Wednesday, May 11, 2011


I have been thinking about loss a lot lately. Our boy's loss has triggered some old feelings of loss from when I was young.

My parents split up when I was 7. I didn't see my dad again until I was 26. His choice. No keeping in touch, no birthday cards, no Christmas cards. No contact.

I tried. But I was 7. What does a 7 year old understand when she stands at her father's door and he won't even come to the door but sends his girfriend instead to say he doesn't want to see her.

I needed answers. 19 years later, I wrote a letter, left a phone number and he called me back. Since then we have maybe spoken or seen each other a handful of times. That was 13 years ago.

I used to think it was something I did. His leaving. I would cry at my desk at school. It took me until I was 33 to realize it was nothing I did. What made me realize it? I found out he got married. To the woman he had been with for 20 some years. He never bothered to tell me. It was that day I knew it wasn't me. It was him.

Yvan has never met him. I don't speak of him often. I have made my peace with him.

I work hard at making my peace with the loss. The loss of the person who was supposed to be there. This loss rears its head at funny times. It has made me leary of making friends. I have trust issues. I will probably work thru these issues for the rest of my life.

We all have baggage. We all work at things. This is mine.

I mourn for my loss.

But more than anything I mourn for our son's loss.

I had the oppurtunity to look my loss in the face and ask questions.

I am unsure if Ade will have this chance. We will do what we can. When we can.

I will share my story of loss with him. How can it compare?

We will tell him we love him. That we are there for him.

Comfort him when he cries.

Answer his questions when he asks.

But will it be enough?


Julie said...

Oh Rana. I had no idea. Hugs to you.

Shannon said...

I think the fact that you have dealt with this loss has probably equipped you very well to help Ade grieve the loss of his birthparents as he grows up. At the very least you will be able to understand his feelings much more than someone who hasn't suffered that kind of loss. It really sucks to have someone turn their back on you who was supposed to have loved and protected you and there is nothing that can make up for that loss and pain, but hopefully you can use it as you parent your little one. I think it will all work together to make you a damn good mama.

Anonymous said...

Oi Vay, what a day for crying it has been. I didn't know. You are brave, and strong. And because you sustained this loss, you will have tools and compassion for Ade in a unique way. It's never the same, but you will be able to understand loss, and that's huge for him. That is usually enough.

Love to you.

Gabrielle said...

I am so sorry you had to suffer this loss and continue to deal with it. Grief never really goes away. My loss of my grandfather doesn't really compare, but the story sounds similar. I hadn't seen my grandfather since age 4 and always romanticized him. At age 21, I reached out to him and visited. I only saw him that once, but it gave me the closure I needed. I wanted more. He didn't. Hugs to you. Through your life experience, you will be the best help Ade could ask for. Surely, he (and you) have suffered more than many.

Melissa said...

We all have baggage. It comes in different shapes and sizes, but you can always find it if you poke around enough. And, I don't think it's the comparison or sameness of the loss that's important, just the recognition and acknowledgement of it's existence. It's impossible to say how Ade will respond to his loss, but it is so good that he will have you to help him find his way.

Your dad missed out on so much, knowing you.

VandD said...

I completely, 100% know where you are coming from, Rana. The main thing is that you can now use your awful childhood experience in understanding your sweet son, and how he might be feeling.


Jess said...

I agree what others have said... you will have an amazing understanding of Ade's loss - hugs my friend through the trials of life.

Anonymous said...

We take our life experiences and hope we can teach our children and help them by explaining how things went for us in our life...loss is never ever an easy thing. My dad died when I was 7 and I still have thoughts that pop into my head on random days that make me feel sad and lonely.

Hugs friend!

Carolyn said...

I also agree with the others- you are a strong and incredible woman and I am a better person for knowing you. It is awful that you have had to deal with this but I think it will help you in helping Ade with his feelings of loss as he gets older.

Big hugs to you my friend!


Claudia said...

What they said.

Sharla said...

I'm so sorry Rana to hear about your own loss. It makes me also a bit sad for your father that he has lost out on knowing the person you are and lost out on knowing your family. You are so right that it is not about you, but a 7 year old doesn't "get" that. I agree that your loss will make you more equipped to understand and talk to Ade about the losses he has had.

Loss is such a big part of adoption and it just stinks. No two ways about that.

lyndsey&kevin said...

Thanks so much for reposting this. I am sorry for your loss... but it is his loss too. I can say as your friend that I really don't know how or where I would be without you. You are an amazing woman, friend and mother.

I feel like the loss I have experienced in my life and most recently with the girls... that it has prepared me MORE for understanding the loss of my children. No it does not compare but it is still a loss.

A wise woman told me once that it is not what is lost but the meaning of the thing to YOU that you lost that counts. She understood for me that the loss of my baby was HUGE for me as I wanted it more than anything. For others it may not be as bad or hard. I mourned for months after my miscarriage, but my friend had one and got pregnant again in 4 weeks. We are all so different.

I am rambling now... my point is I think you are amazing and your dad has really missed out! Wee one is very lucky to have you.

Hugs Lynds

Anonymous said...

I never knew what happened, that was eye opening for me. You are an amazing Mum and Yvan and amazing Dad and when Ade is ready, I know you and Yvan will do everything you can so help him understand.

I remember when you came, and it was the first time had meet you in person, you came to see Ashton in the NICU after he was born, when he was still so tiny and fragile he could not be held. And, what I didn't know at that time, was that you were going through yours own trials with trying to have a child, and you flew from Saskatoon to Vancouver, just to see mine, and to help give me hope that he was going to make it. Your visit meant a lot to me. Still does.

And in a a week we are going to be able to introduce our boys to each other. It is amazing.

Gail ( I Hate that annonymous thing at the tio, but I forgot my google id.

Anonymous said...

It probably won't be enough... just like anyone else's words probably weren't enough for you, if by 'enough' we mean 'enough to make it all go away'. I think all we can hope for is 'enough' to help them process and cope with their loss. You may be in a better position than others to do that.

And my heart breaks for that little 7-year-old-that-was. Sometimes grownups suck.

Sarah said...

So beautiful. I am sorry for your loss, both now and for that 7 year old. I think he missed out on knowing a pretty amazing person!