About Cheerio

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In general I am a cheery and energetic person. But I am enshrouded in a cloak of iron. That cloak is the weight of greiving my son, whom I've lost to adoption.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

At the hospital, Visiting Pistol

When we moved to our new neighborhood in 2006, our neighbor introduced herself.  She made sure we know her nickname is Pistol, because she used to work for security and carried a piece.  Anytime someone new moves into the neighborhood she introduces herself the same way. 

Funny thing is, we all just call her by her first name and she's the only one who mentions the "Pistol" nickname.

Pistol lives across the street from us.  She is an animal nut.  She doesn’t like the circle of life because it means a living creature will die.  She had an arbor put over the many birdfeeders, and added lattice to keep the hawks from dining on the cardinals, mourning doves, or squirrelles.

Pistol has a big heart and is generous.  She looks out for her neighbors and we all look out for her too.  She’s retired and has many physical problems.  Most of the problems stem from the cancer treatments she went through years ago.  I can never keep up with her schedule of when she is going for a PET Scan, Blood work, visiting the cander doctor, the kidney doctor, the lung doctor, or family doctor.  She’s a tough cookie though.

She’s never been married and when I go to visit her, she could talk your ear off.  But she’s funny and interesting and I don’t mind.  She recently had surgery and was in the hospital for over two weeks.  With my work and school schedule I wasn’t able to visit her until this past Thursday.  It was really good to see her!  She looked good and was talkative.  She moved slow, but was getting around. 

Pistol was talking about the little she remembers from being in ICU, she talked about the procedures of the operation, she showed off her new artwork of the 30 staples holding her together.  We joked about the many ways she could keep and reuse the staples as memorbilia.  She could make a necklace, she could have rows of staples lining her earlobes, she could have saples in her nostriles or on her eyebrows – like the young kids piercings these days.

She was talking about a shot they gave her.  Almost mid-sentence she stopped.  “I don’t know if you had to go through any of this kind of stuff when you lost your baby," she said.  She went on by saying, “You don’t have to talk about it if it upsets you.  We didn’t even know you were pregnant.  I guess you didn’t want anyone to know, in case you wouldn’t be able to carry full term.  Was that your first pregnancy? Was it a little girl?   Do you know why you can’t have a baby?”

Wow, needless to say, I wasn’t at all expecting any of that.  I actually DID want to tell her about the pregnancy 2 years ago.  I was trying to take her and one of her other friends out to lunch so I could tell them the good news.  But Pistol was having physical problems at the time, and kept putting off going out for lunch.  Well, then it was too late and the good news turned out to be not so good news anymore..

Nevertheless, here I am visiting my neighbor in the hospital and she brings up one of the most important subjects of my life.  I assured her that I was not bothered at all, and actually was glad for a chance to talk about it. I theorized that I possibly lost her either because of the extreme amount of stress from my job at the time.  I told that I considered it was a little girl. I didn’t remember everything that happened at the hospital.  I know I had to have a RhoGAM shot, I don’t remember if there were other shots or not. 

She was surprised when I said it was not my first pregnancy and asked what happened.  I told her that I carried full term and had a healthy beautiful baby boy.  When he was 3 days old, I left the hospital without him.  I summed it up by telling her that hubby and I weren’t married yet, and I was made to feel that I had to give my baby up for adoption, that if I had kept him it would have ruined his life.

She said, “ That really pisses me off!  Why would people do that?  I know you and your husband, and you both would have been wonderful parents to that child.”

Then a nurse walked in and the conversation changed.

As visiting hours was coming to an end, I brought up the subject of my son again.  I told Betty that he turned 17 last month.  So in a year or so from now, if she sees a tall young blonde fellow at our house, it just might be him.  She smiled at this thought.  I hugged her goodnight and moved her stuffed animals around to keep her company through thenight.

It is crazy that it worked out this way.  I have been trying to figure out a way to tell Pistol about our son, and just didn’t know how to bring it up.  I was afraid that she would have a negative reaction that I sometimes get from older gererations.  Often I’m told that I gave him up and had no right to even call him my son - or that I deserved it – or that he is where he belongs and I should forget about him. 

But the clock is ticking and as his 18th birthday approaches, I am trying to make sure everyone knows about him.  The last thing I would want him to hear someone say to me is “Oh, I didn’t know you have a son.” 

So I am glad Pistol knows now, and I was pleasantly surprised with her supportive reaction.
Here I thought I was visiting the hospital for her, and she’s the one who ended up helping me.

