I'm an adoptee, an adoptive parent and I'm getting older and have experienced enough of life to know a few things. And to see my own mistakes and where they have led me in my life. And I am coming out on the other side... Only by the grace of a holy God who gave His son so I might live... these are my experiences. I have been hurt. By those who should have not done it. By those I trusted. I have been torn in two... broken in half. Hit so hard that I could not breath. Made to feel like I am nothing...
Forgiveness... Some thing we all want when we make a mistake. Some thing we all really would like to say we can do when we get hurt. Especially by some one we love. A word easier to say out loud then to feel in the heart. We can say we do it cause we know that is what we should do. Yes, I forgive you....After all, "I"will not become bitter and spend my whole life hating you. Like some who have not been able to forgive have done.
I forgive you.... I forgive you... ya, ya...bla bla... And I go on with my life and every day it hurts. Every day I wonder how you could have done such a horrible hurtful thing to me? I try to put it behind me where it deserves to be.... (behind in the past,buried a thousand miles under ground,vanished!) I will not let it take up any more of my life. You are just a bad person... you deserve to NOT be forgiven. YOU know that right? I never would have hurt you like that! I never would have done what YOU did to me. Can YOU not see what you have done to me? But I am moving on I forgive you... now I do not want to think of it any more.... cause I forgive you.
But you seem to live your life not really knowing what deep dark pain you have caused me. How can you do that? How can you face yourself in the mirror every day. I do not seem to see any repentence in your smile at me. You do not seem to have paid any thing for your horrible use of me? How can that be? Maybe if I could just speak to you (with out yelling and hitting you) and make you understand and convince you of the evil you have done to me you would not be so carefree? You would feel this weight that I feel. You would feel some kind of pain... pain like I feel. Then I become angry all over again!! It is not my place to make you see or understand or convince you of anything you have done to me. YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO SEE IT!!! If you do not you are only lying... I see now that you would just simply say it was all me... my fault. My fault....
I now realize years have passed for both of us. They have gone slowly for me. I have looked out of the corner of my eye.... waiting for God to smite you! Waiting for my justification and my God given revenge. I understand revenge is for God. It seems He is doing nothing.... Why?
What I have learned:
All of us on this earth need to forgive. We all hurt each other...As parents of adopted kids we need to help them a bit extra to learn to forgive. As an adoptee there are special people we need to be able to forgive in our lives. I have learned that to forgive is a choice. We choose when and who we will forgive. And we choose to hold on to "IT" when we want to. We can pretend we do not know how to get rid of that weight that holds us.... unforgiveness. But I do believe eventually we know and we have a choice. Most adopted kids need to forgive their birthparents. That is a simple "duh" thing to say... deeper then it seems actually. It goes to the core of our being.. the pain is always there. Until we make peace until we learn how to give that pain to a God who bore it all for us to be able to forgive and to be forgiven ourselves. A God we do not always want to forgive either.
All adoptees grow up but we are still adoptees because that has shaped us into who we are as adults. Can you say it? Can you admit that as an adoptee you are mad at God? Or do you scream it out loud? Do you write it on your body in an angry tattoo? Do you drink it down every day in way too much to drink? Do you give your body away as use less to too many people to use as they see fit? Do you stuff that hate away in too much food in a body you are hating too? Do you blame your adoptive parents for every thing that has gone wrong in your life? Do you blame a God who could have made you have a life as nice as others around you seem to have had? After all He gave you a bum deal. You are an adoptee. And it can be a pain you do not want to deal with....
You can feel this way as a child. Even though you may not give it the same words. Even though you love your adoptive parents and your life. Even if you say you are thankful... (and you are). YOU have to make a choice to forgive. Forgive those birthparents who screwed up and had to place you for adoption. The country who did not want you or care for you...And even forgive those who took you away from the country of your birth to adopt you into a family who wanted you very much.... Because it is hard to grow up and be only one of a few non white faces in school, in your town, in your church, in your family. Because it is hard to not be able to speak a language that goes with your face especially when others with the same face expect you to be able to. It is hard to grow up and feel you belong in several worlds but maybe not in any one in particular. It is hard to be an adoptee and want to return the love you are given so freely in your adoptive family but feel so lonely and lost at times.
And it is a process to learn to forgive and a choice.
I learned when I made a choice to become a Christian in my life. I chose to believe in a God who gave His son for my own forgiveness. I stepped out and chose to see if this God was real. I put Him to the test. I learned that to be forgiven I had to forgive.... simple but not so simple. I got married and learned that even the person you love most in life can hurt you...I became a parent my self and learned the hard way that no one can hurt you like your own child. And I had a choice to forgive.
Our adopted kids will all have this choice to make. And if they do not make it... we will suffer with them. So we need to help them understand that we get "no where" in life if we can not forgive. Simple and deep just like the gospel. We can not know true forgiveness with out Jesus as our savior. Simple and deep... we all need a savior.
I was granted a gift from God. I got to meet my birthmom when I was 45 and she was 78. I got to offer her forgiveness... she wanted it and she needed it. I gave it freely with out much thought as she was old and I gave it as a caretaker not wanting her to feel any pain. But I did not feel it then. I heard the story of her life. I heard the pain and in it all I felt her love for me. Not in the same way I show love but in her own way. The way she could show me love. I saw her as a person, An adult and equal as a hurt women that I could help. As our relationship evolved, thru the years, I saw her as my mom. I heard her say I love you. I heard her cry out in years of pain at loosing her child. I looked forward to knowing her and seeing how we were the same but different in so many ways. I accepted her for who she was and I loved her. Not in the same way I love my real mom (my adoptive mom) but in a different way. I am thankful for those times. Because now she is 86 and in a nursing home and she does not talk any more. I forgave her...
Trust God, trust forgiveness... giving it all to a God you can trust is worth it all.