On this day in 1967, I gave birth to a baby girl, and I named her Mary Catherine. I was 15 years old. I never got to hold her, she was whisked away from me, and ten days later, given to a “good family.” I had no idea then that it would not matter how old I got, this memory would still be as sharp and pointy as new – never dulled by the years.
We have “found” each other twice over the years. Each discovery ended painfully. Last year on April 30, she sent me a text asking me to “please do us both a favor and forget I’d ever existed. I’d thank you for life itself, but the fact is there weren’t a real lot of options in 1967.” The text went on from there, but you get the idea.
So, on this day in 2012, at the age of 60, I am still second-guessing myself. Should I have recognized her pain in that text and reached out to her? I didn’t. I let it be. I respected her wishes. The truth is, I really don’t want her in my life. She is mean, deliberately offensive, and inconsiderate. Truth be told? I am afraid of what she would do to my other children. She tried to hurt me by calling them my “REAL” children, but they ARE my real children. I raised them. I love them. I know them. My alcoholic daughter understands me on a very profound level, and so I confided in her about this. She had talked to Mary on the phone and agreed with me. She said that Mary is a drug addict and very bizarre and that it would be scary to have her around – and this is a girl who LOVES felons, she can’t get enough of them!
The bottom line is: I wish I hadn’t gotten pregnant at the age of 14, but I did. I am glad I gave birth to the child instead of aborting her – and there WERE “*choices” in 1967. I believe I fulfilled my obligation to this child when I arranged to have a family adopt her. Truly, I do. If she wanted to play nice, I would be happy to have her as a part of my life. If I were alone, I would probably have a relationship with her anyway. But I have a family, I have a family I am still a part of. I have a family I have made commitments to. I believe this baby, now 47 years old, would cause untold grief to my REAL family, and I will do all in my power to prevent that from happening.
Thank God it is 2012. Thank God I am 60 instead of 15. Thank God he has seen fit to keep me around and living and learning all these years.
A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, and the mood beneath her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. — Revelation 12:1
*What a horrible euphemism, to call the ability to have a baby ripped from your womb a “choice”.