The dream mothers
If you started reading here when I began blogging in early 2006, you may be wondering where the posts about mothers have gone.
I’ve been wondering, too.
Mothers dominated my early posts, and for a reason: writing about and for and to my children’s mothers was what brought me here in the first place. Those posts also held a lot of hope: for my kids to find their families, for me to meet them, for healing of the losses. It was – still is, really – a yearning, a desire I can’t control for relationships that may never be, or may only come with even more pain and struggle.
The first people that found me here were mothers who lost their children to adoption. In honesty, I never expected that. I was drawn to these women's stories, sought their friendship, and found it in many of them. They made the experience of adoption from a mother’s point of view real – so real in fact that I see now that my first posts about mothers came from a place that may not really exist. In that place, there is forgiveness all around, tears are shed and dried, and a new life begins in an expanded family. Problems exist there, but there are solutions for every one. The story has a happy ending.
Reality is different, I know that now. Reality is that it’s really none of my business if my children choose to search or not, or have a relationship with their families if they do. Reality is that my children’s mothers may hate me now and always for the fact that I raised the children they brought into the world. Reality, too, is that they may not care - that in spite of my dream that they dream of us, they may have shut us from their minds.
If that’s the case, there’s really no need for me to be here. I said what I came to say, learned it was off base, and am adjusting to the new reality.
But why is the yearning still here? Why won't these women leave my head? They’re in there with me wherever I go, the phantoms who never leave my side. With every one of my children's milestones, every accomplishment, even the smallest of events, I see them. They will not go away, even though my new reality says they shouldn’t even be there.
I don’t know what to say to them anymore. Respect falls flat. A welcome into our lives comes too late. Love? How can I profess love for someone I've hurt and never met and probably never will? How can I pretend to care about someone when I’m not really doing anything except talking about their problems?
My eyes close and I let my mind drift to these women. What do I see? A woman approaching 40, married with a family, working, doing what millions of women in Korean cities do every day. Another just ten years younger than me, with children who themselves may have children, living a hard-scrabble life in a Korean town. I see women like all women, dealing with what life has dealt them, going day by day.
Maybe reaching out to them is less a matter of talking, and more a matter of showing them, through my actions, that I see what brought them to adoption, and I’m doing what I can to change that. Yes, words are part of it, but actions will speak louder. I need to do something, not just talk about it.
Still, in the furthest corners of my heart, where no one else enters unless I allow them, these women are at home. If someday we meet, I won't talk talk to them about activism or solidarity. I'll listen to them and hear their experiences. I'll share everything I can about their children. If we meet, my head won't do any talking, my heart will.
Our conflicting emotions have bound us together in this dream-like way, and nothing I may do or say or write will change the fact that the dream will be with me until the day I die.
Do you dream about your children still? Do you dream about their lives in my family?
If you do, know that I’m dreaming, too.