I haven’t seen my biological father since I was a baby. He and my mother were divorced by the time I was one. They were both very young. When my mother remarried I was adopted by my stepfather and I guess my biological father took that as an exit from my life all together. For years I had issues with this. To say I still don’t would be a lie. I tried to reach out to him in the past. The first time my mother successfully got him on the phone and it was so overwhelming I couldn’t handle it. I was still too young to deal with all the emotions I guess and scared to confront him for fear of what it would (or wouldn’t) fix in my life. When I heard from my grandmother (my mother’s mother) that my father’s mother was in the obituaries, I reached out to him then too but that was an epic fail and ended up hurting a lot more than I cared to let anyone know. I try not to let it bother me as much anymore. At least until something like this morning happens.
My sister got engaged last week to a guy in the military. None of us have met him yet. It’s hard enough to try to like someone you haven’t even met yet and not be somewhat on edge about the thought of your sister marrying someone she has spent most of her time with online and not knowing in person. I feel like a protective mother inside being so skeptical and wanting her to wait before taking such a huge step. I have to remind myself that she’s an adult now and not a baby anymore. He seems nice enough and only time will tell so for now I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt and trusting that she has a good head on her shoulders and knows what she’s doing.
So when I hear that he’s friends with someone who is possibly my (half) brother it troubles me a bit. Like how the hell do you go through life with a bunch of siblings (apparently I have quite a few) and cousins you don’t even freaking KNOW?! How is it that your biological family is all from the same general area and you’ve still not ever had an encounter or even run into them through mutual friends on Facebook up until now? And of all people to have them with, how is it that it’s a stranger that just got engaged to my sister and doesn’t even know me? And how the hell are you supposed to find out without inviting him in to such a major part of your past (I haven’t even met this guy yet for crying out loud. Like I want to go through the embarrassment of involving him into this part of my history) or reaching out to this mystery-maybe-sibling on your own and looking like a complete idiot to someone who may or may not even know you exist and who may or may not even be related? It’s always a million questions anytime that part of my life comes up. I’ve spent the past few years since the last time I reached out to my father pretending that his lack of response didn’t hurt me as bad as it did and reminding myself that I’m fine and probably better off without him. What I do know is that I grew up with a good life in spite of his lack of presence, that I am a good person with good morals and strong ethics and that I turned out okay…It still doesn’t help all the confusion and questions and curiosity though or the “who are you / who am I” game that always ensues.
So here I sit, in between loads of laundry with Sesame Street on in the background listening to the baby play and staring at a picture of a total stranger that may or may not be my own brother wondering if I should even pursue trying to see if it’s a match. Trying to find a familiarity or sum him up. Are those my father’s eyes? Does he look at all like me? I wonder what he’s like in life. I hope he made something of himself and isn’t some worthless moocher. I wonder if he knows my father anymore either….Then wondering if I should even pursue trying to find out if it’s a match but knowing that never knowing will just drive me crazy too. Either way the emotions you fight so hard sometimes to hold back just resurface and remind you that you can pretend you have a complete and normal life all you want and you can smile and be blessed as you are but there is still this sadness down deep from all the unknown out there – so close yet so far. The root of all self doubt, all insecurities, all phobias and worries. It’s the ever burning fire that draws me in yet offers no warmth but may burn me if I get any closer.
Whatever comes of it this time we’ll just have to wait and see I guess. For today I’m going to try not to dwell on it too much. Sometimes you get more clarity when you’re not constantly questioning things and you just let the way show itself to you.