WEDNESDAY, MARCH 6, 2013
Life is so rough right now. I never thought I’d share deep things in my life through blogging. But, that has turned out not to be the case. This blog is my journal, in some ways, as I do not have time to keep a written journal.
I’ve had the worst streak of bad luck these last couple years, unexpected medical issues, and many other events surrounding me. For example, I am scheduled to have a rhizotomy done on my back next week. This is a procedure where the doctor will go into my spine and kill the medial nerves to the injured vertebrae. I also am having a mammogram in two weeks because the doctor felt something in my left breast at my last exam.
A couple days ago, my first husband, John, passed away from a massive heart attack at the age of 40. John was my daughter’s father, and if you have read my blog earlier, you know that we gave her up for adoption at birth, because I was only 18 year old and already had a baby in diapers. She was raised by a wonderful family who I knew for years prior to her birth.
John and his current wife, Cindy, moved back to Michigan last year with their kids. Our daughter had only had the opportunity to physically meet him once before he died; however, they talked often and were getting to know each other. My heart breaks for my daughter, because her adoptive father died less than two years ago from leukemia, so she was excited when her biological father moved back to Michigan, as she was able to establish a relationship with him. Last year was the first time John and I were able to establish relationships with our daughter, because we were asked to wait until she turned 18 years old to meet her openly.
I have not spoken to John directly in about 18 years, but I became friends on Facebook with him and his wife, Cindy, last year. Despite the fact that John and I had obvious history, I have utmost respect for his marriage and maintained a distance from him to keep drama low between his wife and I. I felt like we were divorced, and he had moved on. My friendship on Facebook has been 99% with his wife and 1% with him, plus he didn’t spend much time on Facebook except to play games.
When it comes to death, even if you haven’t spoken to that person in years, if you have ever shared part of your life with someone, whether it be relationships, friendships, roommates, or whatever, you will grieve their death. Even if you haven’t spoken to that person in years, and you may have even left the relationship with bad feelings, you will still grieve their death when they die. I think that is human nature.
I am sad for John’s wife and children the most. I am sad for his parents who never expected their children to die before them. I am sad for our daughter, who will have to get to know him through memories of him and from stories of others.
My disappointment lies in the fact that I will never be able to make direct amends to him now, which I will have to do here. When we were together, we were really young. Yes, he left me when I was pregnant with our daughter when I was 18. Yes, we finally got back together a couple weeks before she was born. Yes, I chose to move forward with the adoption anyway, because I felt that was in our daughter’s best interest. John begged me not to give her up, but he supported my decision anyway and was present in court the day we signed off our rights to her.
Where I messed up was thinking I could emotionally handle giving my baby up for adoption without any therapy. I justified that because I knew who adopted her well, and I knew they were taking good care of her. But, knowing that was not enough. I took care of my baby while I was in the hospital from giving birth to her. She stayed in my room with me. I got to feed her, change her diaper and clothing, and hold her. I think I held her the majority of the time that I was in the hospital. John was with me during her birth, and he got to spend time with her as well.
I was angry after her birth. I was not prepared for the trauma it would cause me on an emotional level. I was not prepared for the amount of pain I was going to feel, and I don’t think it would have been any worse had she died instead. I had nowhere to expel that grief, and I could not, in any way, share what I was feeling with my daughter’s adoptive family. I did not want to negatively influence the adoption in any way.
I took my anger out on John in major ways. I blamed him for the adoption because if he had never left me to begin with, we could have kept her. I blamed him and punished him for ever small misdeed, every mistake he ever made. And, I didn’t let it go. We fought and fought and fought. I had gotten physical with him several times. We broke up again.
The following year, we got back together. I thought enough time had lapsed that maybe our relationship would work that time. I loved him very much, despite my anger at him, because he was my first love, my first live-in boyfriend, my first husband. We got married when I was 19 years old. Well, that happiness didn’t last long. My anger over the adoption and life in general was still a dominant presence in my life. I punished him, yet again. I got physical with him, yet again. He left 3 1/2 months into the marriage, and we never got back together again.
