31 July 2010

Gotta love those memories...

The last couple of days, I have been reading blogs of varying topics from adoption to general parenting and for some reason when I went to bed last night, the memory that decided to grace me with its presence is the last day I saw Amber after losing the final court battle.

We had one more visit left and so I timed this to ensure my youngest sister T could meet her while she was visiting from Australia. Amber was 9 months old at this point and the battle to keep her had been going pretty much since she was born and I decided to raise her.

It was the 6th of October and I can recall the grey clouds; it was like the weather knew this was a bad day and was crying with me. I took her footprints and her handprints all the while never realising what it would be like, at the end of this visit, for her to leave my life. Gone, just like that. As if all her time inside me had never happened. As if the days in hopsital and the magical days that followed were dreams of my imagination. All gone with the granting of an adoption that was questionable at best. All gone because of the actions of selfish, dishonest human beings.

I had been over the whole scenario of letting her go in my head and wanted to be brave. I would try not to cry in front of her. I would do the right thing and hand her over as now there was no other choice if I didn't want to be branded a criminal.

But... it all changed when the time came. Her adopters turned up and reality sunk in, I started hyperventilating; they decided to wait in the car and the people I was staying with agreed to bring her out. Meanwhile my sister had taken up a spot on the pavement and just glared at the woman who had come to steal her niece (my sister was 14 at this point). Inside, the time came to hand Amber over. And I couldn't do it. My arms actually locked around her and I couldn't let her go. A, the lady who had to bring her out, eventually had to pry her out of my arms and as she did, I started screaming and I didn't stop screaming for some time. As she walked out with my daughter, A felt awful, she hated to be the one who handed her over because she didn't agree with what my daughter's adopters had done either. I was nothing but a mess on the floor. A said when she was handing her over, all she could hear were my hysterical and gut wrenching screams. In fact the whole street could hear and the neighbours had come out just to see what was happening.

I haven't thought much about this day since. To me, it was when I was thrust into hell and I had the chance to see how evil humans could be. For me, this is my blackest day in history and so I slammed the door as much as I could and tried to bury it in the deep recesses of my mind.

After my visit from S and reading her blog amongst the blogs of other paps who feel the same, these memories have flooded their way back; forcing their voice to be heard. These women who want to be "paper" pregnant and parent a child at the expense of another family, have no idea of the trauma they are about to inflict on another woman, her child and her family. They talk about their "joy of parenting" being "stolen" and patronise people and dismiss their voices.

When I wrote about how adoption brings out the worst in humanity, I wasn't kidding. What I experienced when I lost Amber for me was worse than being raped, worse than being sexually abused at age 6, worse than when my father was wrongfully arrested in a foreign country and our home was stormed by men with rifles and bayonets, worse than the things we saw in the developing countries we lived in. I know trauma, very, very well. It has been a part of my life since birth as I battled to survive, not once but twice, but NOTHING has affected me as much as adoption. It was like all these awful things were just stops along the way to prepare me for the hell that was coming. I have wished more than once I could have died and started life all over again in fairy tale land.

Yet, here I am. With a beautiful family, three amazing children, a wealth of support and love surrounding me. I feel if I was a bitter person, I would not be as blessed as I am. If I was living a life full of anger and bitterness, our lives would reflect that and yet I have two happy children. These selfish, selfish people who cannot see further than their own desires to play house and being "mommy" need to know THEY are the bitter ones. The ones who are so blinded by their bitterness and greed, they are using their pain to make someone else pay. They are hurting people just to fulfil their desire and yet they cannot see how wrong this is. Instead, they turn it around and label anyone who dares speak out about the evil of adoption and shows its underbelly.

As has been stated many times before, I have great compassion for women unable to have children. My best friend, someone who was inseperable from me during my pregnant days with my daughter, found out only a few years ago, that she would most likely never have a baby. This news has devastated her beyond words. She is a professional Nanny, has been dedicated to caring for the children of others for years and this is what life has dealt her. How has she responded? Apart from the days where it is really just too much and she needs to vent, she has continued to care for these children. She has no desire to take another woman's child. She cannot comprehend those that pass by here from time to time to spew their ugly vitrol at me. It is totally beyond her that she would expect another person to feel pain because she is in pain.

I so wish I could help her. But there is no way to help except to be there to support her and share my children with her. She loves my kids and she is their other Auntie. We go to stay with her from time to time (she lives in another country) and she is a special person in our lives. I so wish it was different for her but the reality is, its not. But she has responded in the normal way, not in a way that is self serving or cruel and I love her even more for that because it could so easily been different.

