Dark Corners: The Ugly Side of Being Adopted

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Bored out of my wits last year – not to mention I’m a frustrated writer – I thought how great it would be to write a story about my life. It was just a fancy thought and not really having any base story to start with. It was a romantic notion to think that my life is as colorful and interesting as those books I often find myself reading. What a boring life I lead, “I thought.”

Boy, was I wrong! Anyone ever told you to be careful what you wish for? Yes, well, you should.

On my 35th birthday I found out I’m adopted. I received a birthday message from my biological mother blatantly admitting the truth. To say it’s so shocking is an understatement. Hell! I was shaking, hurt, and in denial. I was more than devastated! My whole world came crashing down. Life smashed its ugly horns at me, direct where it hurt the most. Not to mention, it was my birthday – a supposedly happy day.

Of course, it’s been almost a month from whence I learned the truth. I know snippets of information about my adoption. I just recently had the courage to confront my adoptive mother and I haven’t even spoken to my Dad.  However, I couldn’t find the strength to confront my biological mother even though I know she has all the answers. My emotions skyrocket now and then – to pangs of sadness, loss, angst, grief, and stolen time. I’ve been masking my pain by going on with my life, like nothing really happened. Some days are hard and other days are a breeze. My thoughts are all over the place like the scattered glow of tonight’s light cast by the moon over my glass window – with jagged-like edges that somehow cut like a knife in my already wounded pride.

As a matter of fact, I haven’t been fully honest with myself for I have not come to terms with my being adopted. I’ve been told I’m still the same person. You agree with them of course because the same face reflects when you stand before a mirror. But at the same time, you look at yourself strangely different, like that of a stranger looking back at a familiar face. You get people telling you are still you, and you just smile at them because what’s the point of explaining to them you no longer feel the same? Apart from that, you pretend to be happy for the sake of the people who love you. What’s the point of having to carry the weight of their worry over your shoulder? You look at your home; you feel the walls and the corners are all different. Like those dark corners that hide the ugly side of that long-kept secret. You need an outlet for the anger, and when you can’t find any, it is solely directed at how life is unfair.

Coupled with, the impression that, that portion of your life was thrust to you by other people’s choices. You were just a babe to have a say at anything. Not withstanding the pain of being given up, and however unacceptable the reason was the act for me, I can’t find my anger fully directed towards the woman who carried me in her womb and breathe life to me. How hard it must have been for her to lose a child? Yet, no matter how selfless a mother’s act was at giving her child up, the adopted child couldn’t help but harden her heart a little. Can she love another like the love she give every day to the woman who raised her? When is the time to meet her “real” family? Would all of them accept her? Would she ever be ready to see her biological mother? If they hug her, would she pull away and run or would she hug them back tightly? Those are the thoughts running through every adopted child’s mind. At least in my case, they were.

I couldn’t find it in my heart to really understand why it was kept secret all these years. It would have been easier had my parents prepared me for this day. I love my adoptive parents and I’ll forever be grateful for every thing they’ve done for me to make me feel like I’m their biological daughter. Yet, somehow I wonder how my life would turn out had my biological mother raised me? The guilt of even just calling Mom and Dad “adoptive parents” gnaws at me.  I shouldn’t refer to myself as “adopted”, I was told. The thing is, it’s the ugly truth.

Life is but a motion where you move aimlessly with the rhythm. Some people’s lives have lovely, joyous songs. And some, rare people like me, have songs that rends a heart. Life is a struggle for an adopted child;  it’s a struggle with her inner demons. No matter how loving the home she’s placed at – there will always be fragments of that loss. It’s going to be a struggle now to let herself feel accepted. To an adopted child, she feels she has two kinds of life: one is the life she’s snatched from; second, is the life she’s always known.

None of them, at this moment feel like I belong.

When Valentine’s Day Became S.A.D.

February 14. I know it’s supposed to be Valentine’s Day. However, I keep reading statuses on Social Networks about Single Awareness Day – S.A.D. The humor is in the abbreviation. No! No! No! We single people do not mean ‘”sad”. It does not mean we are woeful! Nor does it mean we have a seasonal affective disorder. Pssssh!  Huh! Seasonal? Wait….. Oh!

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ImageI’m single and game for any challenge this S.A.D celebrates, but I find it a little insulting to do it exactly on the 14th of February. Need I remind my single friends that the reason we celebrate Valentine’s Day is not only for the sole purpose of giving couples a reason to be overly mushy, affectionate and excuse the too sweet displays in public? Valentine’s Day is more than just dinner reservations, flowers, showering expensive gifts and words of promises or endearment, etcetera. You can do that pretty much any day you want – holiday or not.

Though, I don’t mean for couples not to celebrate it at all. No one is depriving anyone of how they want to celebrate this special day with their loved ones. But perhaps, to commemorate and be conscious that this is the Feast of St. Valentine?

