My Adoption: Feeling Unwanted

abandonment-quote-mario-balotelli

Earlier this week, I watched a YouTube video where people had to try not to cry while watching a handful of videos. One of the videos in the challenge stuck with me tremendously.

One of the videos was a scene from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. In this scene, Will’s father leaves. Although I have never seen the show, it is evident that Will’s father left him as a child.

But, in this particular scene that is part of the challenge, Will is in his teens and his father walks out on him again. This time, he is bailing on a trip the two had planned.

When Will discovers this, he ends up going on an angry rant that essentially said if he had made it this far in life without his dad, he could continue to do so for the rest of his life. He could continue to accomplish other great feats without his father.

Poignantly, at the end of his rant, Will asks his uncle, “How come he don’t want me, man?”

For most of the people participating in the challenge, the video itself did not make them too emotional. However, it made me extremely emotional. In fact, I broke down as I watched the scene.

My tears just would not stop flowing.

Because even though I have never had a parent walk out on in me in the way that Will’s character did on the show, I am extremely familiar with the feeling of being unwanted. For, I was adopted at the age of five.

My biological mother gave me up for adoption at my birth.

And to this day, I still ask what Will’s character asked, “How come she didn’t want me?”

That scene and those words specifically were another one of those moments that clearly depicts exactly how it feels to be adopted. And it assured me I am not alone in my thoughts.

I would love to tell you I no longer live in fear of rejection. I would love to tell you I do not heavily struggle with abandonment issues. I would love to tell you that I no longer have the idea in the back of mind that those close to me will give up on me and walk out on me.

I would love to tell you I do not constantly wonder what I did wrong to make my mom not want me.

I would love to tell you I do not constantly wonder what mistake I’ll make that is the last straw for someone. For, I have had a physical therapist tell my mom he simply could not see me anymore, that he could not deal with me, that I was too much for him.

I would love to tell you I have healed.

But, I have not.

Honestly, I don’t know if I will ever fully heal. I think with time and counseling, I can reach a point in my life where I can manage the feelings. But, I don’t know if I will ever fully heal.

For, if my experiences of adoption have taught me anything, it is that once someone is an orphan, a small part of them will always believe they are an orphan—no matter how many people in their lives try to suggest otherwise.

Fears of rejection and abandonment are real and fierce. They can be crippling and debilitating. They are a lifelong battle with adoption.

It is extremely difficult to let go of the fact that someone gave you up.

Truthfully, it is only within the past few months that I have begun to open myself up to the possibility that my biological mother gave me up for good reasons—that she did it out of immense love for me, that she did so because she could not care for me—not because I was unlovable or unwanted.

I am nearly a quarter century old. And I am only just now beginning to invite that possibility.

For, I will probably never really know why she gave me up. And I am going to have to be okay with that one of these days.

But, until then, I tell you once more on this platform, adoption is not easy. It is not easy on those who adopt and especially not on those who are adopted. Take it from someone who knows all too well.

My call to you is this: If you know someone who is adopted, please be mindful of what I have shared today. Please be mindful of their potential thoughts and feelings.

And if you feel led, watch the scene I am referencing here to get a better sense of just how difficult it can be. I will say, there is a curse word in this scene, which I do not personally condone. But, it does poignantly visualize just how difficult it can be on a person.

It describes a far too common experience in today’s society—i.e. parental abandonment of their children.

It is my hope and prayer that this post will give you all even an inkling of just how difficult that can be for a person, regardless of how old he or she was when their parent(s) abandoned him or her.

And if you are someone who has been adopted, please feel free to reach out to me at coffee.soothes.the.soul@gmail.com. I am here if you need someone to listen or simply confide in. You are not alone, dear brothers and sisters.

You are not alone.

Blessings,

Renata

Thank you dearly for taking time out of your lives to read my blog! Your support means the world to me. I praise God you found this blog, whether you stumbled upon it accidentally or sought it out intentionally.

I’d LOVE to hear from you all! Feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me at coffee.soothes.the.soul@gmail.com.

I pray God would bless you and be with you always, no matter where you find yourselves in life.

He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. – Romans 4:25 (NIV).

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Small Health Update: Still No Answers

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This week’s post is going to be short and to the point. For, this week has been a rollercoaster ride of emotions. It has been fairly hectic, to say the least.

I’ve been elated. I’ve been distraught. I’ve been confused. I’ve been upset. I’ve been exhausted, tired, and worn.

For those of you who don’t know, I have had health issues the last seven months and counting. They all started with abdominal pain and have reached an undiagnosed state. I don’t know what is wrong with me.

However, this whole time, I have been sure something is wrong with me. I don’t know what, but I do know something is wrong. For, I may not know a lot about human anatomy, but I do know when my body is not its normal self.

