Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Prepare for Liftoff

It's been a long while since I last posted. There isn't a good way to try to explain all that has happened since I last posted in 2015, so for now this is a quick summary of what has changed in my life since then:

-I am married. I married the love of my life in December, 2015.
-I graduated from University with a Bachelors degree in English, Secondary Education
-I taught for 1 year after graduation in the cutest rural town in the middle of Utah and the 8th grade students I taught were the greatest ever. They are graduating this year, which is crazy to think about
-My husband and I moved to California and were jobless for 11 months, which was scary, but we got through it
-We moved from rural California to just outside the capital, Sacramento, and there are a lot of people here who drive all the time and I hate traffic
-We have great jobs here and live in a cute little 1-bedroom apartment. The cost of rent in California is exorbitant enough to gag a maggot and I actively try not to think about how much we pay for rent, but it's our home and we love it
-I worked for an incredibly abusive and inconsiderate jerk in the field of adoption law. I quick after I couldn't take his verbal and emotional abuse anymore and told him on my way out that he was the worst human being I've ever worked for and I hope he treats future employees better. So, that goes to say that I've learned to speak up for myself to employers whom I've always saw in a superior light to myself
-10 days after I unexpectedly quit my job, I landed the greatest job ever in a field I want to be my career (billing towards accounting/bookkeeping)
-3 months after I started working at this incredible job, Covid-19 hit the United States and it's changed everything
-2 months after Covid-19 hit the United States, it was spreading at such an alarming speed that the Governor of California issued a "Shelter-in-Place" order which basically means self-quarantining in the attempt to slow the spread of the virus. It was shortly after this that I was laid-off from my incredible job
-It's been 2 weeks to the day since I've been at home quarantining. The idea is to not go out unless you are doing necessary grocery shopping, picking up prescriptions, or getting out into the sun -- all of which you are to stay 6 feet away from the next person
-For the first time in my life, I've applied for unemployment. Thankfully, it is only temporary, as my employers expect to bring everyone back on when things go back to normal (though no one can say for sure when that will be)
-To keep myself busy, I re-arrange furniture and bake a lot. I'm cleaning all the time and on one hand I love this slower pace of life, but it's scary to be without the income that we need to get by. Millions of people across the globe are in this very same situation


I think that summarizes everything life, in general.


In regards to my adoption story:

-The child of my heart will be 10 years old this year. It is incredible that I'm so far down this journey so far. I remember when it was fresh and I couldn't comprehend getting to this place in time. And, here I am on the other side
-I talk on the phone with this child more frequently, which is lovely
-He wants to see me and my husband, which is beautiful and scary at the same time because what if I'm not what he thinks I am. That, and I know he has so many questions about why he was placed for adoption because he asks about it all the time on the phone. I tell him how much he's loved and how hard the decision was and that I'm going to answer all of his questions when we get together in July (which is the plan, depending on how Covid-19 goes)
-He likes cats and asks about my cat a lot and tells me about how he sticks up for the cats in his neighborhood from other boys who treat them unfairly -He is passionate about what's fair and I can tell he's already figuring out his moral code and he has incredible parents who are helping him and guiding him and that is everything that I wanted for him


Regarding this blog, I really don't know what is going to come from it. I've tried starting other blogs but can never get past the first post. This blog has so much of my history that I can't give up on it, but I've also adapted beyond obsessing about my adoption journey. I don't mean that in a negative way because for a while that was my whole life and I needed to obsess and feel every aspect of it to get to where I am today.

So, this blog is going to be about what goes on in my life, adoption thoughts included. If you feel like following along, that's awesome. If not, that's cool too. So, here we go. Prepare for liftoff.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Going Private

Everyone,

It has been forever since I've posted.  I have spent a lot of time thinking about this blog and what I want to do with it.  I've determined that I want to keep it because it is a huge part of my past and who I've become.  But, I'm also in a place in my life where I want to be more private about what I choose to share online, therefore this blog will be going private.

I truly don't even know how many people this blog reaches, but if you are interested in still following my blog then please let me know in a comment.  My goal is to privatize this in one week, so think about it and let me know by Wednesday, November 18, 2015.

Thank you for your loyalty.  Thank you for your encouragement and support.  I hope this blog has been a place of healing and perspective.  That was my intention from the beginning.  This truly has been a journey, and the journey is getting so much better day-by-day, which is why I'm becoming more protective of what I share.

Sincerely,
Me

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Perspective

It's been almost a year since I lasted posted.  Time goes by so fast.  To let you know what I've been doing, I recently graduated from Utah Valley University, as in May 1, 2015.  And I've just accepted an English-teaching position for the 2016-2017 school year as an 8th grade English teacher, and I'm really excited about it.  It's crazy because I've been working so hard to complete my Bachelor's degree that I haven't really done anything else.  I've kept to myself because I've been so absorbed in academic pursuits that everything else just took a backseat.  And also I've spent a lot of time considering what I want this blog to be.

