Bedtime Stories That Paved The Road to Redemption
shared by Cassandra Holmes
Every child knows what bedtime stories are. Sometimes parents read them from books, other parents make them up as they go. My favorite bedtime story was “The Man & The Woman Story”. Basic as far as stories go, but this one is special. This one is mine.
Once upon a time, there was a man and a woman. They wanted a baby VERY much, but couldn’t have one of their own. Then the woman’s friend told her about a place they could go, to apply and take home a baby-because other mommies weren’t able to take care of their babies. So the man and the woman went to this place, and met a lady named Fran. She introduced them to a woman named Michelle, who wanted her baby to have a mommy AND a daddy. The man and the woman prayed, and waited for Michelle to decide that they could have her baby. Then, on Thanksgiving-the phone rang early in the morning. It was Fran!!!! The baby that the man and the woman had desperately longed & prayed for was here. Did they want to come pick her up today? OF COURSE THEY DID!!! The woman screamed, and called her mommy to come and go with them to the city where the baby waited. They walked into the room, and the most beautiful baby girl was there ready to go home with them.
Through the years, my parents would send letters and photos to my biological mother to fulfill the requirements of the semi-open adoption agreement. Several of those years, I included a letter too, begging my biological mother to write back. Too young to recognize or realize my struggle then, my little heart was aching from the pain of a primal rejection, and the seed that had been planted would grow and manifest itself in my life for years to come-especially after years with no reply.
This private wound festered without recognition until it transformed my life entirely overnight. I quickly changed from a bright, bubbly friendly girl to a girl who was rebellious, withdrawn, and angry. Feeling worthless, I soon entered into an unhealthy relationship. As it escalated quickly from verbal and psychological abuse to physical violence, I withdrew even further. This alienated my friends and family. Within months, I knew something was wrong in more than just the relationship. By the grace of God, I called my parents and was welcomed home with open arms. I entered therapy, and started a long road to healing.
It is here the road to redemption truly began. Despite having been placed with the world’s best parents, there was a seed of rejection that had lingered, unnoticed and indescribable for many years. I struggled with guilt when I realized I was actually mourning a loss…one that was difficult to find words for – a primal separation of me, and the woman whose genetics I’m comprised of. I struggled with guilt – my parents are truly where God intended me to be, and I never ever doubted their love; then why did I feel so unlovable? It was a deep-seated wound that had been left unattended to fester for years, one that created a despairing need for love and acceptance. Through introspection and counseling, I began to crawl forward, out of the cave I had bound myself in. I finally accepted that, yes, I lost something. I was knit-together in a woman’s body who was no longer part of my life. This primal connection – her heartbeat, her smell, and the first sounds I heard – had instantly vanished.
Instead, I came home on a snowy Michigan Thanksgiving to a house full of family who cherished my very existence. While it seems like the perfect start for life – to be surrounded by those who love you most, my introspection led me to realize that true as that may be, there was still a part of me that felt rejected.
In the midst of my struggle, I began to overcome. When I was capable of seeing my life without my “rejection goggles”, my passion ignited. Purpose was given to my painful past. I began to pursue a degree in Social Work with an ultimate goal of attaining a Master’s Degree and going into counseling with adolescent girls who struggle with self-worth. I am open about my adoption experience and I am researching how to incorporate more education into the adoption process about how these primal losses can affect families.
I now realize that neither the emotions that came with my adoption, nor the violence in my past define me. They help to make me who I am today.
Hi there! My name is Cassie, and I blog over at functionaldysfunction.blogspot.com This is my first ever guest-post, and I am over-the-moon excited! (Thanks Alana!) I’m not very great at talking about myself, so I asked Mr. Man (my fiancé) to help me. He told me “You’re a woman of charisma. Opinionated, but open-minded. Adventurous, and always hungry to learn; you care too much-and approach everything you do with an abnormal amount of enthusiasm. Your biggest strength is self-awareness-and that’s why I love you”. Well. Who can argue with that, right?! If you’re interested in hearing my opinionated views day-to-day, feel free to check me out on Twitter: @CassieAnne539
I hope you enjoyed today’s post and that you check out my sporadically updated blog! 🙂