She is not the only person I know in this situation and these other women are the same as her. They also could never prey on young women in the hope they would sever their natural, God-given relationship just so they could get what they want.

There is no such thing as children being born to be separated from their mothers. Pre-destination or whatever it is certain church people want to call it, doesn't exist in the way they think it does. In the Bible, where adoption is referred to, it is spoken about in terms of adults making a choice, not a helpless newborn being wrenched from his or her mother. Anyone who knew the heart of God, would know this and would cease their persuing of taking children from their families and seek to do what God/Jesus would do: find a way to keep mother and child together in every way possible. Any person disputing this is a liar and a theif and has no idea what is at the heart of the Christian message. And I say shame on you for using God and the church to justify a selfish, cruel desire that is never glorifying God but bringing disgrace on His name and His church.

I am so tired of the adoption world. Every day I see more and more cruelty directed at people; more and more entitlement oozing from people who feel they are superior to others and are somehow more deserving of their child. It is sickening. I have said it before and I will say it again. Adoption is sick. It is vomit inducing when you peel back the layers and see all the disease and infestation that lies beneath that glossy "Rainbows and Unicorns" exterior. For those who have had to live its pain and its daily horror, it is a monster and one I wish would just die.

20 July 2010

The little things do matter

Two mornings ago I woke having dreamed intensively all night. The last dream was the one that really stuck with me and I can still recall it now as I sit down to type this.

I have been very close with all three of my children; and each one of them has shown from birth how unique they are, right from the beginning.

This dream was more of a flash back than anything but as it involved scenes I was not present for, I can only assume I was in some state of sleep otherwise I would not have felt like it was a dream.

It started with a memory of Amber and I together, in the days after she had been discharged from the hospital. We slept in the same room, and had done so the moment I was allowed to take her out of the nursery in hospital. She had this peculiar little noise she would make; a little like snuffling but not really that either. It was a noise that indicated she was not settled and it is was rather loud. I loved it. Absolutely loved it because it was my cue to scoop her up out of her crib and lay her in my arms close to my chest and I would nuzzle her head as we would fall asleep. Miraculously, whenever I did this, the noises would cease and we would sleep like that, in silence, until she woke hungry, or as happened a few times, we would wake drenched in my milk! Still, after we were dry or after she was fed, we would resume this sleeping pattern and all would be quiet.

My dream took me on to my other two children where we had similar patterns. Noodle (my next daughter), never had the noise but she was happiest sleeping next to me in her crib, or later as she got older, in my arms. She didn't sleep in her own bed until she was four years old and moved in there of her own accord... once she was ready.

Then came our little Dude and his favourite place was on my left hand side, just above my breast where he could hear my heart beat. I discovered this shortly after his birth when the nurses and midwives had left us to try and attempt sleep (as it was after midnight when he was born) and he started making the same noises his biggest sister had made. Again, I scooped him out of his plastic hospital box, undid my night shirt and lay him on my bare shoulder. We fell into a blissful slumber.

From this point of my dream, I went into scenes not part of my memory bank and I only know this occurred because of what I was told by my daughter's adopters.

Not long after she was taken out of my arms, in fact within a day or two, her noises so precious to me and a sign of what she needed became too much for them to cope with... and so she was placed in a room, a strange, cold room, all alone. No rythmic breathing to signal I was there. No sweet smell of milk to let her know comfort was on hand. Before I woke with a tear drenched face, I could hear her in that room, all alone and it tore at me in a way I could never explain. I wish I could have walked into that room right then, gather her up and fled that house. Instead, I got to wake up.

When I woke, it hurt to breathe. Guilt overwhelmed me in waves. My little girl so happy and secure with me one moment only to be taken by strange arms with strange smells and foreign voices the next. I shudder at the thought of how her little mind coped with it.

Now it is still there, this sense of closeness. She doesn't even understand it herself. She melts into me whenever she touches me; it really shows how the small things in life really do matter. All this from a noise... and a bond that no man and no woman should ever, ever have interfered with.

04 July 2010

It is never too late...

Over the course of this past tumultuous week, as I have hurtled toward this day, I discovered this book, bought it and have been reading it non-stop ever since.

It is titled: "It is never too late..." by Patrick Lindsay. As I have felt so many things have been lost in the last 12 years, it has helped me realise that there are dreams I can rebuild and, slowly, if I keep looking forward, one day, I will get there.

Today was the Visit. The Visit I had dreaded more than any other visit. And I am still unsure why this day was so different, I just know I felt like I had spent all my energies and I could no longer pull anymore out of my hat and fight on. Yet I did:

"It is never too late.... to fight for Love:
If you know deep in your heart that it is worth fighting for,
then fight
."

