Haiku Monday

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Note from Elaine: For those of you who are visiting The Goodbye Baby website for the first time: my blog focuses on adoption and recovery from the early invisible injuries of separation. Though varied in many ways, every adoption story is the same: there has been a disruption of order, a yanking out from the roots, and in nearly all cases, ultimately a longing to understand why one wasn’t kept by his or her original parents. Intellectual explanations do little to dispel the conviction that you (the adopted one) were to blame–the little you who was taken from one mother and placed with or chosen by another.
In my case, though I landed in a wonderful adoptive family, the early separation brought about feelings of abandonment, anger, loneliness and alienation, emotions I swept under a metaphoric rug for too many years.  Understanding at the heart level has come about over a lifetime of searching and reinvention. We adoptees, the products of nature and nurture, do well to take responsibility for our own destinies.
Of the many routes to healing, I’ve found that reading poetry is a balm. It is with great delight that I bring you fresh haikus by my poet friend Roberta Fine. Check out her newest collection.
Twelve Graces of 2014

Above the Clouds

Above the Clouds

January
Baldy’s white cap thins
Brown skull showing through the white
Waiting for a storm.
February
Fresh snow on Sangres
Opal tinted at sunset
Glow fading slowly.
March
Lady hawk surveys
White fields from catalpa tree
Great head swiveling.
April
Buried bulbs revive
In frozen lifeless garen
Reaching for the sun.
May
Clinging to twin trees
Raven pair tear at pine cones
Then leave together.
June
White threads vein mountainimages
All that’s left of winter snow
Garden pants for rain.
July
Fledglings line up
To take a turn at feeders
Lone bird pecks at ground.
August
Ravens’ raucous call
Splitting summer morning peace
Dewdrops shine on leaves.
September
Head held high, lone rose
Surviving frosty warning.
Someone’s chopping wood.
October
Tawny gold valley
Flaunting bold farewell to sun’s
Declining power.
November
Red chrysanthemumsIMG_0004
Capturing sun’s chilly fire
In sundown’s last glance.
December
Fuzzy moon peering
Down through tree’s bare black branches
Suggests snow tonight.
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HAIKU-short poems that use words to capture a feeling or image of nature, beauty, or a particular sensory moment.. They are usually written as three lines: the first contains 5 syllables, the second line 7 syllables, the third line 5 syllables.
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Poet Roberta Fine lives and writes in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Finding inspiration from

Roberta Fine adopted Haiku as her medium of expression

Birthmother Guilt: The Daughter Dilemma

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Note from Elaine: Guest blogger Pat Goehe is a welcome contributor to The Goodbye Baby website. Meeting her daughter for the first time after 38 years was a life-changing experience. It has been 15 months since she first wrote about their reunion (http://bit.ly/1M2dGlW). Pat is now moving forward with personal goals, specifically writing projects. Her now-reunited daughter Linda is a mother. However, adoption reunions are not without complications. So much of a life spent in separation can produce feelings of guilt. As Pat tells it…

When I made the decision early in my pregnancy to put the  baby up for

Pat's firstborn daughter was taken away from her after birth.

Pat’s firstborn daughter was taken away from her after birth.

adoption, it was made with the best possible reasons at the time.  So why then do I experience something  that I can only label as guilt?
After several  years had passed since my daughter, Linda,  found me,  I was once again writing.  This time it was a new film script which I was really excited about.  My daughter was then working as an agent for film composers.  Never  would I have asked her to help me get an agent for the script,  but  she suggested it.  I remember feeling such  overwhelming  joy,  and yet something bothered me.  As it turned out, because of other problems, the script did not get completed before she gave up that profession and moved  to Texas .  My mixed joy and guilt left.
Years later I was doing my first documentary and in discussing it with her, she offered to do the packaging  along with information that I needed for the cover and insert.  She had prefaced her offer with the fact that I always said not to give me presents.  This was finally something she could do for me, and she  really wanted to help me on the project.  I felt pretty okay about this.
There have been times when I don’t hear from her  for many months.  My mind immediately goes to, “Why should she stay in touch?  After all, didn’t I give her up?”   At different times over the years I made that comment to her which was not something she liked.  It took me many, many years to realize that the daughter I actually raised often did not stay in touch either.   Both are busy with professions,

Years later, Pat and her daughter met for the first time.

