Monday, April 22, 2013

Adoption

I thought I would let y'all in on my life a bit. I have always believed that transparency was always the best way to live one's life... especially being a Christian... over the years I have learned to guard my heart but still follow through with my open book policy. If you ask me a question about myself or my life I will give you an honest answer... I am an open book.

So, let me start from the beginning. Hello, my name is Beverly but you can call me Bevy, all my friends do. I was adopted when I was 7 months old. My parents thought it important to bring us up knowing we were adopted (my brother is adopted too but I will delve into that in a moment). They would tell us in a bedtime story. It was actually my favorite bedtime story and I would ask my mom to tell it to me all the time. It went something like this:

"Once upon a time, there was a couple who very desperately wanted to be a mommy and a daddy but they were unable to have their own children so God brought them a little boy and they were very happy. A few years later they wanted a little girl and God brought them a little girl and their family was finally complete and the mommy and daddy were so happy and they lived happily ever after."

I know it probably sounds cheesy now, and I'm sure I improvised some since it has been a long time since I was told this story but you get the jist. My parents made sure to raise us knowing that we were loved and special because we were adopted and that it didn't make us any less of a family because we weren't blood.

Growing up knowing I was adopted never really bothered me in a lot of ways but I always had this hidden fear that my biological mom would decide she wanted me back and would come take me away from all of the people I loved... take me away from everything I knew. I would actually have nightmares about it. I wasn't old enough to understand that legally that couldn't happen.

I was never really interested in finding my biological family. Friends would ask me that a lot and I would tell them no. Apparently that's not the answer people normally expect. Haha. So they would ask why not and this is why. I was satisfied. I had a mom and dad who love me and a big brother I adore and an extended family I love. Why would I need to seek out what I already had?

I received a letter when I turned 18 that gave me all the information that was known about my biological family, which wasn't a lot. My biological name was Carolyn Ann. I had one older half brother who was 3 1/2 years older than I who was adopted by his biological father... I believe his name was Vincent. I have at least one sibling who is younger than me but not by a lot as my biological mother was pregnant with another child when I was adopted. My biological mother was a truck driver and had no idea who my biological father was. She didn't even know how to hold me when I was born.

At first reading this information made me furious. It made me feel like my biological mom just slept around a lot and popped out kids like it was no big thing and just tossed us in the system like she didn't care about us at all. I hated her for a while. But God has always been at work in my life and constantly had His hand on my heart making me compassionate and melting any anger or hatred away. He did it here too. He changed my heart towards her. He made me question how lonely she must have been because a trucker's lifestyle was a lonely one and she must have been looking for something to fill that void. He made me realize she wasn't selfish because she put me up for adoption... she cared enough to give me a chance at life... a good one at that. A single mom on the road all the time was no kind of life for a child to be raised. No matter how selfish I thought I could make her out to be, God came back with all these reasons for me to love her for what she did. I think I really do love her too. Even if I were to meet her and she was awful and hateful and wanted nothing to do with me, I would still love her because God has made me that way. Any wounds I might sustain I know He would heal. He always does. Although I fear if I try to find her one day that might be the outcome, a feeling deep inside that's as soft as a whisper tells me that she wants to know me and that she needs to know she is loved. I wonder if she is lonely or if she has settled down and started a family. Sometimes I wonder if she thinks about me or wonders how I turned out. But I always wonder if she filled that void I never felt.... I wonder if she found the love and forgiveness of Jesus.

Lately I have felt something I never before felt being adopted. Isolated. Its easy to belong in a family but there are things about a biological connection you can not have being adopted. Heritage. I have no heritage. I know not of what lineage of people I come from or who I am connected to. I have no idea what kind of health history runs in my bloodline. I believe having my daughter has made this feeling worse for me. I know people don't mean to be hurtful when they say, "Honey, she looks like a Cook. I'm sorry, but she does. She's all Cook." But trust me, it really hurts when you already feel isolated... like you don't belong anywhere. I'm glad Alexa Grace has that though, she has a heritage... she looks like she's part of a family. I love my in-laws and I love that Alexa Grace is part of such a wonderful family that adores her. The icing on the cake though is when people think my sis in law is my daughter's mother. It makes the isolation so much more painful... like I have no connection to anyone, not even my daughter. I know this is all lies from the enemy though. She may be mine by blood and look nothing like me but she is all God's in the end. It doesn't matter who she looks like because in the end I am just blessed with the opportunity to raise her with the time on Earth that I have with her. God created her and He has already spoken for her and that is all that truly matters.

