Two of my friends have both lost their mothers.
One friend was very close to her mother, and is grieving horribly. Everyone understands this.
|Photo Credit: dimnikolov, Flickr|
The other friend was not close to her mother. She is also grieving terribly and perhaps some do not understand why she is reacting the way she is. Why is she taking her mother’s passing so hard when the two were not close and in fact were at odds most times?
In going through the recent passing of my natural mother as well as observing other friends who go through the same, I have noticed the impact is great no matter the relationship. If one was close to their mother, they mourn the loss of spending time together – the comfort of their mom’s presence. If someone was not close to their mother, they mourn the loss of what they hoped for, but did not receive. Either way, when your natural mother dies, it's a huge blow.
This article has been circulated widely around the internet the past week, particularly in the adoptee community. It concerns the baby elephant that reportedly cried for five hours, inconsolably, after being separated for a second time from his mother, who tried to kill him, twice. So many people have pointed out, how much more do humans face such feelings?
Human beings crave comfort from the woman who gave us life.
Many people have said to me, “Deanna, sometimes adoption is unavoidable. It needs to happen at times, for the safety of children.” I agree. Sometimes adoption has to happen but that doesn’t mean the child hurts any less. Losing your natural mother is painful, even if it’s “not about you”…even if she’s not mentally stable enough to keep you. Whatever the reason, you still feel a loss that shakes you to the core.
Sometimes a close relationship with one's mother is not possible or safe, depending on their mental health. When a child is removed from their natural mother, whether by the mother's decision or through child protective services, it is traumatic -- period. There is no bypassing of this trauma. It is unequal to anything else in life. Adoption doesn't take away that loss, it simply adds another dynamic to process.
A friend of mine was working in the emergency room in one of our hospitals in Tampa when a boy, just a toddler, was brought in by ambulance. He had experienced burns, on purpose – at the hands of his mother. She was not present on the scene at the hospital – I am not sure where she was – possibly even in police custody. The boy was alone with hospital staff as he was treated. Sadly, the boy passed away in the emergency room. But what absolutely blew my friend and her colleagues away was that the entire time they worked on this little boy to try to save him, he was saying one word, over and over again…”Mommy...mommy...mommy.” He was crying for his mommy. After she purposely harmed him. They could not believe it! Even as he lay dying he cried out for his momma.
Some people have read my story and said to me, “Deanna, why did you keep trying? Why did you take a chance of being hurt all over again? Why didn’t you just move on?”
I wanted my mommy.