar tradeoff. Suppose they showed you the statistics from those studies and an alarming percent of such tradeoff’s proved to fail.

How might you feel about this person who seemed to care about you and did not want to see you make a foolish or unwise decision? You would probably be thinking of how you wished you listened to them. But you certainly would not blame that you made the decision anyway.

But suppose the one involved, did the exact opposite instead?
The person making all the arrangements never mentioned risks. They talked about all the benefits, even exaggerating and misrepresenting them just to lure you into the deal. Instead of talking about risks they made promises of how wonderful the payoff would be for everyone. They showed how this decision was a positive step for a brighter future.

Although they were aware of studies and research, they intentionally kept the file folder closed so you would not see them. They very carefully steered you away from holding onto what you had, because they wanted it.

They very carefully and subtly eroded your rights to keeping what was yours. They went so far as to suggest it was a waste and even wrong for you to keep it for yourself. Dishonest, deceptive, manipulative, and greedy are words that could be used to describe them.

As you’re looking at this worthless trinket, your thoughts of them would not be so kind.
Yes, you had to blame yourself for not seeing through their tightly woven lies, but I am going to guess you would feel angry. Hopefully, once you realize their destructive ways, you would not sit quietly by and let it go on. Hopefully you would want to speak up about the injustice being done, point out their corrupt ways, and prevent others from falling into their trap.

And the ‘sacrifice”, how would you then view what was sacrificed for the trinket.
What you sacrificed indeed became a tremendous, irreplaceable, unrecoverable loss.
As you reflect on it, most likely you would experience feelings of sadness, foolishness, self blame.

I’d venture to say you’d have feelings of remorse or regret, probably even begin to sense a longing to have again what you lost. You might feel either twinges or overwhelming feelings of anger toward the ones responsible for arranging the deal.

Please allow me to continue and suggest that you might feel hopeless.
The sacrifice has been made, and there is no way to reverse it. You will never have it back.

Even if some day it returns to you, you have still gone through all those years with a mocking trinket. When/if it returns to you, it will not be the same as when it was last yours. Yes, there are decisions we make every day. Some decisions are more important than others. Then there are those critical decisions of life that we make. I made one of those life-altering critical decisions in 1994.
I grew up believing adoption was ‘the answer’ to an unplanned pregnancy. It is the ‘right’ thing to do. So when I found myself in that situation, as a reflex I played out what I had been brainwashed to believe. Unplanned pregnancy = adoption.

There were no other options.
I was told that I could not possibly be the kind of mother the son I was carrying deserved to have. I was told that as long as they are loved, it doesn’t matter to the child if they’re raised by their natural family or not. I was told a child deserves a two parent home, with a loving couple who is financially stable.

I was discouraged from marrying the father, for surely marriages that start out that way don’t last. I believed all the myths and lies about adoption that still saturate our society today.

For years I lived under this spell. I lived believing all the subtle and not so subtle messages that had been planted in my mind. I ‘believed’ it all to be true and right, but it was as far from the truth as the north is from the south.

Then one day on my journey the adoption rug started lifting in the wind, until it finally blew away completely.

It left me to face everything that I had swept under it.
It suddenly was all out in the open and exposed.

I can’t describe to you, Pastor how I felt when I realized the truth about my adoption experience. ** losing my son was UNNecessary. Right or Wrong had nothing to do with it. It was unnecessary to separate the family unit.
** adoption is not a ‘ministry’ to frightened pregnant women, it is an industry. It is a multibillion dollar tax free profit unregulated industry that put all their money into honing their skills how to coerce a woman into giving them her baby.
** adoption is a very unchristian principal. It is giving to one person at the expense of another person. Religious people constantly distort scripture to support adoption, while at the same time shun the frightened pregnant women who need love and support. They just want the baby, not the baggage of the woman who carries it.
** This is the hardest one for me to face.
Did you know that not all adoptees are happy being adopted? Did you know that many, the majority feel like they were abandoned by their natural parent(s)? Although they may ‘know’ in their head that is not the case, it is how they feel in their secret and hidden heart of hearts.