At the Hospital

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Mother is a terrible thing to Waste

 That is pretty much all I have to say in response to the month of November being dubbed as adoption month – AKA: Celebration of godless amounts of profit from separating families needlessly.

Every billboard you see, commercial you watch, radio advertisement you hear, or article in your newspaper that has to do with adoption, consider this estimation that about 50,000 non-family adoptions occur each year.  Wow, 50,000 adoptions.  That represents 50,000 human beings sold with a bill of sale (complete with amended birth certificates).   It also results in 50,000 Mothers Wasted – cut off from her child and discarded like scrap pieces of fabric.

This post is for you Bethany Christian Services (and all unethical agencies like you).
You pretend to ‘serve’ women and girls in need, but you are really serving yourself and your agendas – gleefully ripping babes from families and wasting mothers in the process.

A certain percent of them may have other children – but she will never be THE MOTHER of THE CHILD you’ve sold under your replacement program.

My slogan for November –
Don't support the Wasting of Mothers, instead help Preserve Original Families!!!

A Mother
is a Terrible Thing

picture from

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Come, Sleep With Me

Normally I start getting ready for bed by 10:30.  But not tonight, or many nights of the past weeks either.  It’s another late night of keeping busy before I finally drag myself upstairs.  I am so tired my head hurts.

I flick on the light and trudge my way to the bathroom sink.  I avoid looking in the mirror as I open the medicine cabinet for my toothbrush and toothpaste. 

I wash my face and catch a glimpse of my own reflection.   I wonder what my son thinks when he looks in the mirror.  What does he see?  What are his thoughts, feeling, or questions?  Does he ever ponder his brown eyes that are just like mine, or his lips like those of his original father’s?  Do any emotions come to the surface for him, as they do for me? 

I close the door behind me as I quietly enter the bedroom.  I slip my feet between the sheets and mountain of blankets and burrow in for another long night. 

 I fall back on the pillow, the blonde tresses land softly around my shoulders.   This is not a picture of peace or serenity as I feel the heavy weight of weariness.

Sleep doesn’t come with the stillness and silence of the night, my heart aches and my thought churn out more questions than I could ever keep up with.  What will it be like to see him face to face?  Will he even like me?  Will I meet up to his expectations?  Will I disappoint him?  Will he allow me to give him a big long hug, or will he rather I not invade his space and keep a distance?  Will we actually get to connect after his 18th birthday, or will it be just more of the silent waiting game?  Will we send e-mail back and forth as we try to get to know one another?  How long will it really be until he is comfortable meeting face to face?  When will he ask the “but why” question?  What will I say?  Will it sound like lame and pathetic excuses to him?  Will I be able to temper my disdain for this unholy institution of adoption?  Will I find a way to deal with all this guilt ahead of time so it doesn’t hinder our relationship?  Is it really guilt? Or is it just a continuous reaching out there for acknowledgement of how painful it has been? 

I am thoroughly exhausted emotionally.  I lie there staring through the darkness at the ceiling; the tears start to well up.  Closing my eyes doesn’t make them go away and the tears start slipping from the corner of my eyes.  I have to turn my head to keep them from rolling into my ears. 

The tears don’t let up, so I roll onto my side facing the doorway.  Curling myself into a ball, I pull the covers up over my head.  It is dark and all I hear is my own breathing and sighs.

It isn’t just the endless questions that keep me awake, it is the pain.  I miss him.  I miss him terribly. 

Yes, I regret my decision.  I regret that we were separated all these years for no good reason.  But it’s about more than just regret.  Since coming out of denial in 2006, I think I’ve come to a place where I am able to acknowledge plainly the different pieces of the adoption.  I know that I made the best decision I could based on the information at that time.  It was never because I didn’t want him.  It was never because I didn’t love him.  I know now that it was faulty information.  It was a very very very  wrong choice  and a very unnecessary decision at that.

However, looking back and acknowledging it all does not change the fact that he is 17 years old and he is a complete stranger to me.  This is my son, and he is a stranger.  This is the pain and the heartache, that time and memories – both his and mine - have slipped through the hourglass of time.  It can never be gotten back; it cannot be relived to knit our lives into repair. 

It hurts.  I have found no words to describe it any differently.  So many nights I cry myself to sleep, holding it all so I don’t wake my husband sleeping beside me.

Does it match your idyllic picture of ‘beautiful’?  as a ‘win-win’?  Where is the love now in this so-called “loving choice”?  It’s dashed to pieces on the jagged realities of grief and tremendous loss, an incredibly senseless loss that is applauded by society and benefits an industry whose thirsty greed cannot be satiated.

