a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring,
all of which have the potential to turn a life around. – Leo Buscaglia
I am beginning preparations for my trip to Philly next weekend. I will meet with Thirdmom. We will begin developing our joint presentation for AAC. I am excited at the prospect of seeing Thirdmom again, at a weekend away, at a an opportunity to see my friend Joanna, maybe my friend Robin. Will likely be a very busy weekend.
Yet, as is the norm for me, the classic Gemini, with the good feelings come the negative ones. Thirdmom mentioned that she was going to dig up her own adoption process papers to use as a reference for our discussions. This prompted me to think about bringing "the box" to Philly.
The box is a fireproof box that contains my only copy of the papers I signed to surrender my daughter to brokers. It contains the magical "waiver of confidentiality" (I really have to blog about that magical waiver some day for it wasn't so magical after all), photos of me, my daughter, her father, books, videos, poems, the profile I was given of my daughters prospective adopters, printouts of my first correspondence with my daughter in 2005 and more.
I am quite confident that this material will be very helpful to my meetings/discussions and eventual presentation. I am also confident that upon opening the box I will hear the sounds of an eighteen year old mother weeping in pain over the loss of her child. It is a sound only I hear. I open the box, the whimpering starts. I close it and it stops. I open it wider and the whimpering starts and is louder.
I must admit pulling it off the top of my bedroom armoire is akin to loading a gun for a game of Russian roulette.
I never know what pulling the trigger will produce. Will I get shot in the heart or will the barrel turn up empty? Can I flip through the pain in those papers like I might wash lettuce or will the tears begin to fall? Will I lose my breath and be unable to function? Can I share this information, discuss it, in a clinical manner with Thirdmom and others or will I be in need of men carrying white jackets?
I know Thirdmom is worried about me. She is worried about this presentation being triggering. She even asked if I wanted to rethink it. I responded with an emphatic NO. I will do this. I must do this. I must do this for me, for my daughter, for any future children my sons or even my daughter may have. I must do this for my grandchildren. I must do this for the mothers and children I don't even know.
My pain cannot change the past. It cannot get my child back. It cannot make her care about me or make her want to meet with me or be part of my life or be sensitive to my feelings.
I do believe it can change the future. For me and others like me others that may be doomed to be like me.
I must believe.
If I can change ONE life with my sharing, it is worth it. Save one mother and child from my lifetime sentence and I save generations of that family from a lifetime of unnecessary pain.
For in attempting to help others, I somehow help that 18 year old mother whose cry emanates from The Box.