So, let me share with you Pastor, when I reflect, this is what I see.
I am left holding trinkets, and losing my son to adoption was NOT worth it.
Not one single day has been worth it.

What I have left holding in my hand are worthless pieces of junk. Who cares about my job, my house, my car, my neighborhood – none of those things numb the pain of grieving and longing for my son.

I live with a seeping wound in my heart that will never heal.
Although I have many things I am thankful for, adoption brings a sadness I can never escape and a sorrow that shadows my life. Somewhere out there is a teenage boy who, in the quiet of the night asks himself what is wrong with him? what makes him so unlovable that his natural mother could just give him away? That she could just walk away without him?

No, Pastor – it has not been worth it and it will never be worth it.
And Pastor, unlike what the adoption agencies will tell you,
 I am not the minority in my regret, in my grieving, in my pain.
That is what they would have you believe.

Over the past 6 years as I hear more and more stories from other firstmoms. Out of the hundreds of women I’ve ‘met’, I can count on only one hand the number of women who do not regret her decision.

And yet the adoption professionals still paint this picture of how "worth it" adoption is to the firstmom.

We do not go on with our lives as they [adoption professionals] want you to believe, and we never get over it, like they say.

Have you seen the movie, Juno? That movie is stunning bold message clearly touting the myths and lies. That movie is just more marketing from the adoption agenda.

Pastor, if you don’t mind,
I’d like to be the one to challenge you with a question this time.
Maybe this is the first time you’ve heard about the ‘ugly sides’ of adoption. Maybe until now you didn’t know an ‘ugly side’ even existed.
Well, now that you’ve heard,
What are you going to do with your own belief about adoption?
Are you going to continue believing what has been marketed to our society, and grotesquely promoted by religious people as a win/win situation?
Or are you going to dig a little deeper,
research beyond the surface so that you can stand on the side of the unborn child who already loves the mother that is carrying him/her?

Stand, by not promoting a choice that years later will be worthless trinkets,
 a choice that was... Not Worth It?

Saturday, November 29, 2008

pillows for a hard heart?

Well it’s done.
Another year I’ve invested myself in a gift for my son’s amom.
Several years ago – before they stopped sending pictures, they sent pics of the family at Disney World. She made a passing comment about how they had to practically drag her away from the penguins because she just loves penguins.

Each year, since I learned that tidbit, I’ve include a penguin gift for her at Christmas time. I thought it would be relatively simple to find a penguin ornament or some little penguin token.

Do you have any idea how hard it is to find a penguin at Christmas??!!??
Certainly it was not nearly as easy as I thought it would be!

The market is saturated with polar bears, snowmen, and even biker Santa’s. But finding a penguin?

No such luck! It was if they disappeared when the cold weather came.

And so that first Christmas I made a little glass ornament with pics of penguins sledding. I stuck some red sparkly stuff inside the ornament and flicked white paint on it to look like snow.

Then next year Cheerio was not at all creative.
I made a lameo gift. It was a boring candle w/ a pic of penguins sledding. Lame, yup, it was lame that year.

The third year I hand crafted a penguin.
I called him “Fuzzie.”
I took a floral brick and carved it into the shape of a penguin.

Then I covered him with feathers.

I made his beak and feet out of orange pipe cleaners.

I cut the heads off two pins to glue the little wobbly eyeballs on, so they would stand out above the feathers.

I crocheted a little blue scarf.

Then I sat him on a little wooden sled and ran the leather sled rope through his wings.

It took hours making him.

He turned out to be the absolute cutest little thing, I’ve ever made.

