Inspired by a first mom friend, I decided to start a secret Facebook group entitled “IKL’s First Family.” Secret means it is not searchable and only members of the group know it exists. I added all of my immediate family and my children. The thought process behind this group was that one day I could add IKL to it and she could comfortably get to know her first family without expectations or awkwardness. At least, this is my hope.
My first few posts were pictures from those first few weeks and things I thought she may like to know. I go into detail about my labor, her birth. I talk about special things I noticed during that time. In other posts I put old pictures up of my siblings and talk about what they mean to me and subsequently talk about the 4 siblings she has but does not know. My most recent post is from the present and is about our Fourth of July weekend. I want her to get a sense of who we are and to do that I need to get around to the present and stop focusing on the past. I would love to make post after post about every precious moment I spent with her but hopefully there will be time for more details in our future together, if there is one.
There is one more, more morbid, reason I created the group. One I haven’t mentioned to any family members yet.
I can never get enough of reading adoptee blogs. I crave understanding from their perspective in order to be able to be a positive force in IKL’s life. They are the only people that never got the chance to say what they wanted and how they wanted it. I feel like, as adults, the least both sets of parents (adoptive and birth) can do is allow them to run the show and not make them feel uncomfortable or guilty about doing it their way. One common theme I keep seeing arise is the death of a birthparent before reunion and its effect on the adoptee. Unresolved closure. Questions left unanswered. Most don’t discover this had made an impact on them until later in life.
I cannot pretend that there is no possibility that I may leave this world before being reunited with IKL. I worry that if this should happen that she may be left with a tiny hole that cannot be filled. While I certainly hope this will not be the case, the group I have started and the posts contained therein are sort of my insurance policy for her. Replacing your first mom cannot be done. But being given an intimate piece of who she was and who you were to her, made especially for you, is better than nothing.