Tuesday, July 27, 2010

More Progress

I really can't believe how much has happened in the last 5 months!! 5 MONTHS!! For over 15 years I lived with this suffocating secret. This huge cross I dragged behind me everywhere I went. With every breath I took (or reminded myself to take), I inhaled more shame, more sadness. The thought of telling someone about, well, about me and my story, sent me into a severe panic attack and now...

Yesterday I talked to two of my friends that I literally lived with when I was 15. They actually introduced me and K's dad back in the day and we were like sisters...but then I left and detached from all of them. I couldn't deal with still having them in my life after what happened when K was born...I couldn't tell them or anyone for that matter. So needless to say, until yesterday neither of them knew I had this beautiful daughter. Since finding them on Facebook last year, we'd talk every now and then but I was still a little closed off...duh :) But I love those girls and I wanted to share this with them...so I did! WOW!! I can't believe this is me doing these things...talking, sharing and doing it without severe anxiety?!!?!?! What?? They were so blown away and SO supportive! They told me I was their family and they loved me & wish they could've been there for me. They couldn't believe how gorgeous K is and they are so excited for us!! I never knew how liberating living "your truth" could truly be. It's remarkable & I'm just learning how remarkable it really is.

In the last 5 months...I repeat...5...months, the following has happened: (eh-hem)
  • My daughter wrote to me & we began emailing each other
  • I told my best friend (who happens to be adopted herself!!!)
  • I told my brother (he never knew)
  • I confronted my parents & talked for the first time about my pain
  • I told my In-laws
  • I told her birth dad!!
  • I told friends that I never thought I'd tell
  • I went to Disneyland with HER!!
  • I met her family & her friends!!
  • I don't feel ashamed to be ME..along with a truckload of other emotions I've never felt or allowed myself to feel before...
Progress...pure progress. I'm truly amazed.


Monday, July 26, 2010

Baby Daddy Follow Up!

Okay, so I need to catch you guys up on what's happened since my last post, "Big News", where I talked about K's Birthdad's reaction to, "Surprise, it's a girl!". I think the last thing I said was that he took it well and was supportive, but then sent text messages saying he needed to find her and basically wouldn't rest until he did. Obviously that wasn't going to happen & although I completely understand his need/want to know if she was safe, I would not in any way, shape or form, allow him to disrupt her life. So a few days later he and I spoke again & I knew I needed to explain things a little more. I told him that we didn't need to look for her because she had already written to me & we email each other so I know she is safe, happy & has a beautiful life.

My plan originally was to only tell him that she existed and that I felt he had a right to know, so if she ever wanted to look for him he would be ready. But when he began to insist on finding her and saying crazy shit like he was going to get a lawyer if necessary, I knew I had to do something to ease his mind. Hence me telling him that we email each other. He was relieved and happy to know that she was okay. He is really emotional about it all & even sweet about it, yet I don't trust him enough to tell him that K and I have spent all of this time together. By the things he has said, I feel that if he knew the extent of our relationship, he would feel he had a right to meet her too. He would be pushy about knowing more detailed information & that would just be unacceptable. Not to sound harsh, but he seems to think that the fact he never knew about her gives him some sort of right to know her now. Well, it doesn't! Not at this point in her life anyway. I've tried to explain to him that SHE has to be the one the initiate a relationship with him and that it's completely up to her and to her parents...not up to him! On that note, her parents have told me they don't think she's ready for any communication with him & they'd rather him not know any specific details (last name, where they live, agency info, etc.). I completely respect their decision and I agree. She is still a minor and none of this was supposed to happen until she was 18 anyway, so he will have to just be patient & really, he has no other choice.

I always absorb other peoples feelings and make them my own. I've started doing that with him too! After all of these years of guilt, I finally told him!! I should feel a sense of accomplishment and feel good-no, feel great-about that and I do, yet at times I find myself taking on his feelings of "want". I really need to take care of myself and my emotions for the first time and of course always do the right thing by K & her parents. I would protect them with my life if need be. I need to NOT make myself responsible for the way he feels. I did the right thing in my mind...I told him. He knows. He should be able to rest assured that she knows how to contact him if & when she wants to, and all he can do is wait. I waited for 15 years...I think he can handle this.


Sunday, July 25, 2010

The First Time...

