Assembling Self

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

It's A Matter Of Rights!

“There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest.” ~Elie Wiesel

I'll never forget one of the most memorable days in my life.  The day I received, at age 39, the non-id handwritten letter from my biological mother via the adoption court.  I finally after 39 years of wondering, waiting, and searching, found out who I was in part, where some of my physical traits came from, my likes, dislikes, tendencies, and personality traits.  It has totally changed the way I see myself, how I feel about myself, and how I see myself fit into the world.  Everyone deserves that right!

I have been angry that I did not fit in where I was placed at adoption, and the fact that both of my biological parents refuse to release their identities.  But, life is not fair I learned that long ago.  Adoption is so far from fair it is downright dysfunctional, corrupt, and fraudulent in how it functions.  The system of adoption steals basic human rights from one group of people without a voice and hands control of them (sells is more like it) over to another group.  THIS is not unfairness it is blatant preventable discrimination.  It's not about reunions it's about RIGHTS!

I know I can't change the past I can only change the future.  I know all too well anger can eat you alive and take your life from you without you even realizing it.  I know that I can't stand the thought of other adoptees struggling for the truth and being treated like second class citizens.  So, I will do what I can to help do that for others.  I will take anyone along with me that wants to go.

I'd like to brag a little now.  There are parts of my life that I am not proud of and choices I made due to circumstances I did not understand nor what to do about.  When I began to understand what did happen to me I grew angry, and the more I learned about the adoption industry the angrier I grew.  Now, I CAN do something about it and adoption reform and education have been a large part of my life for thirteen years now.  Below are some adoption protest pictures from one of the many events I've had the privilege in being involved with.  These photos are from 2008.   My son came along and held a sign too he's the cute blonde guy, and the handsome one in the black jacket is my husband who was adopted at birth by his stepfather, so both of them have been affected by adoption too.

Above I am educating someone who approached with questions about why we were there and what we were doing.  We all got to speak to many people and hand out informational fliers.  Many people driving by stopped their cars and got out to ask questions about searching and or to tell their adoption related stories.

Since I began this journey in adoption reform so much has been accomplished.  It may seem painstakingly slow to many, but when I joined up only Oregon had been fully opened to adoptees for OBC access.  Now, thanks to the persistent effort and work of too many people to count, other states who have reopened access to OBC's for adoptees.  We are far from done.  And I'll end with one of my favorite quotes. 

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." ~Margaret Mead

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Who Am I?

Who Am I?

I am an enigma tangled up in a mystery.
I am the lost puzzle piece swept under the rug.
I am a missing link in a chain of life.
I am a tumbleweed blown in the wind calling home wherever the breeze takes me.
I have no roots.
I am a chameleon changing colors to blend into my surroundings.
Who am I?
I am an adoptee.

As a child I was loud, hyperactive, talkative, emotional, demonstrative, and extroverted (I still am).  I was adopted into a family the exact opposite.  I spent decades trying to fit into a mold that I was not made to fit.  I was chastised, criticized, ridiculed, judged, and labeled because I was so very different.  Instead of celebrating and honing the gifts of heredity and biological I had inherited, I grew up hating myself and who I was. 

Something had to be wrong if a family gave me away, and I didn't fit into the "new" one where I was placed.  I learned very young to pretend to be someone else, I was good at it to.  Mostly because I didn't know "who" I really was.  I spent years and decades not believing in myself and searching for my biological parents and my true identity.  I lived, lost.

Even for adoptees who have access to knowledge about their biological families are still separated from them on a daily basis.  This can cause gaps and holes in the fabric of our young souls that leave us feeling not good enough or incomplete for the rest of our lives.  Much of the time our questions or fears go unanswered, ignored, or overlooked as just simple curiousity.  It is far from just that. 

So many people in life are running away from themselves.  Adoptees are doing their best to run towards themselves and whatever tidbits of truth they can get about who they are.  But, there are many who think we don't deserve the same rights as others, or that we should just be thankful...period.  We run into brick walls, into unknowns, as there is no map or compass to find these pieces from another time.  We lose time, we lose money, and we lose what other non-adopted persons take for granted everyday.  It can be very lonely and confusing being an adoptee.