Years later, Pat and her daughter met for the first time.

family; it is my own crazy head that  kept feeling the guilt.
Recently I have been back to the “I need help” phase.   Never in my life  did I expect  to write a children’s picture book, but I have.  And now, I need help in the marketing.  This is again a skill area my daughter has.  At one point I broke down and called her to ask about one issue.  She gave me good information even though it was a very busy time professionally in her life.  Currently, I really could use her expertise and would love nothing more than to have her take over the marketing for this project.  But,  I won’t ask.   Why?  Because this book is all about my granddaughter  from the other daughter’s  family.  When I heard that granddaughter was complaining how Grandma had taken her two half brothers on many trips but she never got to go on any, I decided (because she’s a teenager these days and certainly wouldn’t enjoy a trip with me)  what greater gift of love could I give her than to write a book based on true happenings she and I shared when she was a toddler.   The reality is that I spent much time with that family over the years but not much time with the other.  So, how on earth could I ask L. to help me on this book?

It’s at times like this that I’ve learned to take a step or two back and rethink things.  Let’s face it.  Asking for help has always been difficult for me.  I’m the one who gives it!  I spent more time with the other family because it was needed then.  And that was the time when Linda was trying to desperately to get pregnant.   She did ask me later to come during a spring break and help out with childcare; I did.  I can develop skills I’ve had in the past;  they’re a bit rusty now!  Perhaps I just need to ditch the idea that I’m too old to do all of this.  I need to remember  that we can’t control outcome.  I have no idea when the book is published what  I may need to deal with.  I suspect no one will tell me if they were hurt  because of something I wrote in the book or perhaps left out or even that it wasn’t about them.  But then I’m equally certain Linda won’t feel that way.   I continue to treasure our relationship.

Pat Goehe is retired from a teaching career and devotes her time to fulltime writing. Her children’s book Annemarie and Boomer Wait for Grandma is now in production. She is the mother of two daughters and one son, and grandmother of four.img_1688

If You Could Whisper in the Ear…

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…of your teenage self, what advice would you offer? Here’s what I would say if I could travel through time and encourage the younger Elaine…

Bryce Canyon, 1970-Smiling on the outside

Bryce Canyon, 1970-Smiling on the outside

Dear Me,
Quit feeling embarrassed because you are an adopted daughter!
I notice that your parents Richard and Reva seem afraid to let anyone know that you aren’t their biological offspring. WHY they hide that important truth is anyone’s guess. I’ll keep saying this until you believe it: Being adopted is nothing to cover up.You can tell anyone you like. I give you permission.
Dear young Elaine, why not ask your Mom and Dad (calling them “Richard and Reva” sounds a bit unfriendly) how you came to be their daughter? You might actually be doing them a favor. They will not send you back to foster care, I guarantee. True, when you asked your new Mom about your “real” mother, she got tears in her eyes and said “I’m your real mother and you’re my REAL daughter.” Yes, I know you wanted to die just then. But your question was OK.
Don’t be afraid to keep up with the questions. They might act hurt and disappointed at first but they will get over it! They chose you and your brother Johnny and they mean to keep you.
I know that you have a lot of guilt about snooping in your adopted Dad’s files, trying to find letters from your birthfather, trying to learn what happened during the first five years of your life- the time before you became the college professor’s daughter. You were reprimanded and now no one will talk about it. I know you are afraid, that you feel guilty and traitorous, and I understand that you are very nervous about revealing your curiosity. Believe it or not, this is the perfect time for you to ask those burning questions. Think Pandora’s Box minus the negative consequences.

1980s-A cheery facade hid my inner melancholy

1980s-A cheery facade hid my inner melancholy

I see that you basically hate the way you look. Stop! Desist! Quit raking yourself over the coals! Even though you think losing a few pounds will make you happier, it will not. You are beautiful from the inside out. Your smile is one that inspires people to smile back. Dry your tears and spend time in nature. It is to become your haven.
In closing, I urge you to shift your perspective from shame to self-respect. Take pride in the fact that you survived the jolt of being “transplanted” when you were just past four years old. You did nothing wrong in being born to a mother who was unable (or unwilling) to parent. It will not serve you well to remain silent about the questions that haunt your every waking hour. Writing about these concerns is good, but it is not enough. Ask and demand answers. Don’t be afraid to be identified as the adopted daughter. Dear younger me, please know that you are lovable just the way you are.