This post will not in any way express the feelings, the emotions, the surreal-yet pure realness, of what happened on June 25th. It was a Friday & it was the first time I met my daughter. Well, second if you count the fact that she grew inside of me, which I have to say is pretty noteworthy, but did I ever see her? Hold her? No. So for the first time on that Friday I met my daughter. I hugged her, held her hand, we smiled at each other, cried together and told one another we loved each other. My life will never be the same. Thank God!! I was ready for something monumental to happen...and so it did.

Okay, you're going to die when I tell you this! So the plan was to pick her up on Saturday. I would pick her up from their hotel, as they were coming to the So Cal town in which I live for a weekend getaway. Just the 3 of them (mom, dad, & K). We would spend the day together and then I would bring her back to the hotel later that night. It was a plan & that whole week I was nervous and excited and freaking OUT! What would it be like? Will it be awkward? Will she like me? Will I say the right things? Will she understand? What will we do? Will I be able to hold it together? Barely, but I did! That plan changed on Wed when I got a text from K asking if I was available Friday too because they would be coming in early and she wanted to spend both days with me!! Available?? YES!!!!!!! Then I had the idea that since I'd be picking her up Friday and seeing her Saturday too, maybe she could just spend the night and we could have a slumber party! I felt comfortable enough with her mom to at least ask. I sent her mom an email...she said yes!! K texted me freaking out with excitement that she could sleep over!! I picked her up on Friday morning and we had two full days together! 

The first time I saw her was indescribable but I'll try...They were waiting outside by the pool area. As I was walking toward them I could see her profile in the distance and it felt like I was dreaming, like an out of body experience (not that I've ever had one but it's what I think that would feel like). I was floating and I could hear my own heartbeat pounding in my ears. Her mom ran out before I got too close and just hugged me and asked if I was okay and if I was ready to meet her. I think I said, "I can't believe this is happening, but I'm ready. I think I'm ready". As I turned the corner, she stood up and smiled at me. It was the most beautiful smile I've ever seen in my entire life. When we hugged, it felt like I was falling into her and she was falling into me. It was the first time I hugged my daughter. It was the first time I saw her smile with my own eyes; the first time she heard me say I loved her. We couldn't stop hugging and we must have both said how much we missed each other a 100 times. We held hands, took pictures and sat down to chat with her parents. They made it so comfortable, so easy. We talked about the weekend & what we would do. We talked about the fact that they use to come to this area for vacations over the years and wondered if we'd ever crossed each other's paths without knowing it. (I live in the same town where K was born...). I don't know where her parents came from, but if there's such a thing as angels walking this earth, they embody everything that one would be.

About a 1/2 hr later, we were off to spend the next two days together! I think for the first few hours we were both in a state of shock and disbelief. I know I was! We came back to my house to hang out & talk and just get to know one another. I wanted to make her feel as comfortable as possible & I tried to contain my overwhelming emotions. We talked about everything. She told me about her friends and her boyfriend & I told her about my life and most importantly, our story. I told her how it came to be that she was given up for adoption and how much I've loved her, how much I've missed her and how thankful I am that she wrote to me when she did. She told me she always loved me and couldn't imagine me not being a part of her life for things like her prom and graduation & she didn't want me to miss out on those things. When she said those words it felt like my heart was going to burst!! She loves me that much?? She didn't want me to miss out on those things?? Oh my God! I couldn't believe my daughter had thought of me in this way. I think I was just always so consumed with pain, fear, sadness & guilt that I never was able to think that she actually loved me as much as I loved her; that she could miss me or did miss me as much as I missed her. It just took my breath away. I don't think I actually breathed those entire two days.

We had a great weekend together! We went to a film festival that was in town later that day (we both love movies), we went out to sushi, we stayed up till 3:00am watching TV, talking and sitting on the couch holding hands. Just sitting with her, holding hands was so magical. There was this energy that I can't put into words. It was a physical & emotional connection unlike anything I ever have and ever will experience. We stared at each other and smiled & laughed in amazement that we look so much alike. We played with each other's hair. I held her before she fell asleep & we told each other how much we loved one another. I made her breakfast the next morning! I made my daughter breakfast!! I stood there scrambling eggs, staring at her sitting at my dining table and just thought, Is this really happening? Am I dreaming? Is she really here? She was here. I wasn't dreaming...this is my (our) new life & it is more beautiful than anything I could have ever dreamed.