I will always wonder who or what I could have become had I have grown up knowing that my genes and nature were not wrong, they were just different.  How terribly sad and preventable.  Lies and secrecy are not the way to raise children or create families.  So, I'll continue to work, as many of us will, for the rights of adoptees to know these valuable and life altering truths about themselves.

It's terrifying to see someone inside of whom a vital spring seems to have been broken.  It's particularly terrifying to see him in your mirror.  ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966

Thursday, November 24, 2011

To My Adoptee Friends on Thanksgiving

Many years ago I used to spend the Holidays alone, in silence, and many times it was by choice.  I didn't have to pretend, or hide my pain, or be something I was not.  I found pretending to be far more exhausting than being alone.  My children have always had their father's family to go to and enjoy extended family they didn't get from me.  I encourage that because I know all too well the importance of family, and wouldn't want to deny them that, or for them to ever feel the magnitude of that kind of loss..

There are many adoptees who are ostracized from their adoptive families.  There are many adoptees who are rejected by their biological families, or can not locate them, or they passed away either before or after being found.   There are more adoptees than I care to count, that have neither family in their life.  This is such an over-whelming tragedy for an adoptee who did nothing other than be born.  It is difficult to comprehend, wrap your mind around, and deal with.  But, life can be cruel, and adoption can be a life long sentence without parole.

This time of year can be horribly painful and definitely depressing for adoptees who continually long for acceptance in either of their families.  For me, I have found solace in the adoption community.  They have been there in good times, and in bad times, through search, denial of contact, refusal of further communication, and during times of the year that are tough for us such as Birthdays and Holidays.

It's hard for those not adopted to understand this inner turmoil we experience.  It isn't surprising then that adoptees band together and support one another as they face and endure this time of year.  It's the greatest gift I've ever been given.  So, I'll end with a piece I tweaked from one of my favorite movies "Bruce Almighty"because it really does almost say it all for me.  To adoptees who are working for reform and education in adoption you ROCK.  To adoptees who are new and struggling I say HANG IN THERE!  We need as many of us as we can working together towards the right for all adoptees in this country to have their OBCs!!!  I am thankful for all of you today, and always.

"I have to say, I am so proud to be a part of our adoptee community, and I think, in a lot of ways a great community is like a great recipe.  You take some hardworking citizens, some caregivers, maybe a few nuts.   All sprinkled with the love and support of our good people.  Ultimately that makes the adoptee community one sweet place to be."

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Incomplete Adoptees

Trying to figure out who you are growing up is hard enough.  Growing up adopted makes it extremely difficult.  Trying to get information about your biological family AFTER you are grown up as an adoptee can be virtually impossible, or very expensive, or both.  Now, imagine growing up trying to figure out where you fit in and your place in the world when your life is missing the basic information others have and yours instead is based on silence and secrecy.

Children look to their parents faces as mirror images of theirs.  Even if a child does not resemble their parents I can assure you that somewhere in the family be it sibling, or cousin, or grandparent, there is someone they are related to they resemble.  Adoptees are raised away from genetics and biology and therefor, are at huge disadvantage to have the chance to create a healthy and solid foundations to expand upon into adulthood.  I'll compare it to feeling like sliced swiss cheese compared to other people's full wheel of cheddar.  Maybe that's a poor analogy, but I'll always stay true to my Wisconsin upbringing. :)

Adoption erases our biological foundation and transplants us into another family.  Not only are the physical resemblances lacking between adoptees and adoptive parents but so are likes, dislikes, and habits.  I have born witness to numerous adoptees in reunion who found out their biological relatives shared many similar traits such as chain smoking, habitual nail biting, gesturing dramatically with their hands when they speak, the love of either art, music, dance, even down to having the exact same professions and or degrees.  It goes beyond coincidence.  It is heredity plain and simple.

Some adoptees such as myself are adopted into families who are the polar opposites of them.  So, not just physicality differs but personal tendencies, wants, needs, and desires do as well.  You begin to believe that everything about you is wrong.  It has to be for your own parents to give you up to someone else.  And, as an adoptee you do your best to blend in, conform, and fit in.  We find ourselves caught between two worlds.  One of reality that much of the time doesn't make sense to us, and one of fantasy where we try and make sense, or to cope.

