Dear Mary,

I watched Glee tonight with Rob. I *heart* Glee! It’s one of, if not my absolute favorite non-cop/criminal related shows. Tonight part of the plot was about Rachel and her search for her birth mother who gave her up for adoption to a gay couple. Only it wasn’t so much Rachel’s search as it was Rachel’s Birth Mother’s desire to know her daughter.

I used to daydream about a reunion like that for us. You would look for me. Then we would be reunited. And have a happy reunion. A  happy relationship. Sure, it would be bumpy at first and bumpy at times because all relationships are sometimes. We would be okay though. We would still be family though.

What I don’t understand is; twice now in my life, you’ve pretended you wanted to know me. Twice now you’ve started to get to know me. The second time you went so far as to meet my family. Only to blow me off in the end.

That’s right, twice now you’ve done this to me! What the hell???? What is so wrong with me? Why is it that you said that you would get rid of my other three siblings if that’s what it took to keep me away from you? You blow me off and I don’t bother you. I don’t talk to you. I don’t have anything to do with you once you blow me off. I pretend as if you don’t exist. You are dead to me. I only speak your name to my sister, my husband or my therapist when I’m trying to make sense of your insanity. Something that’s truly pointless to do because really I’m a sane person seeking to make sense of the insane. Although this actually brings me to something I need to speak with you about.

You blew me off. You cut me out of your life over some imagined thing I had done. Not to you, mind you but to Trisha or Charissa – you weren’t sure which. The last thing you said to me on the phone was:

Me: I’m not going to keep defending myself when it doesn’t do any good and all it does is anger you more.

You: I can’t talk to you anymore! I’ll call you back when I’m not so angry!

Then you hung up on me. That was 2 or 3 days before Easter and you still haven’t called me back. Despite the fact that I had called you a few times and you ignored my calls. I had texted you a few times as well – all ignored. The only text you didn’t ignore was the “Happy Easter” text I sent mostly out of some sick sense of guilt because technically you are my “mother” and “I should”. I didn’t expect a response. Imagine my surprise when I received “Same to you”. I guess technically that was the last thing you ever said to me – “Same to you”.

I hate you for that. For getting my hopes up the second time. I fought against it. Especially because I had Rob and Trisha this time. I didn’t have that kind of protection the first time around. But this time, I had the benefit of Rob to back me up and pick me up when I fell – and I did. I also had the benefit of Trisha’s lifetime of experiences with you. Even with all that, I still got my hopes up. Between text messages, your willingness to help with Gavin, the few times you took me to breakfast…Can I just talk about those few times we had breakfast or lunch together?

I was like a star-struck kid. I was terrified of saying the wrong thing or doing the wrong thing. I was sure that if I made one wrong move you would write me off again because I had embarrassed you or because of some other unknown slight. I even opened up to you about this when we were sitting in the Cafeteria at the Children’s Hospital while Emmett John had his ABR. Do you remember what you said? You said that I couldn’t say the wrong thing or make the wrong move. That I was worrying about nothing and I should stop. Yeah, that worked out well for me, didn’t it? You wrote me off in the end anyway.

I’m going out of order here but it’s my letter and I’ll do what I want to. Besides, let’s be honest for a moment. You read Rob’s blog. You don’t read mine. If you did, you wouldn’t be pumping my sister for information about Emmett John after he fell down the stairs because both Rob and I posted updates. But I digress.

The first time around, I admit my hopes were up from Go! There was no way they wouldn’t be. You were my birth mother. I had been searching for you for 4 years! Posting my information on every free Adoption Registry I could find. Doing anything that looked like it might be the slightest bit helpful to an adoptee searching for her birth family. If another adoptee had told me to dance by the light of a silvery moon and you would appear, full of love and thrilled to see me…I’d have done it.

