I won’t give up

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This morning, at work, I wanted some new music to listen to. I YouTubed and eventually found this song. I listened to the music, at first, but then after a couple of times of hearing the song… I finally heard the lyrics. And wow, it’s a beautiful, inspirational song (for me).

The lyrics that are in bold are to my kids – from me. The lyrics that are underlined seem like they’re singing to me / about me. When you hear the song, you may think of different things. This is what the song means to me.

When I look into your eyes
It’s like watching the night sky
Or a beautiful sunrise
Well, there’s so much they hold
 And just like them old stars
I see that you’ve come so far
To be right where you are
How old is your soul?
Well, I won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up
And when you’re needing your space
To do some navigating
I’ll be here patiently waiting
To see what you find
‘Cause even the stars they burn
Some even fall to the earth
We’ve got a lot to learn
God knows we’re worth it
No, I won’t give upI don’t wanna be someone who walks away so easily
I’m here to stay and make the difference that I can make
Our differences they do a lot to teach us how to use
The tools and gifts we got, yeah, we got a lot at stake
And in the end, you’re still my friend at least we did intend
For us to work we didn’t break, we didn’t burn
We had to learn how to bend without the world caving in
I had to learn what I’ve got, and what I’m not, and who I amI won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up, I’m still looking up.Well, I won’t give up on us (no I’m not giving up)
God knows I’m tough enough (I am tough, I am loved)
We’ve got a lot to learn (we’re alive, we are loved)
God knows we’re worth it (and we’re worth it)

I won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up

I like to pretend to be strong

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melb

It began on October 16, 2015. 

All personal success and motivation flew out the window, that day, last week.

Nothing truly fell apart, but it almost-almost did.

I told my employer that I didn’t want to do a blog post for support, because my family can see these posts, if they look.

“I like to pretend to be strong.” – – – “Family doesn’t equal support.”

(At least not my immediate family. Some of my extended family try a little harder.)

I guess I’ll be okay, for another year. Lady Bug’s birthday doesn’t seem to cause depression. There’s no pain, in knowing that she’s going to have a party and receive lots of love on her big day. (Love is every day. Birthday parties are not.)

On October 16th, it began:  …I stopped eating very much, at all. I stopped hydrating myself. Some of my hygiene suffered. Nothing productive really happened, for about a week.

I tried to cope, but my coping skills need some work. Not all are good and healthy for me.

“I’m not doing today sober.” – part of a text that I sent to someone

As-if my pain is a good excuse to get a-little-more-than-tipsy / waste some of my money.

This morning, I woke up completely okay. Maybe it’s because a week is what I need to finish grieving…

or maybe it’s because someone made me a big bowl of soup and another person gave me pizza to eat.

I know that 18 hours of sleep, a quart of ice cream, 2 beers (on an empty stomach), etc. etc. all did not help.

My former, favorite therapist suggests that I find a local therapist, until the insurance that pays her makes its way to my area of the Metroplex. I want her as my therapist, though. She specializes in adoption / adoptive families / birth mothers. Plus, she understands Asperger’s. How perfect, right? I miss her!

Okay, that’s all. Have a good week. I know I will, finally.

Hoping, Hoping, Hoping…

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Finally! There is the potential to have the kind of life I’m hoping for.

I still have some important “loose ends” to tie up, but eventually (in the next 2 years), everything (I hope) could potentially be set and in place.

I’ve re-gained a job that I am able to handle. The job provides a Monday through Friday routine, for me. The job comes with an understanding (of Asperger’s Syndrome) boss. The job pays exactly what I need to live the simple life that perfectly suits me. My basic needs are met.

“Basic needs?? That’s it??” … Yep! I’ve gone almost 3 years without having the promise of my basic needs being met. Intermittently, I’ve had housing (whether it be living with a friend, an acquaintance, a live-in situation, or a homeless shelter.) I’ve usually had food to eat.

I shaved my head, recently. So, even bathroom supplies are at a minimum-need. Give me a bar of Zest (shower supplies) and I’m good.

People think I’m being a martyr or something, when I “talk” like this – about needing very little. Nope. I’ve been very, very low maintenance (about material items) – my entire life. I need what I need … and if I get a few things that I want – that’s awesome! My vices are: coffee, eating out, and books. If I have extra money, that’s what it usually goes to.

I drink the coffee. I scarf down meals (especially if I didn’t have to make it). I buy books, but rarely read them. Books are comfort items, for me. Really, if anyone has some book spines they’re not using / they’re about to throw away – just send them to me. I would love to create a fake bookshelf type-of-thing. Then, I’ll have my real books in a special-other place. I’m weird.

