Friday, May 11, 2012

My Mother's Day Story

My Mother's Day references continue.  This one hits a little closer to home...

My Story

I've never hesitated sharing my thoughts online, after all this is precisely why I started this blog to begin with.  My life is an open story.  No secrets.  No skeletons.  This is my way of shaking out the dust and figuring out what makes me tick.  My personal, self-help journal open for the public.  If it helps others, awesome.  If not, oh well.  Feel free to giggle, squirm, or weep beside me as I examine my life.  No one is perfect, I've made mention of my faults along the way.  I've had my share of successes too.  There will be a lot more of both, I'm certain.

Mother's Day is a strange celebration for me.  As many of you are aware, I'm an adopted mother.  I was never able to conceive children of my own.  Some of you would argue that this is one of the greatest types of motherhood, the woman who would open her home and heart to a child.  Thank you for that compliment; however, unless you've been in my shoes don't jump to conclusions.  Adoption isn't always a "self-sacrificing" option.  In my marriage, it was a bit of a selfish decision, we were lonely.  We wanted the whole "Leave it to Beaver" experience; the after school football practice, Halloween nights, snuggling in bed and watching TV as a family.  We wanted the happiness but not the pitfalls. 

When Eric and I discussed marriage, one of our sorrows was knowing that we couldn't have biological children of our own.  Eric has a non-malignant brain tumor which affects his pituitary gland and reproductive system.  I, after having been with my ex-husband for close to seven years, never conceived.  Even if Eric didn't have the tumor, most likely I would have had problems getting pregnant.

As a little girl, I'd written in my diaries about having babies of my own one day.  I wanted to look into the eyes of an infant and see my eyes or those of my ancestors smiling back at me.  It was an incredible thing to believe I would live on through another human being.  I even wrote letters to my unborn children giving them names and telling them how excited I was for their future.  As the years went by, I saved little things for them; for the girls, prom dresses, love letters, jewelry from their great-grandmothers.  For the boys; sweaters from their grandfather, tools, notes, and other things of interest. 

William, Bri, and Austynn 2008
When Eric and I agreed to adopt children, our thought was that we could mend their broken hearts.  We had so much love to give.  The things we stored away would be given to these children if they wanted them.  Our family was now their own.  We would take them and cherish them and bond as a family.

Despite what most people think, bonding doesn't happen overnight with adoptive families.  In some cases, it may never happen.  Our oldest has been with us for over ten years now and there are days when I still question his attachment.  He came from such a troubled, horrific past - oftentimes I wonder if he's manipulating us to get what he wants when he wants it.  He often lacks empathy.  This is both a trait of his Aspergers and a big piece of his trauma background.  He's also sixteen.  He's angry.  He's angry at life.  He's angry at everything.  God help my son.  

My youngest wants to hug, touch, and be held constantly.  Where is that maternal piece of me I wrote about as a child?  She's impossible to find most days with this 152 pound autistic kiddo.  I find myself cringing every time I feel his chunky, clunky fingers grope my back.  Why do I struggle to nurture this boy who obviously needs to be nurtured?

So, Mother's Day.  It's a tough holiday for me.  I don't feel as if I've earned it.  Personally, I'd rather stay in my room and sleep the day away.