The Goodbye Baby gives an insider view of growing up adopted.

The Goodbye Baby gives an insider view of growing up adopted.

 

Say YES to Allowing

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Note: Life Story Facilitator Ellen Antill has helped me greatly with recovery from the invisible woulds of adoption.  In today’s guest post, Ellen writes about a playful kind of freedom that can be applied to ones writing, emotional development, and living life more authentically.  I’ll be adding the key idea—allowing—to my 2015 guiding principles. Whatever your journey, you might want to join her in adopting the word ALLOWING.
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I have a very dear friend who, at the beginning of each new year, chooses the kind of Screen shot 2015-01-02 at 9.22.37 PMsandbox she wants to play in.  In other words, she sets an intention for the life experience she wants to call into reality.

I began a similar custom a while back, selecting a guiding internal energy for the fresh year.  And I love my friend’s emphasis on playing, or thriving, in a particular kind of environment of her own creation.

What guiding energy will you choose for 2015?  What sandbox do you want to play in?

I’ll be playing in the allowing sandbox.

Allowing is all about giving myself time and space to rest and care for myself with luxurious abundance . . . asking the dreams I envision personally and professionally to easily flow into my life . . . allowing myself to release pushing and pressuring myself to accomplish timelines and agendas.

Allowing means calling in genuine vulnerability and peaceful strength to set the pace for my journey . . . inviting fears to dissipate . . . fear that I won’t “make it” (what does that mean anyway, “making it?”), fear that I’ll appear incompetent if I don’t have it all together, fear that I won’t have all the answers to move forward.

Allowing means letting unconditional love fill my spirit and come pouring right on through to touch everyone in my world.

In her own words…
One of the key reasons Ellen is on the planet is to facilitate the Storytellers process, a personal growth experience she designed 10 years ago for older girls and women.  Much of this process is about providing an emotionally safe environment where girls and women – individually or in small groups — can share and embrace their “original stories” and learn to love themselves.  Storytellers also supports girls and women in creating vibrant new life stories for their present and future.

Ellen Antill, M.A.Headshot EA Dec 2014
Founder/Executive Director
Storytellers: Women Creating New Life Stories
(505) 577-3930
storywomen60@gmail.com
http://www.storywomen.wordpress.com

How to Adopt a Fresh Start

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If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always gotten. -AnonymousIMG_0001

It’s that time of year when folks proclaim “Out with the old, in with the new!” Past New Year’s Eves found me creating endless lists. My belief was that resolutions could deliver a kind of magic. As I cranked out yet another tally of resolutions, I wracked my brain. How could I make the upcoming the new year could be better than the preceding one? Organizing the closets, losing five pounds, finishing my novel, growing vegetables, decluttering, being more (present, spiritual, generous, courageous or any number of virtuous traits)? The assumption was that something needed to be fixed and by sheer force of will I could do it. Thus my list of personal prods.
Did I accomplish the resolutions? Partially, “yes” but mostly “not really.” The mental and emotional energy involved in resolution-writing was hardly worth the effort. This year, I’ve had it with the list method. Instead, I’m aiming for a new level of comfort with being an adoptee.
As 2014 draws to a close, I’ve decided on making one word my year-long motto: BELIEVE.
Two years ago, I published The Goodbye Baby-A Diary about Adoption. In my memoir, I concluded that I’d moved beyond the invisible wounds of being adopted at age five. It was relatively easy to announce that I’d embraced the role of adoptee and  reached a truce with abandonment issues. Living those words, however, is another matter. But I believe that it’s possible.
For 2015, I’m following the advice of Sarah Ban Breathnach in her excellent book Simple Abundance-A Daybook of Comfort and Joy:
“…keep on believing that you have the passion, intelligence, brilliance, creativity, wisdom, clarity, depth, and savvy to find that quiet center of solace, serenity, and strength necessary to create and sustain an authentic life.” Like Ms. Breathnach, I feel that “When you start believing, you’ll discover that all things are really possible.”

Join Elaine every other Monday for her take on adoption and life!

Join Elaine every other Monday for her take on adoption and life!