Time flew by and before we knew it we had to meet her parents for dinner and we'd be saying goodbye. I knew I'd be a wreck...and I was. I was okay through dinner, which was great and lighthearted...her parents just made us all feel at ease. But after dinner, as we sat outside Starbucks I felt like I was in a bubble. I couldn't see or hear anyone around me. I was just holding her little hand tightly and she was holding mine. My husband did a great job at entertaining her parents as she and I just kept looking at each other and hugging and crying and smiling...it was once again, magical. She and I were completely in our own world. It was emotional. It was heart-wrenching. It was beautiful. It was the second time I had to say goodbye, but this time it wasn't forever, it was until next time. Needless to say, after we finally let go and said I love you's, I got in the car and completely broke down but it was the most amazing emotional roller coaster I've ever been on.

And the next time happened to be two weeks later!!!! We had talked about going to Disneyland together one day since I'd never been there before, which if you live in CA and have never been to Disneyland you stand the risk of being stoned to death. It's unheard of! But why would I go to Disneyland?? I always thought, I don't have kids so why would I go to the Happiest Place On Earth? Didn't seem to be a priority on my list but K insisted we go together and I never wanted to go anywhere more! So two weeks ago, I was driving out to her house & we were at Disneyland a couple of hours later. It was the second most amazing day of my life. Just my daughter & me...at Disneyland...together. Her parents welcomed me into their home and had me stay over that night. We were at Disneyland ALL day. From 11am to 12am! In the morning, her mom made us muffins and coffee and we told her all about how much fun we had. I know!! It's truly unbelievable!!! And each time we're together it will be more amazing than the last...I can't wait for the rest of my life. I can honestly say I've never felt like that before.

Like I said, this post doesn't describe in the least what really took place when I met my daughter but I promise you all, when you meet your child, no matter when that happens, the love you will feel and the love they will give, will be unlike anything you have ever imagined. Everything you thought, everything you dreamed of, everything you wanted to say, will come true. I know what has happened to me, to us, isn't something that happens every day. The fact that her parents are so open with me and to me, is not something that happens to most of us Birth Mom's & I will forever be grateful and thankful to these two people who have changed my life forever.

No matter what your situation is like or what it becomes, don't give up on loving your child or thinking they love you. They will know how much you love them when you hold them in your arms for the first time. Write to them, even if you never hear back. Pray to God, to the Universe to protect them and to fill their hearts with the love you have for them. They will feel it. They will know it because you are connected. No matter who's in the way, no matter who feels threatened by that connection, they can't take it away from either of you. It is just a fact that the love you have will prevail! It may not be today or next week, or even next year, but it will be. I wish for all of you that your child's parents will see that there is enough love to go around and the most important person who will benefit from that love is the child. There should be no room for jealousy or fear, because when you strip the negative thoughts and feelings away from the situation that we as humans create, it really is only about the love. K's parents love me for giving them this beautiful child & I love them for giving her this beautiful life. K loves all of us so much and we all love her more than life itself. If I could have a wish come true, it would be that Adoptive Parents and Birth Parents could come together in the way that we have come together, because it's truly the most beautiful thing I've ever witnessed.

I never thought I would be healed of this broken heart or live in light instead of darkness, but it's happening right before my very eyes! I'm learning how to forgive myself and love who I am for the first time. How could I not love myself when she loves me so much? How could I not love myself and look into the eyes of this beautiful person I gave birth to? I'm learning what love truly is and it's taking my breath away.

Until next time...love always.


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Big News!

So it's been a few weeks since my last post. Time has just gotten away from me and I've been going through such a roller coaster of emotion but nothing like I'll experience tomorrow. She will be here! My beautiful K will be in the city where I live and I'm picking her up! OMG! OMG! OMG! There are no words that can describe what will come over me when I see her for the first time. I promise I won't wait long to post what this incredible experience will be like. This is something I've dreamed of for so long. I've wondered so many times if it would ever happen and here we are. The day is here! I'm in awe of it all...