It was so hard to give him away. I wanted to keep him for myself. Or at least give him to a friend that lived nearby so I could at least see him every now and again.
(sorry poor pic, only one I had, taken w/ cell phone)

Last year I made one of those knot blankets.
I used a print of a penguin family, and the color of the back material was a cheery yellow (to match their beaks and feet). I am not a needlepoint kind of person, but I embroidered her name and the year on it.

Well, this year, I wanted to make a pillow in the shape of a penguin.
Aaaacccckkkk! It turned out looking hideous!!!
I had to scrap that idea and decided that since I was running out of time, I’d just make two cute little ornamental pillows. And tonight I finished stuffing and sewing them shut. And so here, they are… pillows for a hard heart.

I can’t believe I actually put time into not just sending, but actually MAKING gifts for someone who probably wishes I was dead.

She has changed, they have changed, well, SOMETHING has changed. I have no idea what, because I’m not good enough for either aparent to actually communicate with me.

But I am not going to change…. No matter how they choose to treat/ignore me.
I will try to be consistent. I will NOT give them any opportunity to prove how horrible of a person I am.
Riiiiggghht, I was so horrible I sent handmade gifts. THAT is definitely what horrible people do!

I wish I could have seen her face the year she opened the box and found Fuzzie inside.

Did he make her at least smile? Even just a teensy weensy bit? Did it warm her heart, even a tiny spark? Sigh... Oh, well. I guess now she’ll have soft pillows to compliment her hard heart?

Friday, November 21, 2008

logic without a heartbeat

Today is one of those days that I’m just in turmoil inside.  
People who haven’t lost a child have NO Clue what our lives become. 

 I have two nephews who have been missing for 10 years. And twice this month when visiting friends, they asked how my sister is doing. And I am just totally floored by how insensitive and cold hearted their replies are. 

 To the one friend I said my sister is doing okay considering. My girlfriend said what do you mean? This girlfriend has always known about my missing nephews. I tried to express that although my sister is doing ok in general, she is still searching for her two lost boys and that is a hard place to be. 

 I’m trying to find the words of how I felt when my girlfriend replied. I distinctly remember my bodily reacting as if someone had powerfully thrust a dull dagger into my chest. My shoulders pulled around me as I recoiled from the impact of the blow. The air was knocked out of me. I was angry and indignant as her words burned into me. “She needs to understand that they aren’t little boys anymore….and she needs to realize that they might not want to ever see her... – blah blah blah blah … get over it..” 

 What a cold-hearted, judgmental, insensitive –itch. I thought to myself. What the heck would YOU know what it’s like? You talk to your son on the phone every day, right? Often it’s several times a day. How can you spout out words of advice of how my sister should go on and just put it all behind her. How would YOU feel if the shoe were on the other foot and you didn’t even know what your son looked like? If his biological father moved him from family member to family member to family member – between several states and back again – and YOU were blocked from him? Then if you were to call up a family member that you think had your son, and they hung up on you. Or when you call and you can hear children’s voices in the background but you’re told your son isn’t there. To not know – to honestly NOT KNOW where you son was or what was happening with him. Tell me how you think YOU would feel? WRONG!!! 
You’re absolutely wrong!!! YOU have NO CLUE how that would feel! How could you? How could you possibly know the feelings of helplessness, the feelings of anger, the feelings of being betrayed, the feelings of GRIEF sadness and loss? How could you? You KNOW where your son is. Even if you tried to imagine don’t forget to think about how deflated and dismissed it would feel with everyone telling you what you SHOULD do – as if you are stupid or as if you aren’t searching hard enough. Don’t forget to feel the pain when people look at you as if you’re undeserving of your own child. Don’t forget to imagine how LONELY it would be to try facing each and every day without someone else to talk to, someone who understands. Not judge, just understand. Imagine how isolated you’d feel that you don’t have someone to go to when you’re crying and have no idea what to do next. Without anyone to sit beside you and just cry with you or give you a hug when you feel like you’d just rather die. You can’t imagine it at all. You can’t imagine the overwhelming pain of surviving just one day without your son – let alone a month, a year, a decade. Don’t stand there and tell me what this poor woman needs to do. I won’t tell her to give up. I won’t tell her to stop loving her boys. I won’t tell her to stop searching. And I won’t tell her that she should not grieve, that she should get on with her life or get over it. You just don’t understand. As long as she breathes, a mother longs for her child. To get over it means we would have to cease breathing, lie down and die.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

more? on Adopt AWARENESS month???