Haiku Monday

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In dealing with adoption questions such as, Are my “real” parents my adoptive mom and dad or the parents who are biologically related to me?, I’ve learned that a lot depends on perspective. Some people, especially those living in the harsher climes, look at winter as tedious, dreary, uncomfortable. Others, ignoring the cold, choose to notice the beauty. Today’s guest blogger and poet Roberta Fine has adopted the season in all its loveliness. She’s chosen details that feed the spirit and imagination. As we begin the shortest days of the year, enjoy her Haiku Scenes of Winter

Baldy disappears

Above the Clouds

Above the Clouds

Behind descending veil–

Birds crowd feeder.

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Brown, wrinkled, puffy–

Frozen apples still on tree

Feed the winter birds.

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Ravens trail coyote,

Hoping he’s a good hunter,

Will leave leftovers.

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Cooking up a stew—

Birds aren't the only ones who like apples even if they're frozen.

Birds aren’t the only ones who like apples even if they’re frozen.

Sunlight streaming through window

In my warm kitchen.

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Mountain emerges

From cloud in late afternoon—

Sparkling, massive jewel.

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Winter moon shining

Softly on violet snow—

Dogs barking to come in.

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Shopping for some bread

In the store a stranger’s smile

Brightens the cold, grey day.

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Cutting wind shakes trees.

Scatters seeds from bird feeder.

Birds peck through ice film.

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NOTE FROM ELAINE: Adoption issues occupied up my psychological “real estate” for too many years. It was more than time to transcend them, to wake up and live more positively. Christmas and the holiday season, I propose, offer the perfect time to shed any self-images that tarnish and corrode. The luminosity of Roberta Fine’s winter haikus reminded me of the world’s beauty.  What are YOUR favorite winter images? I’d love to hear about them! Please comment below or reach me on Twitter @TheGoodbyeBaby.

See the world through adoption-colored glasses-Every other Monday.

See the world through adoption-colored glasses-Every other Monday.

 

Love Across the Ocean

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Lt. Richard L. Beard in his WWII army uniform, before he became my Dad

Lt. Richard L. Beard in his WWII army uniform, before he became my Dad

NOTE: This post was originally published last winter. I’m offering it again in recognition of Pearl Harbor Day (December 7). Because of an upcoming deadline for my walking guide, Santa Fe on Foot-Exploration in the City Different (Due in early 2015, Ocean Tree Books), I am swamped. Therefore I’ll be switching to a bi-weekly schedule for new posts. As always, thanks so much for your readership!

 

During the later years of WWII, my adoptive dad served in the China-Burma-India (CBI) theater of operations as clinical psychologist at the 142nd General Hospital in Calcutta, India. Just when I think that the “Forgotten Front” has faded from public awareness, I meet someone who not only knows about WWII’s CBI arena but who is still honoring the memory of those who served in what General Vinegar Joe Stillwell called “a theater of uncommon misery.”
Yesterday I was making my way up a snowy slope to buy my lift ticket and enjoy a day of skiing. Leaving the ski area was an attractive couple in their 50s or so. They were not dressed to ski but seemed to be sightseeing. This was not so unusual, as many visitors to my hometown of Santa Fe like to come up to the ski basin just for a look around.
What was unusual was the CBI insignia on the man’s leather bomber jacket and the emblem on his armband. How often does one see honoring of the CBI, and of all places at the ski hill? I admired his jacket and

The CBI was known for the Ledo Road through Burma and the "Flying Tigers"

The CBI was known for the Ledo Road through Burma and the “Flying Tigers”

we talked briefly about “the forgotten front” and those who’d served there. He also had a relative, now deceased, who’d been stationed in that remote corner of the world. Thus the inspiration for today’s post, which is all about love across time and miles. Once again, I’m posting a letter from Lt. Richard Beard to his wife Reva written early in what would turn out to be an 18-month separation.

1944                                        At Sea
    Dearest Wife,
             This is written in commemoration of our 7th wedding anniversary, Reva, and will inadequately express my sincere happiness and good fortune in being married to you. I should prefer to look into your eyes for a moment and then kiss you to express those feelings; since that is impossible, will you accept this letter?
I was too moved to write on July 3rd, instead I sat for hours watching the waves slip past the stern of our ship. I ran over our wonderful experiences: I thought of our hard times and the troubles we have encountered; and then I reflected upon the almost perfect peace and comfort which is ours when we are together. How our eyes light, and how solicitous we are of one another’s welfare.
It is necessary, darling Reva, to refer to last summer and our second honeymoon. Perhaps six years of living with you had to fade into history before my love matured sufficiently to leave no vestige of doubt. You are my fate, dear, and I am content.
This war is but a passing shadow, Reva, in our lives. If it should prove more, and I am not to see you again, then if there is any eternity, forever you are engraved on my soul’s substance. But optimistically, I plan for the future, and I want you to do likewise. I hope that you will have a baby boy or girl waiting for me when I come home. If not then, together we shall secure the blessing of children in a family.
I love you, my girl wife, and each passing day confirms how engulfing my love is. Even now I look into your lovely face, and with blurred eyes, pledge to you again my everlasting devotion.