...including the conversation I had yesterday. Part of my emotional roller coaster the last few weeks has been (still) that K's dad doesn't know. I feel like I've made such huge strides with all of this since Feb. but the fact that he was still a missing piece of this huge secretive puzzle that has been my life, just wasn't sitting well with me. It's been like an overwhelming weight that he and I were in touch and I didn't check "telling him" off my list. The last conversation we had was weird and awkward and he was obviously drinking or something but I thought, let me give this one more shot. So I did, yesterday. His voice was different and sounded normal or alert. Sober I think they call it. We made idle chat for a few and then...I told him. I told him that I was pregnant when I moved and that by the time my parents found out I was having Her and they called an adoption agency. I didn't tell him we've been in touch. I needed him to absorb what I just told him, plus I didn't feel totally safe telling him, "Hey, we had a baby you know nothing about & she's coming to visit me this weekend. So what are you up to?" I just needed him to know that she's out there. She exists and she may, one day, want to know him. He took it surprisingly well! Thank you God, was all I kept saying. He said he was sorry I had to go through that and that he wasn't mad at me and that he cared about me. He wants to know if she ever tries to find us and he would be so excited to have her as part of his family. I'm so taken aback by this! I'm blown the F away!! I buckled when I got off the phone and just said thank you a million times. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

But then he texted me later that night. Oh how our minds start to fuck us when we dwell. He wants to find her. He thinks legally he was screwed over (I'm paraphrasing). I didn't tell them (my parents or the agency) I knew who the dad was so there was no effort on their part to find him, at all. I was a minor and my parents had to sign the paperwork and so did I. Legally he wasn't a part of it. If that's anyone's fault it's mine. I assumed he was drinking when he sent me this text so I just tried to diffuse it and will attempt to clarify how much he would upset her life at this point if he tried to get involved. When she's 18 she can find us and we can find her...not now. Good idea I didn't tell him we've been in touch??? Ye or Nay? I'm thinking Ye.

Most importantly, no matter what happens, I am so thankful to have this opportunity to know my daughter. I can't believe that I have closed the circle of secrets. There are no more. It was my greatest fear, that is telling people my secret & now everyone who this could have directly affected knows. I actually faced my fears! I can't believe it! I never have done that before in my life. Amazing!


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A New Light, A New Friend

My friend Lisa (who I consider family, not just a friend) found a new light on Sunday around 3:00. She will never be the same and I mean that in the best possible way, and she will forever remember that day. The day she met her Birthmother!!! She has a new light around her now! It's like this glow. She told me that a feeling of peace came over her that day and it's like something she'd never experienced before and like nothing she ever knew was possible. She is still in a state of complete awe!

It's so crazy to think that we've been friends for about 8 years and we're just now really getting to know each other! I mean, we knew each other before, like I knew her true personality and I knew what she liked and didn't like, we made each other laugh all the time...all that stuff but I didn't know her big fears, nor did she know mine. We were both guarded and felt naturally comfortable together because we both knew not to be too nosey or pry into each other's lives and it was like an unspoken respect to not "go there". But once K wrote to me, there was no way I could hold back my "secret" any longer. I just had to tell Lisa & I had wanted to for so long, but was always so scared it may change our friendship somehow. And you know what? It did, but only in the most amazing way!! We're more close now than we ever have been and we are so incredibly supportive of each other! Duh-that's what real friends do!! I never knew that because I'd always been too scared before. Anything deeper than the surface was too scary!

Once I told her my story just about 2 months ago, she was inspired to reach out to her B-Mom again. They had found each other about 10 years prior but lost touch over time and had only emailed and spoken on the phone once, never met. So fast-forward to present day and they met a few days ago, at a restaurant, not far from where they live! Lisa is now 40 yrs. old and has a whole new outlook on life, a new light, a new gift, a new friend in me, and a new love...her Birth Mom!! I am so happy for her & I'm so thankful that I'm able to share (with every part of me) this moment with her. We were meant to be friends and to both have such amazing stories of adoption, is just unbelievable! Who knew when we met, we would be where we are. Life just keeps on taking my breath away!

Let the light shine on!


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Wishing I was there

I can't believe it's only been 3 months since I received my first email from K. I still remember looking at my phone, seeing that I had a new email from someone who's last name I didn't recognize and how I had a delayed reaction to seeing her name. At first I thought, Who? And then in a split second I realized it was K, my daughter & my heart leaped out of my chest!!