I read on a blog last night that the focus of Adoption Awareness Month is supposed to be about foster kids who need adopted. And they commented about how people talk about it from the POV of domestic infant adoption.
At first I felt silly about my journal post from earlier in the week. I even thought about removing it.
But as I thought about it, I stick to my guns above.... BECAUSE, although the firstmom who made the above statements is correct in the technicality of the gigantic difference between foster adoption and infant adoption ...
the realities are twofold. One - society does not make the distinction. When you say adoption society in general lumps it all together...they don't see a difference. And since foster adoption is obviously a good thing (when presented this month) they come to the conclusion that OBVIOUSLY infant adoption is just as good of a thing.
the other reality is... Two- just what you rainfalls under the prior journal page (about adoption advertisement on tv showing a young girl and her domestic [Hollywood] adoption story.) So reality #2 is that the infant adoption folks/industry are riding on the coattails of this month's heightened awareness about adoption. They are not only are not only gleaning from the increased use of the word adoption in media (see reality#1) - but they are also distracting from those kids who TRULY do need a home.
An article I read last week (gee I wish I could remember where from where, it was not a blog, it was an online news article) about the pattern of international domestic adoption. How adoption industry paints a picture to the American people of the children languishing in orphanages and NEED homes. So Americans start to adopt from those countries -- where the 'NEED' is. Then these countries finally wake up and see that the opposite is happening. When they review the facts, the amount of children languishing in orphanages has not gone down. Instead the number of fresh from the womb infants adopted by foreigners skyrocketed. They also found increased problem of babies being stolen to meet the demand of foreigners to adopt. Those countries found that when they shut out foreign adoption agencies - that suddenly the # of infants who needed 'homes' disappeared.
Wake up AMERICA!!!!!! Infant Adoption is ALL BASED ON SUPPLY AND DEMAND!!! I don't care if it's domestic or international adoption. Americans have this unrealistic image of infants laying around in ditches - and so they want to rescue them.
That is NOT the reality! Women are talked, pressured, coerced, brainwashed out of keeping their babies - so someone else can buy them! Women's lives are maimed by losing their child. Stop picturing babies needing rescued! It's a false image!!!!!
Instead start to Picture expectant moms who need a hug, a support network, reassurance that she can do it - then offer to stand beside to help her. Help her raise her child into someone who grows up and makes a difference in the world! Then you can be proud that you played a critical part in that miracle!
Then start to visit orphanages and be a big brother or big sister to some of those kids there. Maybe you can't bring them into your home, but you could be their friend. Doesn't every kid deserve a friend? someone who cares?
That is why I will write about domestic infant adoption in November. Because the original intent and focus is gone. Once upon a time, there was a need for kids stuck in orphanages to be adopted into a good home. And adoption may have started out with a good intent. But that intent has been abused, misused, neglected, and discarded.
Arm yourself with knowledge! Research it for yourself!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