We may look o.k. on the outside and you'd probably never know we were any different from anyone else.  Internally though, we are often struggling while analyzing everything and everyone around us, or living in a fog of denial.  Often times I have felt like a chameleon in life.  Changing to fit my surroundings be it with family, work, or socially.  I know people will say "Well, I feel that way too".  And if you do, then I can guarantee being adopted we feel that ten fold...x 10.

"I wish, naturally to prevent the possibility that someone may write an accidental, superficial, incomplete and perhaps untrue picture of me."  ~Conrad Veidt

And that's what adoption does. It allows others to alter and recreate "our" life stories  from the very beginning be it by the industry, or agencies and social workers, or adoptive parents, or society.  It makes adoptees adhere and abide to laws that only apply to them.  Only in adoption are genetics white washed as unimportant.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Adoption is Relentless

Neither injured arm, or computer malfunction, or deep emotionally draining adoption issues can keep a true adoptee activist, reformer, and blogger away for long.  I think activism and education in some capacity must run in my veins.  I was born to very conservative, unemotional, and quiet people.  I am....well....NOT.  I'll always wonder, and want to believe, there was a great leader out there righting social and civil injustices and or advocate for positive change in the world somewhere in my family lineage.  And I will always question if I will ever get said information...ever.

I watch from the outside into the lives of my friends and others and their interactions with their family members.  As dysfunctional as they believe they are, and yes some of them are, adoption throws a wrench into family situations that can add to any dysfunction that already exists.  Sometimes, it even multiplies it.

No matter how hard adoptees can try adoption plays into almost aspect of our lives.  What we think about ourselves, how we see ourselves, how we fit into our families and then the rest of the world or better yet how we don't.  And just as important, how we react to all of it.

There are triggers that exist for adoptees at certain days and times of the year that for most people are happy and joyous occasions.  Birthdays are celebrations but for adoptees just another day to ponder your navel and wonder who your biological mother is, or where she is at, or why she gave you up.  Holiday and family gatherings are filled with traditions, recipes, stories, and history all something adoptees long to know, or be a part of in their biological families even if just to celebrate them outside of their adopted family gatherings.

I keep getting told to make my own Holiday traditions.  Well, that's easy to say if you already KNOW yours and it was not taken away from you.  And yes, I do reject the Scrooge and Grinchish practices I grew up with in the "unjoyous" season my Amother seemed to loathe, and have created some of my own.  There is just so much missing, so many parts and portions unknown, so much to continue to grieve and question.

Although I did receive a hand written eight page non-identifying letter from my biological mother twelve years ago explaining so much and answering some of my questions, there are still hundreds left to ask.  I still long to know what dishes, decorations, music, and religion or spirituality my biological family practices and cherishes each year.  I wonder if my natural parents think of me when sitting down to holiday meals, or on Mother's or Father's Day they realize a part of the family is absent, or want to wish my Happy Birthday.  I wonder if that will ever change.  I always will.


Relentless questions drive my soul.
How many hours have the wondering stole.
Like pounding waves that wear away the strongest rock day after day.
My weary bones nearly give in and let the persistent pounding win.
But there are those who lend me power where there is no sun in my darkest hour.
When the doubt hounds daily at my door and I feel I can't take anymore.
They whisper the truth into my ears with hope and love resolve my fears.
I hold the goal within my sight and remember the reasons I continue to fight.
To find what I lost so long ago the place from where those questions grow.
How many hours have been lost in days and years what was the cost?
The time I've spent in somber thought and sorrowful reflection perplexed about.
What I'm to do with all I feel, when unseen bonds remain so real.
I had a taste of reality when fractions of truth I was allowed to see.
Fate had brought us back together, the soul deep ties could not be severed.
To know the tragic parting was not in the end to be forgot.
And that somehow soon they'll find a way to share with me those missing days.
I'll wait until the time I'll know.
The place from where these questions grow.

