Monday Smiles – 5/12/2014

AnAJust about every morning, before I start my day, I sit down with my tablet and read the news.   I don’t read the news like my father used to read the New Haven Register, front to back, but by skimming the headline pages then selectively reading articles.  I start with the Fox News app which, I’m sure, makes some readers think I’m a gun toting conservative.  These days, I find almost all news sources are decidedly tilted left or right, and as a libertarian, right feels a little more familiar.  Knowing Fox’s political positions (and that they are no more Fair and Balanced than, say, MSNBC), I can take their stories with a grain … or shaker … of salt and fact-check on my own.  But mostly, I like the way the Fox News Page is organized.  Today, I learned something.   It’s not every day that an almost 70 curmudgeon gets to learn something.  Uhhh … on second thought, it is every day, but that’s another story.

The day before Mothers Day is unofficially designated by some organizations fo mothers who have put their babies up for adoption as Birth Mothers Day.  An article on the Fox opinion page titled Happy Birth Mothers Day talked about the roughly 120,000 mothers who put their babies up for adoption each year, and how that difficult decision may haunt them for years, particularly on Mothers Day.  This year, the article says, please take a few moments to reflect with gratitude and admiration upon those women and their families who have lovingly placed a child with an adoptive family.  They may still be in need of comfort and healing or of simply knowing that they are loved for loving so powerfully and painfully.

My son and daughter are both adopted.  Because we adopted them through the county we had no contact with the birth mothers.  I suppose I was vaguely aware that giving up a baby might be difficult for a mother but, thirty something and self-centered, I imagined that the young birth mother’s simply wanted to get on with their lives.  They’d get over it.  This in spite of the fact that my daughter’s birth mother left a beautiful letter to be given to her daughter at our discretion when she was older.  That’s not to say that all birth mothers spend their lives wondering about the children they gave up for adoption.  But some do.  Years later, my daughter received a letter from her birth mother, Pamela, asking if she would be willing to have contact.  Amy was very excited and, protective of Muri’s feelings, I was against it, so I have been out of the loop.  That is to say, I don’t know how much contact they’ve had.  But they have had contact.  I’ve seen Pamela’s face go by on Facebook once or twice, or heard my daughter mention Pamela to Amy occasionally.  Muri is more enlightened than Older Eyes.

It’s amazing how much more aware I am at (almost) seventy than I was in my thirties.  It is time to appreciate those two young women that gave us our children.   Being an adoptive parent is interesting, in some ways, harder than parenting your own birth children.  It hasn’t all been smooth sailing.  But it has been a center of our lives.   Thank you Pamela.  And thank you to the unnamed woman who let us bring our son into our lives.  Happy Birth Mothers Day.

It’s Monday … I’m smiling.

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