Still here, Still Adopted.

There is nothing like an adoptive family crisis to make you feel all the more adopted. My a-dad had a bit of a health scare recently. He was diagnosed with cancer, luckily, it looks like it’s treatable. This is good, really good, but waiting to hear that was an awful experience. It’s a feeling of just waiting to panic, or not.

We didn’t have to panic. Big sigh of relief there. But not panicking and getting my a-dad through cancer treatments is going to be challenging enough. Long time readers of this blog have got to know my a-dad a bit, so you can imagine the challenges ahead. For those who don’t know, let’s just say a-dad is very outspoken (that’s a nice way of saying he’s a bitchy old man).

Then there is the whole adoptee thing. My a-famiily once had a family dinner, complete with relatives from out of town, on my birthday, and “forgot” to invite me. But who is the first one they call when they need a ride to the hospital for surgery, or wreck their car, or can’t figure out the cell phone? You guessed it, the adoptee. I know they do it because they see me as being the one who can handle it (or possibly because I’m alone right now and might not have anything better to do. Ha.), but it’s still hard. Sometimes it feels like you get all the responsibility and none of the good stuff.

There is nothing to do but deal. And deal I will. I always do. Adoptees are like that.

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Rolling With It

What has become of Addie?

I have no idea.

She is still becoming.

I’m not the same person I was a year ago. Everything is different, the minutes, hours, days and months are nothing like they were. I have become accustomed to being adrift, but decided to trust.

Worst case scenarios playing out can make you feel bulletproof. It’s an illusion, it can always hurt more. I figured that out when I decided to trust again. Setting that fear aside has been difficult, but I had to, loss comes regardless of intent. To fear loss is to fear life.

Yep, that means I have a boyfriend.

Well, not really a boyfriend, we have decided to put off dating for a few years until we are eligible for the senior citizen’s discount at leading establishments. We’re not getting to know each other, we met nearly thirty years ago. He scared me to death back then.

He scares me to death now, but for entirely different reasons. Now I can handle his looks, his voice, his sweetness, his humor, but his love frightens me. I never planned on falling in love again. I wasn’t sure I would find it, I wasn’t sure I wanted it, I wasn’t sure I deserved it.

I always thought I was extremely lucky to have found one true love in my life. A second love didn’t seem likely.

My life has been a series of highly unlikely events. I’m going to roll with it.

Now for something else unlikely, an Englishman with soul…

 

 

 

Who Can Just Go Get Fucked This Year

I’m coming up on 5 months since I lost David, I’m in the middle of mid-terms, and my birthday is next week. That’s right, I’m a stressed out widowed adoptee just about to have a birthday. Folks who know what this means are already looking for something to crawl under. So in lieu of felonious assault, here are my fuck yous for the year..

The Forty-sixth annual Fuck You list…

The Medical Community-no explanation needed, but I’m going to bitch a bit anyway. I do not give a damn if you will never pay off your student loans, that you are not allowed to practice as you wish, or construction on your new summer home is six months behind schedule, you fucked up and fucked up bad. Not only did you lose one, so did I, and a whole lot of other people. Your decisions effect lives, forever, at least you could try not to be an asshole about things. Oh and quit billing my husband’s worthless estate for killing him.

The Funeral Industry-again no explanation required. I hate everyone of those fuckers. You can take your fake sympathy and shove it up your ass.

The Greeting Card Industry-I’m fucking well aware that I’ve lost someone, thanks for putting on the front of a card to remind me. Is this supposed to make me feel better? Widow pro-tip for my readers, don’t send sympathy cards, send friendship cards. The sentiments of some greeting card writer are not comforting. Poets and Jesus may care, but you can’t buy it for $2.75.

The Greeting Card Industry Again-Like I said my birthday is coming up, and I have to pick out birthday cards for a couple of adoptee friends today. I’m thinking they aren’t going to have anything that expresses my true sentiments of “Gee sorry about this day that brings up all your abandonment issues, but you’re my friend, and I want you to have a good day anyway.”

The Adoption Industry-Duh.