Friday, November 11, 2011

TOUGH Adoptees!

It's tough to reveal one's life adopted for open display, and it's tougher putting yourself out there into an activist role in effort to faciliate change within the system.  People are going to judge you, and label you, and offend you with their uneducated opinions.  It comes with the territory.  So does emotional and physical exhaustion and wanting at many points to quit along the way.  So today for NAAM and NaBloPoMo (and you know your an adoptee if you know what those mean) I'm going to relay some of what adoptees encounter telling their stories, and being involved in adoption reform.

Adoption has such a wonderful public image. One of creating love filled forever families and giving children without homes a lasting place to grow up in the care of those who desperately want them.  The PR for adoption has been done well for a very long time, mostly because the groups and people doing it are those who profit from it.  And believe me when I say, there has been plenty of money to promote adoption.  What they don't want you to hear besides their profit margins is the harsh reality adoption is based on.  The fact is a child has lost its family of origin.  And, the fact when adoptees grow up they may or may not have any recourse, or right, to information about their biological family or to obtain their original birth certificate.  We won't go into open adoption, or that being the answer to issues in adoption, at this point.   I will in a later blog because I have plenty to say about it and the problems with it.

After thirteen years doing what I could when I could in adoption reform I've pretty much heard and seen it all.  I don't get startled or overly angry about much.  I get miffed and my feathers ruffled that's not unusual.  I get frustrated at closed minds and prejudiced notions based on inaccurate information, or someone who has an uncle whose cousin has a friend who is an adoptee and they are just "fine".  Once again, it comes with being out there in the trenches breaking down barriers of secrets, lies, and corruption, and attempting to replace them with truth, honesty, and what is RIGHT.

So out there in the public spotlight and eye adoptees and adoption reformers have to endure insults, being scoffed at, and disbelieved.  I've been called names, called crazy, and a hypochondriac for "imagining" the health issues I inherited even though half the medical information from biological family is filled with numerous hereditary diseases, and who knows what is in the other half.  But today, for the very first time I heard that " Adoptees are not normal thinking people."

And the anger ensued, my stomach rolled over, and I felt nauseous.  Then as I cooled down I began to think, and finally to chuckle.  And this was the image that came to mind.

'Cause if you're going to be able to deal with working in the world of adoption reform you're going to have to bring your sense of humor and a BIG thick skin.  I began to imagine a skit like the one in "Young Frankenstein" where this creature/adoptee is brought back to life from their previous one by Dr. Frankenstein aka NCFA/adoption agencies.  But, adoptees/monsters were given abnormal brains.  And, that's pretty much what people think of all unhappy adoptees who are not thankful for the people who took them in, or the fact that someone wanted them, or they were not aborted, or left in a dumpster to die, or insert any adoption myth people buy into.  I mean look at all the famous adopted serial killers like Son of Sam David Berkowitz, Bianchi-Bono The Hillside Strangler, and Ted Bundy.   We must be abnormal!

No wonder so many adoptees go back into hiding after being so harshly judged by so many people with so many misconceptions and beliefs about them and their life being adopted.   No wonder there are private support groups for hundreds of adoptees searching and struggling who share behind closed doors and away from the scrutiny of others.  I've known adoptees who won't speak about adoption except to other adoptees and adoptees who have bowed out of adoption reform and activism due to this and it's sad.  Adoption is such a misunderstood subject and we are here to educate and change that.  I have seen so much progress in the last thirteen years, perhaps slow progress, but it is progress none the less.  The admiration and respect I have for adoptees who put their lives, experiences, and emotions out there for others to see is immeasurable.

Sometimes all I can do is what I can do from my computer at home.  When I feel like it's not enough and I'm not making a dent I think of the story of "The Tortoise and the Hare".  We all get burn out at points in time and have to bow out temporarily until we can rest and refuel.  But, we'll keep plugging away at it.  We'll endure the horrific accusations, the taunting insinuations, and the false allegations, as we carry OUR torch of truths to the finish line.

