Grieving the Unknown. 

I’ll keep this short. At this time last year I found out my story and visited my mother’s crypt where I keened for the one I cannot remember. At the same time, my cousin’s father contacted my eldest half-brother, hoping to establish a connection. My half-brother rejected this, we imagine due to worries about someone claiming inheritance…. The other day my cousin informed me that he finally succumbed to the illness that had him bedridden when I was there. And it really hit me hard, though at the same time I’m rationally thinking “that doesn’t make any sense.” Anyone experience something similar? Any insights into grieving what and whom we never knew? 

4 thoughts on “Grieving the Unknown. 

  1. Yes, of course. It’s such a strange feeling. If we had not been given away, these people would have been part of our lives.
    In the true world, they are our blood. ISA (infant stranger adoption) turned life inside out, and substituted water for blood. It can never really be true, so our hearts and bodies still feel connected to our kin.

    I know I hate it.

  2. Pingback: I don’t have an answer, I don’t think there is one. | The adopted ones blog

  3. I have not mourned my mother, even when I found out she died. And even though I asked for some of her ashes, my un-met siblings said no. So I don’t have an answer. I have no words.

  4. Hi Daniel, I understand what you’re saying. I grieved, but I had no idea I was grieving, until years later. I got news that my birthmom died, I went to her funeral, met a ton of people I didn’t know, heard amazing stories at her wake (funny, but dysfunctional), found out that I was only “part family” (like being “part Indian”) when me and 2 of my other siblings, who’d been adopted into different families, sat in the pew designated for family. At that moment the rest of the ‘family’, siblings who weren’t adopted, moved back a pew. They didn’t sit with us. It was a strange and discombobulating three days. Two weeks after I returned home, my sister in law and her daughter came to visit. I’d entirely forgotten about that visit, and was reminded when I saw them 3 months later. “It’s so good to see you!,” I said. “It’s been so long.” They looked at me like I’d grown 2 heads; then they looked at the wine glass I held in my hand. Clearly I had a problem if I couldn’t remember. I thought about their reaction for months, and put two and two together. My birthmom’s death had affected me far more than I realized. I’d wiped nearly two months out of my memory with her passing. I’d only met the woman 4 times, had 3 conversations, and only one of them healing. I kept thinking ‘it shouldn’t have mattered so much.’ But it did. Do I miss her? How do I miss a woman I’ve never really known? Do I feel the absence of her presence? All the time.

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