Come, sleep with me
so you can see firsthand
the aftermath of adoption

Monday, October 24, 2011

What a MESS!!!

Change is inevitable.
We can't always accurately predict ahead of time what the outcomes of change will be, nor can we always foresee the far-reaching effects of its tendrils.

The change comes,
and later we find that - oh, no!   I'm not liking this effect at all!

So it is with my blog(s).  Having been silent for months, changes happened while I was away.  With my most recent posts people were unable to add comments, so I had to adjust my settings.

Somewhere I clicked something, and I'm not entirely sure what it was, but I wish I could undo it.

All my old posts are now one huge long run-on paragraph.  If you're a regular visitor, you'll know immediately that is NOT my style.

So, now I'm going to be cleaning up a huge unintended mess as I go through all the blog posts I've ever written, and try to make them presentable and put back in the paragraph breaks for the intended emphasis.

That's what happens when we make decisions without a full understanding of its implications.  So it is with adoption...

Pregnant, afraid, and considering adoption she gets sucked into a world where the truth of the far-reaching effects of such a decision is skillfully hidden from her.

Later could be days, weeks, or maybe years down the road.  She turns a corner to find out she has yet another big huge mess that ties directly back to the 'decision' to give up her baby for adoption.  Unexpected effects could be dealing with the adoption closing, it could be finding out that the people who supported adoption as the best decision are nowhere to be found after the fact, it could be the inability to have another child, it could be the inward slicing of the knife as peers, friends, or co-workers have babies of their own, it could be silence after trying to reach out to adoptee who is now an adult, it could be flat out rejection after being found, it could be the difficulty of keeping ones head above water during the cycles of depression that threaten to suck her under each and every year...the possibilities go on, and on, and on.

By then, there is no way to un-do it.  We're simply left trying to figure out how to cope, how to deal, how to repair all the damage (if that is even possible) and pull together yet another room full of shattered pieces of our heart or life back together just to survive.

Adoption does not "solve" a "problem" -
it only creates different ones, and more of them.

what a
H O R R O Rific

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Wishing You a Happy 17th Birthday

Happy 17th Birthday
His Birthdate: October 13, 1994
It was a Thursday, just as it is this year too.

It’s a gloomy day outside.  No sunshine, just periods of rain.  A reflection of my own soul.

We’ve had so much rain this year.  I hear my son loves the snow and winter sports, so I keep wondering how much snow all that rain would have translated into.

Yesterday was a really hard day. As I drove into work I realized that it was on a Wednesday so many years ago that I drove my boyfriend’s car into work.  He was away at college and we traded cars or a few weeks, since I wasn’t supposed to drive my car because it didn't have power steering.

A manager sent me home before noon.  He said I sounded uncomfortable and it was making him nervous.  I didn’t want to go home, what was I going to do at home by myself?  Alas Barry won and I drove back to my apartment where my kitten Monster Paws greeted me. 

Now what?  There was not much to do but jog up and down the 12 flights of stairs in the apartment building  - again!  Not really interested in the stairs, I continued working on the blanket I was crocheting for him.

He was due on the 3rd.  Sometimes I wonder if it was a physiological reason that he hadn’t come yet.  Maybe my mind didn’t want to “let go” of him, knowing the impending separation.

I don’t want to think about it anymore.  Someday I suppose I should write out all the details, but for now I’ll just cut it really short by saying I went to the hospital that night and he was born the next morning. 

I wish I could be retelling it like other new mommas – all beaming with joy and smiles.  I can’t.  My heart is heavy.  I miss him so much, I don’t know if mere words can fully express it.

Of my adoptee friends, so very many of them say that their birthday isn’t really a happy time for them either.  So I don't feel so bad that I'm not happy on his birthday.

I don’t know what you’re doing today, my son.

I do wish you happiness and cake with really yummy icing. 
I wish you to be surrounded by love. 
Most of all I wish, and I’m sorry if this is selfish, but I wish you could feel the love I have for you and know that I hope for a day that these birthday wishes weren’t merely whispered prayers on the breath of the cool October winds.

 my son

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The 17th Birthday

Cheerios world has been on the back burner, with many posts that have been simmering. They’ve been stated, but not finished. I aim to refocus on my blog with regular posts each week or two.

This week my son will turn 17 (Oct 13th). 
Quite frankly, this terrifies me.

2002 began my involvement with online adoption activity. I’ve developed relationships with original moms, adoptees, and some adoptive moms. I’ve been part of a handful of forums. One forum is exclusive for original moms, and there I’ve observed a frightening pattern with moms in closed or semi-closed adoption arrangements. 

