2003-12-07 @ 10:02 a.m.
I went to Childrenísí Home Society. Because of the direct placement adoption, and knowing the adoptive parents, CHS had much less contact with me, the birth mother, because I had already made my decision and found the situation, and we used them to facilitate the adoption. The feedback that they have given Aprilís parents has been really cool.
I knew Aprilís adoptive mother before I became pregnant, because she works at eepís school. Iíve always loved her repore with my kids, as well as the way she taught eep in Kindergarten. She always was very admiring of my girls, and we talked about her 3 boys and got along famously in general. I first met her when Elizabeth was 3.
Hereís an aside about Aprilís mom- I have a ladybug tattoo, on my left wrist. Itís in honor of my maternal grandmother, and my mother and my 2 youngest sisters all have the same ladybug that we got all together in honor of my maternal grandma. Aprilís mom really loved it. In a move, incredibly uncharacteristic of me I told her all about the tattoo, what it represented to my family, and where the image came from exactly. Basically I figured that if she was going to get the same tattoo, it really ought to be the same tattoo. The idea didnít bother me, which is surprising, since I have thrown a huge fit over my colorist using my recipe on someone else verbatim. No kidding. I reacted as if someone had stolen my soul. But the tattoo thing I shared with AM, when eep was in her kindergarten class. And she got the tattoo. I was sort of flattered. Because, a tattoo is more important reflection of a person than hair color (rdhdprincess knows that opinion doesnít apply to red heads. A head of red is more than just a hair color, itís a brand name) I figured that if my tattoo helped someone identify an image that represented something to them, and then she could adorn away.
So anyway, AM had great ideas about adoption, and how adoption effects families, because her mother was adopted, and her sister gave a child to be adopted when she was in her late teens. Her sister ended up marrying the father of that child, and they have two other children who are that childís full siblings. I was comforted by that story being that April would have two full siblings as well. I knew AM was open and caring, and I thought her experience with her sister giving a baby up for adoption would help her be even more sympathetic towards whatever I might be feeling.
The classes she and Aprilís Dad participated in, only added to that. Open adoption has become something that, depending on the people involved, can be like a big extended family, including sometimes even birth grandparents. So AM and AD really got backup for their already open minds. CHS made everything that Aprilís Parents were making easy for me, even easier. So I was happy to meet the social workers etc, at CHS.
They were interested in me too, because I am such an anomaly. They donít get a lot of 35 year old women giving up children for adoption. They were delighted with my choice, my history, the way I was handling everything emotionally now, that I was open and friendly, that I was open to being a mentor, and willing to share my story. CHS treated me like a rock star.
So signing the consent was a really legal proceeding. You sign many papers, and then many copies of the many papers. You assert over and over the fact that you are doing this of your own free will, and have been informed of all your financial and legal options, and that nobody is making you feel like you canít keep your baby for any reason, if you should do something as simple as change your mind.
Have I made it clear to everyone how lucky I feel I am? I am lucky that I found a wonderful family to adopt and raise the beautiful healthy girl I gave birth to. I am lucky that I donít have to look into her face and feel like I have nothing left for her, because she was born to a woman who still feels, in a huge way, like she is emotionally used up at the end of each day. I am lucky that I can now look at what I have to give to my daughters and feel like there is possibility of that being enough. Iím lucky that the serenity and joy I have moments of feeling, make me able to make those girls feel cherished despite my exhaustion. I am lucky that I get to incidentally see April and that she is always happy and extremely healthy and I am so lucky that seeing her that way doesnít make me feel anything but pure joy.
Iím lucky that I did the right thing and I feel that choice has been my blessing. And I am so lucky that in spite of the fact, that life remains hard- that giving up that girl did not provide any sense of instant healing to my life, that I have never wavered in any feeling that my choice, which I consider incredibly selfish, was anything but the only choice I could make.
So I got to represent that. I was told I have 10 business days before the consent is irrevocable. In my life, irrevocable is always a good thing.
I do wish that Sal got to feel that luck, that he felt that blessing also. But I wish that Sal could really feel anything other than guilt. Thatís his burden though. Too bad for him. He was born that way, and it sure isnít my fault.