Any way, besides those loose ends that need tying… I’m feeling safe and secure, right now.

(I have my own room in a house. Two other people live in the house. I can tolerate them.)

Here’s a picture of my non-hair.

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America Adopts

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America Adopts ( http://www.americaadopts.com )

America Adopts published my birth mother story, this morning.

http://www.americaadopts.com/i-didnt-give-up-my-babies-i-gave-them-more/

My youngest baby (her blog nickname will be Diamond) is a little more than 8 months old.

My son (Sesame) will be 2 years old, this fall.

My daughter (Picklette) (who was not adopted) just turned 3 years old.

My eldest daughter (Lady Bug) turned 5 years old, a few months ago.

I turned 30 years old, a few months ago.

There’s my update!

Healed with the Bandage of Reunion

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I’ve had some coffee and I’m thinking about my children. So, here I am typing a blog post at 75 WPM (or something like that). The only reason a blog post ever takes me a while to type is that I’m trying to filter out my thoughts to what’s actually relevant to this blog post. I feel like a poodle on crack. (Cue laughter, because that’s a joke!)

How am I so happy, even though I don’t “get to see” my children? or “get to” raise them?

First off, again, it’s not about “getting to see” them. I chose adoption. Voluntarily, even if my emotions fought against my logic, tooth and nail.

Second, “there is no adoption that only affects one person.” (That’s a paraphrased ‘quote’; Mark Schultz.)   … So many people have been affected by the choices made for these beautiful children. So many people feel a love that they didn’t feel before. So many people feel a hole in their heart that they’ll always feel. In 10-15 years, though, these people’s hearts will be filled with love and that hole can be healed with the bandage of reunion.

I wonder if a certain church will allow me to use their “fifth Sunday” room that I continually picture as the room that this reunion will take place in. If anyone knew me as a teenager, you might know what a fifth Sunday room is and which room I’m speaking of. I hope they let me use it. I truly hope.

The morning of that day, I would like a small gathering. The afternoon and evening of that day, I would like a slightly larger gathering, if my children feel prepared to meet more of their biological families.

The smaller gathering will be the adoptive family and the immediate, biological families of my children; the family members that I feel are safe for my children to meet – without emotions being too intense – and without there being an angry tension in the room.

Also invited are the closest of my friends. You will be there to catch me, if I fall to my knees – crying. I can’t imagine not crying and falling to my knees in gratefulness. Even now, I’m crying.

Please, God… heal this hole in my heart – with the bandage of reunion. Someday.

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My Job

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Yesterday at work, I was sitting in / at (whichever preposition I’m supposed to use) my cubicle, when I overheard two managers talking at a cubicle near me.

This is what I heard, followed by which manager said it:

“Stephanie…” – my actual boss

“…won’t be able to stay…” – my actual boss

“Oh okay. Thank you for the heads up.” – manager who does the hiring interviews

I had half an hour left of my work day, at that point. It was difficult for me to work quickly. I was too busy worrying that I may not be permanently hired. (I am working as a temp-to-hire.)

I talked to Human Resources, before I left for the day. They said that I have more than 100 work hours, before I am eligible to be permanently hired.

Some of you are close enough friends that you’ve kept up with how well I’ve been doing at work. Because of this, I half-knew I had nothing to worry about, but I still couldn’t let it go that I thought they had already decided not to hire me.

I was given advice from friends, but one friend (in particular) gave me specific instructions on how to handle the situation.

So, I took the advice.

At 7:54am, this morning, I walked up to my boss’ desk. I asked her when a good time would be to ask her a question, privately. She looked worried. She said, “At 9am, unless it’s about you wanting to leave [the job].”

I shook my head and assured my worried-looking boss that I have absolutely no plans to leave my job.

At 9am, I walked up the her desk again. She said that she was still working on reports and would need more time. I asked how long. “10 more minutes,” she said.

I waited until 9:11am. I was doing my work, until then, but I’m very precise with things like this. I didn’t want to seem crazy, by walking up to her desk exactly 10 minutes later, so I waited an extra minute.

This time, she (again) said that it would have to wait. I sat down and worked, until 11:45am. I clocked out for lunch, at 11:46am. My lunch is one half hour, in duration.

I got back to the office and clocked in, at 12:17pm. I needed to make up for clocking in a minute too early (earlier, this morning).

My boss called me over to the “let’s talk privately” area, eventually. It was abrupt, so I apologize for not remembering the exact time. (hehe…) It was around 1pm.

