Monday, November 25, 2013

H is for Hope

Hope is continuing to see the light. Ashley put it best when she said that the hope she felt going through one trial makes meeting the next one a bit easier. It makes for hoping the pain will lessen, and be lesser.  (not her exact words but you get the picture. 

I am not a good "hope-er" I always seem to fall to the "its never going to get better", "I'm going to die", "God hates me".  Seriously its kinda ridiculous. Until my little Lou said, "Mommy, its OK, It will get better. Give me a hug."  And then, only then, do I have hope.  She is my daily dose of hope.  Should have named her that:)

I have hope, that I'll get a hug from E one day. And that I'll have the relationship with his parents that I hope to have. I love them all dearly. Its amazing, the hope that grows, and gains momentum in short moments.  I had hope they would love him, and they do. And I love them!  Oh how I love my S, and my R! Best parents on the planet!



Sunday, November 24, 2013

G is for Guilt

“Maybe there's more we all could have done, but we just have to let the guilt remind us to do better next time.” ― Veronica Roth, Divergent

Oh my Ashley, seriously people you should follow her and listen to her, and read about her just because of her strength, and raw honesty.  She is a HUGE inspiration to my and to so many other Birth Mothers. She is amazing and I am so grateful that she shared her story with me!

Guilt... I feel guilty, still, for hurting my parents. I feel guilty for hurting my missionary, his family, our friends, my friends. I feel guilty for getting involved and letting myself do things I'd never done, and promised never to do.  I can't wake up tomorrow and start over. Even though I want to all to often.  This is where I am.  

I feel guilty for almost NEVER being on time with gifts for E and his family!  I am the. worst. ever. 

 I feel bad for disappointing so many. Even people I didn't know that wouldn't let their kids hang out with me because of what I'd done. That's the worst feeling ever... having the parents talk about you. I want to scream out every time, " I WAS NOT A SLUT. I DIDN'T SLEEP AROUND. I SLEPT WITH ONE PERSON".  Its always a part of my story... "I wasn't a "promiscuous" girl. I didn't have sex with anyone and everyone. I had sex with ONE person. " so on and so on.  ugh, its the worst.  Will I ever not feel guilty? 

Its like I'm trapped. daily.  Stuck in a rut. Does it get better? Can it get better?


Saturday, November 23, 2013

F is for Faith

"The key is no matter how small the spark, remember that it is there! Feed it, strengthen it, watch it grow and don't let go of it when times get tough, HOLD ON knuckle white tight!" - Ashley Mitchell, BIB

I had faith during my pregnancy with E. I had to have faith to place him into arms of almost complete strangers and believe that they were supposed to be his parents. I was supposed to have faith that they'd take care of him. I did, and I still do. 
I did not have faith in myself following placement. Even during I didn't have faith that I was worth a dang. Even the BF was out with other girls while I was pregnant. What would someone want with me after having a child?  I didn't have faith in the male population either. Not that I was any better. I had a lot to get over and deal with, and move forward with. I had to grow and to find out who I was/am.  

Its changing. I still struggle with faith. BIG TIME.  WHY?  I have been contemplating on writing a letter for a YEAR. Why can't I just do it. I don't have faith in the response. its horrible... its the worst feeling.

I had a friend tell me, not to long ago, that Faith & Fear can't be in the same place at the same time. I believe they can, but not the same kind of faith and fear. I had faith that E was where he needed to be, where he was/is supposed to be. I was scared that I would break.  The kind of Faith and Fear that i am talking about with my friend, is STRONG CRAZY KICK YOU IN THE BUTT fear. This is crazy that I feel it now, but didn't then.  Maybe I had more faith?  But either way, its true. My heart can not hold Faith, if I let Fear reside in it.  I need to trust in my Father in Heaven. I pray often when I get that feeling in my chest. I usually get it calmed down shortly after.    Either way... I need to have faith. Not Fear.




Friday, November 22, 2013

E is for Extras

Aaah the Cool Whip Diet
one of the best things I've seen. its funny, but it makes sense. DUH.

Lets just say... watch it, and put your own thoughts into it!


What am I filling my time with?  I am going to get down on me every second, because I compare myself to most everyone in the "world".   I am not the best mommy, even though I want to be. I don't do all this crafty, cool mom stuff... fail I know. I try to read to my kids daily, I should do it for sure every second of the day. I try to be outside with them, but then i start thinking... if I was a good mom I would do this... and this... and this... like they do.
 If I was a good Birth Mom they would want more of this... or more of that. Id be more on the "in" If I was a good Birth Mom I'd be more proactive it getting the gifts and letters, and other stuff out to E, to his parents, to his brother and sister.  