Your husband, Dick

I’ve been thinking a lot about the mom and dad who took me and my brother in at ages five and two. I’m convinced that they adopted us mainly because of their deep love and devotion to one another. Whether they are formed in the traditional manner or forged from adoption, families make us who we are.
It’s really all about love.

Looking at the world through adoption-colored glasses.

Looking at the world through adoption-colored glasses.

Adopting an Attitude of Patience

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In this Internet age of instant gratification, is PATIENCE an outdated virtue? And if

With the Internet, we can reach out to people everywhere.

With the Internet, we can reach out to kindred spirits everywhere.

it isn’t, how can we possibly adopt a practice of patience in an increasingly impatient world?
Essayist Andrew O’Hagan, in a recent issue of The New Times Style Magazine, praises the speed and ease allowed by our connectivity to everyone, everywhere, all the time.
In his article, “Sign of the Times,” O’Hagan says, “I now feel—and this is a revelation—that my past was an interesting and quite fallow period spent waiting for the Internet.” In answer to those who question the validity of online friends and community, he says, “Physical loneliness can still exist, of course, but you’re never friendless online. Don’t tell me the spiritual life is over. In many ways it’s only just begun. Technology is not doing what the sci-fi writers warned it might—it is not turning us into digits or blank consumers, into people who hate community. Instead, there is evidence that the improvements are making us more democratic, more aware of the planet…pressing us to question what it means to have life so easy, when billions do not.
I resonate strongly with Mr. O’Hagan’s commentary. Until I began using the Internet to find answers,  my adoption conundrums stayed unresolved.  Step one was publishing The Goodbye

The Goodbye Baby gives an insider view of growing up adopted. of

The Goodbye Baby gives an insider view of growing up adopted.

Baby-A Diary about Adoption, my account of what it was like to grow up in the 50s and 60s during the era of “closed” adoptions. Following the book, I discovered a vast adoption community online: book reviews, discussions, forums, all manner of exchanges centering on adoption. Adoption from every angle: birthparents, adoptees, people wanting to adopt, adoptive moms and dads. The Internet, I can honestly say, helped me come to grips with with reclaiming my adopted self.
If only that were the end of the story. Once I declared myself “recovered,” the old adoption issues would sometimes sneak back in, sometimes return with a vengeance. Like weeds in my rugged “au natural” back yard, they never really went away. Basically, I learned to diminish their influence, and that is still a work in progress. The goal: An attitude adjustment.
Change may come slowly, but with patience, we can change even ourselves. I’m adopting the following rules for the next 30 days, after which I’ll compare my patience quota before and after.

And here’s a recipe for adopting a practice of PATIENCE. I invite you to try it

In the chess board of life, PATIENCE wins the game.

In the chess board of life, PATIENCE wins the game.

with me:

Give yourself time. For example, in going places if you have to follow a car 25 miles per hour in a 40 MPH zone, allow leeway. You may arrive too early, but in most cases that’s better than arriving late.
Develop realistic expectations: Life is full of the unexpected. Avoid the idea that things will run like clockwork.
Refuse to give in to anger. It is dangerous to your mental equilibrium.
Realize that delays are temporary. As the saying goes, “This too will pass.”
Be proactive: Find ways to make positive use of waiting time. Listening to audible books or reading on a Kindle app, texting a friend with words of encouragement, planning a menu while waiting in the dentist’s office. You get the idea!

I had to be patient with resolving adoption issues, and the approach worked. Now I’m

applying the same principles to life in general. In invite you to join me in a thirty day trial. Please comment or Tweet me about your challenges and/or progress. I patiently await news of your experiences!

Searching for a Family Tree

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What does an adoptee do about the Ancestry Question and matter of ROOTS? While

Will the real FAMILY TREE please become apparent?

