Friday, December 31, 2010

2011 is Unwritten

A New Year always reminds me of the Natasha Bedingfield song, Unwritten.

I am unwritten,
Can't read my mind
I'm undefined
I'm just beginning
The pen's in my hand
Ending unplanned

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words
That you could not find
Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your innovation

Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten.
A new year is great like that - such a fresh start.

What are you hoping the chapter of 2011 will add to the story of your life?

I leave you with the video for Unwritten. Enjoy and Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Holiday Memories

I remember growing up and always being so excited about Christmas and the New Year and being able to make cookies for Santa and also having that special NYE kiss at midnight with that one special person. Now, that I have all of those things now that I am older I now am starting to look at Christmas and New Years Eve a lot differently. When my children had their first Christmases they were the most special to me and I was so happy to see their faces when they saw what Santa had gotten them for the big day. And also going to the church service the night before and having them be a part of that. This year, because of the adoption, I didn't think that I would enjoy the holidays as much. Thanksgiving was probably the hardest for me, as you may have seen I haven't posted in a few weeks. I actually thought that I would be angry, sad or mad, but actually because I have such a great family it was filled with love, laughter, and "OMG IT'S A BOX" (an inside joke that we came up with while opening gifts at my in-laws). Those things happen every year, there is always something that we come up with.

My favorite thing, was getting to open the gifts from our adoptive couple. We weren't even expecting gifts from them, we never do. Trent got an awesome game for the Wii, as well as the kids were given an amazing gift card so that would help us with Christmas this year, because we didn't really think we would be able to afford gifts this year. Also, getting the gift from my Secret Sister really made my day as well. Probably out of all the gifts from everyone was my locket and bracelet that was given to me by E's mom and dad. They had pearls on them, pearls are the birthstone for June, the month that E was born in. I think that I cried more with that than with anything else. I have tried wearing the locket a couple of times but it's really loud, not in a bad way, but it makes me laugh because I'm a loud person so it kind of went with everything. Also, on Christmas I received a picture of E in this "little elf" onesie and I all I could do was smile. Knowing that he is getting all of these traditions with other people does sometimes make me sad, and I wish I could have seen him open his first gift, or eat his first cookie. But seeing him be with some of the most amazing people that I know was great enough, and I was lucky enough to not shed any tears on Christmas. As much as I thought that I would be so upset and sad I really had the most amazing time with my mom&dad, my husband, my beautiful children, as well as my in-laws. It was so nice, because my sister-in-law is pregnant and it reminded me of when I was pregnant last year with E and it made it even more amazing, to know that her beautiful daughter will be here next year for me to spoil and everyone to hold and love on. I always believe this that with every adoption comes a miracle of life born into a family...and lucky enough my hunch was right and when we had E she told us the day after that she was pregnant and it just made me so ecstatic to know that I was going to be an aunt, and for that little girl to grow up knowing about E and being able to one day be able to spend time with each other.

I wanted to let everyone know that Christmas is about love, blessings, and sharing time with your family near and far. Not all of us are lucky enough to be able to see our birth children, or know about their day. But I was lucky enough to know about it and be able to see him (I didn't get to in person although that is the the goal one day to be there for one of his Christmases) but being able to see a picture melts and warms my heart to the core.

I hope that everyone had a great Christmas, and has an amazing New Year. Remember 2011 is a new year, a new time, and a time to cherish what we do have, and not to be angry or harsh about what we don't have.

And I must make a public apology to my secret sister, for being so late on your gift, I really hope that it got to you on time.

Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year to ALL of you. You are all in my thoughts everyday.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Quote of the week: Memory

"Memory is a way of holding onto the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose." - Kevin Arnold

Monday, December 20, 2010

A Christmas Poem

by Linda J Schiltt

It's Christmas time, the gifts are wrapped,
And piled beneath the tree,
Yet every year there's an absence,
That is only felt by me.

I prepare the table for the feast
And bow my head in prayer,
I try best to hide my grief,
For the child that is not there.

We raise our glasses for a toast,
To family and to friends,
But all that I am wishing for,
Is to hold you once again.

So amidst the Christmas joy,
Is an emptiness I bear,
An ever present heartache
For the child that is not there

And when I see children laugh
With that twinkle in their eyes,
I cannot help but wonder
If you think of me sometimes

And when the day comes to an end,
No grief can quite compare,
To another Christmas yearning
For the child that is not there.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Quote of the week: Wonder and knowing

"It is better to know and be disappointed, than to not know and always wonder." - Unknown

Monday, December 13, 2010

Holiday Traditions

( as shared in the Founder's Corner Section of the December 2008 BirthMom Buds Bulletin)

Traditions are an important part of any holiday but it can be hard as a birthmother because your child will be participating in his/her adoptive family’s traditions and those may not be the same traditions that you have grown a custom to. But you can create some special traditions as a birthmother.
Coley’s Ornament Tradition
One tradition I’ve created for Charlie is to give him a special ornament each year at Christmas. I originally didn't plan on it becoming a tradition but it has turned out that way. 