See, I was so worried about my own feelings and emotions. I was selfish, and I reacted on my emotions. I never stopped for two seconds to think about the grief he might be carrying about giving our daughter up for adoption. Instead of drawing on our similarities and getting help together, I pushed him away with my angry hatred.
Would things have worked out in the long-run had we gotten help? No, I don’t think it would. I do believe we would have been broken up in a matter of time, because of my history, because I was a product of abuse. I had no clue how to make a relationship work. I still would have probably pushed him away. My inability to forgive has affected many relationship and friendships in the past my past.
I am a firm believer that ultimately, life turns out the way it’s supposed to, whether we like it or not. We will pay the consequences to our mistakes. But, in the long run, life has a funny way of working out anyways. John married his current wife shortly after our divorce. They stayed married for 18 years and were actively married when John passed away Monday night/Tuesday morning.
I couldn’t make him happy, but that was not because I didn’t love him. Sometimes, if we know we don’t have what that person needs, we have to let them go. Not because we don’t love them, but because we love them enough to let them go find happiness. John’s wife is a good person. She accepted my daughter, her husband’s daughter, with open arms as part of her family. She loved him unconditionally. I remember something he said once on Facebook recently, in one of his rare verbal postings in which he thanked her for their 18 years together and how much he still loved her.
For that, I am grateful. I am grateful I let him go when I did. I am grateful he had such an amazing woman to help pick up the pieces, who was strong enough to love him completely. Life works out exactly the way it’s supposed to. There is the proof. I don’t look at John as my ex-husband. I look at him as someone who is part of my extended family because we share a daughter together. I look at his wife as part of that same extended family. I have not entertained ideas of ever getting back together with him over the years. Sure, I wanted to find him. I had pictures I held onto for years of our daughter, some of which were supposed to go to him. I tried looking for him a couple times over the years to give him those pictures, but for whatever reason, we never made contact.
I wish I could have told him I’m sorry. I wish I could apology to his mother for not being a good partner for her son, if anything, for hurting him the way I did. I was willing to make those amends to him. I should have. I wanted to message him on Facebook to tell him these things, but I was afraid his wife would think I was trying to come between them, so I refrained from saying anything at all. I should have told him. Now, it’s too late.
I had major flashbacks Tuesday. I had a woman respond to the ad for Buddha needing a forever home. I’ve had Buddha for a few months, so I had gotten a little bit attached to him. When she arrived, I walked him outside to her car. He didn’t want to go and crouched with his tail between his legs. I was on the verge of tears. I hugged and kissed him good-bye and told him I’d come visit soon. I put him in her car and shut the door and she pulled away. The tears started to fall, and the dam had broken. Right then, I was rooted in my spot and taken to a place over 19 years ago, when I left the hospital with my baby girl, hugged and kissed her good-bye, as I handed her to her adoptive parents. They strapped her in their car, shut the door, and drove away to take her to their home. Talk about flashbacks! It wasn’t a good day to send Buddha off like that. I was too emotional.
John’s death instigated me to think about many of our experiences together, some good, some painful. It’s hard to remember all the bad things anymore. Even after 18 years, I am amazed at how many things I haven’t thought about in years. My condolences go to his family, and my prayers for them are constant. I pray his wife can get through this and eventually, be able to find happiness in her life again, wherever that happiness may be.
SATURDAY MARCH 9, 2013
As I wake up this morning to finally publish this post, I discovered more bad news on Facebook. Someone I knew from high school and on Facebook passed away last night at the age of 39.
According to my life-long friend, Tony (who was nearby when it happened), Jason laid down because his head and body were aching. Jason never woke up. This is sad news.
So many people are dying lately…WHY? I know we’re all going to go someday, but this is just so young.