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The Other Woman

Sunday, April 4, 2010

“It’s like cutting though leather. Make sure to cut firmly.” After those instructions the doctor handed the scissors to the only man in the room.

“Ok, I got it.” Fighting back tears Jeff took the scissors and cut through the umbilical cord.

There was crying, well actually screaming coming out of this little 7 lb. baby boy. As soon as the cord was cut the slippery baby was loosely wrapped in a soft, warmed blanket and handed to his trembling father. The screaming infant had a head full of black fuzz and was still wet with the fluid that had protected him for nine months. Immediately after the baby was put into his daddy’s waiting arms Jeff began to sing Amazing Grace. Instantly the baby quieted. He turned his little brown head and looked directly into his father’s tear-filled eyes. The child recognized the voice of the man that had sang that song on a tape that had been played every day during the last half of the pregnancy.

The room was crowded with the doctor, several nurses, the parents of this new little life and the woman that knew the baby she had carried all those months was not hers to keep. In that crowded little hospital room there was not one person with dry eyes. The baby knew that he was in the arms of his daddy. At the same time a bond had been severed a new family was formed. The tiny bundle was then with his forever parents.

The baby was named Michael Julian. Julian is a family name that runs back for generations in the new mother’s family. The baby at once was enveloped by a new past, a new future and a new life. Michael was a happy baby that was the center of his family’s life. It seemed that this child had been a part of the family since the beginning of time. He had an older sister and brother that cherished and protected him as he grew. He had parents that kissed his owies, taught him how to skate and nurtured him from the beginning.

The years went by and his parents sensed his sensitive nature. Michael always knew that he was adopted; it was a part of his birth story. Even if the family had wanted to hide that important fact Michael would have known. He was of mixed heritage. His skin was a beautiful mocha brown and his hair was black and curly. He did share one physical feature with his new mommy; their eyes were the same auburn brown color. Michael’s adoption was common knowledge but it made no difference he belonged where he was.

Today on Facebook I got a friend request. It was from the woman that chose me so many years ago to mother the baby she had carried. As I stared at the request I felt adrenaline rush through my body. My face grew hot and my heart began racing. I couldn’t help but stare at the picture of the woman that had made the request. I thought of Michael’s sensitivity. I thought about what his reaction could be. I thought about how his future could change and I felt the intense fear of possibly of losing my child, my baby, my Michael. Some of my fears were rational, some were not.

I know that Jeff and I are the parents of this special 18 yr old. I know that he is of the age to make the decision to meet her. I also know that it would be too much for him to handle right now. But the feelings that return to me again and again are feelings of losing my son. I feel angry that the request was made. That choice should be Michael’s and Michael’s alone. I feel guilty of not being more understanding. I feel selfish and scared.

I continued to stare at the request. I called my daughter, the sister that loves him like no other. We talked and no decision was made. I thought of the problems that had been in this woman’s life and why we had to cut ties with her. I thought of the trouble that the children she raised were in. I thought of the other children that she had given away and of the one that she had aborted. I thought of how different Michael’s life would have been.

I ignored the request.

I Wished for You: an Adoption Story (Mom's Choice Award Recipient, Book of the Year Award, Creative Child Magazine)

7 comments:

Brenda Susan April 17, 2010 at 9:54 PM  

Sometimes we have to be brutally wise! You are.

Teri April 17, 2010 at 10:12 PM  

Thank you so much! I hope I made the correct decision.

Kim Williams Jacobson April 27, 2010 at 8:42 AM  

One of my four brothers is adopted. I was 12 when we adopted him. I was the first person to hold him. I couldn't love him anymore if he shared the same blood as me. He's just my brother.