I try to encourage and support adoptees who are new to adoption search, issues, and adoption reformers and lend what  knowledge and experience I have, just as I glean and learn from those wiser and more seasoned than I am.  It's SUCH an outstanding great group of people.  And we are TOUGH!  Abnormal, or not . :)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Yes, I speak fluent Adoptee

Since I was sixteen years old I've been reading books like "I'm OK, You're OK" by Thomas A Harris MD, and trying to figure out what happened to me because of my childhood and adoption.  This is not a rant on my adoptive parents at all, this is an explanation of what many adoptees go through trying to understand adoption and our place in it, our family(s), and in the world.

We are given no manual, no book, no road maps, and much of the time, no explanation about adoption.  It simply isn't discussed.  Or we quickly learn it is a subject that is not open to be talked about, or brought up.  Worse yet, we can be scolded and called ungrateful and not thankful for being adopted simply because we question it.  And, even in open adoption situations or for adoptive parents who communicate to their adopted children about their circumstances and information in reality they don't know what adopted children feel, because they aren't adoptees.  In essence, we are the only ones who can truly get what being adopted means.

I knew I was damaged goods at a very young age.  I also eventually realized, I was probably the only one who could help myself climb out of it.  There were no other adopted children around me (my adoptive brother and I never spoke of it and now as an adult he has no desire to) and although I knew our family was very very dysfunctional, I also knew that it was different than other families because of adoption.  And, in reality, back in the day (I show my age here truly) there was no Oprah, or Dr. Phil, or Dr. Drew.  And, no one talked about what went on behind closed doors with the exception perhaps some neighborhood and community gossip.

I remember studying child psych when I went back to school in my late '30's and reading in my Adolescent Child Psych book: "Orphaned, abandoned, neglected and adopted children can all have the same issues with attachment disorder, abandonment and rejection issues".  There it was in black and white in print in a college textbook.  It was an AHA moment for me.  I also was lucky enough at the same time to have an adoptive mother as a marriage counselor who was well versed in adoption issues and encouraged my search efforts and need, and also RIGHT, to know.  For the first time someone had validated my feelings about being adopted and the impact it had on me.

I stepped into the computer age in '97 and found support groups and went on to attend adoption workshops, conferences, and seminars. In the last thirteen years I have become a different person.  I owe so much to other adoptees who walked the path before me and said "Go here and do this", and I did, and I am so very overwhelmingly thankful for their help (UNDERSTATEMENT).  Adoption issues are not just "in the past" they are here and now and alive and functioning for many adoptees each and every day.  Adoption is not a one time transaction it is a lifetime event.  I now know my buttons and triggers that are tied to the past and adoption.  I recognize them and deal with them in healthy ways or as best as I can.

I don't think I know it all.  I am still figuring things out.  Mostly though, I don't want to see any other adoptees have to spend enormous amounts of time, money, or energy groping in the dark, grasping for hope, and struggling to find their way in the world adopted.  I never deal in absolutes either and respect adoptees who say they never think about adoption and it doesn't affect them at all.  And, although I  have a difficult time believing it, I won't dismiss their feelings and experiences or try and tell them otherwise.  I know all too well what that feels like.

I have my path as many adoptees have but there are some of those shoes adoptees wear I have never worn, nor will I ever.  I am however, wise enough to learn from them.  I advise the non-adopted to do that as well.  If you know an adoptee be silent and just listen if they bring up adoption.  If you love an adoptee please open your heart and mind and take the time and effort to comprehend what they are trying to relay to you.  It may not seem important to you, you may not understand all of it, but I can guarantee you the effort you make to hear them without judgment will mean more to them than you will ever know.  And thanks, for listening.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Adoption - Truth Telling

I wish this month for people to try to better understand what adoptees go through in life adopted.  I hope for those of us adoptees blogging we can reach those who have only heard and understood the voice of the adoption industry and believe adoptees with "bad" experiences are simply anomalies in adoption.  I pray for a change in the system of adoption policy, procedure, and law to openness and honesty.

