The Pain of a Mother who choses Adption  

Thursday, October 16, 2008

I recently responded to a question on Y/A that in turn started a back and forth email session between myself and this young mother who recently surendered her son. It has only been a few weeks and she is doing the all too familiar flip flop back and forth between changing her mind and letting the adoption continue.

As many things that have changed, evolved, progressed in adoption one thing has remained exactly the same. The pain a mother feels after letting a child go. Her words are my words all over again. Her pain has resurrected my own. I ache for her, I cry for her, I feel that empty pit in my stomach and in my arms, my empty arms. I remember through her, the sleepless nights, the prayers just to let me die in order to stop the hurt. Disfocused, disheveled inside, putting a smile on my face every day so the world will not know what a fool I feel like. That it didn't bother me to do what I did, see I'm fine, as I bite the inside of my mouth to keep me from bursting into tears.

Why is it women who have not been there can not see through the words of women who have that this is painful. This is more than painful, it's humiliating, frightening, depressing, and so much more that words can describe. Maybe that's the problem I can't find the right words to get across to them that there is more to it, so much more to it than just signing papers and walking away.

Had anyone told me how much this was going to hurt and for how long would I have listened? Would I have changed my mind? Would this young lady have listened? Would anyone have been able to describe to her in words what it feels like to do what we did? Probably not. Especially when you have so many others clammoring in your ear about how easy it's going to be. How much better it's going to be. How wonderful your going to feel about making someone else soooo happy. She feels stupid, tricked, lied to. All the things I felt but would never admit.

I felt tricked for a different reason. Now a days you can't help but know that adoption costs a lot of money. Believe it or not I didn't know that. I didn't know people paid money for babies let alone more money for healthy babies. When I was told that I almost went insane. A woman asked me if my child had all her fingers and toes, limbs,etc... and was excited because she would go for a good price. I remember that day like no other. It changed everything for me.

I still stand behind my decision of adoption being the better choice for my daughter, just like this young lady stands behind hers, most days. But to know what someone is headed for and not be able to explain it to them in words adequate enough to understand is frustrating. All I can do is be there and try to help them pick up the pieces of their shattered life. Sit with them without words having to be exchanged because words fail to accurately describe. Let them know that someone stands next to them and completely understands. Accept them into the club no one wants to join. Help them work on themselves so that their sacrifice is not in vain. Get them to that next level, help them through that one day that seems to never end.

I have heard people talk about saving that one child through international adoption. In a sense I can relate. I want to save that one mother who is in pain beyond words. I want to get her to that next class, get her to work the next day, get her out of bed and in the shower. I want to keep her from that early morning drink, that next dose of make it go away pills. I want to hold her hand through the next 18 years only to realize that the real wait has just begun.

I have always said that I do not belong to the sisterhood. Meaning I don't automatically stick up for women just because they are women. Especially when it comes to things they do to men. I am more ashamed to belong to the species most of the time. But this is a sisterhood I feel I belong to. This one I can relate to. This one I can't turn my back on.

My young friend, if you are reading, I want you to know you have found a sister. One that will hold your hand from far away and help you through all the initiations of this club you now belong. I will drag you out of bed, get you in the shower, send you off to class or to work on time. I will be there when you get home and can't hold back the tears. I will listen when others have had enough and feel you should move on, because I remember, and I had those who were there for me.

When you are strong, and I assure you that day will come, maybe you can be there for another who has made the same choice we made. Maybe you can find the words that seem to escape me. Maybe together we can find a way for others to get through the one thing that has not changed in my 35 years. The Pain of a Mother who choses adoption.

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