Elaine asks, Will the real FAMILY TREE please become apparent?

others can trace their family trees, the adoptee has to choose between the birth family and the adoptive family. Do we adoptees even have a family tree? If you’ve grown up with adoptive parents, is THEIR family tree yours? If you’ve been lucky (or unlucky) enough to meet your biological parents and learn about that family, do you BELONG to IT? Could their family tree be yours?  How does one claim ancestors?
These are questions I’m no longer willing to sweep under the rug. I’ve decided that instead of a family tree, I’ll settle for family records, those of my adoptive mom and dad. The letters they exchanged (before they became my parents) during their long WWII separation reveal their search for me. In 2005, I gathered these letters together for a book: From Calcutta with Love-The WWII Letters of Richard and Reva Beard.
Richard and Reva Beard were separated by 6,000 miles and 18 months during WWII.

My Dad wrote home every day.

My Dad wrote home every day.

Richard served as a clinical psychologist in the China-Burma-Theater (CBI).  To imagine my mother’s search, I re-read the letters that deal with adopting a child. One of my favorites …
August 1, 1944

My Darling, We chose what turned out to be a very warm day to go to Toledo. I was very warm
and perspiring all day — to my amazement the big stores there aren’t air-conditioned. I got a purplish wine shade. I thought a red would be too bright. This is really a
pretty color but I’m afraid you won’t approve of the style. I couldn’t’ find a pattern that I liked in a fitted coat to use my fur to an advantage. So I got a tuxedo on the strength that you will like it when you see it. The fur will be down the front you know. I hesitated, knowing you don’t care so much for them but if it is really made to fit me maybe you will change your mind. I visited “The Child and Family Agency” 1035 Superior St. Toledo. They feel that they have to supply Toledo people first but said that their number is increasing so that they may be able to go outside of the city. I had a nice interview and they gave me an application blank to fill in which requires both our signatures. The first part is data concerning our religion, finances and references. I have copied the last two paragraphs which I think necessitates your signature. I suggest you sign it and send it to the agency, providing you agree. Of course they would probably like a letter from you too. I will sign the application and return it to the agency. Most of their children come from the Crittenton home. So naturally most of them are
young babies. (You have them 1 year before adoption is competed.) … I’m watching for the mail man these days.
These days certainly will make me appreciate days of common ordinary living. Goodnight My Darling and
Loads of Love and Kisses,

Reva

It turned out that my mother’s queries at various Ohio adoption agencies came to

Meanwhile, my Mom never gave up on finding a way to adopt.

Meanwhile, my Mom never gave up on finding a way to adopt.

naught. They waited until after the war ended and my professor dad started a teaching job. Amazingly, and lucky for me, my soon-to-be parents found me through a student (my birthmother Velma) at Iowa Teachers College. I was five years old and my brother Johnny was seventeen months. Products of a short-lived wartime wedding, we had lived in a series of foster homes. Our biological father had disappeared. During this drama, as revealed in this and many other letters, my adoptive mom-to-be was working hard to find a child. As it turned out, parents and children did not come together until after the war ended. The fact that we did was a miracle, one for which I will always be grateful.

Trying to find a family tree no longer, I’m settling for a grove of wartime letters.

How to Adopt Winter

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Today we awakened to fresh snow. It continued, for hours, snowing off and on. In the high mountain country of the Southwest, snowfall brings a welcome transformation. Instead of autumnal brown, sere, scruffy terrain of the recent months, we now view snow-covered pinons, the nearby Rocky Mountain foothills hooded in white, everything fresh and pristine.  I am drawn to Robert Frost’s musing on the silence of the woods, the solitude of his horse-drawn sleigh journey, the temptation to linger in the stillness contrasted with the needs of the day. So here on this snowbound day, I offer you, dear readers, one of my favorite poems…
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

Path to Raven's Ridge, Santa Fe, NM

Path to Raven’s Ridge, Santa Fe, NM

By Robert Frost
Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Winter often arrives early here in Santa Fe. This Autumn, it came just in time for “Take a Hike” Day, officially November 17th. Whatever your favorite seasonal way to be outdoors, put on your skis, snowshoes, or your best hiking boots, and tromp away those Monday Blues.

Follow Elaine's Monday musings on adoption and life.

Follow Elaine’s Monday musings on adoption and life.

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