Monday, November 19, 2007

Peeking Inside Pandora's Box

About 15 years ago, my parents went to the attorney who handled my adoption and my sister's adoption. Mom and Dad gave me my birth mother's name and date of birth, and from there I located her. While I do not have a relationship with my birth mother, I do have a friendship with my birth sister. M wasn't interested in knowing her family history at the time, so my mother kept M's birth mother information--and lost it.

I always found it strange that M had no desire to find about about her birth family since her hobby is genealogy. She has managed to trace our father's lineage to pre-civil war, and our mother's family to the late 1700's. Last year, M finally expressed interest in knowing about her birth family. A few weeks ago, my mother was able to get the information from the county court house.

In a matter of a few hours, M's network of genealogy friends had located a BOOK dedicated to the lineage of her birth mother. A BOOK! Things got even more strange when one of M's girlfriends realized that she actually KNEW M's birth mother because she had gone to high school with the birth mother's sister (it's a small world since M and her friends live in Michigan and the birth mother's family are in Illinois.) M has been able to find out a lot about the family with this book and other research she did. When I spoke to her over the weekend, I asked her what she planned to do with the information--would she be contacting her birth mother any time soon? I also warned her that she needed to make sure that her friend kept her mouth shut and didn't interfere. If the family didn't know about the adoption (like my birth family), the friend would run the risk of causing major upheaval in the family. My sister said that she was too busy to really do anything about it right now because she is very busy with her classes, her boys, the holidays, trying to plan trips to visit Mom, etc. I told her that maybe she should think about contacting the birth mother after the holidays. I was glad to hear she didn't want to rush things. I just didn't want her to get hurt. She has gone through a lot over the past few years, and I didn't want things to turn out badly for her.

Through it all, my mother has been so excited for both of us and has always regretted not having the information to give to us sooner. I initially didn't tell my mom about becoming friends with my birth sister right away because I worried she would think I was looking for a replacement family that would take over once Mom died. Eventually, when I told her, she insisted on meeting my birth sister and LOVED her.

Mom called me tonight and told me that M had just called her to say that her birth mother had just called her. Apparently, the friend decided to not keep her mouth shut and told the sister of the birth mother. Apparently, the birth mother was thrilled and that the entire HUGE family that has a BOOK devoted to them is excited about M. Apparently, they spoke for an hour. At the end, M said," My Mom said that she wants me to come down and visit her in North Carolina."

Mom said her heart broke just a little to hear M refer to this woman as "Mom." My heart broke a little for her too.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I can relate on so many levels. Miss your posts, glad to see ya!

Lumpyheadsmom said...

Having another "mom" in M's life does not diminish your mother's role in the slightest.

Just because there are other guys who can call themselves "President" doesn't make the current Commander-in-Chief any less of a leader.

Ew, maybe that's a bad example. But you know what I mean . . .

wordgirl said...

I know what you're saying and I understand it totally. The word "mom" means so much more than just the person who gave birth to you. The word shouldn't be used lightly.