Monday, September 16, 2013

The "Card" for my mom

  I dont recall the last time I purchased a card for mom.  I usually print a pic, and make my own card that requires just a "Love Cathy" signature on the inside.  No long, complicated verses of trust, love, devotion, adoration, cherished memories, etc.  

I didnt make her a card this year for her birthday, husband was very sick and we spent time in the ER the day before we got together to celebrate her birthday.  On the way I stopped at the local party store, I walked to the card section that said "For her" and I looked around to make sure nobody was near.  I usually end up with a lump in my throat and have a few tears escape reading the "For her" cards.  I picked one up,  didnt see too much mumbo jumbo on the front, grabbed the envelope.  Started to walk away, and stopped.  I went to the other side and saw this card I liked,  a sweet painted pic of a mother and daughter, opened it up, and realized this was the card.  I put it back.  Then grabbed it again, put it back, and grabbed again.

I forced myself to walk to the check out.  Theres no escaping now, someone is standing in line behind me, I thought.  I grabbed some blow pops candy and kept my eyes searching for things to read to distract me until it was my turn to pay.

I bought the card.  I walked out, drove to my sisters house, and I signed my name.  That was seriously painful, so painful I was sweating.  Yeah, it was hot outside, but I wasnt really moving for about 20 minutes while driving with the air conditioning on!  ha!  I debated about giving her the card, but I didnt have an alternative to give her.

The card was given, I could feel my heart pounding.  I took a pic of her reading the card, her facial expression was unusual.  She got teary eyed.  Now that wasnt so hard I thought to myself, or was it?

It was hard, and I'm still lamenting over this today.  The card is racing through my mind, the picture of the mother and daughter still stuck in my mind.

I texted my daughter who is up in college,  something was mentioned about my mom, and then I mentioned to her about the card I gave her.  My daughter knows I dont give mom store bought cards and why.  She said something like "Oh really" with surprise in her voice after I told her I gave mom a sappy mother/daughter card.  I texted her a pic of the card, and told her this is the card I'd give my mom.  Well, I did give this to my mom.  But this is how I want to feel, and this is how I should feel when I give her this sort of card.  I told my daughter this is how I feel for HER, so I know I CAN feel this way.  

I feel cheated, and like I'm back in first grade and Sister Marceline Marie has caught me talking when I should be quiet . I feel guilt , like I've cheated my own mother as well.  This is just a card but it has such a larger meaning and there is so much attached to this little card.  The picture on the cover is worth a thousand words.  Nobody has to explain the meaning, it's understood, its a universal feeling .

Monday, September 2, 2013

I've dreamed about you every day, my mother

The two movies that really opened up a can of worms for me....August Rush and Antwone Fisher.    I was flipping through the channels last night and I came upon Antwone Fisher, near the end.  When he meets his birth mom for the first time was when I think the inside of me was shaken so deeply, my world as I once knew it never the same. Throughout the movie he has dreams that he is sitting at a large table with extended family with an amazing spread of food, something that looks like Thanksgiving.  I swear that symbol in the movie just about took my breath away.  More than anything else in the movie, that image just crushed me.   That deep desire you have as an adopted child to meet your (real) family and have that moment.  I did not talk about it the fantasy, but it was inside of me since I was a little kid.  It makes my insides hurt watching that part of the movie, I physically hurt.  I've never had that happen in my life and I have wanted and wished for it my entire life.  When he does meet his extended family, I dont think that I could breathe seeing this scene in the movie.

August Rush, "The music is all around you, all you have to do is listen."  -- Looking up to the sky August Rush says this.  Something clicked inside me when I saw this movie and I cried hysterically, so hard I came close to throwing up.  The music is a symbol for the connection the birth family has with one another.  Its a sixth sense that my adoptive family has with each other, one I'm not part of.  Its an innate sense we are born with, to seek those who are like ourselves.  To find the missing link, to find out the basis of my quirks.  Its the reason why I have to know things, understand everything, to get the details of things other people may not give a damn about.  

For me it was silently picking up magazines at the Lucky's supermarket as a kid.  I was sure my mother was a model, on the cover of one of the magazines.  I have a clear memory of doing this for years.  Searching for her in crowds, looking at everyone I saw, everywhere I went.  I never told anyone, except for maybe my best friend Maria.  I dont think she understood.  I was probably around 8 or 9 years old.  I searched for her starting at a young age, probably around 5 or 6.  Probably this is the reason why now, as an adult, I scan everyone's face, I match people to one another, try to decide if random people are related.

This is the reason why I chose to pick this blog title, Fantasy mom has died.  Because honestly, my mother only exists in my mind.  Both adoptive and birth mom is a fantasy for some adopted people, like me.  

My oldest son just made a wise crack today, said something about my "So called Mother" -- dont remember why this came up, but I said yeah, she is my so called mother, but in reality I dont have one.  Silence.   Its make believe, like my life up until the time the fantasy was cracked open wide.  And I can thank those two movies August Rush and Antwone Fisher for helping me achieve this goal in my life.  

There is some mystic, soulful connection the adoptee has with her birth family, it may not get her what she wants or needs.  But it does exist and it is real.   Even though my own birth mom is what she is...gone to the dark side and a horrible liar.   If she didnt make the wrong life choices, our future may have been drastically different.    

What I dreamt about, every day, my mother, is only a fantasy.  I did dream about you, a blonde  model on the cover of a magazine.  Someone who would treat me special, take me clothes shopping and really adore me. Teach me to cook, do special art projects I loved to do so much, and look into my eyes with the love and bond only a mother can have. 

I hope that adoptive moms out there understand the secrets and fantasies that linger in the minds of adoptees.  For years I was disconnected to the world because of my disconnection at birth.  I missed out on "Experiencing" life as I should have.  I was in some adoption fog, wanting something that I could not have and that made me angry.  Anger is just a symptom.