" Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go." – Herman Hesse
Cindy Sue (which for some reason causes me to say Cindy Loo Who in my head and think of Whoville, but I digress) made a rather profound comment on this post. I extracted part of the comment below.
"I made a vow to myself "to protect my hurt and adoption pain at all cost" simply because that was all I had left of my daughter . . . I protected the pain like my special treasure"
I read this comment at about 4 in the morning. Bleary eyed, having just been kicked in the back by my son who decided to insert his small feet into my underwear and create some new form of sock, I rolled over to check email on my iPhone (yes, I have a problem). Cindy’s comment was there.
What I take from her comment is that she lost her daughter and all she had left was the pain of the loss and that pain became the substitute child. She hung onto that horror with all her might as it was all she had left.
This may not be exactly what Cindy did or meant but that is what hit me and it made me think if I have done the same thing. I think I have mainly because I have done that before.
I hung onto dreams and hopes and love of my daughters father for many many years. While I still love him and always will, the unrealistic expectations and false hopes were let go of long ago. I realized at some point that I was hanging on to him (even virtually) as a way to keep her near. She was gone but he wasn’t and he was part of her so I clung to him and memories of him as if they were more needed by me than the oxygen I breathe. I wasn’t seeing him or truly loving him, I was loving what he represented to me (no different than what many adoptive parents do with the children they acquire). Nowadays, when I say I love him, I truly mean him. He is separate from her in my life – even if he is her father. They are distinct, though related, individuals to me.
But now, now I think, is this pain, this horror, the final shred of the false daughter I had? Now that I do know where she is, I know what she looks like, do I need to hang onto this pain/daughter any longer?
Do I want to see my daughter as PAIN or do I want to see her as HER? How would I want her to see me? Clearly she sees me and sees trauma and horror and abandonment. She doesn’t see the love I want to share, she doesn’t see my great eyes, or crazy red hair. She sees something unappealing. She doesn’t see ME.
I cannot control her thoughts or feelings, but I can control my own.
Gonna continue to work on this. I think I maybe onto something here. Of course I realized I held onto pain, but only now have I begun to suspect I held onto it as a substitute daughter.
Thank you Cindy Sue Loo Who.