So I recently found a post I really love.
I love it because of the compassion given all around. Sometimes the glib funny answers that serve one person's purpose cause only harm to another.
I've been a little wounded on some issues. And one that I really didn't understand and couldn't put into words is how I get upset when people brush away the concept of a birth Mom as also being a 'real Mom'. Part of me thought it was because sometimes the best people can do is to be incredibly unselfish and let a child go to a loving family. Because the real selfish people won't give a child up- they will keep them for years with neglect and the child isn't raised, they just sort of grow.
Those 'real parents' make me angry, because I loved my child and raised him and yet I didn't get to keep him. I would have done anything to keep him (and I am glad that I have never been forced to really ask myself how far because that is a really big heart of darkness area for me).
But I really sympathize with the bioparents that do give a child up with love and are sometimes whitewashed out of the picture through insecurity. Life given through birth is beautiful and should be recognized as a gift- not as taking away something from the parents who are raising them, also real parents.
And I realize it is because when people brush off the first 6 months of a child's life or the birth Mom it makes me furious.
Because in many ways, I haven't got to raise my son. Ok so maybe God, a loving father, is raising my son better than I can, but I love him desperately. It wasn't my choice. I wasn't a bad parent. Just because I got to keep him for a short time doesn't make me less of a real Mom. Just because my time was only comprised of time I carried him, birthed him, and less than 5 months in my arms doesn't make me less a real Mom than any other parent who raises a child. And yes in many ways I 'raised' him, even though we only had a brief moment together. In some ways more so than most parents because I have had to do some things for my son that, God willing, YOU will NEVER have to do- figure out how to bury a child and yet keep them alive and meaningful in a world that wants you to forget. Anyone who has done the same for a parent understands in some ways what a huge painful loving thing this is, and yet for a Mom who has 'lost' a child it is very much a part of being a parent in the story books where life doesn't end happily ever after. As much as changing the first poopy diaper was, or as much as helping my Daughter get ready for prom will be one day.
I only really had largely a beginning and the ending with him here. So in some ways I feel like a 'bio' parent and in some ways a 'raising' parent too.... Sometimes a grieving parent feels like they have been made an orphan. What if the sound of your child's name was wonderful to your ears and you woke up one day without them and then a week after the service this music becomes taboo to even say?
Confusing? Try being me.
But I love this post. Because in real life things aren't need and tidy, feelings of love and loss and abandonment mingle in confusing pools with multiple experiences coexisting. Some things simply are.
I think about the complexity of love and human emotions when I think about each of my kids. In a weird way, they each individually have all of my heart completely. Like the miracle of the fishes and loaves it doesn't add up mathematically and yet I know it is true with my whole being. So too with a child's heart/love perhaps- maybe the heart can be filled completely with love for one parent and yet still have that desire and longing for acceptance and love by another?
I know with grief, at times your heart can be full of love for one child and still filled with complete void and brokenness for the loss of another. It doesn't make for a bad parent- I guess it just means they gave more than just a piece of themselves to each child. The grief / love for one takes nothing away from the love for the other.