November - Adoption AWARENESS Month

Adoption AWARENESS Month! November – should be called Adoption AWARENESS Month! Just like Cancer Awareness, Suicide Awareness, or Leukemia Awareness. We need to be aware of the illness or disease so we can avoid the spread of it. This is how adoption should be discussed in November. Imagine the reaction from society if next year we call October Breast Cancer Month, but let’s make one tiny change from the Awareness Month from this year. The entire month of October there would be radio announcements, advertisements on TV, and stories in the newspapers about the wonderful gift of Breast Cancer. But next year, rather than discussing the dangers of Breast Cancer and how to Detect or Treat it. Instead, let’s look at it from only one Point of View, profit. Let’s listen to only the financial institutions. Interview all the surgeons who make their living from those with Breast Cancer. Interview the hospitals or other places that provide care for the women who have Breast Cancer and who are struggling to survive just one more day. Discuss only the positive benefits of what Breast Cancer has meant to them. And if they told their stories from just their point of view, people might think Breast Cancer is indeed a wonderful thing. But in order to make that happen, the other voices need to be silenced. There could be absolutely NO stories, comments, or otherwise presenting a ‘downside’ or negative perspective toward Breast Cancer. No one could mention the courageous yet difficult battles and struggles of those women who lost their life to Breast Cancer. It would be deemed totally unacceptable to hear about experiences from their point of view and how it changed their life. There would be no room for their voice, even though they were the ones to endure the pain, the fear, the struggle, and at times the very will to go on. “Preposterous!” You say? “No one would believe that Breast Cancer is a beautiful thing!” “It is totally absurd to even suggest such a thing. Breast Cancer destroys lives, everyone knows that!” [[Yes, Breast Cancer has directly impacted my own family and circle of friends…I take this comparison very seriously and am in NO WAY intending to minimize how serious breast cancer is.]] Preposterous? Absurd? And yet this is how adoption is portrayed in our culture, in our society. The ones who are paying for the advertisements you hear, for the movies you watch, for the billboards and newspaper ads… they are the ones profiting from adoption. They are the ones not only profiting, but they are very active in trying to silence the voice of the women who endure the pain, the fear, the struggle, and at times the very will to go on, the natural mothers. Preposterous it is that society has completely sided with the adoption industry and the message portrayed by their financial institutions – without even taking into consideration the other lives in the balances. Society has just bought the marketing hook, line, and sinker. They do not take the time or make an effort to learn about the scars adoption leaves. The scars of the natural mother who loses her child, as well as the scars that an adopted person bears. There is the other voice that the adoption industry wants to silence. The children they pretend so much that they ‘care about’. While at the same time they intentionally shut it in a filing cabinet the studies that have been done which clearly demonstrate that a child is not a clean slate as the adoption industry claims emphatically in their well-honed marketing presentations. A child spends 9 months in his/her mother’s womb. He/She knows the mother’s voice, and is already bonded to their mother. The child is born and then they are separated from the only person they knew. It is not a simple easy transition that the adoption industry claims. It can be tragic to the child. As if it’s is not enough to separate mother and child when it is unnecessary. Many adoption agencies – and yes, even the religious and international Christian agencies – do everything in their power to keep the adopted person as a sub-class citizen by not allowing them access to their own records. Every adopted person should have a right to know their own heritage, not to mention their own medical history. But you won’t see that talked about during the month of November. And why is that? It is because the message being broadcast is paid for by the ones who profit from adoption, not by the ones living with the aftermath. November, It’s Adoption Awareness Month – arm yourself with knowledge!
Instead of just soaking in what is being marketed, check it out for yourself!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Babies and Bubble Wrap

