I spoke with my birthdad’s aunt on the phone last night (my great aunt). 🙂 She had a substantial amount of water in her basement (as her daughter had emailed me), and I wanted to check on her. She is a trooper! Her energy level at 80+ yrs., her positive attitude, her connection to her kids and her grandkids, and her inclusion of me and my family . . . all are inspirational to me. 🙂 What a pleasure to dial her number, a birthfamily member who I have only recently connected with, and yet she recognizes me as special. There are a few like that . . . two great uncles (one married), two great aunts, and two cousins (both married), who have become family/friends. Talking to them makes me feel grounded, special, . . . .
My birthmom’s cousin who shares kindness, funnies, and wisdom with me on facebook. We have never met face to face, and still–her welcoming heart means so much to me.
My birthdad’s cousin and her husband chat with me via email, facebook, and phone, and have been to my husband’s basketball games . . . with more plans to come. They have had me to their home, let me spend the night, sent me a birthday present . . . taken me through cemeteries to see that part of my heritage.
My birthmom’s aunt through marriage was a “gatekeeper” when I knocked on their door. I began to explain who I am, and she listened with a puzzled look on her face, went to get my great uncle to hear more, and I spent hours that evening with the two of them, learning of their lives and more of that part of my heritage. That great uncle spoke soon with another uncle of my birthmom’s who quickly called me, befriended me, sent me a birthday present, and includes me in his version of fantasy football via email. Precious.
All of these relationships are precious to me. The more I talk to them, the more validated I feel . . . I do have two family trees. I just do. Wanna argue about it? 🙂
What makes me sad/makes my head hurt is that I don’t perhaps reach out to them as often as I should, am missing opportunities/time to know them on this side of heaven because the wound of my birthparents not connecting with me is so big. I wish I could define that/understand that better . . . it has something to do with the very ones who you come from, who first saw you come into this world–denying you.
There. I came across a feeling–it’s a feeling of powerlessness . . . still. I am left, still, as a baby to accept who will take me, who will have me, instead of being able to choose. I try to choose my birthparents and siblings, but they still hold the key. I cannot force them. Even though they forced me to embrace a family other than my original, I cannot force them to embrace me.