Where It Gets Tough

Adoption Journey — Day 85-ish

Well as diverting as the Friday Fun is this week, there is work to be done this weekend! Le sigh. Although I WILL be going back to our Friday Fun post, because it never fails to make me laugh. So keep your comments coming!

We have some things to tackle before the home study people come visiting later this week. There’s lots of cleaning to do, although it’s not the BIG BABYPROOFING appointment, so basically we just have to make the place clean and neat for visitors.

It is the first of a couple “paperwork and interviews” appointments, and so there are some forms to be filled out. And we were warned that this is the part of the process that gets a bit tough. This is where you’re asked a lot of personal questions, where things get emotional sometimes. So I thought I’d just take my time this weekend and get through it all.

A lot of the forms are statements that say we understand what we just read, and require a signature. Or they’re forms that okay “them” to do “something” — okay the ministry to do a background check, okay the social worker to send stuff by email, that kind of thing. But a couple of them are big ass questionnaires, and require some time and thought to complete.

Today, I sat down to do one of the questionnaires, about family history. They ask about your childhood and to describe your childhood and your parents and such. I started to fill my form out but it was really hard.

My mom died when I was young, and I was trying to describe her and our relationship and her parenting. I was so young, I don’t remember much about her. And because she was sick, she was not at her best. So I felt bad pigeonholing her and her parenting based on the few years I knew her when she was sick and struggling. I felt like I was betraying her and who she was, because when she was not sick, everyone says she was a wonderful parent and a lovely woman.

I just didn’t know that woman, that’s all. I was too little.

I was so upset. I felt like I was betraying her, and labelling her, and it felt unfair. I felt that if she was looking down on me checking off some of those checkboxes, it would break her heart. Because who she was when she was sick was not who she REALLY was.

So I stopped.

BDH and I talked a lot about the questionnaire, and the upcoming interviews. And it was hard. It was upsetting. And I didn’t want to think about it anymore.

So BDH told me to put some socks and shoes on, and took me out to the mall to get a happy movie or a nice book or something to cheer me up. He took me out and distracted me.

The form is still waiting. But I think I’m going to fill in a lot of “unknown” checkboxes about my mom, and tell them that my memories are not the best.

But I will tell them that my mom was, by all accounts, a great mom. And that she loved us with all her heart. And that’s the key to who she was.

One thought on “Where It Gets Tough

  1. Since reading this I’ve been wandering around thinking about it. Your post made me cry a little.

    And, I’ve been thinking about all the stories you’ve shared with me about your mother. I wish I could find the words to make you feel better, but I know how hard it was for you to be so young and see her so sick. I know how scary and confusing that was for you. I know how lost you felt as a child when you saw your mother so unlike her “regular” self.

    What I think is that you wouldn’t have felt those emotions at the time if she’d not been a wonderfully loving, supportive mother. And I think that, while you may not remember it, a lot of who you are in the nurturing love and support that you give out comes from those early years with your mother. I think it helped mold you into who you are today, more than her loss did.

    I think that the unknown is the honest answer here because you can’t remember (very well) what she was like before she was sick. And who she was when she was ill is not who she was as your mother.

    What I think about is how (whether you realize it or not) you seem to have a really strong connection to your mother. I think of her measuring cup that you use when you bake and I think that something inside of you remembers that mother.

    I wish I knew how to make it better for you, but I know I can’t. I wish I knew how to help, but I don’t.

    But I do think that your mother is looking down on you sad that she couldn’t be around longer, proud of you for taking risks to expand your family, and loving you regardless. Know why? Because it’s what a mom does.

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