The Power of An Adoptive Mom’s Non-Abandoning Heart

How Adoptive Moms Can Prevent Fears of Abandonment in their Kids With Their Non-Abandoning Heart

Looking back on my life as an adopted person, I am certain that my Mom gifted me with a non-abandoning heart:

  • I will do everything possible to connect with my child
  • I will still love her even when she rejects me
  • I will love unconditionally, knowing her back story
  • I will love her even though I am afraid
  • I will love her by telling her the truth about her backstory.
  • I will keep loving her even though I receive no love in return.
  • I will go to my grave knowing I’ve done my absolute best for her.

That rare gift of a non-abandoning heart can be illustrated by this story about a forest ranger who was surveying the results of a forest fire in California. 

All the mighty redwoods were but an ash heap. 

Kicking his way through the ashes, he came upon a mysterious clump, which he kicked to the side. Immediately, baby chicks scurried out from their dead mama’s body.

What a mom she was to those scurrying chicks…and what a mom my mom was to me…her scurrying chick.

What Moms Can Do

  1. Place A Bandaid

Place a bandaid over your heart. No one will know it is there but you. Every time you see the bandaid, remember your profound wound and speak a few affirmations over yourself:

  • I am deeply loved.
  • I am this child’s mom and no one can ever take my place.
  • Even though my child can’t receive my love, it won’t be lost.
  • I am more than enough to meet my child’s need for a good mom.

  1. Envision Your Survivor Scar

Enjoy these quotes about scars:

  • Every scar tells a story–a story that you survived.
  • Scars are like battle wounds–they show off what you’ve been through and how strong you are.
  • Scars are proof of healing.
  • Every scar I have makes me who I am.
  1. Good Books. Audio versions ideal:
  • Book: WISE ADOPTIVE PARENTING: When Kids Struggle to Adopt Their Parents, by Ronald J. Nydam. Ron is my friend, colleague, therapist, pastor, and author. He’s worked with adoptive families for years and is savvy about the disconnect between kids and parents.
  • Book:  KEEP THE DOORS OPEN: Lessons Learned from A Year of Foster Parenting, 2019, by Kristin Berry. Moms, you will love this irresistible book by my friend, Kristin Berry. Her writing is engaging and powerful. You’ll end up edified. Available in audio.
  • Web Site: Confessionsofanadoptiveparent.com. You won’t believe the plethora of services they have for adoptive and foster parents. Best I’ve seen.
  • Book: 20 THINGS ADOPTED KIDS WISH…A Daily Devotional for Adoptive Parents, by Sherrie Eldridge. Available on Kindle.

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One Adoptee’s New View of Verrier’s Primal Wound

One Adoptee’s New View of Verrier’s Primal Wound

For the last two decades in the world of adoption, Adoptees clung tenaciously to the book called The Primal Wound, by adoptive mom, Nancy Verrier.

Thank you Ms. Verrier for validation, but you’re not even an adopted person…we Adoptees are over-the-top confident that our perspectives are much different than yours.

There’s no way you could see Adoption nor life through an adopted person’s eyes. Our eyes have been shattered by loss of a much different kind.

So, respectfully, thanks, but bye.

No longer do we find comfort in the compromising status of self- validation, for a self-centered life is not how we were created.

Instead, our genetic blueprint calls us to sacredly build others up.

We want to know the  perspectives of fellow adoptees who walk the walk. Each, like refined gold, oftentimes better than therapy, a mirror, an unspoken gift to our needy souls.

How we need one another.

We are moving on now, for we see there is so.much.more than validation.

We know our struggles weren’t caused by character defects or generational curses.

Shame has drained from the dark, musty basements of our souls. We’re inhaling invigorating fresh air and feeling the sun’s warmth on our gargantuas trauma scars.

We don’t inflict self-loathing for the oftentimes contrariness of raw life…no,  we base our self worth on what Someone greater says—we are unique jewels of inestimable worth and beauty, bought with a price.

As we move on, we embrace the fact that we indeed can heal from our excruciatingly painful past.

Yes, we struggled in our chrysalis of toxic anger and trauma-ridden beliefs for decades, but we now know that we can successfully learn to fly, discover the unique colors of our wings, and zoom to unimaginable heights.

It’s not comfortable leaving you behind, Primal Wound, but we do so with the tenderest of soaring hearts.

After all, there is so.much.more.

The Gift of My Adoptive Mama’s Perfume

I'd Pour Out Mom's Perfume If At All Possible

If you pick up an empty bottle that once contained expensive perfume, its possible to still distinguish the fine fragrance, even though the bottle is empty.

Adoptive mamas, you are the perfume and you want your life and love to be a timeless fragrance of fine perfume for your adopted and foster child.

That’s what my mom longed for, but like many adopted and foster kids, I couldn’t smell the perfume.

