First of all, Happy Mother’s Day to all the Moms out there. Â New Moms, Old Moms, Grand Moms as well as the soon to be Moms. Â But, for a bit of a change-up here, I want to throw out a special Thank You to two other Moms that often get left out, or worse get somehow “downgraded” by uncaring, unfeeling or just folks that aren’t thinking too clearly. Â Those are the Moms that knew enough that they were unable to take care of a child that they had brought into the world and made the very difficult and unselfish decision to give that child up for adoption, and also for those Moms that, whether they couldn’t or simply chose to go the adoption route, gave homes to those children.
I have to admit, it took a lot of soul searching on my part, as well as finally getting to know some people on the other side of the equation to really appreciate the plight of the mother that has given up a child for adoption. Â I was going to say “every adopted child” but I really can’t speak for others, so I will say “I” with the understanding that I don’t think that I am really all that different from other adopted children… anyway, I went through a time of wondering “why.” Â Why didn’t my mother want me? Â What was wrong with me? Â And similar questions. Â Combine that with many in the general public that seem to think that the only children that are given up for adoption are from people that are shirking their responsibilities as parents, or are “lazy” or “don’t care” or other more hateful things, and it is not difficult to draw a picture in your mind is rather unpleasant. Â (Perhaps it is a way of coping… it is easier to think bad things about somebody else, than to question if it is you that is the problem.)
Are situations like that sometimes true… of course. But in all actuality, that is not always the case. Â Circumstances are what they are. Â Things happen in life. And a woman gets pregnant with a child. Â One that she knows damn well she is not in a position to raise properly, and rather than “dragging up” a child though a bad situation, she makes the rather unselfish decision to allow that child to be put up for adoption. Â That certainly can’t be an easy decision to make. Â And from the few women I know that have done this, it can beÂ (and usually is) quite anguishing… not just at the time of the decision but for years to come (if not forever). Â So rather than pick on or chastise or ridicule somebody in that situation, I think it is better to say “Thank You.” Â Thank you for being wise enough to know that you would not be able to handle the situation. Â Thank You for being unselfish enough to try and make something work that you know would not.
Now follow the strange path that is my brain to the other side of the equation. Â The adopting mother. Â There are few things in life that annoy me more (which is sort of counter-intuitive to what I just wrote), than to have somebody ask me (and I can’t tell you how many times I have been asked, I lost count long ago) if I am going to try and find my “real” mom. Â To this my answer is always the same, “I know where my real mom is, she still lives in the same house that I grew up in.” Â Though my mother skirts the issue when asked about it, I know there were people in the family that scoffed that mother was not able to “give my father children.” Â There were riffs in the family that lasted many years. Â My mother actually went on to forgive one uncle (though I never did). Â I find this sort of sentiment unacceptable. Â What is not “real” about an adoptive mother? Â She is the woman that sacrificed for me, got up to feed me, dealt with illnesses, and driving me to Little League games, always made sure I had a healthy andÂ nutritiousÂ meal. Â She loved me when I was good. Â She loved me when I was a complete and total screw up. Â If you think a maternal bond can only come with anÂ umbilicalÂ cord, you are sadly mistaken. Â I have seen plenty of mothers that had less instincts and love towards children that they gave birth to, than my mother showed to me.
I no longer harbor any resentment or questions (other than health related ones, an issue any adopted child has to deal with) for the woman that gave birth to me. Â I wish her well, and an appreciative Thank You. Â I don’t know how my life would have turned out if she had not put me up for adoption, nor do I really care. Â I know I wound up having a simply wonderful mother, one that loves me, and I love very much. Â And in the end, that is all that really matters. Â Happy Mothers Day.