What I would LOVE to happen is for everyone to STOP telling adoptees how to think, feel, and live.  It's hard enough to take from the world who has no idea or conception of what adoption really is, does, and the ways it continues to affect us in our lives.  We as adoptees not only have to spend enormous amounts of time and energy making sure everyone around us is "ok" with our reactions to adoption, but we are expected to make sure what we say and how we feel makes strangers "ok" too.  Who we really are as adoptees gets lost beneath the unrealistic expectations, preconceived notions, and myths thrown out there by those who need to keep control of the system of adoption.

This week once again, a first mom gave us adoptees a lecture on terminology.  We were not talking about anything other then OUR own experiences about OUR own personal situations.  Many of us adoptees have been treated poorly and unfairly by many persons biological and adoptive in life.  We have been silenced, disbelieved, and dismissed for telling OUR own truths.

I am who I am because of adoption.  It isn't something I can remove or have taken out.  I will no longer deny it or spend my life hiding behind masks.  When I talk of my adoptive and biological family I am speaking of MY experience and sometimes yes, the experiences of those I know to show it's did not just happen to me.  But, that's the problem with adoption it has always been about agencies, and lawyers, and religious institutions, and adoptive parents, and biological parents first and foremost.

Adopted children have had little say, little voice, and very very little support.  Those times are over.  Adopted children have grown up into adopted adults who are speaking out and will not sit down and take what is dictated to us by others any longer.  Is the truth about adoption hard for people to hear, certainly.  Are the lies, secrets, and falsehoods harder to live, ABSOLUTELY!  Allow adoptees to tell you the truth about adoption and help grant them the same rights every other citizen has.

"I never gave them hell.  I just told the truth and they thought it was hell." -- H. Truman 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

An Adoptee's Divided Heart

I laughed out loud, one of those throw your head back, chuckle and snort kinda laughs, when I saw this graphic above.  It's SOOOOO me.  And, part of life is discovering who we really are.  Celebrating the parts we are proud of, and hiding the parts we are not so proud of, and laughing about them too.   And sometimes, denying the really really scary parts we don't know what to do with.  When you are adopted this can become difficult if not impossible when the knowledge of where you came from is withheld from you.  I will always remember getting my non-identifying information stating my birth grandmother was an extremely nervous and anxious person.  And I thought AHA it's NOT a character flaw I inherited it!!!

There are many parts that make up my adopted self.   There is the stronger and more healed version of the “new me” I've become since adoption counseling, workshops, seminars, conferences, and support groups.  There is the “angry me” that comes out of hiding when my feelings and emotions are dismissed or ridiculed, especially by those who buy into the adoption industry propaganda and myths.  There is the “activist me” who comes alive at the first sign I can educate or inform anyone about adoption and adoptee rights.  Lastly, there is the “lost and wounded me” who has been rejected and abandoned and is still at age 52 trying to find her place in the world.  The “little girl” who is never far away and is just below the surface waiting to be triggered by harsh criticism, judgment, ridicule, oh.....and Holidays.

I am many things besides an adoptee.  But it seems that being adopted affects the other parts I am wife, mother, friend, teacher, and writer etc... But I think sometimes being an adoptee there is a portion of you know one ever sees.  A part that we never give away of ourselves that is reserved and held back.   It's self preservation plain and simple.  If I don't fully open myself up to the world then I can never be fully hurt, or rejected, or abandoned...again.

I just have not come to terms that I will never know who my biological family is. Much of that I credit to watching people find and be reunited after decades of search.  A larger part is denial.  In such huge monumental life situations it really can be a great coping tool.  Hopefully someday I can take all the segments of me and combine them into one solid person.  For now, I wait, and I hope, and I write.

I think a lot of my adoption poetry is sappy and syrupy.   But, it is also part of me. The part that is dealing with the trauma of childhood and adoption and the adult I've become because of adoption.  It is probably the closest anyone will ever get to truly knowing who I am as an adoptee, including myself.

Divided Heart

Pieces of me live between what I expose and what's unseen.
Unable to reveal my dread I keep it locked inside instead.
Afraid to show the chasm depth, half-filled with hours that I've wept.
Oceans full of pain I know, and agony I refuse to show.
This shattered soul still hidden well, conceals the terror I have felt.
This fear that I can't bring together the segments that have long been severed.
Until I bridge these separate parts.
I live in this divided heart.

