Charlie is adopted. Our adoption is what is referred to as semi-open. Hubby and I have met both the birth mother and birth father of our son. We’ve also met his full brother and 1 of his half-brothers. Per our agreement update photos and letters are sent via the agency as an intermediary.
We are only required to do this twice a year but like I said previously, I’m working on developing a more open relationship so I send them more frequently. I also send tons and tons of pictures along with scanned copies of Charlie’s artwork, report card and anything else I think she might like to be aware of . I send photos and a letter every other month or so via email to the agency. Family to Family then saves them to disk and mails that to the birth parent.
I sent our most recent pictures from Christmas and Charlie’s birthday along with my letter at the beginning of February. I received an email back from our agency saying that they had lost contact with Charlie’s birth mother but will keep my update in case she ever contacts them again. Apparently the last batch of update pictures and letter were returned back to them with forwarding address unknown.
This news hit me harder than I thought it would. When I got the email I just sat back and went “huh. okay”. Ten minutes later I was crying my eyes out. It has taken me over a month to be able to write about it and my feelings. But since Courage is my word for 2011 and as I read over here at a friend’s birth mother blog;
The root of the word courage is cor — the Latin word for heart. In one of its earliest forms, the word courage had a very different definition than it does today. Courage originally meant “To speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.”
I will write about my reaction and emotions regarding losing contact with Charlie’s birth mother. I honestly did not think the news would affect me as much as it has. Literally within 10 minutes of reading the email I was crying my eyes out. I was not sure why it hit me so hard or hurt so much until I was talking to my best friend about the situation. She put it into words that I had, up until then, be afraid to say or think even.
She said that I was angry. Angry that one of Charlie’s parents abandoned him. Angry that she is missing out on knowing how awesome our/her son is. Angry that Charlie might miss out on getting to know her when he is older. My friend was right.
Anger is one of the stages of grief. I am grieving for what has been lost; the potential for a more open relationship with Charlie’s birth mother, the potential for Charlie to be able to meet her at some point. I am mourning for what I don’t know – why she did not leave a forwarding address with the agency. His birth mother has moved before and provided her new address previously. I am worried about whether or not she is okay emotionally, mentally, physically.
I have let go of my anger. I think I’m pretty much at the acceptance stage now. I know I am not in control. I will continue to send update letters and photos. In fact I need to sort through pictures at some point next week for her. I can continue to pray for her, Charlie’s birth father, and Charlie’s siblings. I hope at some point she will reach out and reconnect.