I'm in a very different place in my journey as a birth-mother than I've ever been before.  I've been an activist for adoption awareness in my own way, but I feel like my vision and perspective have shifted.  When I first found out I was pregnant and I took a hard look at my life I realized that I had wasted so much time floundering about and wasting my time on unimportant pursuits.  And as a result there was no way that I could provide for the child I was going to bring into this world.  And that realization came about over the course of my entire pregnancy with Baby Boy.  The day that I finally came to terms with the fact that I would be selfish if I chose to parent him knowing that I had no way to provide for either us was the day that I promised myself that I would create a future so that when I did become pregnant again I could provide for that child.  And that's been my focus.  And through all of that I have a better idea of who I am and I know what I want for my future, and it's happening for me.

This blog has been such a huge emotional outlet for me.  I love the adoption community and I always will because it's within this community that I found my voice.  For the first time in my life I realized that it was okay to say what I want to say and share my experience.  I will always treasure that and all of you who have supported me and been my friend.  And I'm going to continue to share my voice through this blog.

Something has been on my mind the last month, since about mid-April.  It's probably silly but I also can't shake it so I'm going to talk about it here.  It's Birth-mother's Day.  Why do we need a separate day?  Truly, why?  Did you know that the founder of Mother's Day wasn't ever a mother?  It's true.  Her name was Anna Jarvis and she loved her mother so much that she wanted to commemorate that love by inspiring a national holiday to commemorate the love for all mothers, and to ceaselessly show her own devotion to her mother, endlessly.  

Commemorate, that's a good word.  It means to honor, memorialize, and celebrate.  When I think of the word memorialize, I think of paying tribute to someone as a way of honoring them.  I wonder if that's what Anna meant when she inspired this national holiday.  In 1914 Mother's Day became an official holiday.  Anna Jarvis later became disappointed in the commercialization of Mother's Day.  For her, the idea for a day honoring mother's was born out of the recognition that children did not honor their parents, and that all that a woman does goes unnoticed and unrecognized.  Her mother served the family, her husband, and the community with selfless service and was never recognized or appreciated for it.  As a young child Anna swore that one day all women would have the opportunity to be recognized for the selfless acts they do for the benefit of others.

Now I recognize that Birth-mother's Day was born out of a need to create awareness, to educate the broader community, and to honor and remember.  All of that is very important and I acknowledge this.  But I'm concerned that it is beginning to become too commercialized.  Anna's drive to advocate for a day for mother's was born from a prayer her mother gave; a very sacred experience.  My experience to place Baby Boy for adoption was also born from a sacred experience.  It's sacred, in both cases, and many more.  To commercialize on the sacred is wrong.  If it's for awareness sake, then yes that's important.

But more important is that a woman who was never a mother inspired a day for mothers.  And now this day has become a day of stress and self-comparing to other women who seem to do "it" (mothering) better than you/me.  I don't think there needs to be a designation because we are all mothers whether you are an adoptive mother, birth-mother, hopeful mother, whatever.  One woman should not have one way designated for her because of the legal type of mother she is.  We have all sacrificed something great for the well-being of another, and in that light we are all incredible mothers.  To the women out there struggling with infertility, I'm sure mother's day means something very different to you.  And that's my point.  The day shouldn't be something that sets a person apart or that puts them in a different bracket than someone else, and that's exactly what Birth-mother's Day does.  We need to stop comparing.  I am an Other Mother, that doesn't make me less of a mother than a woman who parents her child because I sacrificed and did the best for him that I knew how given my circumstances.  And for women who are waiting on the results of fertility treatments, or for women who are waiting for a placement to finalize, you are also mothers.

I hope my message is coming across clearly.  From the perspective of a feminist, which I consider myself to be, the last thing we need is the compartmentalization of women into categories for the sake of commercialization.  Mother "A" gets the traditional flowers and chocolate because she's a mother-mother, meaning she didn't place for adoption, whereas Mother "B" needs a special trinket from a specialized online store that specializes in gifts for birth-mothers because she's an "Other mother", and for women who aren't mothers, who don't have a child to prove their maternal instinct, well...

Do you get what I'm saying?  Mother's Day shouldn't be about commercialization, and why have 2 types of mother's day for the different types of mothers, when a mother is a mother whether or not she's had a child yet, or adopted a child yet.  Distinctions are made legally, and I can't resolve it within myself that within this adoption community that I love that distinctions are being made among powerful women, important women, life-altering and beautiful women.  This is just my perspective and so I'm not saying it is the only perspective.  But not everyone gets recognized on Birth-mothers Day or Mother's Day because the world fits us in a mold, or they don't know about the Saturday before Mother's Day and it's significance to birth-mothers.  And I've seen birth-mothers feel "less-than" because they aren't acknowledged and that's why we need to be careful.  Our self-worth and importance is not attached to a day that is commercialized.  We are powerful because of the difficult decisions we make.