So, I went along. I grinned. I laughed, took "tea with my torturers", but most of all, I loved my daughter. I sat with her, swept back her hair, looked into her eyes and loved her. We spoke of the same things we always speak of; the safe topics I knew wouldn't raise the ire of her adopters whilst doing my damnest to quell the rage inside me. There was no talk of stopping visits; rather I quietly mentioned to my daughter, in the most casual way possible, how nice it would be one day to spend some time together, just her and I... perhaps catch a movie or go shopping. Her eyes lit up and she said she would like that. Now, I know this is unlikely to happen, however, she will know it is not from my end this resistance comes from, but that of her adopters.

My younger daughter, Noodle, sat on her sister's knee the entire afternoon and my eldest daughter showed Noodle her DS and how to use it... it was beautiful. My husband who is another of my staunch supporters, sat this one out and took our two year old son, Dude for some Daddy time, to help lessen the pressure. My family, as ever, rallied to make the day as good as possible and together we made it through. Until the next time.

At some point, not long before the end of the visit, the talk of email addresses came up between her and my sister who is currently here from the UK and the reason we had the visit. The look from a certain male was priceless. She could not sadly recall her full school email address and when she asked her adopters for their help they were silent and we never obtained said address... however, I wrote one of mine down in HER little book. Then, as everyone was moving towards the front room from the lounge room, she asked her male adopter for her mobile number to give to me which he immediately replied: "She has mine, she doesn't need yours". Well!

I am however a little devious. In my pocket, I discovered my Squiz cards which I slipped one of to her and whilst by some miracle both her adopters were out of earshot, told her she now had all my details and could text me her number when she had a chance and then we could text each other whenever she wanted. I also mentioned she should keep this between us for now to which she grinned and replied "oh yes". Wow... it is amazing how little hope can appear and how much it can make you feel. It may not happen, she may not have the strength to fight her captors as yet however, the seeds are there and she now knows I am open to more contact with her but I understand how difficult it might be.

Incidentally, this is not the first Squiz card I have given her and yet she acted like she had never seen one before which confirms to me her mail is definitely being sensored as I have sent several in letters.

There was nothing different about this visit. The pretend games were there, in full velocity. It sickened me the entire visit and yet we had snippets of time where for mere seconds we could share ourselves authentically when the ever watchful eyes of certain people would stray.

I want to thank my readers, especially those of you who offered such love, for your support. Knowing I had you behind me, I got through this day however painful it was (and it was!) and I will make it through the next one. I also need to thank my sister C, as her unconditional love and unwavering support from the beginning of this ordeal has always helped urge me forward just that bit more. Thank you and love you too!

Again, thank you all from the bottom of my (broken) heart. You helped make today possible to bear.

Myst xxx

03 July 2010

Authenticity - my lack of

I am a fraud. My life is based on fraud. And I can't do it anymore.

We have another visit tomorrow and all I want to do is tell Amber the truth and that I can no longer play this game of lies and pretend. It has been going on for 8 years. 8 years I have played this game and I cannot do it.

Part of me waking up and wanting to live again means I want to be authentic and with the existence of this situation, there is no way I can be authentic. I feel as though I betray myself and my beliefs every time I have a visit. Every time I sit there pretending everything is just fine. But in reality, it isn't. It never has been and it can never be.

I don't want anymore visits. I want her in my life but in a way that is free and honest. To spend time without all the chains wrapped around us, ensnaring and trapping us in a game of make believe. I don't want to sit with THEM, the perpetrators of the crime, the liars, those who stole, yes, LITERALLY stole my child with the aid of money and a crooked judge. Haven't I played this game long enough?

And then there is her. My girl. Stuck in the middle of this. She didn't ask for it anymore than I did and her voice was never heard and is still drowned out. How can I walk away from her knowing she will not be allowed to see me without them tagging along? Yet, I know for the sake of my family that are here and now, I need to let her go. I need to do what I have never been able to do and accept she is no longer my girl. That is all gone. She never can be mine again because of the nature of adoption. It severs everything in all possible ways. Its poison kills off any chances. I see no hope, no chances and so why should I continue with this farcical game? How can any of this help her when we don't even talk? Even with reunions I have read about and see, I see only more pain ahead, no hope of anything being real. I will always be just her birther, her womb-for-rent, her abandoner. Which means I am nothing to her.

Today is a dark, dark day. I cannot see the sun through the clouds, cannot see the light at the end of the tunnel. I want to withdraw into a cave and never come out. Pain hovers too closely and I lack the strength to continually hold it off. Why did anyone think adoption could be a thing of beauty when all I have ever seen it do is cause more anguish than anything else...