One day he grew up. I chalk it up to another milestone that I missed.
I saw a photo, and he was unrecognizable to me. All of the oxygen left my body in one rush and that metallic taste crept into my mouth, my stomach went sour. Who is that kid, and what makes him tick?
We have sporadic contact, mainly texting. I have no idea what he’s about, what inspires him, what defeats him. If I think about it long enough, ten minutes or more, it becomes an endless source of angst. Given that it’s “birthday season”, and the “off season” in my seaside locale, I find myself in this place more often. There’s a fine line between being “interested” & a creeper. A very fine line, which I try to walk respectfully & carefully.
While fairly at peace with myself, at least with the version of myself that made this decision, I’m not yet at peace with the outcome that we may never have a relationship. But it’s a reality that I need to consider.
I am reliable in my efforts, every few months, open ended questions that don’t demand any taxing emotional thought. I divulge small, inconsequential bits of personal information if the exchange warrants. My therapist taught me well.
What adoption has taught me, over these nearly 17 years, is how to wait. How to be patient beyond all personal expectations & previous experience. How to really stretch & flex those emotional endurance muscles. The trick is how to live, actually build a life, while waiting. And there’s no chapter in the Birthmother Handbook* on that topic.
*yeah, there’s no “Birthmother Handbook” either.