My brother, Paul, (my sons name too), is only 35, but has the body of an 85 year old. He's had a rough life with our family. When he was almost 4 years old, my dad and I left my mother. She was crazy, tried to kill herself twice and had two stays in a mental hospital. She would tell my dad how much she loved him and then when alone with me, would tell me she wished that he were dead. Emotional abuse was her specialty. I could not live there any longer. I ran away once and then when my dad left, I left with him and did not talk to her for two years. I still hold a huge part of me away from her. I think subconsciously I do that because I'm afraid she might succeed with the next suicide attempt and my heart doesn't want to get hurt.

Unfortunately, the court said that we could not take my brother with us. My dad fought very hard for him.

My mom and her second husband bought a run down apple orchard in New Mexico. My step father stayed in his great job in California so that they would have money to get the orchard going. My mom and brother and now a new sister, stayed on the orchard and worked like slaves. My brother was about 7 years old and he was taking a but 40 miles one way to get to school. When he finally got home, he had to help my mom with the orchard. He never got to have a family life. He did poorly for most of his school years and it wasn't until his senior year of high school that he was diagnosed with dyslexia.

My step father ditched my mom, brother and sister for another woman. My brother has serious abandonment issues.

My brother has been a roofer, electrician, truck driver and now he is a farrier. All of his hard work has only gotten a broken and constantly sore body. He drinks too much and barely has enough money to live on. He qualified for welfare, but is too proud to take it.

He wants me to help him find his birth mother, but I don't even know where to start. She was a college student that loved him, but thought she was doing the right thing by putting him up for adoption. I think she would be crushed if she knew how he was doing. She tried to do the right thing. Unfortunately, he ended up in a home with a crazy woman for a mother.

He moves from job to job and I'm afraid that he won't be able to work much longer because of all of his injuries from his different jobs and a stint when he rode bulls in the rodeo for a few years.

Sorry for the rambling, but I just wanted you to know how fortunate Michael is that he has you for a mom and your family as his family.

Don't feel bad for feeling selfish. You can't help your feelings. You've been there for him through good times and bad. She hasn't and it was her choice. If he chooses, he can love her too, but he knows who his real mother is and deep down, he'll never forget that. He has the capacity to love you both.

I pray that all works out for you guys.

Kim Jacobson

~Onreeone~ June 16, 2010 at 6:34 PM  

Whatever decision you make is completely up to you. But I don't believe ignoring her request is going to help you out any. It's going to eat at you and eat at you. You can't ignore it forever. Send her a message questioning her motives behind the request. If the biological mother's heart were in the right place I believe she would have contacted you in a more respectful fashion. At least Michael knows' he's adopted and always has. Imagine how at 18 he would feel if that had been kept from him. I understand your feeling of being left, but Michael knows who his mother is and who has loved, supported, and encouraged him the past 18 years of his life. No one can take that away from you. Hang in there Teri- A few question though- Did you know this woman before she birthed your son? How did she pick you? I'm probably asking too many questions here, but I have a similar, but not similar situation. If that makes any sense?

W.C.Camp July 15, 2010 at 1:13 AM  

I will never understand these biologicals getting magically wistfull for their shurked responsibility 18 years later? I understand the need to 'let go' sometimes, and I understand the need to 'hold on'. But overall, if the system placed the kid with loving parents (as in this case it is obvious they did), the biologicals should be 'at peace' with the result and forever 'let go'. W.C.C.

The Queen September 6, 2010 at 5:23 PM  

I will never understand these biologicals getting magically wistfull for their shurked responsibility 18 years later?

I would have to argue this point. Sometimes, they are given up because it's the best thing a Mommy can do.. and once they are of age.. then.. both Mommy's should do what is best..

so they don't feel lied to by either. I don't know the case here.. I just don't want all people lumped in to one bucket. THEY CHOSE TO ALLOW SOMEONE ELSE TO LOVE A CHILD, that for some reason they could not care for... it's better than dumping them in an alley..and coming back 18 years later to see if they are still ok..

Candace June 7, 2011 at 7:34 PM  

i'm going to go with "good choice". Friend requests...for friends only. GO AWAY. Sorry, I'm totally late commenting because, well, i'm reading your blog instead of studying. hugs.

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