When searching for something to give Charlie his first Christmas, I came across a really neat Precious Moments Christmas “Baby’s First Christmas” ornament that had a spot to write his name, birth date, weight, and length. I purchased the ornament and thought what a neat keepsake item it would be for him to have one day in the future.

The next Christmas it only seemed natural to give him another ornament, thus it has become a yearly tradition. I plan to continue this ornament tradition for years to come and when he is all grown up and leaves home, he will have years worth of ornaments to put on his own Christmas tree.

Lani’s Verse Tradition
have always loved family traditions and thought it would be great to still have a part of that in my birth child’s life.  Since the time she was born I started a  neat tradition that I do periodically when I send her gifts. I have a special Bible verse (James 1:17, Every good and perfect gift comes from God.) that is kind of like my thoughts about her.
Over the years I have given her different things that have that special verse on it such as a blanket with the verse embroidered on it, a stuffed bunny with the verse embroidered on it, etc..  One day I hope that she will see the link in all these things and know that time, thought, and love was put into it.  

We both encourage each of you to find some sort of tradition that you can do over the years for your child. Even if you are in a closed adoption you could still do something and just save it for the day when you are reunited.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Quote of the week: A New Ending

"Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending." - Maria Robinson

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Quote of the week: Life

Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we're here, we might as well dance! - Unknown

Friday, December 3, 2010

December 2010 Newsletter

The December 2010 BirthMom Buds Bulletin is now available here. If you have any problems viewing that or if you just prefer to download the PDF file, you can download that version of the same newsletter here.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Path of Adoption

I don't know you and you don't know me, but we are one in the same. We gave our hearts away to fill someone else's life with joy and happiness. We gave our children the best life that we thought we could, by allowing ourselves to love our child enough to let them go. We walk along the same road, maybe down different paths but always in the same direction.

When I refer to paths- I mean the option of adoption paths. Some of us chose a closed adoption to make the pain or hurt less, even though it is always there and it will remain a part of us forever. Some of us were forced with closed adoptions because it was the only option at that time. Some of us chose the semi-open adoption path because there was a part of us that still wanted the option of seeing pictures and knowing how our child was. Then there are some of us that chose the open adoption path, like myself, who wanted full access to all of the information, wanted to feel in control, even when most of the time I feel like I'm out of control. And some of us didn't get a choice at all. 

No matter which path we have decided or are deciding to take it is one that we all go into with a heavy heart and did so because we thought it was best for our child. No one said that it would be easy. Many of us will wake up in the morning thinking of whether or not the decision we are making or have made is the right one. 

Some people may tell us that we are selfish because we just want to live our lives without the "burden or responsibility" of a child, or that we are abandoning our children. I want to address those comments. 

Our decision was the hardest one that anyone can ever make, one of the least selfish things anyone can do. How is it selfish to love your child enough to give them to a family that can give them more than you could ever dream of? Give them the option of being anything they want to be? How is it selfish to give people the most blessed gift from God that they literally are so happy that they cut up newspaper and magazines to show that confetti is flying in the air to show a celebration of their happiness? Or being so grateful to you that their cup runneth over with love and joy? It's not...plain and simple. 

If someone ever tells you that you are selfish they haven't walked a mile in your shoes, or carried a child for 9 months knowing all those kicks, heartbeats, ultrasounds, and even your first moments of holding that child would be the only firsts that you'd get to have in person. They will never know the pain, heartache, and happiness that you feel, and I really feel sorry for them. 

As for those that want to make snide jerk comments about you abandoning your child to live your life with no worries, no responsibilities or any other selfish comments they want to make, are obviously too self-absorbed to even care enough about what you are going through to see that you are not selfish and you are NOT abandoning your child. 

Maybe this post was more of a rant-- maybe it will put some people in their place, maybe it will put comfort in some birthmom's hearts and let them realize that they are not alone and what they are doing is just making others wish they had the strength and the selfless heart to go through it all. 

I've just been feeling so down lately because of some of the comments made by others who are bitter, and also been told straight to my face that I am not E's mom because I'm not raising him. I'm so frustrated with the arrogance and ignorance of others to think they even had or have the right to say such things to me. I am E's birthMOM, see MOM. Even if I didn't already have 2 kids before I gave birth to E I would still celebrate Mothers Day and I'd still be proud to call myself a mother because there are plenty of women out there that believe their children are a burden to their independence and that pregnancy is the most horrible thing that they ever had to go through, AND there are even "mothers" out there that leave their children with random people, ship them off every weekend, and even leave them with their parents so that they can have their "alone" time with their significant other, party with friends, or  do drugs. THOSE mothers are the ones that are abandoning their children NOT you. But yet they are still considered "mothers" even after doing all of that. We are giving the gift of life and love to families that can't do it themselves. We make very important decisions for them before they are even born. 

We are moms one and all, you never know the journey of someone's life and path of adoption if you never plan to walk a mile in their shoes, but you are willing to spit on the road that they are traveling. 

"All that still matters is the love and the laughter, after the life we've been through"