Friday, January 28, 2011

Worry


Photo credit: http://morningcruise.blogspot.com/

I’m a worrywart by nature.  It’s as inherent to me as breathing.  I get frustrated by the unneeded stress and pain that worrying causes, but as much as I tell myself to stop worrying and that everything’s going to be okay, I can’t seem to stop.

So when it takes T and C a while to respond to an email from me, I worry.  I worry that I’ve said something to offend or hurt them and that I’ll never hear from them again.
It's interesting that open adoption in general seems to breed those feelings.  Don’t get me wrong.  I know that all birthmothers have to struggle with some feelings of worry about their children, whether they’re in closed, semi-open, or fully open adoptions.  But I think that each situation breeds different kinds of worry.

I just completed my first official year of open adoption.  There’s been a lot of worry on my part about where I stand in general in my daughter’s and her parents’ life.  During the year, T and I have gone from exchanging an occasional letter (which we still send) to sending emails back and forth quite frequently.  When we first started emailing, we exchanged long emails a couple of times a day, but by the time December arrived, it had gone down to a couple of emails a week, and they were MUCH shorter.  But that was okay.  I was (and still am) grateful for any contact.

I think that’s been the key for me.  I still worry.  I don’t think I’ll ever stop.  But I worry less because I trust that the relationship we’ve built will survive.  That we don’t have to send a certain amount of emails a week (or daily, for that matter).  I know that they won’t forget about me.  They won’t decide suddenly that they don’t want to have any contact with me ever again.

So I still send emails when I have news.  I still email and let them know I’m thinking about them.  Every time I make a comment that I’m sure they’re tired of hearing from me, T reassures me that even though she may not respond as promptly as even she would like, that they still love hearing from me.

What do you do when you worry?  Do you have something you think about that helps you worry a bit less?

3 comments:

  1. I totally feel you on this! I'll never forget the first time I called Bee's family and they didn't return my call! I thought I was going to lose it. I though, "Ok this is it. This is them cutting me out." Turns out they were just super busy with a family wedding and my phone call got lost in the hustle and bustle.

    These days if I ever get worried again I just remind myself that it's been over 8 years, why the hell would they just cut me out now?

    Great post!

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  2. platanosandmangoes.blogspot.comJanuary 28, 2011 at 9:19 AM

    I think the worry lessens as the relationship matures. I worried more at the beginning and in those moments I would try not to be impulsive.(Like calling right away) I would just let it sit for a couple of days and then approach it. ! :D

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  3. Someone once explained to me that Worry makes you live something an extra time.

    1) If the thing you're worried about actually happens, you live it once in your mind and once in real life.

    2) If the thing you're worried about DOESn't happen, you've spend your time and emotional energy experiencing it anyway.

    That said, it can be a challenge to stay present, and not in another place or time with all the What Ifs!

    I really like what you said: "But I worry less because I trust that the relationship we’ve built will survive."

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