This journey has been long and tiring. Some days, I don’t think I have any problems. Other days, I feel so terrible, I don’t know how I will make it through the day.

I’ve come so close to possible answers a couple times. But, they fall short just when I hope for them the most. Or, they only explain part of my issues, not all of them. Then, the question becomes, “Is this issue separate from my major one ailing me, or are they connected?”

I know I will find answers in God’s timing. Nevertheless, it doesn’t always make the wait easier. I simply want to let you all know that I am still trying to find answers.

Although, I am fairly certain, the issues are not gallbladder related. In fact, that is about all I know, to be honest.

I am going to spare you all the details of the journey I have had to go through until I get a complete diagnosis and start to feel better. I’ll leave the daily and/or weekly updates for my closest friends and family.

I just don’t think my blog is the kind of place to have slow, progressive updates.  It is for the whole story.

I suppose this post is my way of telling you all, I’ve been a little frazzled lately. I honestly don’t know if I am on the mend or if I am just at the beginning of an even crazier chapter of this journey.

I’ll keep you posted.

So, no, I do not have my health figured out completely. But, slowly but surely, and in God’s perfect timing and plan, I will find answers one day. It may not be in my timing or end result, but it will be in His.

And that is what helps me not feel as discouraged.

Until then, I am on the rollercoaster ride a little bit longer.

Blessings,

Renata

Thank you dearly for taking time out of your lives to read my blog! Your support means the world to me. I praise God you found this blog, whether you stumbled upon it accidentally or sought it out intentionally.

I’d LOVE to hear from you all! Feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me at coffee.soothes.the.soul@gmail.com.

I pray God would bless you and be with you always, no matter where you find yourselves in life.

He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. – Romans 4:25 (NIV).

Music: ‘Golden Hour’ Album

kacey-musgraves-sadness-quote

I don’t know about you, guys, but I tend to have a routine in my various moods of life.

For instance, when I am in a generally good mood I tend to talk a lot and be sarcastic. When I am angry, I tend to run away in the other room just hoping to avoid the issue (which only lasts for a short while). When I am depressed, I tend to curl up in a fetal position in bed and/or eat extremely fatty foods.

However, I’ve added another part of my “when I am depressed” routine that is surprisingly soothing and just what I need.

I listen to the album “Golden Hour” by Kacey Musgraves.

I don’t know what it is about the album, but whenever I am feeling down, that is what I gravitate towards. Perhaps, it is because the album leaves me feeling happy and sad, as one of the songs on the album is titled.

Prior to this album, I heard a couple of Musgraves’s most popular singles such as “Merry Go ‘Round.” But, I am generally not a fan of country music, so I wasn’t making an effort to hear more of her music besides the catchy tunes I heard here and there.

Nevertheless, I chose to listen to her newest album, per the recommendations of one of my favorite artists of all time—John Mayer. The day her album was released, Mayer posted an image of the album cover on his Instagram and said he thought it was her best work yet and that she was one of his favorite artists.

However, what intrigued me the most to actually listen to the album was he also said, “There’s a universal sadness that exists in all things. Not an anguished sadness, but kind of a joyful one. Kacey is so deeply connected to that beautiful sadness.”

Hook, line, and sinker. The writer in me was sold. I knew I had to listen for myself.

For, as the quote in the image above shows, John Mayer must’ve have figured out the whole point of Musgraves’s new album. According to Musgraves, the album “Golden Hour” is about showing all of the individual, yet collective parts that make up who she is and what she has experienced since her last album. Part of that process includes her inspiration to find the sadness in things.

To some, that may be depressing. But, to artists and creative folk alike, it is inspiring. It is intriguing. Because Musgraves is right. There is a beauty in sadness. There is a beauty in all emotion if one is willing to take the time to understand it.

For, all emotion has a purpose—even if those who feel it cannot pinpoint it.

However, it took me awhile to truly see Musgraves’s purpose of the album. For, when I first listened to it, I wasn’t a big fan of it. As I’ve shared before, I am someone who likes albums to tell a story from start to finish. Personally, I did not see one. The album seemed a little gimmicky and undone to me.

Yet, I still chose to listen to it again. For, I was fairly distracted when I first listened to it. Therefore, I challenged myself to just sit and listen to it in its entirety, distraction-free, once more. Deep down, I just knew there was something more I missed the first time.

I am not typically one to give an album another chance, but I felt led to do so. And I am glad I did. Now, it is one of my favorite and go-to albums.

I thoroughly enjoy the different, not fully country route she took with it. There are a handful of songs I deeply resonate with on the album, too, such as “Lonely Weekend,” “Happy and Sad,” and “Love is a Wild Thing.”

Honestly, I could write individual posts about each of those songs. That is how much they resonate with me!

