I was reading a first mother's blog today where she posted photos of her girls, the one she is raising and the one she is not. I had read much of her story but the photos hit me in a new way today.
I saw the little girl she placed for adoption. My first though, oh how beautiful she is. My second thought, Wow, how much she looks like N. My third thought stopped me cold.
Oh My, it would KILL me to see her.
So young - so much a fit into her own family.
It would KILL me. And this is exactly what it would be like for L. Our children so close in age (if it was her that had the little boy a year later), If her life is in a different place than it was.
Did I do the right thing? I think so. It is not my choice if she should see photos of BJ. More so if we visit.
But - My, God, My God - How does one survive this. I know not all who read here share my faith, but I don't know how a pain like that could be survived without holding on to God. It would be horrific enough, knowing it will somehow work together to Glorify him. Without that knowledge - I don't think I could see her.
But the other side - is it any better? Not knowing. Wondering. Missing and longing without the concreteness of a touch, a smell, a smile?.
Maybe that is why some choose photos only.
Once again I am rambling. But the beauty in that little girl's eyes made me weep for L.
BJ is OK, will be OK. Even if we meet, even if she weeps for saying goodbye to L at the end of the day. BJ knows our love, and love from L would primarily be gain, even if it is tinged with sadness. That acknowledgement of loss is already there, as BJ says - "but I never saw her" and doesn't want to talk about her and says she doesn't want to see her photo even if I get it. But I know my child, she will be glad to know we have it - to know she can see it when she wants.
But for L - what does she get out of my offer of contact. Nothing but more pain. Well, maybe a little bit of confirmation that BJ is safe, loved, happy, smart, healthy.
I am glad it is not my decision. Wow.
And all this from a photograph.
Maybe because it is so close to our situation. BJ begs for a brother or sister. I know that is not going to happen. We won't adopt again, except for a very rare situation. I never really wanted to pursue medical stuff and now I am 37.
BJ might already have a brother. I would love for her to know him. But again - what that would cost L. Oh my. The pain of seeing it. Of knowing - I got clean for him, I could have done it for her.
But even there, I am projecting. I don't know. I don't know if she is the one who gave birth to that little baby boy. I don't know if she has conquered her addiction. I don't know her family situation. I don't know.
I would like to know. But not at the cost of her pain being magnified.
It is her decision.
And all my anxiety about time is gone. Who but our God, for L does share my faith, knows. He knows when BJ and L will be ready for each other.
I pray he gives me the strength to look with love into the face of her pain.
This adoption, this making of our family was the making of joy (for us) out of a bad situation. A woman suffering in addiction undoubtedly facing a great deal of pain even before the pregnancy, fails to provide safety for the newborn. She decides to relinquish the child to adoption. Did she diminish pain for BJ? Probably she removed a great deal of risk for her, at least for a time. And L will pay for that choice, and I will benefit from it.
From here I can only be thankful for the blessing and wonder that is this child, try not to make further pain for L, and work to ensure that a day will come where BJ will have the fullness of all her life has for her. I pray that someday that will mean two families to love and embrace her.
And I still pray that the pain of all this will be protected from BJ until she is mature enough to understand it. That doesn't mean hiding the facts of who she is from her. I mean the woman to woman issues of grieving, loss, and dying to yourself to save your child, even from yourself when you in the midst of a losing battle and desperately trying to win the war. When victory feels like defeat every day of the rest of your life.