Letting Go

I've had six blog-free days, six PC-free days actually, three for a family wedding and three for a business conference with enforced single-tasking.

And during the three days of my business trip, I had lots of time to think.

I thought mostly about our children, about what the future will be like as they grow up, move on to college, and ultimately leave home. Like most parents, the thought of our home without the kids is one I find hard to accept. But the time is getting closer and closer - our son is a senior this year, our daughter a sophomore. Really, in a blink of an eye they'll be off on their own.

And for me this means the time has come to consider my involvement in reunion with our children's families. I need to step away and let our children make the decisions about if and when they reunite.

A couple of weeks ago my daughter and I were talking about her first family, and she commented that, although she wanted to know them one day, she wouldn't want it to be now. I gently asked if she could say why, and she honestly responded that she didn't feel she could handle the emotions at this point in her life. She seems to recognize that her teen years are turbulent enough.

A part of me wanted to encourage her otherwise, to pass on the urgent hope for reunion that I've held in my heart since she and our son arrived. Yet as she voiced her hesitation, I saw clearly that the time has come for me to let go - not to abandon hope or withdraw support, but to simply hand over the reins. This decision has to be hers and our son's.

Our children's families will always be a part of ours. The hope that we meet someday will always be in my heart. But it's time for the search and reunion to belong to them alone.

Comments

weigook saram said…
I guess for the adoptee it must be like opening a box, and you don't know what's inside. I've read about reunions that were really joyous; I watched Daughter from Danang and I almost had to look away at times because it was so painful. I can imagine that it must bring up a lot of scary/ painful emotions for you as well as the kids. But I think you have the right idea, to just let go and let them decide what they want to do.
joy said…
Yes, motherhood is a process of letting go, and it's not easy. I remember when Tomtom was very little and an older mom telling me that.
For me reunion, making contact was so easy, my amom gave me all the information,I imagine it is not so easy internationally.
But even though the physical aspect was easy, I had my info. they were local, the emotional part, I think it took me 6 months of having the info before acting. And I don't necessarily think it was lack of want, though this is an older person looking back, I was confused and the birth of my son, was the first time I started consciously thinkning about my first mom, when birth became more real for me, and not understanding how my mom gave birth and then signed me away, it brought up confusion and anger.

But I was so young when I did both, gave birth and reunited, I wonder what it is like for those who have different frames of reference, and despite my amom's "blessing" worried a lot about hurting her, in fact am not immune to that feeling today.
art-sweet said…
Thanks for sharing this. As always, you give me food for thought.
The Goos Family said…
There is a time and place for everything, I truly believe that. When your daughter or son is ready, whether that be 3 or 5 or 10 years from now to reunite with their first families. But when that time comes, they will know that you are there to support and encourage them. It's great that you recognize the reins need to be handed over and great that your daughter recognized her own emotional state and what she could and could not handle right now.
Erica
Dianna said…
It's wonderful that your daughter felt comfortable articulating her feelings to you - and that you respect them. Letting go is not easy and letting them make their own decisions is even harder, especially when you have a differing opinion!
sheri said…
I think that you are doing a great job here. I know that it can't be easy for you, but you have a great outlook about your kids being able to reunion with their first family. It is so important that you have kept the lines of comunication open for them. and that they know you want to be there for them in what ever way you are needed so they can find and reunite with their first families when they are ready. You have done that, so now it is a matter of letting them know that it is up to them when they want/need this to happen. If they reunite with their first family before they are emotionally ready, this could lead to a lot of heart ache. So in my usual over zelos (sp)way, what I'm trying to say is you are handling this touchy situation with your kids just fine.
Mama Nabi said…
Third Mom, I hope that I, too, can be as wise in knowing when to encourage and when to take a step back...

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