Sunday, July 27, 2014
Celebrations and Reunions
We got there and met Dee's fiancee--that would be the young woman with the wide smile and the lovely melon dress in the picture. We hit it off instantly, she and I. She has a bubbly personality, is absolutely over the moon happy to be having a baby, and she and Dee are very deeply in love. It is wonderful. It was great to see Dee again. It has been far too long since we got together. He and I have also always hit it off.
There were cousins that Fiona and Rob have not seen in years. There was their sister Krystal who they have not seen in years. That is her on the far right in the picture. I had worked hard to prepare Fiona for the day. We had wrapped gifts together and talked about how baby showers work because she had never been to one before. I had filled her in on the folks I knew would be there. What I did not know was that their birth mom was coming. That is J on the far left. J did not know we were coming either. I think Dee genuinely didn't think about it. He and his fiancee did this shower themselves; I thought family were throwing it for them but that wasn't really the case.
Luckily I overheard that she was coming from the train station and had time to talk with Fi and Rob in advance. So although to say they were prepared would be an over statement, they were not blindsided. Poor J was though. I felt badly for her as she sort of fell apart when she saw the 2 kids. (acutally she walked past Rob first, not knowing that the tiny fellow she once held was now a strapping young man) She and I went outside to a lovely courtyard and sat together. I'd never met her, but we connected. We both hugged and cried. I told her what good kids they are. She had not recognized Rob when she first came in and I think that was perhaps the most painful thing for her. I spent time talking about hte fine young man that he has grown into. How he is a quiet fellow but when he has something to say it will be deep and from his heart. J said she is like that too. It was good to share stories about the kids, to hug and cry together. I am incredibly blessed and love my kids more than there are words for. I also recognize though that our family is built on the fracturing of another family. However I hold an image in my mind that I saw on the internet. It is of a Japanese art form where cracked bowls are mended with beautiful threads of gold. I think at its best and most thoughtful, building families through adoption can be like that.
When J felt stronger we went back inside and the kids spent time with her. She had also brought her youngest daughter who is 9 and whom she is parenting. She and Lissa played together. R is wearing the pink shirt in the picture.
On the way home I stopped at a nearby Dunkin Donuts and sent all but Fiona in to pick up some fuel for the ride home for us all. This gave Fi and I a chance to talk together about how she was feeling. It was her turn to cry and to share some of her conflicted feelings. She was glad though that her big dream of all of her family-adoptive and biological--being together happily had come to be. She also recognized that the day may have been hard on KC who has not been able to meet his birth mother although they do have intermittent contact by letter. We did not have more than maybe 10 minutes or so before the troops were back with some food but it was enough (I think) for reassurance and for reminding her that J can love her and she can love J and I will still love her. She can also feel happy AND sad about J. It is okay to have more than one feeling about someone.
I think it went okay because although I had brought a prn in case she needed it, she did not and the homeward trek was pretty normal. Singing to the radio, talking and acting like her typical self. I have emailed a lengthy post to the group home so that they will be aware of all that transpired. Meanwhile, I am feeling incredibly blessed that this reunion was able to happen.
Yesterday, at least for that moment in time, the gold threads of healing were shining in the cracks of our large family.