It seems to start with her child’s 17th birthday and the “final countdown” begins. Just one more year to go and he/she will be 18! Each month and every holiday that passes, her anticipation builds as she pictures the next year will be different. Her attitude seems lighter as she looks expectantly toward the 18th birthday. 

Finally the 18th birthday is at hand! She’s spent the past year getting advice and trying to decide how to proceed on that special day. She carefully and cautiously executes the plan. 

Let me emphasize that point. 
She doesn’t just go charging in like a bull in a china shop. Not at all! From my observations over the past 10 years, she carefully considers her options. She views it from many angles, and does her best to find a method of reaching out without offending or pressuring. There is no magic formula, no book or guidelines to follow; each mother’s attempt is different. 

The 18th birthday comes, and it goes. 
We wait expectantly with her to hear a response or reply. Days pass, then weeks. The weeks turn into months. All the while she is hopeful. 

The 19th birthday comes and goes – and she has had no response. 
We try to encourage and support her as we watch her struggling to remain positive. 

The 20th birthday approaches the horizon.  It comes, and it goes.
Once again my heart is torn a thousand times to watch this woman on such a painful journey. 

The 17th birthday is a time when she becomes hopeful that she finally may be able to connect with her lost child. For the next two years she struggles within to remain positive. When no response comes, it is so incredibly hard to witness her plight and her obvious pain. 

One year from now, it may be my turn to be the one who is teetering on the edge while my hopes are dashed to pieces.
This week my son will turn 17, 
and it terrifies me.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

2011 Adoptee Rights Demonstration in San Antonio Texas

Please take a moment to read posts on this blog - http://adopteerightscoalition.blogspot.com/ I hope that it will help you find one way (or more!) that you could show support to the Adoptee you Love! I've tested it, and their link for a donation (of any denomination) is fast, easy, and safe!
I'm afraid to attempt a list
of all the adoptees, I love,
for fear I'll miss some names -
But I'll say that it would include all the adoptees (and other Original Moms) I met & reunited with at the
Adoptee Rights Demonstration in Louisville, Kentucky 2010

And the Adoptees (and other Original Moms) that welcomed me with big, huge, gigantic wide open arms at and the

Adoptee Rights Demonstration in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 2009

The adoptees I Love would also include
FB Friends,
CafeMom friends,
as well as the Adoptee Forum Friends
you All have made an incredible and positive difference in my life!!!
If you've happened upon this blog from some other google search, and you don't have an "adoptee you love" in your life - we still welcome your support as we fight for Equal Access for All Adoptees in the US no red tape no extra fees no special requests to a judge Simply to walk in to a Vital Statistics Office, fill out the form as every other person in the state, pay the same fee, and walk out with one's Own Original Birth Certificate

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

"We've Moved"

I’m sitting in the only car outside a local grocery store.

The vacant parking lot was a fore shadow of the ominous message on the darkened windows of the unlit store.

“We’ve Moved,” was painted in bold letters across the glass expanse.

Defying the obvious, I turn off the car engine, and walk up to the windows to peer inside.

Sure enough, they’ve moved.

I walk despondently back to my car. With my hand on the door handle, I slowly turn my head and look back at the closed store, and sigh.

They’ve moved to a BRAND NEW facility. It’s bigger! It’s better! It offers soo much more! These are signs of success and prosperity! It is good news, isn’t it? Then why do I feel so sad, so small, and so lonely?

I remember when this grocery store just opened. It was the first one from this chain brand to open on this side of the river. I remember when it was sparkling and brand new. I remember shopping here when I lived in my first apartment.

But the nostalgia is much deeper than that. I used to do my grocery shopping here when I was pregnant so long ago.

Since moving back to this part of “town” in 2006, I would often think of him as I walked down the aisles again. The squeaking wheel as I went along was a comforting sound. I could buy produce, cereals, and milk, all the while reminiscing the days when I would shop here for those same things with my son.

But another thing strikes me about all of this.
It is simply the words,
“We’ve Moved.”

That captures the plight of an original mother. The memories are stuck, like a gouged CD, at a certain place in the past, and life moves on, but we can’t keep up with it.

Sure, on the surface we seem to, but our mind, our heart, our very soul carries us back to the last time… the last time I held him, the last time I saw him, the last time I sat here eating ice cream before he was born, the last time he was with me...

A piece of my soul will be left wandering, like a hollow ghost, in the aisles of the closed grocery store. I can no longer walk those aisles and remember having been there with him so many years ago.

But that doesn't matter to them, because they've moved.

