It’s my birthday and I’ll cry if I want to

Cats birthday

It’s my birthday tomorrow and …….. I’m sure I won’t cry. I’m not ashamed to say I’ve reached the ripe old age of 42 – not ashamed but I am a bit sad – I am now well and truly in my 40′s…half my life gone already. What it has made me think about though this week is my children.  When I look back on my life I have been blessed. I’ve had a great family upbringing, relatively good school life, bounced around jobs until eventually found my passion. I’ve done many things I wanted to do in my life – travelled, lived abroad, married etc. I can wholeheartedly say I’ve been blessed.

Of course there have been struggles – the road to adoption being one and there are others too. BUT on the whole I know I am fortunate. My Dad died a few years ago now and around this time I think of him more. He was a brilliant man – a big, warm hearted man who loved to laugh and was generous to those around him. I miss him deeply.

Anyway enough of me – I read a blog from a lady I follow – Sherrie Eldridge an author and adoptee. There was a sentence in this blog that I can’t get out of my head – she was talking about other adoptees and their experiences and she said that the majority of them think about their birth mum at least once a day! Not all adoptees feel like this I guess but a huge number do and what might they be thinking? I can think about my Dad often too but the thoughts are good thoughts, they are real thoughts because I had a relationship with him for 38 years. He wasn’t perfect of course but we both knew how we felt about each other. For my children that is not the case.

When our adopted children think of their birth Mum I wonder what feelings it evokes. For me when I think of Dad there is loss and a deep sadness. For my children I’m sure there are many conflicting emotions – sadness, loss, guilt, shame, confusion, frustration – the list could go on and go. Birthdays are especially a difficult time for our children. We know that around that time there will be a struggle for them to deal with all the feelings it brings up, that will change their behaviour greatly.

For us as adults when we feel loss we can rationalise it in some ways and find ways to deal with it – it still hurts but for the most part we can cope with the pain. For our children they need us to help them do that. So if they have to say – “it’s my birthday and I’ll cry if I want to” – let’s let them!

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