Facebook-Really? What the fuck dude? ‘Nuff said

The Entertainment Industry-This has to be the worst year yet for adoption themed movies, television shows, and any other thing they can throw at us. I got so goddamn tired of not being able to watch a pissing thing without the fucking wonder of adoption being thrown in my face this year, I told DirecTV to take a hike. I’m much happier. Thanks. And don’t even get me started on “still young woman loses her husband and goes on to make a life for herself” bullshit. Yeah it happens and it’s happening to me, but for fucks sake, it’s not one bit inspirational and being widowed doesn’t make me a goddamned saint. The whole let’s make the character widowed instead of divorced so we all know she’s a good girl thing makes me want to clean out the china cabinet with a baseball bat. Fuck you, my trauma didn’t cleanse me.

Verizon Wireless-Talk about profiting on death. They really need to have a recently widowed plan. I think I might have spent as much money with them as it cost to bury David in the first three months after he was gone. Fuck you.

David-Yeah, David. Fuck you for leaving me. Fuck you for not being here to take me out to dinner when I finish up my mid-terms. Fuck you for leaving me the mess of your life to clean up. Fuck you for not being late with my birthday present this year and wrapping up a picture of whatever you just got around to ordering me. Fuck you for loving me. Fuck you for dying.

I’m going to stop for now, but I’m not done.

The Minimum Gold Standard

I got a call from my a-mom yesterday afternoon, she wanted to know if I’d like to go out to dinner with her and dad tonight. She told me it will be their anniversary. I had no idea, we don’t do well keeping track of those kinds of things in my family. Mom knows the birth dates of all her children, including me, but dad, not so much. He has the vague idea that two of us were born in the fall, but that is it.

I’m not good with dates either, more than occasionally I have to do the math to figure out how old I am. After I hung up the phone I did wonder how long mom and dad had been married. I had to first, figure out how old I was, then add the appropriate amount of years to my age. Turns out it’s my folks 50th anniversary.

Around here most folks make a big deal about their 50th anniversary. The milestone justifies a picture (taken at Olin Mills, of course) in the local paper and a reception in the basement of house of worship of their choice, not to mention the mandatory card shower. My family never went in for that stuff.  Though we might all agree that showing up is 90% of success, we aren’t ones to celebrate meeting the minimum requirements. Being married for 50 years simply means you haven’t screwed it up, yet.

Even if doing what is expected isn’t much revered in my family, neither is royally fucking something up demonized. We’ve all done it, many times in spectacular form. These episodes get more play in family conversation, many times, than our achievements. We just don’t find it nearly so interesting when things go as they should, that’s expected, but a good near death experience, especially due to your own actions, is pure conversational gold.

I’ll be counting on that acceptance of screwing up tonight. The chances of me coming up with a suitable gift for my parents by 6 p.m. are slim to non-existent. My own guilt is tempered by the fact that no two people on the planet need one more thing in their house less than my parents. But karmic justifications do little when everybody else has a gift.

Maybe I should just thank them for expecting the minimum standard and teaching me to admit, and even sometimes embrace, my failures.

You’ve Got Yours, We Want Ours

YOU’VE GOT YOURS, WE WANT OURS!

This phrase should sound familiar to most folks reading here. It’s the chant repeated over and over as we march in the annual Adoptee Rights Demonstration. After demonstration day its so ingrained in your mind, you hear it in your sleep.

YOU’VE GOT YOURS, WE WANT OURS!

This isn’t the kind of statement that demands an answer, it stands alone. You don’t really expect a cadre of legislators to emerge from their meetings and answer, “Well gee, okay, you can have your original birth certificate, you’ve made a hell of a point there. We’ll get right on that.” They are simply words that you want to be heard.

YOU’VE GOT YOURS, WE WANT OURS!

The thing is I’m starting to hear an answer.

I’VE GOT MINE, SO SCREW YOU!

We live in a world where, at least a vocal minority, cheer at the thought of someone being allowed to die for lack of health insurance. Do you think that bunch is going to give a good god damn if you have your original birth certificate when you’re dying, at home, from a fully preventable cause, because you didn’t have the financial assets to find treatment? They won’t, being adopted, in their minds simply marks you as another useless member of a permanent lower class who didn’t fully embrace the American dream.

