This saying is something that used to drive me totally crazy. Now I can appreciate it with greater clarity. It is just one of family sayings of my tribe. For me, my tribe includes my adoptive family and my biological family. It also includes my husband, our children, and our grandkids. It even includes our ex-spouses and their new spouses. It will not ever include her because she has put me and my family through hell. Please don’t judge me. She sent me a cease and desist letter from an attorney in Indianapolis. I contacted her twice through a confidential intermediary and once via a letter in eleven YEARS. This does not constitute harassment by even legal definitions. I sent the letter because I did not want to be the one to tell my brothers, her sons, who I am. I just don’t want to be in that boat.
I searched so much that my marriage was destroyed. Keep in mind he did his fair share as well. I spent quite a bit of time chasing women away from him. In the end, I did not know about his current wife. By that time, I had just given up. It was not worth the fight. I digress again.
I researched and searched extensively but I discounted the one town that had a tire plant near Indianapolis. I probably even looked at her father’s obituary but I ignored it. I guess it was a good thing that I did not find my biological mother during this time.
I had finally walked away from my marriage. I just could not handle it. I was with a man who no longer and possibly never loved me. I knew that if I stayed in my marriage, I would die. I decided that it was not worth my death. My kids deserved a mom who was for them and focused on them. I deserved someone who gave love and received love.
For several years, I did not really even participate in the adoption world. I just did not have the appetite anymore for adoption. I really do not want to be in politics of adoption. I still do not. I am currently two years away from graduating with a degree in Chemical Engineering. I rather come up with health care solutions for veterans and adoptees. I do it so that people who have neurotic and psychotic parents like me can get have some kind of health background that is truthful. My biological mother only mentioned that she is on statins and is allergic to seafood and cats. Mother may I ask politely if that is fish or shell fish? Almost everyone has high cholesterol. Really woman the devil is in the details. Her father died of pneumonia. Uhmmm Mother may I get additional details because his death certificate says something more than just pneumonia.
I began going to school during this time. I also completed three DNA tests during this time too. I did a mitochondrial and two autosomal tests. It didn’t amount to much. A girlfriend of mine convinced me to try one last time with another company. This company had a larger database. I agreed to do it with this company.
The rest is saved for later.
~ Martha Ann’s Daughter
My road began at the beginning of 2006. I was married to a different man. My life with him was hard. My adoptive mother had pushed for many years to search for my biological family. I finally began that process. I had recorded things in a small notebook. It wasn’t enough. I contacted the adoption agency, St. Elizabeth Coleman. The maternity home was the Suemma Coleman for Unwed Mothers. The agency was a reputable one. It was not originally associated with Catholic Charities. It was bought out by them many years later.
The agency confidential intermediary was Katrina Carlisle. As you can read in the transcript, my biological mother was distraught when she was contacted. At the time of the search, I believed that Katrina had poisoned my one shot with her. I was very wrong. I hope that one day that she will forgive me. Everything that she said about both my biological parents was dead on.
With the receipt of those transcripts, I cried for days on end. It destroyed my soul. My first thought was that my biological father was my biological grandfather. Katrina promptly dissuaded me of that thought. My now ex-husband was very unsympathetic just like when my step father died. He left me swinging out in the cold to figure out how to deal with this process. My husband now is completely opposite of him.
I was only given non-identifying information. It was comprehensive. The health history was minimal at best. That is the bad thing with confidential intermediaries. It is impossible to know everything to ask. My life now is so different. I am also so much more aware of what my health concerns could potentially be for myself. Is she allergic to Sulfa medication? Is she allergic to anything in particular? Does it cause a strong reaction in her? Does she have fibromyalgia or any skin diseases such as acne or cystic acne? What illnesses, disorders, or disease processes run in the family? Type 2 Diabetes, Alzheimer’s, liver disease, and alcoholism are just a few of those types of questions. I guess maybe the agency needs to come up with a comprehensive health checklist of some kind. Possibly something from a doctor’s office would be a good place to start.
None of these really came up in the conversation with Katrina except her dad died of pneumonia (It doesn’t say just that on his death certificate. It actually mentions disease pathways relating to alcoholism) and she is on Crestor (Everyone has heart disease) and has an allergy to cats (I don’t believe that this is true). Her mother loved Siamese cats (This is in her mother’s obituary). This isn’t an accurate or complete medical history. I do believe that Katrina tried to get the information from her but she wasn’t having any of it.
I began writing extensively about my feelings and processes to healing. I searched for her for many years. It led nowhere, a place of absolute heartache. I was so broken over the situation. This time is a different situation. I am coming at this stronger and healthier.
~Martha Ann’s Daughter
It has been years since I have written anything about adoption. I did not want to return to it but it was healing the first time my biological mother rejected me. I guess it is understandable that I return to blogging. I want healing but on a different level this time. I do not want to return to the utter devastation that I felt the last time.
The woman who gave birth to me is a doozy. Words cannot describe her. I am, however, getting ahead of myself. I want to retell this story so that my kids have this for future reference. I do not want to discourage others from searching or doing a DNA test. Since I now know all of the details of my history, I feel a considerable peace. She can no longer steal my identity. I have it now.
I am a passionately ungrateful adoptee. I am ungrateful in a different sense. I am ungrateful to her and for her. God placed me with a good family. God also planned the reunion with my Dad and my half sister. My biological mother could not keep me secret from everyone forever.
~Martha Ann’s Daughter