Thursday, 12 April 2012

The Power of the Telly Box

There is a programme on tonight "Long Lost Families" ~ it's very mawkish and deals with the reuniting of families separated by adoption. The first series last year was dubbed "Mummy's Weekly Weep" by my kids, as I sobbed my way through every episode.

It resonates with me on many levels, the main one being that of an adopted child. I am not sure whether this is a appropriate subject for a Blog, but it's my bloody Blog and so I've decided to write about it.

My parents wanted children desperately but it just never happened, and so they chose to adopt ~ and being the amazing human beings they were they subsequently adopted 4 of us, my Mother never did anything by halves! I was only 10 days old when I was adopted, which meant that I didn't have to grow up in Solihull, which is where I was born ~ I mean me with a Brum accent?? I think not..

I didn't find out I was adopted until I was about 9 ~ I still remember walking upstairs and hearing my sister scream at our Mum "I hate you, you're not even our real Mother" ~ which is, quite frankly, one hell of a way to find out! I ran into my parents' bedroom and wept bitterly for about 15 minutes with my poor Mother tying to console me.. And then I suddenly realised it actually made no difference to me AT ALL.. My Mum and Dad were still my Mum and Dad and life was really no different, other than it would be a bit cool to tell the girls at school!

At the time I asked questions about my "real" parents (God, I hate that phrase) and my parents skillfully avoided telling me anything ~ rightly so, I now realise with hindsight. All I was told was that my Birth Mother was very young when she had me, and that my Mum and Dad loved me and wanted me to be their daughter. Good enough for my 9 year old self!

The years rolled on and there was the odd occasion where I thought I wanted to know more, but the desire passed very quickly as I looked to my parents and realised how lucky I actually was.

When I was pregnant with my eldest daughter my Mum used to get very upset that she couldn't empathise with me, having never been pregnant herself. That hit home for me.. It made me love my Mum even more to be honest.

My Mum died less than 2 years after I had my daughter and the effect that had on my life was devastating. I had lost my best friend and my rock, the light in my life and my Beacon of Hope ~ how the bloody hell was I supposed to cope when my world had been knocked off its axis? And to this day I defy anyone to tell me it would have been more painful if my Mother had actually given birth to me, it's simply not possible. The same can be said when both my big Brother and my Dad died ~ blood ties could not have made the pain any more horrific. 

Throughout all of this I have never had any desire to find out any more about my Birth Mother ~ I have, in fact, been quite dismissive.. I have always brushed off friends who have asked "But don't you have ANY interest in knowing" with the [true] explanation that I felt nothing was missing from my life and my relationship with my parents, and therefore I felt no need to delve into someone else's life.

And then this flaming programme was shown ~ and I realised that I am not the only one in the equation. Somewhere out there (maybe) is the woman who gave birth to me and who (maybe) wants to know about me. You may say that I am thinking like this because I no longer have parents, and to be perfectly honest you may well be right. 

I think I would like to see my adoption records ~ just to see. And yes, I can't help but wonder what if I look like someone else? A harrowing thought I know, but a thought all the same.

So once again, I will sob my way through this programme while I try and decide whether to apply for my records. Might I be opening a can of worms? Or might I not be strong enough to do it alone, maybe I should leave well alone.

Now, excuse me while I go and mop all the mascara from down my face.

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