Yes! Single people can celebrate them too. But, to give little respect to those who fought to marry couples that led to their imprisonment, isn’t that kind of disrespectful?

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Even with a partner, I’ve never really been the type of person who make a fuss about how I spend Valentine’s Day. I never really liked getting flowers because I worry about whether I’ll upset my guy when I throw the flowers out when they start to wilt, or whether I should make potpourri out of them to keep as souvenirs. So, over the years, with or without a partner, it doesn’t really bother me not having a “date-night” . I always make sure though that my partner and I get to go to church and thank the heavens for bringing us together.

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I don’t mind being stuck at home alone either – whether I’m writing, playing with my pets or cleaning my house or just video chat with someone on a different timezone – which I happen to think is my “someone special”. It doesn’t really matter how single people want to celebrate the hilarious made up feast that is S.A.D either. Cheers to that if you’re celebrating it better than I do! But, leave the sarcastic comments about Valentine’s Day to yourselves. It makes being single sound so pitiful.

ImageWithal, S.A.D. is a celebration, a proof of how independent we are. How we are in control of our own lives and are happy. S.A.D. should empower us, and not make it sound as if we’re jealous or bitter. Why not celebrate our independence at a later time? Oh! Say, like most people who observe it on the 15th?

If being single is something that doesn’t bother us, we owe it to ourselves to give others a chance to be happy and in love.

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And, because I am in love with pretty much everything about life, Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

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When Raindrops Fall Heavy On My Shoulders

I can’t complain! I shan’t sit here in all the world looking sorry and irritable. Being stuck at home in this dreadful weather? I thirst for that Jose Cuervo a friend promised me early today, that date I was keeping secret (whoops!) and looking forward to all week. No! I will not sulk and pout like a brat because my plans for the day went awry. I refuse to succumb to such childish temperaments.

It’s cold, it’s pouring, and unless I want to get sick, I can’t very well go out and walk or play fetch with my dog. Since I can’t wield changes to the weather, there’s not much I can do about it.

I skipped the need for a third cup of coffee, flipped through the channels and instead decided to watch CNN. All the while feeling I didn’t have any choice with today’s activities. NO CHOICE. Na-da! Stuck in my room, endlessly brooding – even Facebook, Pinterest and my few unread books left me no interest. Home, bored, frustrated. Did I mention bored? Yes. B-O-R-E-D!

As I continue to brood while watching the news, I started feeling guilty. A few more minutes of watching and my earlier attitude gnawed on me. Horrified at what I’ve seen. I don’t have any right to be grumpy! Not when people were running for their lives a few hours ago from a mass shooting in the United States. They went in for entertainment, but came out clutching fear in their hearts. Even if I just imagined it, I shivered at the thought of being in that theater.

When other parts of our country is currently under water that constantly bring reminder to those already traumatized by the tragedy brought about by Typhoon Ondoy (2009); when  the rain deprived those who want to sleep in their homes but find their beds afloat – I put my petty thoughts aside.

I can’t continue playing the victim just for reasons that I can’t go out, especially when some people out there might not have a blanket or a bed to sleep in! Nor complain about my dog unable to go out and play when some stray animals might be scavenging for food in the streets right this minute. And, when just a few minutes ago, a friend just admitted that she is in the darkest moments of her life. I fear for her and the choices she might make.

When lives are lost; When drops of rain along with their tears stain the cheeks of some, and familiar smile vanish; When worry eat the heart out of good people I know – I’m ashamed of myself and my selfish complaints. I have it easy. Why then do I complain? Yes! “Crazy-changing-weather”, you just turned me into some “biatch”. It’s raining outside, but I feel that even if I’m safe inside, the rainfalls heavy on my shoulder.

Here and now I will change my perspective. I did have a choice!  I choose to change my attitude. I choose to stay positive.

Difficult times have helped me to understand better than before, how infinitely rich and beautiful life is in every way, and that so many things that one goes worrying about are of no importance whatsoever.  –Isak Dinesen

You.Are.Amazing.

As. you. are.
Stronger than you know.
More beautiful than you think.
Worthier than you believe.
More loved than you can ever imagine.
Passionate about making a difference.
Fiery when protecting those you love.
Learning. Growing. Not alone.
Warm. Giving. Generous.
Quirky. Sexy. Funny. Smart.
Flawed. Whole. Scared. Brave.
And so, so, so.much.more.

Be Strong. Be Confident. Be You.

[Copyright: Tia Sparkles Singh, 2011]


A Misguided Notion About Love and Hate

I was not planning on posting anything because I have so many things to do. So far, I’ve only accomplished the task of feeding my dog, finished my cup of coffee, a few comments here and there (all the while … Continue reading

Fragments

I’m a different person now;

Pain shaped me to be who I am.

The lesson we’re yesterday’s tears;

If someone would try to stitch my heart back,

They would find some pieces missing,

Yet if anyone would be patient enough to wait,

They would see that in time, 

I can be whole again.