Now the disclaimer, I have only ever shared these feelings with my husband so this is the very essence of transparency. This in no way reflects ill feelings to anyone mentioned in this blog it is strictly just a view into the heart, feelings and mind of an adopted. I wanted to share my view on things... the "daily" struggles I face being adopted and the aspect that I am human... no matter how confident I seem, comfortable in my skin, satisfied with who I am and what family is to me, I still struggle with insecurities like everyone else. I must also add... I have felt this way but no longer feel isolated in the sense I mentioned in the above paragraph... and in no way has my family (immediate, extended or married into) made me feel these things by anything they did or did not do. These are just internal things I believe any adopted person struggles with and faces at sometime in their life.

Through all the struggles, especially lately with isolation and heritage, I know I am God's and I am a part of His family. He has adopted us all and loves us just as my parents love me. He doesn't care what our heritage is or what kind of background we come from. We are all His children and He loves us deeply. I will always belong to Him and so I will always belong somewhere and in God's family we all look different but are part of the same family. I will never be alone. I will always belong. Jesus was sent to cleanse us of our sins and to welcome us home into God's family. All you have to do is accept the grace He has provided.

Being adopted also fuels my adamite stance of Pro-life. I do not believe that because it is your body that you have the right to end the life growing in it. You never know who that child growing in you may become and how they may change the world. I am so thankful my biological mom chose life for me. I have had plenty of heartache, pain and struggles in my lifetime but I am so glad I have been given the ability to live through them and experience them. I also know how important it is to be adopted... to feel like you belong to a family and to feel loved. I plan on adopting some day and am eager to see how God develops our family.

4 comments:

  1. Oh, sweet girl. This window into your heart is precious to me for a few reasons. I want to adopt one day, so for one, you're giving me a few hints about what to expect my future kiddos to feel and the ways in which I can help them through it. And you're making me feel not so alone, because I grew up without ever knowing my biological dad (my mom raised me as a single mom) and that's been a hole in my life for the longest time. I feel sort of "half" of what you're feeling, I think. I don't know half of my heritage, and sometimes I wonder if some of my qualities that my mom doesn't understand (and that have caused conflict between us sometimes) might come from him. But it's hard to tell, because I don't even know who he is. I don't have any clue at all. He's just this blank spot on my history that I have no way of getting at right now. My mom dropped everything to raise me and she really is an amazing mom. But there is still part of me that feels the missing-dad wound. Part of me feels "leavable," like I am easy to give up, easy to walk out on. Like there is something wrong with me that made him leave. I know in my head that that's not true, but I still need God to heal that part of my heart that still insists on believing it. It hurts every day. I don't know why he hasn't healed that part of me yet, but I believe he will. I'm sure he's working it out in his timing, but it sucks in the meantime! Anyway, I just wanted to let you know you're not alone in feeling some of those things, and to thank you for sharing them and being so open. Sending you love, and good luck with adopting someday!

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    1. Cattie- you are such a beautiful person! I'm glad my blog post could help you out for the future of adoption! As for the fatherless part it is totally the same thing because I have the possibility of figuring out my heritage through my biological mothers side butwill never be able to do that with my biological dads side since she doesn't know who he is. There is nothing wrong with having that wound... and having that wound doesn't mean or give the impression that your mom didn't do enough. Children were meant to have a mom and a dad, not just one or the other so there will always be that wound regardless of how wonderful the other parent does. If you ever need an ear to listen, a shoulder to cry on or just an understanding embrace, you know where I am! I love you lovely! Hugs!

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  2. Wow, Bev, you are a beautiful writer! Thanks so much for sharing your heart. I'm so glad your biological mom chose life for you, too. What a blessing you are to so many people! ((hugs))

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    1. Thank you Janet! So glad I was blessed with the opportunity to know you and get back in touch!

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