I didn’t have any protection the first time. I had an ex-mother-in-law who didn’t understand why you mattered. And I had an adoptive family who either hated me for hurting my Adopto-Mom or simply hated me because they viewed what I was doing as an attack on the family. Like they weren’t good enough. A few of them were bold enough to vocalize their opinions – painfully so. Most kept their opinions to themselves and just gave me “looks”. Again, like most things in my life, the only one who even tried to understand me, my motivations, my emotions, or anything else was my Auntie Paula.

You know something, Mary, I’ve been working on this letter for a little while now. And I’ve figured something out.

The first time around in November 2000, I had no idea what to expect. All I had coming into the situation was love. I was thrilled to have found you. I already loved you. And I just knew that if we could get to know each other, you would love me too. You would see that you had done the right thing in putting me up for adoption. But that you also missed so much and now you wanted to make sure you didn’t miss anything else.

This time around, I knew what to expect. I knew what was likely to happen because I had the past on my side and also, because you said so. You said flat out that you didn’t want a relationship with me. I was more to be tolerated because Trish had made it clear to you that I was important to her and you are important to her; so we were going to have to learn to make civil and polite conversation look friendly and convincing.

It all snowballed from there. I wasn’t looking for a mother. I was looking for my sisters, all along. Even back then in the year 2000, I was searching for Charissa and Trisha. You were merely a jumping point in my search. I knew that it was likely you would know how best to find my sisters. That was it. If I were lucky enough to develop a relationship with you, that was a bonus. My sisters were the treasure. Even that turn sour and went south. You didn’t want me and, “They are sorry you didn’t have any sisters growing up but it isn’t our job to be your sisters NOW.” You didn’t want me. My sisters…didn’t want me either. I was right back where I began.

Which brings me back to the episode of Glee that I previously referred to. Rachel toyed with the idea of finding her birth mother, Shelby. Purely from a curiosity standpoint. Then Shelby pushes the matter. She uses Rachel’s boyfriend to push it forward because in her mind, the reunion will heal all wounds. They will share memories and create their own. Everything in her life will be just as it was always meant to be – just as soon as she is reunited with her daughter.

Then comes the hard realization…it doesn’t always work that way. Rachel has a lifetime and a head full of memories about being raised, loved and comforted by her fathers. It’s while Rachel shares one of her childhood memories that Shelby realizes she was wrong. She was chasing the wrong dream, forcing the wrong destiny. And now I’m to my point…

I have a head and heart full of memories about being raised by my Mom and Dad (Barb and Doug). Some of them are good. Some of them are bad. But they are my memories. Like how Daddy used to hear me when I’d fall out of bed and rush into my room as if it were under attack. Then he’d help me back into bed, kiss my forehead and return to bed himself. Or the time I broke my finger in gymnastics and I was falling apart over the pain. (Cut me some slack here! I was only 10 years old! lol) The whole way to the hospital he played my favorite Beach Boys cassette. He hated the Beach Boys (mainly because I listened to them non-stop but who’s counting). But he played it anyway, to try and soothe me in my “hour of need”. Yes, I have some ugly memories. But I choose to not focus on them any longer.

Besides, the true point I’m making by sharing those tid-bits of my childhood is that you and I can never have that, Mary. I have those memories and those experiences with my family – my Mom, my Dad, Zachary, Trisha, Rob, the Boys, John, Paige, Danny, Dyvin and Payton. I have those memories with my aunts and uncles as well. You didn’t give me a fair chance and the more time that goes by, the more perspective I gain on the situation.

When it comes to the 4-5 hours we spoke while at the Children’s Hospital, I may never know what you were thinking. What your plan was. I do know this though, I thank you for having that conversation with me. I thank you starting the whole mess in motion. Without it, I’d never had spoken with Charissa on the phone and my relationship with Trisha wouldn’t have been given an opportunity to grow stronger.

So yeah, I’ve realized that it’s too late for you and I. Too late to make the connection, the trust has been decimated making that impossible. Too late to make memories, because we are both to set in our lives with the loved ones we have.

Thank you for the opportunities to try. Thank you for being there with me and maybe a little bit for me at the Children’s Hospital. And most importantly, thank you for the gift of life.

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