But, if handed the full bottle, I’d either grab it and throw it to the ground, stomp on it while screaming, plug my nose and run in the opposite direction, or bite the glass container.

Why such a powerful reaction?

Was I just a character-flawed kid who had no choice? Were the genes stacked against me? Was there no hope for me to someday be able to cherish the fragrance of the perfume?

In a surprising turn of events, I can now smell the fine perfume fragrance of my my late adoptive mom.

I can smell her best-in-town apple pie, see her taking care of my kitty, and feel her gentle hands rubbing warm oil on my childhood asthmatic chest at bedtime.

It was her legacy to me.

Legacy is a gift from one generation to the next.

Could it be that what I was experiencing was that my late mom’s legacy was surfacing in me?

Is Adoptee Anger My Life Sentence?

Why Can't I Control Anger At My Mom?

Many of us adoptees wonder if anger is our life sentence. It’s been a constant companion since childhood and even though attempts like counseling have been made to quell it, it’s a strong as ever.

Once a counselor told me to just scream when I feel angry. The next time I felt angry, I screamed in the middle of a session. She jumped at least three feet.

But, screaming didn’t help.

It’s important to understand how anger manifests for an adoptee. It’s a strong feeling of displeasure and belligerence around a wrong. An adoptee becomes enraged, incensed, and downright hard to live with.

Anger says, “My birth mom gave me away and I am mad as hell at her for doing that.”

What I’ve Discovered About Adoptee Anger

What I didn’t know until recently is that at the moment my first mom disappeared from my life (at birth), something was borne within me besides anger.

This something grew quietly in my system and couldn’t be identified as a companion to anger. It just did it thing secretly. It grew beneath the surface of my life, yet it was deadly.

It whispers, “You’ve been through the worst hurt. Eventually, I will keep you from ever being free to heal.  I will leave a relentless sour taste in your proverbial mouth….I fool lots of adoptees because I grow beneath anger, like a winding root, delving deep even into your soul.”

The Bible says I’m poison and that I can defile many through you. (Hebrews 12:15)

Identifying Anger’s Unnamed Companion

My name is bitterness.

I am like a bubbling fountain laying beneath the surface of your anger. My roots don’t show but my job is to feed strength to your anger. My mission in life is to make it easy to get upset over things others do, especially your adoptive mom’s many attempts to connect with you.

My message is, “Your mother’s abandonment is the worst of pains and will be incredibly hard to accept or even admit.”

It has taken a lifetime to understand my anger and how to deal with it effectively.

Looking back on my discovery, I am sure it took a move of God to arrange circumstances that would ultimately free me.

In the weeks ahead, I will share some of this with you all.

I hope this has been helpful as you process whether or not adoptee anger is a life sentence.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why I Rejected My Adoptive Mom’s Gift…and Her

What Adoptive Mamas Can Do When Kids Reject Their Love and Them

If the President were pinning Purple Hearts on adoptive and foster mamas whose daily challenge is to pull drowning Adopted and foster kids from trauma tidal waves, my Mom would be there….for she saved my life in multiple ways.

Dad would be in the front row, beaming with pride….I hope.

And, me, I’d be sitting in the back row, ticked off. How could I be happy and proud of someone I hated?

Yes, that is the ugly truth.

I hated my mom.

Oh, please forgive us, for we know not what we are doing.

Mom died suddenly at age 70, when I was only 36. Dad died 11 years later.

Then, in my seventh chapter of life, warm memories of mom surfaced within me, like an old-fashioned slide show.

These memories weren’t necessarily about her achievements, but they could have been.

Instead, they consisted of her character and unspoken influence of love…eating her delicious apple pie on the front porch , feeling her oil-drenched fingertips massage my asthmatic chest, and a car trip to a farm to pick out a kitty—Dinny Dinwit.

Quite cognizant of the changes in perspective, I searched for information about brain chemistry, etc.

Then, I wondered if I was experiencing hallucinations…really!

Little did I imagine that I was healing from adoption wounds and receiving the love mom left for me.

When I say healing, I mean that something truly miraculous happened within me. Something I couldn’t have worked out no matter how hard I tried.

It was God’s powerful move in my life.

He gets all the credit.

Sometimes, it takes a lifetime for a legacy to be discovered by the next generation, but it is never lost.

So mamas, take heart. Your legacy of love to your child won’t be forgotten.

 

 

 

What Adoptive Mamas Can Do When Kids Reject Their Love and Them
The pain involved in the adoptive mother/child relationship is deep and often seems impossible to normalize. Sherrie Eldridge encourages adoptive mamas to know the intrinsic value of their love to their children by showing her own mom’s determined love in the midst of Sherrie’s fierce rejection.

 

 

 

 

Looking back, I declare mom to be a “Marine mom,” one of the proud, the few, the willing of heart to take whatever necessary for her child to experience love.