I sat down with her and wasn’t sure how to begin, but my brain can always come up with something to say.

“I didn’t sleep much last night, so I think I’m compensating for that, today.”

She said nothing. I remembered that I was clocked in and needed to hurry up and communicate.

I said, “Yesterday, before I left, I talked to Human Resources. They said I have over 100 hours, before you make a decision whether to hire me.”

She said, “Yes. We’ll set up a review, after those hours pass.”

I told her, “Well, I overheard something yesterday and it was the reason I spoke to Human Resources. I heard my name spoken and that made me want to listen. Then, I heard, ‘…won’t be able to stay…’.”

My boss looked relieved. She said that she thought I was having a social problem in the office.

(I quit talking to most of my co-workers, after a couple of misunderstandings that the other people involved my boss in. I know you’d say that I may be perceiving things wrong, but some of these female co-workers seriously “don’t like me,” except that they don’t know me, at all.)

My boss quickly filled in the blanks of the conversation; the parts that I didn’t hear.

—————————————————————

Here it is / was:

“Is everyone going to be able to stay, today, for overtime?” – manager who does hiring interviews

“Stephanie won’t be able to stay. She is still with _____________________ (TEMP AGENCY), who won’t pay overtime.” – my boss

“Oh okay, thank you for the heads up.” – manager who does hiring interviews

—————————————————————-

She continued to talk with me, which made me feel even more secure in my job.

(Part of the conversation was that I will be trained for a new process, next week – which will make me more of an asset to the company. Enough that I’ll probably keep this job for 2-5+ years. I love to feel secure.)

We’ve spoken on a semi-personal level, before. She’s aware that I have Asperger’s Syndrome. She’s aware that I over-think things. (I really can’t hide that.) She’s aware that unless I speak about what I’m mulling over, I’m inwardly distracted and can’t work as efficiently.

She says that her son is a lot like me and that he gets it from her… but she’s had to learn how to deal with it while at work.

She compared herself to me, in that I don’t speak to very many people at work. She was the same, when she first started working there. She also has a problem with people getting in her personal space.

I asked her if she’d rather that I email her, when I need reassurance that I’m secure in my job.

She (happily) said yes. She added that unless she’s “in my face” or “standing over my shoulder” all day, my job is not in jeopardy. She didn’t seem annoyed. She didn’t rush the conversation’s end. She seemed relieved to be able to take a break and talk to someone that she could relate to.

I think my job is safe. 🙂

A Year, Apparently

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Apparently, as WordPress has informed me, I have had this blog for one year, today.

A lot has changed in a year. All good, I can tell you that.

Once I feel a little more secure in these good changes, I’ll inform you people of the changes.

Lady Bug is 4.

Precious Picklette will be 2 years old, in August.

Sweet Sesame is almost 7 months old.

 

Here’s a recent picture of me:

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Cognitive Dissonance

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Here’s another analogy, to try to explain this.

If you have children, you’ll understand this a little more… maybe.

Your 4 year old daughter has a doll (made of cotton material) that she loves. She takes that doll everywhere. Your daughter’s doll needs a good washing. Very badly. For whatever reason, you can’t wash her doll, while she’s asleep at night. It’s not an option.

You’re now on both sides of this. Some definite cognitive dissonance (excessive mental stress and discomfort experienced by an individual who holds two or more contradictory beliefs) is going on here.

1) You want your daughter to be happy. You want her to have her doll.

2) You know that your daughter’s doll needs to be washed. The doll fell in the mud and needs to be washed NOW. Your daughter likes to take her doll to bed with her and you can’t allow that muddy doll in your daughter’s bed.

This is the Steyer wife’s inner struggle, having to do with these adoptions. She’s good friends with Mr. and Mrs. Zumba (adoptive parents). She also knows me. She housed me. She fed me some awesome homemade food. Her family sacrificed, to help me.

Mrs. Steyer is accustomed to being strong. She sacrifices for many people. She has a difficult time saying “no” to (some) people.

Why am I trying to map out what I think Mrs. Steyer feels?

Empathy. And an attempt to explain how I feel, without hurting her. I don’t want to hurt her. I appreciate her. On my list of people that I appreciate, she’s near the top. I’m close to tears, right now, because I don’t want to hurt her.

Here’s how I feel:

Lady Bug is 4 years old. Sweet Sesame is 6 months old.

What am I going to do? Talk to their mom 3 times a week, for the next 14 years?

I can’t figure out whether I’m being selfish or this is what naturally happens within adoptions. I’m not very good at letting things naturally happen. I over-think everything.