I know how lucky I am to have this opportunity. To be able to have the chance to email her whenever I want to; to be able to send her pictures and receive pictures; to be able to tell her how much I love her and miss her, not just wish and hope she will know one day; to know that her mother has accepted me with open arms & has reassured me that I will always be a part of their lives. It is more than I could have ever dreamed of. Thank you GOD!!! I don't know how I survived this long without having her in my life. I can't imagine my life now without her.

No matter how amazing this relationship is or becomes, I'll always miss what I didn't have with her. I don't think that part ever goes away. That part that wishes things could have been different & that I could have raised her & been her Mom. That part that wishes when I look at her pictures as a little girl, that I could have held her & rocked her to sleep and comforted her when she was sad, or heard that little laugh that kids have. Even though I know in my heart and my mind that her life probably wouldn't have been as amazing as it is right now & that back then, as a teenage girl, I probably wouldn't have held the same feelings about doing those things as I do now, as a 30 y/o woman, I think us B-Mom's will always hold on to that wish deep inside our hearts...no matter what.

K is on the swim team at school and they had a banquet dinner the other night. She sent me pictures and she looked so incredibly gorgeous. One picture in particular just really got me though. It was one of her and 4 of her friends, all standing next to their moms, K's included. It's a beautiful picture! I just stared at it and cried. I cried because I was so happy she has become such a beautiful young woman, because her mom is such an amazing woman & I know how much she loves K, because I missed her and my heart longed for her and because I wished that I could have been there, standing there next to her; next to my daughter as her mom.

All B-Mom's know we can't change what happened. We can't change the past or take back the adoption once it's been done. At first it feels like it was the right thing to do and it probably was, especially if you had a family like mine. For me, time didn't make the decisions 15 years ago more bearable. If anything, time made the pain more severe, more real. But the universe has shifted. Now time has become my friend. Now I know K & I will always be in each others lives & I feel like my life is just beginning. I feel like she and I have all the time in the world and in just weeks I will be meeting my daughter for the first time ever! I will hold her and hug her. I never had the chance to do that when she was born. I've only dreamed of it.

Giving up your baby is one of the most painful things in life that someone can experience & if it doesn't feel like it at first, it will one day. I have literally woken up every day since getting K's letter & said out loud Thank You, because I know how blessed I am to have her in my life. I'll always wish I could have been there & I'll always be grateful, for the rest of my life, that I'm here now.


Friday, May 21, 2010

Up & Down

This morning (and kinda last night) I was feeling really down. I could feel that weight in my head starting to get heavier and heavier. That little nagging voice that has dictated my life in a negative way, was starting to talk to me again. The difference though, between hearing that voice now vs. say 6 months ago, is that I'm more conscious of it. What I mean is, when that negativity starts to set in telling me that I'm not good enough, or that my dreams are unattainable, or that I'm less than so & so because they've accomplished more than I have, I'm able to now pull myself out of the darkness. It may take a couple of hours or it may only take a split second but by me telling myself out loud to stop it, I'm able to quiet the voice inside my head so that I can hear the voice inside my heart.

In my heart I know I have so much to be thankful for & I know without a doubt that I will fulfill my dreams. I've just been programmed for the last 15 years to think otherwise. I've allowed every negative thing I've ever heard, felt, saw, and experienced to trap me. My ability to now be able to shut that negativity down is because I've realized in the last few months that everything I've ever believed was a lie. I believed I was a loser, that I'd ruined my life, that because I had this secret I didn't deserve anything good (and a ton of additional insecurities) but that is ALL A LIE!! It's a lie! Since having K in my life, I am certain beyond all certainty that I am meant to do & will do all of the things that I've ever dreamed of and maybe even a little more than that.

So at 8:00 this morning I was crying, praying and giving myself a pep talk all at the same time. Now it is 10:47 and I feel like I will have a book deal by year's end! In other words, I went from hopeless to hopeful in less than 3 hours. Not bad for me! Sometimes when I have these mood swings, for lack of a better word, I laugh and think I'm a little skitzo but this is my way of working through my shit. That is quite the accomplishment I'd say! I'm working through it. I'm not just letting my mind take me on a roller coaster of depression and angst. I'm telling that voice that is my other self, the old self, the self that use to be louder than my heart, to fuck off. This Inn is full. There is no room for you here.