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“When the Student is ready, the Teacher will appear” -Unknown

This California tree overlooks sun-baked terrain.

This California tree overlooks sun-baked terrain.

Stand tall and Proud
Sink Your Roots into the Earth
Be Content with your Natural Beauty
Drink Plenty of Water
Enjoy the View!

-by Ilan Shamir

LIKE THE REHABILITATED ALCOHOLIC, the recovering adoptee must be ever vigilant for signs of backsliding. Nature, I have found, provides opportunities to gain clear vision, to strengthen, invigorate and purge. For example, a grove of Eucalyptus trees near my son’s home became a psychological springboard. For one week, I strolled daily under the majestic giants, stopping occasionally to write in my journal. It so happened that in the journal was a bookmark that spoke directly to my heart. Quoted above with the permission of http://www.YourTrueNature.com …is the lesson. Sounds simple, but it is actually profound. Yes, I’m following advice from a tree, delivered by a bookmark!

Join Elaine on Mondays for reflections on adoption and life.

Join Elaine on Mondays for reflections on adoption and life.

TWO YEARS AGO, motivated by the desire to provide a “tell-all confessional,” I published The Goodbye Baby-A Diary about Adoption. Through the Internet’s large, rambling “adoption community,” I’ve met dozens of other adult adoptees, many of whom have written about the same hard lessons of growing up adopted. The response from my readers has been gratifying, but even more beneficial has been the freedom allotted by pouring the angst into a book and journeying forward with courage and positivity.

And yes, it is possible to leave the past behind, to move on. But let’s get real. No matter how much analysis, clarification, self-appreciation and education the adopted self receives, the demons return. Thanks to the support of my readers and the excellent adoption memoirs I’ve read, especially Catana Tully’s Split at the Root, I am able to recognize the demons and combat them.

Hope comes from many sources. Who knows where or when the next beacon will appear? While taking a

Nature awaits us with answers, if only we take time to listen.

If we take the time to listen, Nature awaits us with answers.

beautiful walk on one of San Diego’s many urban trails. I realized that the answers to adoption issues, and maybe to anyone’s issues, need not be complicated.

So here, with the clearer vision of one who’s fought the demons for years and come to an armistice, is the message: Letting the past take up too much of today is not a good idea. Learning is a daily challenge, but one that makes life worthwhile. The rewards are never guaranteed, but when they do arrive, we are able to emulate the tall, proud, healthy tree. My gratitude is deep, I’m drinking lots of water, and I’m working on the rest.