I think this is another allegory at the ugliness of adoption. Losing a child (losing an original parent) leaves a lonely darkness in the heart, like the emptiness and lonliness of a vacant store which was once full of life and vibrancy.

So, there I stood, feeling forlorn as I look back at the store.
The message painted on the window is only half of what is said. To me, it reads, “We’ve moved,
without you.”


Sunday, February 20, 2011

Positive Adoption Language / Respectful Adoption Language

Cheerio the student is going to do more digging, reading, and research.

Specific purpose for my next (short only 3 page) paper is going to be -"I will inform my reader about one of the tactics against expectant moms from adoption professionals’ use of positive words and phrases to undermine her self confidence."

As I am researching what people say about PAL/RAL (Positive Adoption Language/Respectful Adoption Language), I am stupified that this one thought shows up on so many websites... "When we use positive adoption language, we say that adoption is a way to build a family just as birth is. Both are important but one is not more important than the other. "

Wait, did I read that correctly? "Both are important, but one is not more important than the other." Yes, I DID read it correctly? Who comes up with these things?

Let's forget about emotions. Is that even logical???
How is it possible to have adoption without a birth?

Umm, I'm thinking it isn't.

So, if they start out their explanation of downplaying and disrespecting the importance of birth, do I really want to adhere to their idea(s) of what Respectful will be?

More posts are sure to come later on this PAL/RAL subject.
Still shaking my head as I signoff...

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Cheerio - the student

Whilst continuing a full time job, Cheerio has become a student again.

I have been in class 4 weeks, and am taking two courses. Constantly, during lectures and reading, I find myself translating how ‘that relates to adoption.’

As life so often brings change, you may find this blog may change as well. My hope is that it will change for the better. That as I learn it will bring more clarity to the thoughts, feelings, experiences, struggles, and hopes of a mom going through life without her son. That it will increase awareness of the struggles thrust upon the ones who had no say in the matter – the adoptees.

This post is being prompted from reading one of my textbooks. In chapter one there is one sentence that just struck me, and I am compelled to write.

Please join me in Speech 101, using “Human Communication” – 4th edition (Pearson, Nelson, Titsworth, Harter).

“Human relations are vital to each of us. Human babies thrive when they are touched and when they hear sounds. . . Human relationships serve a variety of functions. They provide us with [1]affection (receiving and providing warmth and friendliness), [2] inclusion (experiencing feelings that we belong and providing others with messages that they belong), [3] pleasure (sharing happiness and fun), [4] escape (providing diversion), and [5] control (managing our lives and influencing others) (Rubin, Perse, & Barbato, 1988).”

[Above emphasis are my own.] Who really thinks about the “function” of our relationships? It’s not something we purposefully think about day to day. When I got to the second point of inclusion, I had to stop and underline it.

For those who are raised by someone other than their original parent(s), that ‘feeling’ of belonging cannot be manufactured from the outside. It is something that begins from within. Even if those around are providing messages of love and care, it cannot guarantee the individual receiving those messages will indeed ‘feel’ that they do indeed belong.

I’ve heard stories from adoptees who grew up always knowing they are adopted, and from those who find out later in life about their adoption. A common thread among them is that something didn’t “feel” right, that they didn’t “feel” like they belonged. That was true among those who were in loving positive adoptive families, as well as for those whose experience was the opposite. Please read into the next paragraph with me.

“We learn about the complexity of human relationships as we study communication. We learn first, that other people in relationships are vastly different from each other. We learn that they may be receptive or dismissive toward us. We learn that they may behave as if they are superior or inferior to us. We learn that they might be approachable or highly formal. [While all families can produce negatives here – step back and try to consider how much greater the impact is to an adoptee who may already have a strong internal feeling of not belonging. Combine this with aparents who are unapproachable or are dismissive of the adoptee’s original loss. Even if the aparents do not treat the adoptee differently from other biological children, there are often afamily relations who do treat the adoptee as inferior.] People clearly are not interchangeable with each other.”

Did you catch that last sentence?

People clearly are not interchangeable with each other.”

That sentence is what prompted this post today.

Pause, if you would, please. Ponder every single word.

People Clearly Are Not Interchangeable With Each Other The statement that “people clearly are not interchangeable” would include all people regardless of race, gender, or age. This would include babies then, would it not?

Since this statement is unarguably true, then why does society as a whole accept the adoption industry’s marketed idea that parents and babies are easily interchangeable? I think it directly challenges the erroneous myth -- “it doesn’t matter who is raising the baby, as long as they are loved.”

Yes, it DOES matter, because "People [parents / babies] clearly are NOT interchangeable!”


are NOT