All i can do is fill my time RIGHT. Less of some things, more of others.  I want to do better. I will do better.

 the extras

bunch of extras

Thursday, November 21, 2013

D is for Decisions

Decisions Decisions.

I remember so many nights, trying to make an official decision. I was in limbo with no real light coming in from anywhere. I was standing in a room... trying to find the switch.  I never really thought about it, being in limbo, being stuck in a state of denial.  I wasn't in denial. I was in denial. I wasn't in denial about being pregnant, I was FULLY AWARE that I had a bump protruding from my stomach. And I was fully aware of the little being moving inside me.  
I WAS in denial that anything needed to be done, or talked about, or prepared for this little life.  I don't remember if the BF and I talked about our options very much. I don't remember if the BF and I ever talked about what the other wanted.  I was in denial that this little guy, was just... there. 
I knew what I needed to do, but i didn't know how to admit it. This was HUGE HUGE HUGE. The HUGEST(yes i know not a real word) thing i'd ever come to. What in the world was a 18 year old girl supposed to do?  Not graduated, still a TEENAGER, not married, in a toxic relationship... the list grew and grew.
I had to made a decision based on what I knew to be true at the time. AND I needed to make a decision based on what was best for little buddy and not me.  But, why did I never ask?  Why didn't he ever ask me? More to add to clarity:)

And, besides, I am THE. ABSOLUTE. WORST. decision maker ever!  I hate making decisions. I'll walk around the store with something in my had and then take it back as im about to checkout. or I buy it and take it back.  I can't even make lunch... its kinda lame. So bad, I had to REDO my "decisions opening page" because I hated it BWAHAHAHA  yes. Winner Winner folks:)


Decisions page one.   - which do you choose? the A, K, Q, or J?

Decision page 2.
"Waiting hurts. Forgetting hurts. But not knowing which decision to take can sometimes be the most painful." 
Paul C.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Journaling the Adoption ABC's

 Here is my first ever Journal page. ( well art journal page)
It looks better in real life... but it has improved I hope.  I already wrote a little about acceptance. though, even weeks later, it can still be added to.

 Here is the Boundaries opening page.  I love watercolor(fyi)

CLARITY

C is for CLARITY

"We need to remember that we chose what we did, at the time that we did, because of the knowledge that we had, the pro-con lists and our best emotional judgment. - ASHLEY MITCHELL, BIB."

I initially wrote the lyrics for "Clarity" by John Mayer.
mostly for this part:

"By the time I recognize this moment
This moment will be gone
But I will bend the light, pretend that it somehow lingered on"

In this moment, I don't have a real problem with the 'clarity' of my adoption. I know why my choice was to place that little boy. I know why I had to do it. I know why I needed to do it. It was based on what knowledge I had at the time.  And what I thought was best. Who knew where I would be the following year, where his Birth Father and I would be. We were so toxic.  BOTH of us were. 

I have FULL CLARITY and peace on my decision to place a child for adoption. I am at peace with that. Though, there are so many other aspects of those days, ten years ago, and even a fewer more recent, that need clarity. I need to look and see what it is, and why it is. 


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

B Is For Boundaries

"Know the boundaries beyond which you will not allow trampling or trespassing." Elizabeth S.

Not only did I imagine Boundaries applying to the relationship between Birth Parents and Adoptive parents, which are important, but what about the boundaries I set for me?

Do I allow others to trample on my story. Do I continue to try to let others in, giving chance after chance hoping they'll come around and LOVE him/me/them.  Do I take sever care of my story, and those involved?

I am an open book, in most cases. I have had to learn to be careful of what I share. But when it comes to adoption, its hard to keep my mouth shut. Its hard not to tell of a story that not only broke my heart, but built it.  Its hard not to share something that made me Strong, Wise, Hopeful.  How can you not share something that taught you the most?  To share those you love, because HELLO, those parents of his are utterly my most, absolute, favorite people on this planet. Truly.  

But, what I need to look at more closely, are those around me. It made my heart ache, ya know, as if you got a cut on your finger and it just aches with pain no matter the pressure/bandaging.  It hurts, still, that there are some that are proud of the way they treated me. That there are those who still feel as if he and his family are something that are just easily shrugged off and forgotten, because he was placed.  Does that make him any less of what was mine, because I placed?  I didn't place because I didn't want him. Didn't love him. Didn't care for him. I placed him because he deserved the very best chance. He deserved everything I ever wanted for him.  I couldn't give that to him. BUT, he is still mine. He is mine in a way he isn't theirs. But he is also THEIRS in a way he isn't mine.  I AM OK WITH THAT. What matters in those few sentences most though... is that THEY ARE ALL MINE. I love each and every member of that family to the depths of my soul.  I love each birth parent that allowed them to become a family.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE them.  And me hurting, because of a lack of support or knowledge, or forgetfulness, is something that I need to be protected from.  


