I haven’t talked to Jeanne in 13 years. Life went on. Nicole is 16 now, and I have a wonderful husband and life. Yet – I’ve felt something missing, and I’ve never attributed it to being adopted. Being adopted was just something I was – like being female, or being funny.
Writing this blog has seemed to open things up for me that I’ve never considered. It’s made me think more about the circumstances surrounding my being and it’s making me realize that all might not be as it seems. Maybe there’s something to the “primal” theory – that a person is irrevocably changed when removed from their mother. That a mother is irrevocably changed when forced to give up their child.
Being a mother myself, I cannot begin to imagine how my life would have been ripped apart if my daughter was taken from me at birth. How could a person ever recover from that?
Women – especially women “back then” – didn’t even get to talk to anyone about their pregnancy – they were shamed and sent into hiding. Who could they talk to about their feelings? My birth mother, like many – was “sent away” – as a young girl – to experience pregnancy on her own, and forced to “behave” by not even crying. They went through one of life’s most changing experiences – alone, and then were expected to just go home and get on with living.
There is a book called “The Girls Who Went Away – The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children in the Decades Before Roe vs Wade”. I intend to read it.
I believe now that something that happened to you at birth, of which of course you have no memory of, can have effects of which you won’t understand – unless you try to understand – if that makes sense.
I have been having conversations with my sister – Jeanne’s daughter, which has made me realize that Jeanne never recovered from her experience as a young woman. I don’t think Jeanne realizes it herself. I will talk about these conversations with my sister in another post.
Maybe, in trying to understand Jeanne – I am trying to understand myself.