Plus, the writer in me deeply appreciates a lot of the lyrical aspects of the album as well. She has some lines that are so poetic that like John Mayer also said, “Every time she sings I get a lump in my throat. Her voice goes straight to your core.”

This album paints an incredible picture of the power of words. You can feel the rawness and emotion in each song, even in an upbeat tune!

For these reasons and many more, that is why I listen to it when I am depressed or feeling down. Somehow, in the body of a piece of art, Musgraves understands the difficulty of life, yet also provides a picture of hope and empathy.

Instead of denying hardship, growth, and self-reflection, she embraces it with an open heart and outstretched arms.

If you haven’t figured it out yet, my call to you is this: Listen to the album “Golden Hour” in its entirety. Listen to it several times. Listen to it when you are happy and listen to it when you are sad or feeling down. Let the album—its musical compositions and lyrical mastery—transport you into a wonderfully sad, yet hopeful haze.

Please, take a moment to see the beauty in sadness.

Blessings,

Renata

Thank you dearly for taking time out of your lives to read my blog! Your support means the world to me. I praise God you found this blog, whether you stumbled upon it accidentally or sought it out intentionally.

I’d LOVE to hear from you all! Feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me at coffee.soothes.the.soul@gmail.com.

I pray God would bless you and be with you always, no matter where you find yourselves in life.

He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. – Romans 4:25 (NIV).

Life as a Working Adult: Juggling Emotions

Emotions-captains-quote-van goghAs much as I enjoy being an adult, sometimes, I just want to curl up in a ball, grab my stuffed animal, and get lost in a book for hours like I did as a kid. I want to get lost in another world rather than be in my reality. Let’s be honest, being an adult can be tough, especially being a professional working one.

Lately, my job has been extremely stressful. I knew the stress would come one day, so that doesn’t bother me. But, what bothers me is what it can do to me and how it impacts me. When I am stressed, whether it be at my job or any event, etc., my stress can cause me to not enjoy what I do. It can cause me to not be my normal, fairly outgoing, yet introverted self.

On those days, it can be hard to go to work ready to be productive and pleasant. It can be difficult to not throw in the towel for even a brief moment. Most importantly, it can be extremely difficult to be emotionally present and focused.

I have a rather expressive face, so when I am having a rough day, it’s obvious. It was quite the chore to work through those kinds of shifts when I worked at McDonald’s. At McDonald’s, and really any fast food chain, it is all about smiles and friendlessness. Your front to customers was more important than your feelings, needs, or life situation.

I was reminded of all this and more at an appointment recently. I could tell the health professional was having a rough day. I’ve seen her regularly enough to pick up on her typical body behaviors to know that day, in particular, wasn’t great. It wasn’t obvious, but I am quick to pick up on those types of cues.

I know what it is like to have to muster up even an ounce of professional demeanor for what could be an excruciatingly long day ahead.

To say the least, my heart broke for her and I barely know her. My heart broke for her because I wanted to ask if she was okay.  I wanted to ask if she was having a rough day.

But, I couldn’t, so I didn’t. And it’s been bugging me ever since.

As I get older, I learn more about the depth and complexity of people, emotions, and trials. I learn more about getting through one day at a time, even if it takes all you’ve got.

But, it’s even more difficult when you throw your job into the mix. There’s this tension inside of oneself that is hard to explain. There’s the tension of needing to be there but also just wanting to walk away from it all.

How do you be present for the patient, clients, students, customers, etc., but also wrestle with life? I don’t have it quite figured out. To be honest, the highly emotional person in me probably never will figure out that part of life. And I am truly okay with that.

I’d rather wear my heart on my sleeve and showcase my emotions all over my face rather than silently suffer. I’d rather be honest that I am struggling, even a little bit than be unreal, even if it means I struggle for days on end, especially as someone who battles depression.

So, I still find my heart breaking for the health professional. I know because of our relationship all I can do is pray for her. I can pray for God to bring peace in her life. I can pray for God to be with her, even if I don’t know what’s going on.

Most importantly, I can be thankful for that small glimmer of hope I found in her tough day. Her tough day showed me I am not alone. Her tough day showed me that every working professional will go through bad days at their job, no matter how much he or she enjoys it. Her tough day showed me it is okay to show people you are hurting without spilling your guts or losing your cool.

My call to you is this: Please observe others. Please treat those who serve you or care for you as if you are in their position. It can be challenging to constantly appease to a job that demands never-ending smiles or conversation when that’s the last thing a working professional wants to do.

And if you are a working professional who can identify with this, don’t feel pressure to constantly be happy and upbeat. Don’t beat yourself up over manmade ideals and pressures. You are human after all.

Instead, find a comfortable balance that works for you. Find a comfortable balance between being professional but also being honest with the reality that you are a human with feelings and difficulties just like everyone else, including those you encounter.

