Thursday, June 28, 2007

A Mother's Gift

I asked my mom if she’d be interested in sharing a little bit more and I suggested that we each make a list titled “200 Things You Don’t Know About Me.” There are so many people who are so superficial that wouldn’t be able to write such a list. Not her though – Immediately she was up for the challenge and I began diligently writing my list.

I am still working on mine. I’m on # 122. On Monday morning I decided to check my email one last time before I left for pre-op, and I saw her name in my email. That always makes me smile. I get those crazy butterflies in the tummy and then I notice the subject line. “200 Things You Don’t Know About Me.”

I opened the email and there it was. Totally completed and sent to me at 3:00 am, the wee hours of the morning of my surgery. Coincidence? So I printed it out and stuffed it into my hospital bag. While I was waiting for the lab and before I saw my doctor. I was laying there freezing and I asked the nurse to bring me some warm blankets and pull the curtain. I held onto the papers. I was so excited to begin reading it. There in my hands were 200 things I was about to learn about my mother. I should mention that when I was searching for her – I had very little information. These are the only things I knew about her:

1. Brown hair
2. Blue eyes
3. Sensitive
4. Indecisive
5. Artistic

Then when I found her and we began emailing, I learned a lot about her life and the way she lives it. I learned a lot about my siblings, very few about the time of my conception and birth and some about her likes and dislikes. Our letters to one another quickly turned into chit-chat about daily life and experiences. Then I met her face-to-face and I saw how she lived first hand, but still lacked all those little details that most people know, and take for granted, about their mothers.

Here I was with this paper in hand – wanting desperately to read it but also wanting to savor it. I wouldn’t have traded this paper for gold. I briefly contemplated reading just 10 things a day but I began reading and of course I could not stop. I’ve received a lot of gifts in my life. I got my VW Jetta when I graduated from high school. I got my gold earrings in January from my boyfriend. My grandmother made me my first princess dress that I still cherish today but there is no better gift than the one I received from my mother on Monday. Hands down this was the best gift I’ve ever received in my life.

You live your life as an adoptee always wondering. What does she look like? Who do I look like? Did she hold me? How could she do it? Was it hard to walk away? Did she try to come back? If she could have; would she have? You are so full of questions and there are never any answers. Even after reunion, you’re too afraid to ask. God forbid she look into your eyes with those familiar blue eyes and say “No. She didn’t regret losing you.” So instead, you opt not to ask. The answer could be too painful. So you continue wondering.

I learned so many things about her. I learned about some of her secret dreams. I learned that she likes antique shops, toy stores, wine tasting, what makes her happy, what makes her sad, that she’s quirky like me, how much she loves her children and her husband, what kind of friend she is, her favorite food, and her favorite candy, her favorite book, but most of all, the biggest gift to me was #s 7, 47, 100, 148, 168, and 200. I learned that she loves me, she misses me, she has thought about me every day of my life, she never wanted to give me up, she held me and sang me a song when I was born, and that she wishes everyday that she had kept me.

I read this letter so many times this week and I can’t seem to put it down. To learn 200 things about my mother is a dream come true. Cameron asked me what we’ll find to talk about now. Knowing just 200 things about someone you’re lacking 25 years with is still just an ice breaker. There is so much more to know. I look forward to spending the rest of my life adding to this list.

5 comments:

Lillie said...

Hi!

I just stumbled across your blog entry, and I wanted to say that reading this brought tears to my eyes. I'm very happy for you and your mother and hope you continue to build a wonderful relationship!

I'm a reunited adoptee myself, and I understand the wondering, the longing for answers, and then to finally find her and have those questions answered...ah, well. You know. ;)

Good luck to you sweetie, I wish you all the best and all the happiness in the world.

Bdad said...

Thanks for sharing, gives me some motivation to write down some things to share with my son.

Good luck & wish you the best, thanks

suz said...

i did this with my daughter in reunion. she seemed to like it too. but never responded with her own. but she did comment on mine. like i said
Me: I am agnostic
Her response: WHEWF!
Me: I am a democrat.
Her response: THANK GOD!

It was very sweet and I enjoyed it. I know how much that stuff can be cherished.

The odd things, the silly things, like I bite my nails, I play with my hair too much, whatever. LIttle personality quirks can really give you the essence of a person!

Kelly said...

I been reading through your blog. You have gave me some great ideas.

I am sorry, you felt torn between your moms. I always keep telling myself; I can't put my son in a weird place; when, and if reunion does happen. I am so hoping it does. Women; we are catty; right??? Hmmm; why can't we step-up to the plate; and do what is right for our child???

Possum said...

WOW.
200 things.
I wish. I wish. I wish.
Sending you loads of hugs sweetie.
Poss. xxx