Last week a friend updated her page online. I got the little notice that she posted a pic with the title “welcome to the world…” I already knew about her family member who was due any day. So, being the near genius that I am, I figured this was a picture of the new baby.
Then I avoided her page.
From what I’ve observed over the years, this is not supposed to be the ‘normal’ reaction to babies – especially for a woman. From what I’ve observed they ogle over babies and say things like “aaawwww how cute!!!” or “oooo, he’s so beautiful! and “can I hold her!?” Ya know, I wish I could react that way. I wish I could celebrate like they do. I wish there was at least a hint of joy inside of me, but there isn’t. I wish I could be excited, but I can’t. It isn’t, it just is not like that for me. Instead my reaction is to pull more bubble wrap from the storage of my mind. Then I wrap several layers of it around my heart. I can not risk exposing myself to the pain of an infant child. What should be ‘normal’ instead hurts so much. It’s like swallowing juice seasoned with the spines from a cactus. I find it hard to swallow, breathe, or even regain my focus. I shut the baby out and pretend he/she is not even there. I’ve trained myself to avoid eye-contact with them. A co-worker handed me his cell-phone & and almost dropped the phone when I realized he was showing me a pic of his new grandson. Just beyond the bubble wrap, I’ve built up a wall of defense to those around me from day to day. This wall of defense has been built by the words I’ve used leading them to the conclusion that I hate children and especially babies. For example, I had a brief conversation with Mary (who is in charge of the nursery at church). I’ve described my ideal nursery system to her. Mommy or Daddy would bring precious little infant to nursery. Put Velcro vest on precious little bundle of goo, and then stick him/her to the wall, where he or she would be safe. A plastic pail would be strategically placed below the baby. Whenever Mommy or Daddy comes back to retrieve their little one, they are totally responsible to clean out of the pail whatever may have fallen from the baby while they were away. I’ve shared this ideal nursery system to many people over the years. And just like Mary, they get the picture I want them to have. Actually, it isn’t the picture of me that’s important, it is end result. The result is that they steer clear of me when it has anything to do with infants. People think I hate babies and kids. Yup, nearly everyone in my life thinks this. Very few people know that it isn’t babies I hate. It isn’t babies I’m trying to avoid. The truth of the matter is … it’s the flashbacks of my own pregnancy, birth experience, and the sharp pain that pierces my heart when I think of my own son. That is what I hate. That is what I am really trying to avoid. My son a day old, 2 days old, 3 days old – and then he’s gone. So when I got that little notice that my friend posted a pic, I initially avoided it. And I can’t really tell you why, but after some time I decided to at least look at the picture. And as I looked at the pic of this little boy, I was shocked at what the camera captured. It seemed as if his one eye was looking right at the camera. He was looking right thru the lens and into my soul. I was entranced and just sat here staring back at him through my computer screen. I was looking him right in the eye. In spite of the fact that it was just a picture, it was a brave move. And I could not look away. Nor can I put into words what was going through my mind, because this was not logic. It was purely emotion and feeling. I felt the intense sadness in my soul of missing my son. It was a heaviness and longing that words can’t really describe. I wanted the moment again. I wanted to have him in my arms. I wanted to look into his eyes and just experience a tender moment with my one and only child. I wanted to re-do it and allow him to look back at me. To just look and not have to hear the horrible words on his ears of the lies telling him why our lives must go separate ways.
Once the ink dries on this, I’ll roll it up and store it in my heart. Then I’ll be sure to carefully again surrounded and encase my heart in the much needed
bubble wrap.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

my best friend

Yup, she's my best friend. 
We're not just friends, We're belly buddies! 
No, we were not pregnant at the same time. No, we did not join weight watchers together. No, we do not go whale watching. We met in January 1995. In the classifieds there was an "Intro to belly dancing" class being held at a nearby mall. I was still living alone, and thought it could be fun. So I went to this intro by myself. At the end the instructor had a sign up sheet for those interested to take regular classes. I was sitting there filling out my info, and the lady next to me was going to sign up too. I had no idea who she was, but I poked her with my pen as she wrote. That is my natural mischievousness seeping out. That was the beginning of a long special friendship. 

There were only 4 gals who signed up from that intro class. We stayed with that instructor for a little while. Although she was a fabulous and beautiful dancer, she stank as a teacher. So the 4 of us moved on to another instructor. "Miraj" was her stage name and she was an outstanding instructor. 

Soon the other girls dropped out of dance, but she and I stuck with for awhile longer. Then she got busier and busier and I was the only one who continued dancing, but we have stayed friends through the years. 

Everyone needs a crazy friend like her. She's energetic and bubbly. She has taught me how to be more trusting and generous. And she's always been there for me. 

