July 14, 2014

Selling Your Soul to Reunion

What would possess a mature, grown, confident and otherwise wildly successful person to throw all common sense and self respect out the window?



Adoption reunion has the power to turn a powerhouse into a groveling wimp.
I only say that cuz’ I’ve been there. As the wimp.

But no more. No sirree Bob. The showings of the  Wimp Chronicles Starring Deanna Doss Shrodes have closed and are no longer available, even on DVD. 

I know so many adoptees who are the kind of people who slay dragons with one hand behind their back in every other sphere of life. They kick tail at work and their other endeavors. But reunion turned them into Jello. When they enter reunion, they begin to agree to things no strong, self-respecting person would otherwise agree to.  

What is it about reunion that causes one to act like they never would in another area of their life?

For starters, the most insane desire for approval…ever. 

Even if you don’t struggle with that in other situations…it so often seems to come with the territory in reunion.

Because you just want a seat at the table.  
A full seat.

So you put up with craaaaaaaaaaaaaaazy stuff that you would never put up with when it comes to anything else in your life.

Whatever you have to do to get that seat, you do it.

You compromise, going beyond any reasonable alteration to a place of losing yourself at times, just to gain what you lost at birth or shortly thereafter.

But you can never totally regain it anyway because the tremendous volume of loss of shared history can never be regained.

But you try, oh do you try.
You knock yourself out trying to create and recreate shared history.
Trying to fit in.

And no matter how hard you try, you don't absolutely fit in like a perfect puzzle piece with your natural or your adoptive family because there are such gaps with both. Typically a shared history gap with one and an understanding gap with the other.

Amidst all of this change, you encounter the "nons" as we know them, who (with or without invitation) will give such brilliant wisdom as, "See...this is why reunions are not always good...they open up a can of worms...you have opened Pandora's box...it's best to leave well enough alone...blah blah blah..."  

You have embarked on a sometimes unrecognizable version of yourself in exchange for active relationship. And then, you wake up one day and ask, “What in the world am I doing?  I am agreeing to things I would never concede to in any other situation in my life.  I am compromising in places I never would with a friend, or even my spouse. What in heaven’s name is driving me to agree to put up with these expectations or this treatment?” 

Perhaps you have agreed to be kept a secret after reunion, just to stay relationship.

Or maybe you’ve agreed to refrain from openly sharing your feelings with anyone, or writing publicly.

After realizing the ridiculousness of this demand,  you may suddenly see that you don’t have to live that way anymore.

You do not have to compromise for one more day.

You can stop talking yourself into the fact that it’s okay in this one area, just because it’s not comparable to anything else in your life.

You can refuse to be someone other than yourself, just to hold onto what is left. 

You can just say no to doing whatever it takes to keep them happy so you can still have some shred of contact left.

You can stop selling your soul to reunion.

You can be who God created you to be, and let the chips fall where they may. 

*Photos by Deanna Doss Shrodes