August 13th, 2013

Girl in the MirrorIt wasn't until I began working on my memoir that I realized that I had completely disassociated from myself as a person when it came to the adoption I went through when I was 18. That girl, and myself, while our stories are very much intertwined, we are two incredibly different people. It's as if she went into hiding for self-preservation, and I created this new version of myself in order to handle and cope with the grief associated with the adoption. I've been doing my best to get back to her, and to understand her more. Perhaps I know that I am frustrated with some of the decisions she made, and the fact that she didn't speak up… [more]

Open is Now Closed

July 17th, 2013

doorIt's been just over six months now since the doors on my so-called open adoption closed. Six months where I have gone through a plethora of emotions ranging from anger to sadness and even to peace. Six months where I wonder if I would be told if my son ever got sick, or if something terrible happened. I know that they don't wish to share his life with me when it's good; why would I be subjected to knowing when it's bad? I never expected this to be the way my adoption story turned out. I mean, I didn't really know what to expect, but this wasn't at the top of the list when I signed the relinquishment papers. I felt strongly that… [more]

Perspective And Truths

July 10th, 2013

heartPerspective is everything. Earlier this week, I received a comment that insinuating that I was playing a victim when I wasn't really one. The truth is, I don't often hear much in terms of criticism when it comes to sharing my adoption story. I assume that is because I've always been so open, honest and raw about my feelings, my experiences, and what I generally believe now. I'm also okay with someone disagreeing with my point of view; the adoption dynamic is so diverse, and really evolves quickly. Hearing other points of view helps me to reexamine my own feelings and thoughts regarding adoption in both a personal and non-person manner. What I don't like is when someone criticizes my experience. Unfortunately, I was… [more]

Embrace The Grief

May 1st, 2013

Coping with Loss blog imageTen years ago, I was swollen, pregnant, and wondering when my son would make his way into the world. In May, I would go to the hospital at least half a dozen times thinking it was time, until it was really was time. I would spend three short days, three of the most vivid days to date, and three of the saddest days I have yet to survive. Here I am, ten years later, in the same city. You see, after the adoption, I tried to erase my past, the days before I had my son. I didn't want to deal with the idea that life existed before him, so I numbed myself, and I moved out of the… [more]

Sometimes …

April 4th, 2013

heartsSometimes I look at my life, and the choices within it and it takes me back. My journey with adoption as a birth-first mother has transformed my life so much. It has changed my ability to love. I say it but truly mean it that when I saw Phoenix for the first time, and his red hair stuck up in a million directions that my heart grew. It has changed my capacity to love people in terrible situations but also I think made me more opinionated about certain things. Like life, and choosing life. Knowing what he did for me by simply being a squirmy lovely newborn I grew miles from a self centered and delusional girl. I had to make a decision and… [more]


March 12th, 2013

nameThe story starts like most of these stories do; I was seventeen, and one autumn afternoon I received that  life altering news; I was expecting a child. To this day, those words, their enormity will never leave me. I didn't hide it from anyone, like I know some choose to do. I promptly told my parents, close friends, and began to imagine what my life was going to look like going forward. Even though I was terrified, I was never ashamed. Honesty was the only thing I had left, I felt, as my friends dropped from my life, and the rumors spread like wildfire. I was raised in a highly religious home. For my parents, having an unwed pregnant daughter was next to murder… [more]


March 10th, 2013

shhHer story became a secret, and secrets are always burdensome and translate into shame.  Even if we didn’t view it that way when we hid it, even if our motives were not initially shame based (though they often are) we will come to see it as something worthy of being hidden. Anything we attempt to escape will come to be seen as something worthy of escape. There was a time when I skirted the topic in conversation. Every time I had to twist or orchestrate an answer so as to steer away from what I was hiding, I felt uncomfortable and sad. I think some of us, instead of heeding that discomfort, just get used to it. And it spills over. We find that… [more]

Talking Openly

March 10th, 2013

churchYesterday at church, I was among a large group of women discussing how one can be led in difficult decisions. The first thing to play in my mind was how I came to find my son’s family. I had the feeling I ought to share but I argued with myself; “but Tamra, it’s of a highly personal nature, you’ll make people uncomfortable. It’s not the kind of comment one can easily make concise, etc.” As we went from each segment of the lesson, my withheld comment continued to be relevant and the prompt to share continued to press on me. Finally in the last moments of the lesson, I decided I’d better heed. I started “Do you mind if I share something of a rather… [more]

The Things I Miss

February 22nd, 2013

snowWhen I woke up to the snow and ice, I woke with a smile. I dreamed of a friends little boy greeting me with such love and genuine joy that it lingers in my heart even now. I realized I miss a lot of things, some of them simple and selfish, some that are impossible-- I miss spring, flip flops and long hair. I miss waking up in my own apartment, living by my own rules. I miss my queen size mattress. I also miss feeling important to someone, wanted even.  I miss the small hand clasped in mine as we walk down to the library, now that my oldest son's hand is much bigger and he is much older. I miss reading "Guess… [more]

Holiday Memories

January 4th, 2013

christmas drumI had what some would perceive a very good end and start to my new year. On December 24th, 2012, the Adoptive parents and family came over to my house, and I saw Jimmy. Now if I haven't talked about Jimmy before that is because Jimmy is my son whom I named Phoenix. Tara and husband and kids enjoyed the time we had together. I had a nice clean house to call home to host in, handed out presents and spent time with a curious little four year old who holds my heart so delicately in his hands that he doesn't even know it's there. Jimmy and I played the piano together and he insisted that we sing Christmas carols together, namely only… [more]