My Holidays

Holidays have always been a struggle for me since placing my daughter so many years ago. They are focused on family interaction and that doesn’t happen too often for birth mothers. Some might have a great relationship where they are a part of the adoptive family and enjoy the interaction of the seasons and times but for me they were a time of pain and suffering. I was never made a part of any of these activities in my daughter’s life even to see if she was experiencing the warmth and collaboration that are typical. I spent those special days wondering what it would be like if I had the chance to be a part of it all. I have to admit I found myself in a deep depression with the loss.
There were three specific holidays which brought me total collapse each time, Christmas, Mother’s Day and her birthday. I actually would become so distraught that I would be physically sick for days before and after. I hated holidays and dreaded them coming up each year because I knew what they would do to me. No amount of preparation, counselling or avoidance could dampen the pain. Even after I made my own family this loss haunted me with little relief. 
After re-uniting with my daughter, I thought maybe this might bring some joy. I thought that if my relationship with her was good this might be possible but it has only become worse. She only complicates this mess. Early in our re-uniting the adoptive parents were very protective of their ownership and would do all they could to prevent interaction with me especially on holidays. They would make sure their demands of her were so that no time was available to visit with me. As she grew older and somewhat started her own life, they still worked to dominate her time. They have always portrayed me as not being worth the oxygen I inhale and probably not knowing made the comment to her when they were unhappy with her actions, she was just like me. That has an impact.
She also seems to always make excuses for not making visits. I have 4 grandchildren and I spend time finding gifts and making sure they will have a special visit but my daughter always finds major problems arising to prevent her from coming to see me. Our relationship is always based on her mood and if I am not pleasing her and she doesn’t have a current need for me I am ostracized and avoided. We actually celebrated Christmas in March this year. My grandchildren wanted to know why I didn’t still have my Christmas tree up. 
With Mother’s Day coming up quickly, I am again feeling the anxiety it brings. I know there will be no call or it will come a week later with some excuse of how her life was so dramatic that she was unable to pick up a phone and call. It will be an amazing story of how others caused a catastrophe that she was made to deal with and make well. I know it will be a complete fabrication as usual but somehow our lives will go on to the next event.  It will again provide me with another example of how badly I hate the holidays. 
I tell this story not because I want anyone to feel sorry for me or think a birth mother is a sad thing. I created Life-After-Placement because I want to educate birth parents and adoptive parents that what you create will live with you. Had the adoptive parents portrayed me as a good person who gave a great gift of life to them and showed respect for me, there might be a good chance this type of relationship would not be dealt with now and there’s a good chance this girl might not see herself as the person they painted me to be and willing to create a solid base. 
There is no ownership of another human being even if you are the biological parents. You have a duty to your children to be honest so they can face life with the best tools they can. Your shortcomings and insecurities should not be used to damage them. Making mistakes is a part of our learning and most of us never stop but if we are honest about it we stand a greater chance of a better outcome. My daughter is a mess due to some biological reasons but how she dealt with it is beyond belief. Misinformation, lying and selfishness by her adoptive parents gave her a completely false idea of who she was and why she was. She was not given up, I did not abandon her, she is not a piece of crap like I was made to be and she is not an ownership rescued by them. Trying to correct those years of misinformation, lying and selfishness is exhausting and with how she has become probably impossible.
I hope someday I will look forward to holidays and think back on my days of sorrow as a learning time but it is hard to do right now. I do wish all Mothers a great day and hope it is filled with love, peace and excitement. You deserve it.