For me, that usually means showing it in my face, but not talking about it with others unless I am truly open to confiding in them. But, then again, that is only if they ask what’s wrong. I am not typically someone who likes to volunteer information unless I truly feel the Lord calling me to be vulnerable and open. Regardless, I understand not everyone has colleagues they can confide in. Besides, there are days I just simply don’t want to talk about it.

Furthermore, it means finding small ways to have conversations with others without being pushy. It means even just texting my husband that I am having a rough day, so he can be thinking of me and praying for me throughout the day.

Most importantly, it means taking my day one small task at a time. Before I know it, it will be over and I can hopefully find the time to simply unwind and aim for a better tomorrow.

Blessings,

Renata

 

Breaking Free from the Anchor of My Emotions: My Adoption

Hebrews 6 19

More often than not, I consider myself an emotionally unstable person. Emotions are a beautiful, challenging overflow of the heart.  Without emotions, there ultimately cannot be love and the ability to open up to others.

However, emotions, like my own, can also bottle up, clam up, and blow up well before a situation is dealt with calmly.

I struggle daily defeating my inward, innate emotional responses. Thankfully, through the power of Jesus, one recent event has helped transform the ordinary customs of my behavior.

The event that took place was minuscule, yet absolutely and utterly profound, too. It shook me to my core and awakened all my defenses. It numbed my body and catapulted me into a state of complete surrender.

The details of what occurred are not as important as the root cause of all these reactions inside. This one event taught me that I needed to take a deep, hard look into my emotional state, or I could forever tarnish some valuable relationships. For years, I knew I needed to.

Because I am a selfish, sinful human, I kept brushing off the desire to go through the painful and necessary process of taking back my emotions.

Nevertheless, in order to take control of my emotions, I had to take back the anchor of my instability: I needed to deal with my adoption. As I have said before, my biological mother left me in the hospital on my birthdate.

The spiritual, emotional, and mental repercussions of accepting that detail of my life have been incredibly painful and heartbreaking to work through. Nevertheless, I am far better with the topic now than I was two years ago.

Despite that, I cannot say I have fully dealt with the situation. Just when I think I have overcome the anchor, another event takes place that rocks me to my core again. I have yet to come to a point in my life where thinking about my adoption has not left me numb in some way.

I am not as angry toward my biological mother as I used to be. I am not as angry and stubborn, in general.

Now, I am more inclined to have difficult discussions. Although, usually the other party must bring up the discussion. Rarely do I bring up the need for a discussion. Usually, I sit and barely speak, looking for anything to distract myself, which is the fancy way of saying I ignore the issue.

I am not the type of person who enjoys dealing with confrontation at the moment it arises. I would much rather think about it before speaking or run away from the topic entirely. Yes, if you have not guessed it, I usually completely run away.

Indeed, I am a messy person. My life has a lot of yucky areas. I need to keep myself accountable. This minuscule, yet profound event that occurred recently hit me square in the head. It was then I realized not everyone will react as graciously as others when the anchor in my soul is the megaphone behind my actions.

Telling people that I have yet to deal with my adoption fully is not an excuse NOT to work toward destroying the anchor once and for all.

I think that is where I have been wrong this whole time: I should not justify my actions based off an experience only I went through. I should not have to preface all of my conversations with people that my biological mother left me in the hospital just to explain my actions in the next few moments. No, that is selfish and unfair.

Therefore, I know full well, I did not react in a godly way to the recent event in my life. I reacted with selfishness, fear, and trembling. I did not trust God to be all who He says and proclaims Himself to be. I thought my personal instability was greater than the present situation.

Again, selfish.

It is okay if you are saying, “Wow, she must really be selfish. All she ever writes about is her selfishness. When will she get it and stop being that way?” I completely understand. I ask myself that all the time.

However, because I was born in sin and will live in sin until I die, I won’t ever stop being selfish.

Despite that, there is a light at the end of this dark tunnel. Being able to acknowledge any selfishness is huge. Quite frankly, I can do everything possible to not have human tendencies such as selfishness. But, truth be told, I will carry that cross with me until I go home to Jesus.

Lastly, I tell you this: We all have an anchor in our souls. We all have some event or someone that greatly shaped who we are spiritually, emotionally, and mentally. We have to take the time to look at our lives and identify it. Then, destroy it.

The only anchor that should be in our heart and soul is Jesus. Anything else will bring nothing but pain. No anchor but that of Jesus Christ will break us free.

Blessings,

Renata

 

Thank you dearly for taking time out of your lives to read my blog! Your support means the world to me. I praise God you found this blog, whether you stumbled upon it accidentally or sought it out intentionally.

I’d LOVE to hear from you all! Feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me at coffee.soothes.the.soul@gmail.com.

I pray God would bless you and be with you always, no matter where you find yourselves in life.

He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. – Romans 4:25 (NIV).