Your Adopted or Foster Child’s Memories May Surprise You

Frozen green peas in a pyrex dish adorned the shelf of the fridge.

A common sight from my childhood.

Immediately, my heart went to my mom, who used to make “peas on toast” for me. It was her specialty and I don’t know of anyone else who loves them as I do.

When I thought of her, there wasn’t the adolescent anger, the shouting matches at lunch hour during high school, or my constant criticism of her.

There was warmth inside at the thought of her, of Retha, of the one who fell to the floor with me at age 20 when my buckling knees crashed to the floor after announcing my pregnancy.

Did I even realize what lavish love was being shown?

Nope…not with peas on toast or hugging during buckling knee times.

It’s funny what memories we carry, isn’t it? I’ll remember something different from the same experience than you do.

If you could ask my mom, Retha, today what one of her daughter’s favorite memories was, she wouldn’t say, “Peas on toast.”

We all know the basic fact that we adoptees struggle with misplaced anger. We are mad as hell at our birth mothers for sending us away. But, who gets the whiplash anger?

Our moms.

Our moms who would go to the moon and back for us.Our moms who rub warm castor oil on our aching chests during asthma attacks and who sit up into the wee hours waiting for us to return from dates. Our moms who constantly turn the other cheek, who continue on as wounded warriors storming heaven’s gates on our behalf. Our moms who are content to not even see any love from us this side of heaven…as long as we thrive.

Hats off to you, moms.

You are absolutely amazing.

You may think you’re having no positive effects on us belligerent kiddos, but I assure you…you are.

In between the anger and rebellion are pockets of warm love that you can’t see. Really…they are there. And, there probably not formed in any way that you can possibly imagine.

But, they’re there.

Who knows how many years it will take for your adopted or foster child to discover them or for you to see them, but you all will.

For me, it’s too late.

My mom has been gone for over 30 years.

How I wish I could love her well now.

Your foster or adopted kiddo probably won’t remember your loving acts, but they will remember the thoughtful things you did for them…like making peas on toast.

The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart.   Helen Keller




7 responses to “Your Adopted or Foster Child’s Memories May Surprise You”

  1. Sherrie Eldridge, Adoption Author Avatar

    Oh, good! I hope that the writing will speak to at least one person! Thanks for responding.

  2. Ellen Avatar

    Thank you for this post, I needed to read this today.

  3. […] wieder einen Post vor ein paar Wochen veröffentlicht, der mich sehr gerührt und ermutigt hat. „Your Adopted or Foster Child’s Memories May Surprise You“ kam gerade richtig. Hängen geblieben ist er zunächst, weil Sherrie über ein ganz profanes Gericht […]

  4. Sherrie Eldridge Avatar

    Thank you so much for sharing your story! I am glad to hear how the message of this post resonated with you and was confirmed through your experiences with your sons. Keep storming!

  5. manuretherapy Avatar

    This hits right at home. We adopted 2 brothers from foster care when they were 10 & 14 (8 yrs ago). Both of them pushed us away as the enemy and moved out of our home, the older one 3+ yrs ago, the younger one last March. There’s a lot to the story, but two nights ago I received a Facebook message from the younger one, who has not been willing to have any communication with me, and in fact, was not speaking to me for a few months prior to him moving out.
    Anyway, yesterday my husband and I were talking about how when our son did make contact, it was to me rather than my husband (who he was always more willing to communicate with), and how I did receive a one line “happy mother’s day” message randomly.
    Long story short, your message through this post has been reinforced in our family, and we also know the realities of what is underneath (the displaced anger etc). Our story is far from over with much yet to be written, and we do continue to storm the gates.

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