Letting go (to the point that I feel that I should) feels somewhat natural. Again, I suck at this.

Now…

here’s another analogy:  (…finding an analogy that’d make you feel anything close to how I feel is not easy. Just remember that the “thing” I love are my children, not some pet.)

Your parents tell you that you’re moving 500 miles away into an apartment that is not going to allow your 100 pound dog. You love your dog more than anything or anyone (besides your parents, sometimes).

No, really. You really love your dog. A lot. You’ve had him since you were 3 years old.

You find a really good home for him. A lake, 3 acres of land, 5 other dogs to play with. Just a perfect home for him.

You met this “perfect home” family through a friend of yours.

You have hysterically cried over the loss of your beloved pet. You know that he’s where he should be, but it still hurts to be without him. It hurts a lot.

Your friend (who helped you find this home) periodically tells you how your dog is doing. Your friend sends you pictures. Your friend visits your dog’s home, from time to time.

Yes, this makes you thankful that you have such a direct connection to your dog’s new home.

A year and a half later, you’re still missing your dog. Sometimes, you still cry.

Now, you’re about to “begin a new chapter.”

Your friend will always be friends with your dog’s (“new”) family.

It’s just life, for your dog’s family and your friend. But it’s not “just life,” for you.

Part of releasing the pain of your loss (which, in reality, very few people love DOGS this much… so, remember, these are my children – not a dog!) …. is to “put away” constant reminders of your dog and your loss.

…another explanation:

if a mother’s child is kidnapped, she keeps the child’s room AS IS – until her child returns.

if a mother’s child is killed / dies in an accident, she keeps the child’s room AS IS (for a while), but eventually things are packed away and put into storage, so that she’s more able to accept her loss and allow life to “go on.”

Adoption shouldn’t be compared to a child dying, no, but the loss and pain are similar – but not equal, at all.

I hope what I feel is understood. I don’t want to hurt anyone. I’ve never wanted to hurt anyone.

I’ve tried to put you “into my shoes.” If you can’t understand, I’m done trying to explain.

If you do understand and aren’t hurt, thank you.

Letting Go // Bug & Sesame

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Lady Bug is 4 years old, now. Sweet Sesame is 6 months old.

I’m feeling an inner prompt that I need to let go – a little more.

I won’t see Lady Bug or Sweet Sesame, possibly for another 14 years. I have no idea. It’s whenever they’re ready to meet me.

I’ve received information and pictures, at least bi-weekly. Usually more often than that. I appreciate each anecdote and each picture that I receive.

But at what point does life begin again? I feel like I’m trapped in the past. I feel guilty “saying” this, but I really don’t want to be trapped there any longer.

I don’t EVER worry about Lady Bug or Sweet Sesame. The only worries I have are the kind that you can’t do anything about; the kind of things that no one could ever be blamed for. 

Babies, I love you.

I want to let the past go.

That doesn’t mean entirely letting go of you. It means letting go, to the point that I can stop with the “what ifs.” It means letting go, to the point that I can look forward to the day that I’ll meet you again.

snakes in the grass.

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Am I the only one who has to learn lessons the hard way, over and over, before the facts finally set in?

The class I’m attending has a complete syllabus of life’s lessons. Even if one or two lessons aren’t in their curriculum, I’m managing to sneak in a learning experience or two.

One lesson I’m learning is about self-disclosure.

My tendency is to over-share … with friends, acquaintances, and total strangers.

There have been a few people in my life that jumped from the Total Stranger category to the Best Friend (or so I thought) category way too fast.

I’ve not made that mistake just once.

I’m too trusting. I’m too open with the details of my life.

This type of openness attracts a certain type of person, I’m discovering. Don’t get me wrong, I have made some great friends via my openness. But of course, there will always be “snakes in the grass.”

These snakes have little going on in their own lives.

These snakes have an innate ability to sense drama.

These snakes should just get cable and watch soap operas all day.

 

“You’re an interesting person.”

If I hear any variation of this, ever again, I will step back and take a better look at the person. What are their intentions? Are they bored with their own lives …and have they sensed the dramatic past, having to do with my children?

The drawback of being in the midst of learning to be less self-disclosing is that it’s a work in progress. ..catching yourself saying something, realizing that it’s probably too much information, but they’ve already heard a portion of the story.

Should you continue and give the details? or do you hold it all back and hope that they don’t make up their own version?

We live. We learn.

How do you deal with the slanderous snake? I’m still learning that lesson.

chloephone