Thursday, January 06, 2005

Happy Birthday.

Speaking of growing up...today is Amanda's 12th birthday.

TWELVE.

I feel bad, because sometimes, when people ask me how old she is now, I have to stop and do the math; quick mental calculations so that they don't think I'm a horrible mother. I mean, who doesn't know how old their own kid is? (Except for deadbeat dads or something--parents who aren't really in their kids' lives.)

And that's the thing. Technically, I'm NOT in her life. But it's not because I don't care; quite the opposite, in fact. But it's just so hard, with her not knowing the truth...I've gone into all that before, and I'm not going to go there again. Suffice it to say that 12 years is enough. I've reached my limit. I'm done with the bullshit. When she's ready to tell Amanda, she knows where to find me. Until then, I need to keep my distance. I can't bite my tongue any longer, and I'm afraid of what might happen if I'm around her until the truth has come out.

That's not to say that I won't call and wish her a happy birthday today. I'll fake the usual happiness and laughter; I'll talk to my daughter about boys and music and what she got for her 12th birthday. I'll say how I'm looking forward to seeing her again--knowing, deep down inside, that it probably won't happen any time soon. And I'll realize, once again, that my own daughter doesn't know who I am.

9 comments:

Renee said...

There are no words with which to respond to this post... it breaks my heart like you'll never know, but none of us can know even half the pain this causes you... I'm so sorry that you have to go through this every day of your life :-( Wish I could give you a hug right now.

Nik said...

Ya know Jen, I will never know totally what you go through, but I say a prayer every January 6th. I have Amanda's birthday marked on my calendar and it irks me that I can never celebrate it! So, I can't even imagine what it's like for you to be able to talk to her and have to pretend to be someone else. You are one of the most amazing people I know and my heart goes out to you for being such a strong person when it comes to this. Just know that I love ya and if you need anything I'm here too! Just keep in mind that someday she'll come home, I can just feel it.

Anna said...

Oh. My. God.
That is SO sad.
Is there anything that you can do? Don't you have more rights than this in the open adoption?

Jen said...

Nope. Legally, I have no more right to her than you do.

Renee said...

And isn't it, legally, not even an open adoption? Like wasn't it just a verbal agreement and nothing in writing?

Jen said...

Yeah, exactly. At the time that we did it (it may have changed since then), an adoption was just an adoption--you signed the papers and that was it. Any arrangements the birthparent and adoptive parents wanted to make was fine, but there were no papers drawn up in THAT regard (as far as future contact goes, etc)...it's up to us, but they aren't legally bound to anything.

Anna said...

That sucks. I'm so sorry.

Jen said...

Thanks, guys. You're right, it doth suck, but I'm trying to focus on all the GOOD I have going on in my life right now.

Renee said...

Which you have a lot of. And I'm glad you aren't DWELLING on what does suck, but let us have some sympathy for you :-)