Before my wedding in 1996, I was fed up with my employers and was looking for another job. They found out and fired me. So I went to my girlfriend's house that Friday night. We sat out in the hot tub and we celebrated. I don't drink often or very much, but that night I enjoyed a magnum of verde. And trying to get out of the hot tub was a challenge. I'll never forget my girlfriend and my then-boyfriend practically carrying me to the car and shoving me inside. 

It was a small wedding, but she was there. I ended up with a psycho maid of honor (long story, for another day), who caused all kinds of trouble at our wedding(which we didn't find out till later) and while we were on our honeymoon. When we got back and went to pick up our wedding gifts she stole most of them, she had eaten our anniversary cake, and smashed our crystal toasting glasses and porcelain cake topper. So I went bawling to my girlfriend.

October 2001, my Grammy was in the hospital. She had been there about a week or so. I was going to visit her every night after work and staying as long as I possibly could. One afternoon when I arrived one of the Dr's wanted to talk to me, in another room. I was stunned as I was hearing him say that my Grandma was already starting to die. There was nothing they could do, except make her comfortable. My heart raced, and my mind was reeling from the shock. I thought they'd be able to make her better and I'd still have her for a few more years - not a few days or weeks. 

I will never forget that day, that feeling. I called my girlfriend from the hospital. Right away she could tell something was wrong. She was in the middle of canning, but she came over to the hospital, just to be there with me. Casual friends don't do that sort of thing. She is my best friend, and I don't know what I would do without her. 

Here's my problem. 
Although she knows about my son I lost to adoption, she doesn't understand how I feel. Whenever I do try to talk to her about it, she cuts me off with all the hurtful things we Natural Moms hear out here, like "You did the right thing." I know she means well, but I wish I could get her to just listen to me. Without interrupting. To open her mind up to consider that maybe adoption is not what she's always thought it is. 

She doesn't know this, but that first day we met, it was just months after I lost my son to adoption. She's my best friend, and yet she doesn't really know this part of me. She doesn't know that I've spent the past three months sleeping through depression. She's so energetic and bubbly, that it's easy to smile and laugh when I'm with her. And yet I don't think she realizes there is this dark spot in my soul. 

And part of me doesn't want to burden her with it. Because then, what's she going to do with it? Life is hard, NO ONE needs more sad news or to have to listen to someone whining about their problems. And so tomorrow night after work we're supposed to get together. We haven't decided yet what we want to do. Go for a movie, or just hang out and talk. I know what I want to do this time. I'd like to just sit by the fire (or in the hot tub) and tell her that I want her to just listen. 

it is soooo easy to sit here on the computer and type away - hiding behind this computer screen. 

I don't know if I could do it face to face...even if it is my very best friend.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

