I've been trying to get down to the heart of the matter.

**This is a long post, just lettin' ya' know**

Here it is, January 2nd. It's almost midnight--- and I am WIDE awake. I got a lot accomplished today... All of SJ's birthday and Christmas gifts are put away and my house is semi-back to normal. I wish that I was sound asleep next to my husband right now... but alas, insomnia has once again shown it's ugly face. I watched the latest episode of Lipstick Jungle a little while ago (by the way, I love that show - even if it is utterly disgusting and unbelievable, eh). Leno is on now, he's rambling about this and that --- people are laughing, if I were listening to what he is saying I am sure that I would be too. He's a funny guy.

This always happens. Around this time of night, my mind just runs hay-wire. I sent out my Christmas cards on the 20th, I think. Maybe the 19th. I sent one to Karla... and one to Craig. Neither one of them responded. hmmmm.

Now, let me explain the signifigance of this (for all of you people that know nothing about who these people are). I'll give you the brief version... and then pick up in the present:

I am the youngest of 7 children. 5 of us, myself included, were adopted. I was adopted when I was 3 (almost 4). Karla is my biological Mother. Craig was her male reproductive counterpart at the time of my conception. Now, although I know very little about Craig (by my choice), I know a bit more about Karla. I was adopted by Karla's Aunt, my Great Aunt --- who is now my MOM. So therefore, my mom knows all about Karla... in fact, my mom's sister (Karla's mom, and my bio. Grandmother) actually lives with my mom right now. Get it?

When I was in the 9th grade, Karla was in a really bad car accident... somehow we were notified. Adoption has never been a secret (although, it's kind of hard to keep it a secret when I have 2 sisters from Thailand), or a sore topic of conversation in our house. So my mom told me that Karla was in an accident.. they didn't expect her to live. So, against my will, we loaded up in a rental Taurus and went to Columbus, Ohio. Low and Behold... there she was. This woman who had carried me in her womb for 9 months... this woman who battled drugs, and lost. Well, at least I think she lost... she might think differently. This woman who not only gave birth to me... but when I got there I found out she had given birth to three more children... and had custody of none of them. Shocker. All four of us were there. Myself, 13 - Wesley,9 - Emily,3 - and Casey,1. I didn't say anything to her, much. Her significant other was in the room with her. I remember him saying something like... Sonya, give your mother a hug. My response was something along the lines of I would, but she isn't in here right now. That woman that was laying there... was not my mother. She never had been. And my name wasn't Sonya. It never had been, as long as I could remember. Looking back on that experience, I wish that I would done some things differently. I wish that while she was coherent, I would have asked her some things.

Until recently...I have always said that I have no desire to meet her... no desire to have a relationship with her.

That was a lie.

Well, sort of. It wasn't a complete lie. I don't have any desire to have a relationship with her..... But I would like to meet her. I want to know some things. I need to know how she could have a child, knowing that she can't take care of her... keep her for FOUR YEARS and then give her away. Beyond that, and even more important than that... how does that experience not traumatize her to the point of insanity? How was she possibly able to do it THREE MORE TIMES???

I have heard all kinds of things. All of my older brothers and sisters grew up with Karla as their cousin. I have heard from all of them... "Jay, let me tell you how...wonderful she was, how beautiful she was, how smart she was, how generous she was, how talented she was"... key word: WAS. No matter what they ever said to me, the only word I ever really heard was that one word. WAS.

Which, as an adult... when looking at my own 4 year old, led me to ask myself... what happened? How was she all of those things, and now all of these things? I never got it. Until recently.

I did some digging. And now I know. I called someone, one person that I KNEW would tell me. And now I hate that I have hated her for all of these years. I wish that I could elaborate more --- but I can't. I will say this... imagine wanting something so badly, and then getting it... and being so excited. Then imagine being forced to give it up by the one person that you thought would be happy for you. She went through something so horridly devastating, something horrendous --- at 17. After this happened... she felt like nothing was worth it, and turned completely to drugs. Not long after that, she met Craig... my biological father. At this point, the drugs owned her and although she tried to beat them, she couldn't.

I still don't understand this, I don't think that I ever will. I still want to ask her those 2 questions, maybe in a softer tone.

I have always been grateful to her, always. Even though when I was growing up I thought my mom could do no right... I still knew that my life was so much better with her than it ever would have stood a chance of being with Karla. I know now, that my mom did very little wrong and that I, like most teenagers, was just a spoiled brat.

That was all, though. I was only grateful. I still hated her. I still never understood. I still cursed the very mention of her name, especially when it was used in the same sentence with mine. Until the last month or so that is how it was... but now I forgive her. I have been angry at her for so long that I don't know how to not be angry at her. No one knows where she is anymore... after the wreck it was like she disappeared into thin air. So... I did a google search for Karla Staggs... and It came up with a Karla J. Staggs in Columbus, Ohio. It had to be her. Her middle name is Jay (like mine)... and that was the last place I knew of her living. There was no phone # listed. So I sent her a Christmas card, with my phone number in it. I didn't get the card back... and I also haven't gotten a phone call. I don't really know where to go from here, or even if I am supposed to go anywhere. Maybe this all happened so it could be a learning experience to me. --- if so, it definitely has been. 20 years has been a long time to hate someone, and I am done hating her. Finally.

Now let me wrap this up by saying this... of everyone in the world, whether I hated her or not, I have always known she gave me the greatest gift that anyone ever could. No matter what her reason was, she saw fit to give me to my mother. For that, I am forever debted to her. My mother is the most amazing woman that I have ever known... and I am so blessed to have her in my life. After a long, hard road of teenage fights and a 5 yr. grudge match, I finally saw the light -- thanks to my dedicated sister and niece and a friend that pushed me to make it right. I love my mom... and no one will ever even come close to taking her place in my heart. I just feel like now my heart is a little bigger without all that hate in there. It feels good to let it go.

So there you have it... where my mind has been the last month or so. It's 1:00 a.m. now... and i am still WIDE awake. What to do now?

p.s. When I went back and read this, I realized how often I do this "...." and this "----". I don't know why I do that. What should I do in place of those things? eh.


Tammy said...

I'm so glad you shared that. That is healing if nothing else! Have you ever seen the show on WE "The Locator"? I cry every time. Reading this made me think of that. You should check it out.

Dana said...

Wow, I have a lot of catching up to do. I think it's true that guilt and unforgiveness are the things that keep us from God. I enjoy watching you move closer to Him..