Friday, November 4, 2011

The Powers That Be - Closed Records Adoption

I will never understand the pro-adoption groups and people who promote the system of closed records adoption.  Why is it the truth is important in every other aspect of our lives with the exception of adoption?  People divorce over lies in a marriage, good parents raise their children to be honest, and if you take an oath in court and don't tell the truth it's called perjury.  However, it is widely accepted practice in adoption to keep secrets, withhold facts, and cover up an adoptee's background.

The birth certificate I have is falsified.  It does not contain much reality in it at all.  My "real" authentic birth certificate is sealed by the state.  I am not allowed access to it even with several court petitions.  This is blatant discrimination.  No other citizen of this country is denied their original birth certificates except adoptees.

I wrote this below after my first court petition denial in '99.  It may seem extreme to those who aren't bound by the system of adoption.  Adoption took from me the knowledge of my family of origin.  It took too the truth about my life.  And, it took my ability to know where I came from and to know who I really am.

The Powers That Be

You took away my family.
You took away my home.
You erased away my history and most of it is gone.
What gives to you the right to do this injustice unto me?
How can you be so blinded?
How is it you can't see?
You're stealing from the innocent are you so unaware?
You're playing God with all our lives, did you think we wouldn't care?
Who gave to you authority to decide how we should live?
Who granted you this power?
It was not theirs to give.
You treat us as possessions.
We are not yours to own.
How did you get the notion you can tell me where is home?
Do not dictate to me about how I should live my life.
Or who I can call mother.
Then take away my rights.
The answers to life's questions you say I need not know.
You're asking the impossible the questions only grow.
What it is I'm asking for is for you to understand.
Until I have those answers I can not know who it is I am!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Adoption subtracts and divides

I touched briefly yesterday on the links in life that adoption severs.  My posts during NaBloPoMo and Adoption awareness month will be brief due to my arm injury.  So, I'm going to post another poem and may do so for the remainder of the month, at least until I'm better.

Adoption does not guarantee a child of a good home.  It just offers them a different one.  I fell through the cracks of adoption.  My mother at age 17 wanted me, no one else wanted her to keep so I was relinquished to adoption.  It was not a money issue it was a social stigma issue.  My adoptive parents couldn't bond with me.  I lost out on belonging in two families.  It didn't have to be that way but adoption dictated it did.

Sometimes all the words in the world get lost in translation.  Art can speak volumes.  I hope the poem below does that for those who can't comprehend the darker side of adoption.  This side so many of us live.


They say that one and one makes two but I'm not sure if this is true.
In this case one and one made three explaining how I came to be.
Then three came in between the sum divides them back to one and one.
These equations seem to break all the laws of give and take.
But life not always plays by rules, nor by facts we learned in school.
I know this all so very well and only hope to "show and tell".
When one and one took separate paths that no one needs to "do the math".
To know this story problem's mine.
I'm the remainder left behind.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

National Adoption Awareness Month - I'm all too aware

Being rejected by family is not unusual.  Most families have their problems and issues.  And, it's tough to take.  In adoption the emotions multiply, because many of us are rejected by not one, but two families.  And, several times over at that.  From birth, to adoption, to search, to reunion, it can be confusing, overwhelming, frustrating, and I can go on with adjectives but you get the "picture" as provided above.  Adoption is not the cure all for unplanned pregnancies.  It does not "fix" what is wrong.  It simply changes it.  As adoptees, we need to be heard, and understood, but mostly, we need the truth.

Life's Links

As flower to bee, as leaf to tree, as cloud to sky and rain.
As foot to toe, as face to nose, as person to a name.
Together these like fish to sea forever will belong.
Just as notes an artist wrote, or lyrics to a song.
Like tracks to a train this perpetual chain is what the world's based on.
There's links between each living thing, and dusk that turns to dawn.
A lost key to a lock, a stopped hand on a clock, are vital connections gone.
Like pasts left behind that we need to find in order to carry on.
I hope you know what I'm trying to show, the point I'm attempting to make.
Like a child to its mother, or sister and brother, some bonds aren't meant to break.