2nd Hand Lions, the movie

I watched the movie when it came out (I believe in 2003), on the big screen. I remembered it being funny. I remembered the scene of the used lion they bought. But there was one other scene where his words were etched in my brain. When I saw the movie on sale this summer, I bought it. I put it in the shoebox of stuff for my son. Both my best friend and my husband know of this box. It contains a video of pics of my Grandam (whom I wrote about in a separate blog), and a card that I want to send when the day is right, and the journal. It is a journal of letters I've written to him over the years. This box is to go to my son someday...and If I cannot deliver it myself, my husband and best friend have vowed to give it to him for me. Months ago I bought this movie and put it in the box. Tonight I got the movie out of the box, and watched it again. And tonight you get the "Two for One Special". A blog containing both Cheerio's current world, and Cheerio's world, the day after I saw the movie almost 5 years ago (copied from my handwritten journal to my son). Cheerio's world today. The key part of the movie that has burned in my brain all these years (having seen it only once) was near the end of the movie. The boy jumps out of the car and is running away from his mother. She goes after him. And he gently says to her "do something for me" [for once was implied]. The 'something' he was referring to was for her to let him go.... for them to part ways. Let him go back to his crazy uncles, because that is what was best for him. And that is what I believed I was doing when I made an adoption plan. At the time before he was born I was so afraid that history would repeat itself, and that I would only mess up a child. I honestly and truly believed that for someone else to parent him would be better. "No child would want me as a mother." I can't tell you how many times I've said this out loud, but most often it was that voice inside my head. And I believed it. I believed this without any doubt or question until just recently. So for the first 13 years of my son's life - I pictured it 'best' for us to part ways. And for him to be raised by someone else as being better for him. When I watched the movie tonight, I wondered why in the world do I want him to see this movie? The mother ... that is not me. That is not me at all. And maybe that is what I want him to understand. Maybe I got the movie for him, so that journal page to him would make more sense. Here is what I wrote 11/9/03... Dearest ---. We went to see '2nd Hand Lions' on the big screen. [Hubby] likes to watch movies on the big screen, rather than to rent it. Except for all the swearing, it was a good movie. It made me think of you a lot. I hear that adopted children have to deal with 'abandonment issues.' And I hope that you don't feel like I abandoned you? I tried to select a couple that would be great parents. And I've always kept in touch. To me, I could understand feeling abandoned if I had dropped you off on some one's doorstep. Or like in this movie - where Walter was dropped off at his 2 uncle's house, unannounced. And his mother did not give him any way to contact her. She wrote him letters, but they were lies. I cried thru that part of the movie. I don't believe I did that to you. I hope you don't feel like that is what I did to you. If you have struggled with feeling abandoned - I am sorry. I did not want that to happen. I've kept in touch - not only because I love you, but also because I never wanted you to think that I did not love you. There was another part of the movie I cried thru. It was when the mother did come to take the boy back with her. ((I don't think it is right to say that I am like her. I did not make the decision to release you - out of hopes for selfish gain. Nor did I walk away with dry eyes. In this move the mother was making one bad decision after another. And she lied to her boy his whole life.)) anyway... The boy does not want to go 'home' with her because he saw he would be in a bad situation - and she did not care about that, only about herself. Walter says to her, with tears in his eyes - "Make a decision .... what is best for me ..." Although the situations are not at all the same, I hope that you see (someday) that the reason you are adopted - is that I made the decision, knowing it was best for you. It was very far from being easy. It was the most difficult thing I have ever done. But when I get pictures of you smiling - that makes it worth my hurt. To see you happy - loved - taken care of - & with your family! I Love You !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *** Back to Cheerio's world today. Wow, I am not at all the same person, sums it up! I am saddened to realize that many people had the power to help me become a good mom. But they used their power to separate our family instead. The adoption fork in my journey did not have to happen. I don't have the energy to get angry right now, but there are times that I feel so very angry that the 'christian' adoption agency took such anti-biblical steps in the so called 'counseling' when I was pregnant. (adoption from the modern christain distortion is another blog on another day.) People who are not in my moccasins think I should not be angry over "something that happened so long ago." Doesn't that imply that I can/should be angry over something that happened recently. If yes, than that is my point. The counseling did not affect me only 14 years ago. But it affected me every day since then. It has affected my husband. It has directly affected that fact that our family consists of a husband, wife, and two cats. Before my son was born I believed that "no child would want me / no child deserves me as a mother." After my son was born, and I gave him away (like a fool) it was daily proof that I would be a horrible mother because Good Mothers do not give their babies away. If I could not be a good mom to one child, then it would seem to reason that I could not be good to any others. This was my perception of myself, my worth, my grotesque inability to be a mom -- ever. I walked away from this blog and came back to summarize my point, especially since this movie was not really about adoption. I am not anti-adoption. There actually are times where adoption may be the better situation for a child. However, that is rarely the case and adoption is an over used and abused (by the professionals) option. I think this movie portrays the stereotypes that people have about natural moms - that "they don't deserve" their own child. And again, this may be true in some cases, but is very very rare. Most of the natural mother's I've met do NOT match this image. Included in those who do not match the image, I am among them. .