Empathy is in short supply these days and empathy is essential to our cause. Those who cannot put aside their own perceptions and feel the plight of their fellow man are sadly becoming more of a force in politics. Their number among state legislators is significant enough it must be dealt with. For that reason, I propose we add a new chant along side the others.

ABANDONMENT IS NOT FREEDOM!

We must make people understand that being abandoned by your government does not liberate us from our our origins, but creates a kind of inequality that will never allow us to be truly free. We are at our very essence people, citizens, even entities completely created, without our consent, by our government. If some would see our government as promoting freedom above all others things, shouldn’t we, the creations of this government, be allowed the truest freedom, that of our identity? If our government judged that we would better enjoy the benefits bestowed upon citizens of our county with revised identities, shouldn’t we allowed all the advantages of citizenship? What possible argument can be made for shrouding our origins in secrecy?

ABANDONMENT IS NOT FREEDOM!

Battle Fatigue

Activism of any kind is exhausting. Being the flea biting, the would-be slayer, the acceptor of hopeless mission, the one who journeys again and again into the lion’s den, will drain away the very stuff that sent you down this path in the first place.

If we look at the on going struggle as warriors, why shouldn’t we tire from battle? Traditionally those that chose warrior as a profession did so not just because it appeals to a need to do good, to protect those that cannot protect themselves, and a baser instinct to apply the force within ourselves to strike at those that do wrong, it was understood that this dangerous work had advantages. The righteous joy taken in the defeat of an enemy, the very things which they defended spread out for the taking, a time to celebrate with comrades all glorious in triumph, and the returning home as subject of honor and praise. Without these things, the warrior life can be a grim one.

When we must band together as guerrillas, few in number, poorly equipped, fighting an enemy so large to be beyond comprehension even by those who are part of it, or be the even more foolhardy one who goes alone, our victories, slight as they are, give us no plunder, no salt, no gold, only the celebration of our own band of fools. Is it any wonder that we tire? Should we not feel we are only receiving half measure of our commission?

There is no wonder in that we tire, the constant battle leaves no time for laurels. We must settle for our scars and scraps. But through that, are we not the truest of warriors? Those that sign on for the fight alone express the purest, most divine, of our guild. And what shall we do when we tire? Return to the fields, the dwellings, the people we defend and advance, and take comfort in them, knowing they surely need us.

We must find satisfaction, if not glory.

 

Adoption and Poilitics Before I’ve Had My Coffee

Disclaimer: This is a humor piece, it is not meant to influence or inform, only to be amusing. Please do not use my comments section to post actual facts. You’ll just piss me off. Thanks.

I woke up way too early this morning. My life in the last few weeks has included falling way too hard for the media coverage of the political events in Iowa (I’m right next door) and adoption activism. No wonder these things got mixed up in my mind being up at this ungodly hour.

I began to think about the current crop of GOP candidates in terms of adoption, specifically what role they would fulfill if they were part of the adoption community….

(insert soft focus and the dream music from any 1970’s sitcom here)

Mitt Romney-Birth father, adopter, envies adoptees, duh, he’s Mormon.

Michelle Bachman-Adopter, with a blog and a website, working on a book, will tell you how important she is to the adoption community, known to troll adult adoptees reminding them how grateful they should be while misquoting Margaret Mead, who she thinks wrote a baby book.

John Huntsman-Adoptee, but nobody has noticed.

Newt Gingrich-Late Discovery Adoptee, claims to be grateful, but is troubled by sexually charged homicidal fantasies involving his adoptive mother.

Sarah Palin-Adoptee that wants to adopt, already has really bad ass names picked out, but has been turned down by every agency in the country. She can see Russian babies from her house.

Ron Paul-Adoptee, nobody listens to him, compensates by overachieving, but just can’t please his adoptoraptors by becoming president, destined to fail. Also wonders if his children are actually his. He still truly believes he came from the hospital.

Rick Santorum-definitely not a birth father. Google it.

Herman Cain-Adoptee, look at the group picture.

Rick Perrry-Sperm donor, but underutilized, has probably not fathered any children, intelligence means more to potential buyers than good hair.

(Que end-of-dream-sequence music)