"Too often we do not set boundaries for ourselves and for others. We worry so much about hurting those around us but really, at the end of the day, if we don't like ourselves why do we care if others like us?" - Ashley Mitchell - BIB

I have come to learn with these moments. That boundaries need to be set. Not only by me just deciding to do so, but they need to be verbally heard and told why.  Someday, I HOPE, those who need to be separated from my story, will WANT to be a part of it.  For now, its OK that they aren't.  Its called ACCEPTANCE:) I am working hard to accept the things I can not change.

Did it tear my heart and soul to bits hearing "well i think i want to meet her more because she was in our lives for those few years."  Holy my Moses it did. Why isn't he as special?  Why doesn't she think he is as special?  Am I wrong for feeling so strongly about him?  That's where boundaries need to be set. And that is where I need to VERBALIZE, Its not OK to downplay, or to make me feel as if he is less, because he was only ours for a few days.   Because he will still be a part of me, and I want him and his family to always be a part of my life. They are incredible, why would I not want to surround myself with INCREDIBLE people? 

So set boundaries, for yourself, for others, verbally and non verbally.  It is respect to yourself. To your story.

- Jena
 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

A is for ACCEPTANCE

I honestly came into this class thinking it would just be another avenue to write down feelings and emotions. The same feelings and emotions that I've had for the last 10 years. I wasn't sure that I could improve, heal, or grow more than I already have. I thought it would be fun to do something during this most favorite month of mine.  Boy have I been turned upside down and inside out.  

How incredible it is to sit down, and read over and over, her lesson for the day. I usually start out just reading it a couple times when its been posted. Ponder and think throughout the day, and then journal before bed. Its been 3 days... and I may have to buy a second journal for this thing! 

There is so much I never thought of during my last 10 years of post placement, post pregnancy, post Birth Father life. ACCEPTANCE... of things more than just what was... but what IS. Things I need to accept now. Things that, if I don't want to accept them, and hope to change them, that I need to step up and make those changes.  

No more excuses. No more what if? Or, how come? Or, Why me. Accept those choices I made. Because, ultimately, I was the one who chose. I was the one in charge of myself and that child I carried. And NOW, I am in charge of protecting it all. 

If you have been touched by adoption, whether it be a birth parent, a birth grandparent, a birth aunt/uncle. If you are an adoptive mom or dad. Or even an Adoptee. This class could be so beneficial. It truly has made me decide to take some steps to change what I can, and accept what I cant. And only, in time, can those things that i have no choice but to accept, can those hopefully change. And if they don't, ITS OK!

Move forward, take chances, and put yourself out there. Put your emotions out there. Be vulnerable, even if you don't share your story, or your details, or anything with anyone, it can only help! 

So come take the class, its gong to be happening again it... i think... april or may... or maybe its march:)  
head to Blessings In A Basket, and check it out!!!


- Jena

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Journaling the Adoption ABC's

I have been very lucky to come into contact with some AMAZING people because of my adoption journey.
One such person is Ashley Mitchell, and she is the owner of Blessings in a Basket, and an amazing Birth Mother. She runs an amazing company that has helped SO MANY women!  The thing is, as well, that she is so aware of the many men that are affected by adoption as well. There are some awesome Birth Fathers out there, and I'll shout that out anytime.  I don't know what the relationship/contact is between my own sons Birth Father and his family, but I know if they still have contact, it is wonderful... or at least I hope it is.

Anyway, she has put together, and is hosting a class on Course Craft, and I am so excited to be participating in this amazing program.  I've decided to post some of what we are learning/working through/ experiencing here. She has entitled it, Journaling the Adoption ABC's, and I am so excited to be involved.  I have been a journal keeper since I was a very little girl. So this is something I hope will not only be a fun experience in journaling, but will help to heal more in my own adoption journey.  Healing is never over, and never stops, but its always good to have help.  I also have decided to do the Instagram monthly adoption challenge. I'll also be sharing that here as well, so it is "public" for the time being. 

I'm excited to get on here and have DAILY things to do. I hope I can keep up... I guess the page overhaul will have to wait a while till this awesome THANKFUL month is over.  Plus, its ADOPTION AWARENESS MONTH!!! It really has always been my absolute, most favorite, awesome month ever. It just made it all the better when I became a Birth Mother.

So.  I hope you all enjoy, that its somewhere you can learn, and take a new view on adoption as an  AMAZING thing, that takes you places you never thought possible.