Alternatives To Violence

Being an adoptee can make you want to throttle everyone you meet sometimes, but you just can’t do that. Read more about it here….

Melanie’s bitchy post at Grown In My Heart

To anyone that might take offense, I was talking about someone else.  Really.  I was.

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Bears, Gay Marriage, adoptee Rights, and Bears

We Need To Talk.

Hey, where else can you get adoptee rights, gay marriage, and bears?

Check it out.

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It’s a really mean looking bear.  Well, mean looking for one in a zoo anyway.

The National Council for Adoption: Mothers, Money, Marketing, and Madness, Part 1 – DivineCaroline

Thought I’d share this with you guys.  Very well worth reading.

The National Council for Adoption: Mothers, Money, Marketing, and Madness, Part 1 – DivineCaroline

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Where Was Cynthia Davis Born?

Where Was Cynthia Davis Born?

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Also check out Worst Person In The World…

And this...Free Whores In Missouri

Now why would I post this?

I’ll let you figure it out for yourself.

What The Hell Was Going On?

Joy’s post about foster care got me thinking.  I was in foster care too, but I was with my adoptive parents.  I was about 2 weeks old when they took me home from the hospital on a trail basis.

I had known that I was a ward of the state until my adoption was finalized when I was 2, but I had not known it was a “trail adoption” until recently when my a-mother mentioned it.

What the fuck is a trail adoption?

A-mom really didn’t know.  That’s just what the social worker had told them.  They were pretty much under the impression that I was with them to stay.

I don’t know the date of my relinquishment.  All I have are my adoption papers and they only mention that my first mother had given up parental rights at an earlier date.  Not what date.

What the hell was going on for those 2 years?

Had I been relinquished immediately after I born?  Was I not relinquished until later?  Was my relinquishment voluntary?  Was I removed from my first mother because she was judged to be incapable of caring for me?

Were the concerns with my adoptive parents?  Had they not decided if they wanted to adopt me?  Did the state have concerns about their fitness as adoptive parents?

Was there some concern for my health? Were there questions about my mental fitness?  What?

I’d really like to know.

If the state hadn’t placed me, and I had grown up in foster care, I would be able to know these things.  But since I turned out to be a healthy little thing that somebody decided to keep, they won’t tell me.  As far as the state is concerned I’m a different person than the baby they were responsible for.  The foster child ceased to exist when I was adopted.

I ceased to exist.  I didn’t die.  I didn’t change.  I just ceased to exist.

That’s a pretty good trick, being able to make a person disappear.  Anything at all could have happened, then it’s all just gone.  Like it never happened.

But it did happen.  It happened to me.

Trinkets Of My Ingratitude

A conversation with a friend brought up an interesting image. She remarked,  as an adopted little angel, I must require a halo welded to my sweet head.  I replied that I thought that I could pull it off if I could wrap it with the trinkets of my ingratitude.  

I could just see myself as the towheaded angel that I once was, clad in a white robe, resplendent with my golden halo, wrapped in jingling sparkly charms representing all of my sins.   It reminded me of the charm bracelet that I had as a child that represented all my virtues.  

My charm bracelet was sterling silver, and so were the charms, that was pretty impressive in those days.  It was my first piece of real jewelry.  I had a charm with a musical note because I was taking piano lessons.  A charm with a four leaf clover  because I was lucky.  There was a charm with a little girl carrying books because I went to school.

My adoptive mother bought me the charm bracelet at the local jewelry store.  This was a place of wonder, full of grown up things that you had to be very careful around.  They had glass shelves full of fancy glass vases and candy dishes in beautiful colors I’d never seen before. Lite from the bottom,   I thought they were the most beautiful things I’d ever seen.  They had long cases filled with gold and silver and gems that looked like contents of the treasure chests in my books.  There was a display of gold paged Bibles with illustrations in glowing colors that seemed to have had to have come from heaven.  

We didn’t buy much in the jewelery store, my adoptive mom liked practical things.  But one day mom decided that I needed a charm bracelet.  We walked into the jewelry store, past the lite up shelves that rattled ever so slightly with our footsteps, threatening to send the precious objects to the floor.  I felt butterflies in my stomach  and was relived to get to the back of the store without incident.

A woman that seemed so old that she might break if touched showed us a tray of silver bracelets.  There were so many to choose from, delicate ones with thin links, more substantial ones with heavy links, and one made up of delicate links fused together, I chose that one.   Then there were the charms, hundreds of them, made to represent everything I could think of, and some I couldn’t figure out.  My mother told me that we would pick out a few charms today and I could have new ones when I earned them.  I got the musical note and the four leaf clover that day.  The old lady took the bracelet to the back, attached the charms and wrapped it up on a satin lined box.  I wasn’t as nervous passing the rattling glass shelves with my little box on the way out.  

I was only to wear the bracelet on special occasions and to church.  Mom and I put it safely in my jewelry box that played Fur Elise and had the ballerina that spun in front of a mirror when opened.  

I earned more charms, a little Scottie dog when I got a puppy, a rose zircon was a birthday gift.  My bracelet would jingle on my wrist now.  I wore it to my cousin’s wedding, and out to dinner at The Green Circle, a very fancy restaurant where they served Shirley Temples.  I always wore it to church.   

There was one charm that I wanted more than anything.  It was a Bible, that had a little peephole you could look into and see the Lord’s Prayer.  It was like magic.  Mother told me I could have it if I memorized the Lord’s Prayer.  

It wasn’t easy, it took a while, and there was some controversy over if I was to forgive sins or trespasses, but I did it.  I memorized the Lord’s Prayer and got that charm.  

I was quite the hit at Sunday school that week. Nobody else had ever seen anything like that charm.  I refused to remove the bracelet, fearing it’s loss, and made everyone peer into the little Bible while I held up my wrist. My Sunday school teacher was even impressed.  

I couldn’t wait to get home from church to tell my mother, who never attended church herself, about how much everyone had liked the charm.  I never got home with that bracelet, it must have slipped off my wrist on the way home.  I was devastated.  Mother and I retraced my steps, but the bracelet wasn’t found.  Mother even hired a man with a metal detector to look for it the next week.  Nothing was found.  The bracelet was lost.  All of the representations of my virtues were never to be found again.  

I believe my friend was right, they should have welded a halo to my head.  It would have been harder to lose.  Would those representations of my virtues turned to trinkets of my ingratitude eventually?  Who is to know?

To Learn Grace..

..is a hard thing.  Some folks will never get the hang of it.

To me grace is something like respect, but in a personal condition,it has to come from not just action, but approach.  It has to come from the way that you think about things, and see the world.  

To learn grace you must realize in all but the most intimate places, you are a guest.  It’s not about deferring to your host, but being just as you are while still respecting that others may not share your outlook.

To learn grace you must never taunt.  Taunting is always clumsy, always disjointed, always a demonstration of gracelessness.  One cannot display grace by pointing out a perceived lack of grace.

To learn grace you must educate yourself.  If you don’t know who or what you are addressing, you are sure to trip.  You must not think that you can lead what you don’t understand.

To learn grace you must know not to be high handed.  The graceful do not see themselves as above others.  Offers of guidance are made from wanting to help, not wanting to dominate.  

To learn grace you must not assume.  Accept that the rather course explanation of the word assume that you were undoubtedly subjected to at some point in your life does have wisdom.  To assume is to make an ass out of you and me.

And finally to learn grace, you must listen.  You must listen to both your supporters and detractors.  When you cut through the praise and censure, there will be something that you can take away.

I don’t claim grace.  But I know it when I see it.