Archive for the 'Adoption' Category

Oct 04 2008

These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things

Published by under Adoption,Blog

Lottie bought me a ring in Galway about 4 years ago. It’s a silver ring with the Lord of the Rings thingy on it – “One ring to guide us, one ring to blah blah blah“. I’m not a Tolkien fan and have only seen each of the movies once. I have seen no DVD commentaries, nor have I been to a convention. I just really liked the look of this ring we saw in the jewelery store window and Lottie bought it for me. I love it. Honestly, every time I look at it I feel something. Happy that I have such a great girlfriend, reminiscent of times past, sad that I’m stuck in work and am neither with Lottie nor in Galway. It reminds me that most of the greatest times of my life occurred when it was just me and her. It’s wonderful to have many friends around you, but it’s truly special to be able to share your life with just one. The ring is a small thing, but I love it.

 

Not long after my Granny passed away, I got a gift from my aunt. She’s my uncle’s second wife and I don’t really know her well. I don’t know her at all really. She gave me this gaudy glass picture frame, not anything I would pick for myself, and in it was a picture of me and my Granny on my sister’s confirmation day. She is sitting in my parents’ sitting room, looking glamourous as ever and I am sitting beside her in my blue shirt, yellow Bugs Bunny tie and mustard waist coat, with a blade 2 haircut. It’s the gayest I have ever looked. And yet, I treasure this present. It always has one of the prime photo positions in our sitting room.

 

Just over one year ago my biomammy came up to Dublin to see me and to celebrate my birthday with me for the first time since I was born. She drove all the way from Clare, just to see me and I took an extra long lunch break (which seems a little feeble now) to meet her for lunch. We went to Pacino’s restaurant at the bottom of Grafton Street and chatted away like we had known each other for many years. I loved it and I can say unreservedly that it was one of the greatest days of my life. At one point during the meal, she nervously produced a box, my birthday present. I wasn’t sure what to do – to rip it open, to save it until later, to casually unwrap it while still deep in conversation? She went to the bathroom and I tore the box open. In it was a beautiful Armani watch and underneath was an inscription – “To Darren, Love Teresa, 02-08-07”. I have worn it every day since then and I adore it. I look at it and am reminded of how lucky I am to have the wonderful life I do.

 

These are, indeed, a few of my favourite things. I am fairly materialistic and I do hoard a lot of junk, but these fall among the list of possessions that I treasure. If there were things I would grab as I legged it from my burning apartment, these would be included. I wonder if other people have some small items that mean this much to them – simple items that may not mean much to other people, but hold a special meaning to them?

 

11 responses so far

Jun 06 2008

Beer And Laughter In Kilkenny

Published by under Adoption,Blog,Movies,Night Out

I almost feel like I should apologise for lengthly blog posts. I like to read short, snappy, to-the-point posts and I’m fully aware that I have a tendency to rabbit on in a random, rambling way. I do try to spice my posts up with pictures, odd punctuation(!) and the use of bold type but I wonder if people really read it or do they just scan. Either way, here is my recollections of my highlight-of-the-year-so-far long weekend in Kilkenny.

Darragh Doyle

I’m sure Mr Doyle has had enough praise of late with his epic blog post and subsequent Blog Award, but I can’t write this post without first thanking him for dragging us down to Kilkenny over the weekend, for putting us up (or is it ‘putting up with us’?) in his home, and for guiding us around the maze that is the Kilkenny Cat Laughs Festival. Thank you so much Darragh. You rock muchly!

The Journey Down

After the Wedding on Friday, we went back to my uncle’s house for the night and by the time we finally got up on Saturday, everyone else had already left. So, we pulled ourselves together, packed the car, switched on the GPS and got on the road…to Dunnes Stores just around the corner. After a surprisingly delicious breakfast (I’ve had some very bad experiences in some Dunnes Stores cafés) we finally embarked upon the Cill Chainnigh trail. Firstly stopping off in Graiguenamanagh (home of May’s Monthly Blog Award Winner), where we said a brief hello to Darragh and Niamh, we then headed into Kilkenny City (because if you call it a town the locals will stone you) where we picked up a chilled out and happy (he had just found free wi-fi) Anthony.

Returning to Graiguenamanagh for tea, sandwiches and showers, it wasn’t long before we were sitting in the window of Morrisson’s Dinky Bar in Kilkenny City, waiting for the final member of our motley crew, Mary, to join us. Drinks ensued and we were laughing away long before we hit the first of our comedy gigs. A small regret: Darragh was volunteering for much of the festival so had to depart and leave the rest of us to it. Needless to say this provided him with some great opportunities, not least the opportunity to interview the meek Josh Thomas. But we would meet up with him after the gig.

The Watergate Scandal

In 1972, Richard Nixon‘s staff broke into a hotel room at the Watergate Hotel which was the beginning of the end for the crooked President. Fraud, coercion, illegal wiretapping and political espionage were among the many crimes committed and it all stared at the Watergate Hotel.

The Watergate Theatre in Kilkenny is nothing like that. Random, hectic, zany, bizarre – therein lies the improvisational skills of Ian Coppinger, Michelle Read, Paul Tylak, Brendan Hunt and Michael Orton-Toliver. From singing musicals about the word ‘Meanwhile’ to the simulation of a man giving birth, from Donkeys doing the long jump (because cheese is great) to Super Hero Serial Killers, there was genius and hilarity in abundance.

We headed down to the Rivercourt Hotel, where Darragh was based to have our ‘final’ drink of the night. We were lucky to find a bunch of seats and nestled into them for the next couple of hours, before heading towards the taxi rank. This was looking to be the low point of the night – the queue for the taxis must have been approximately three hundred and seventy eight kilometers long (no exaggeration), and Graiguenamanagh seemed like a distant hope. So, we decided to head up to the Kilkenny Ormond for a final final drink of the night. We, like James Bond (me) , Jason Bourne (Anthony) and Maxwell Smart (Darragh) all rolled into one tipsy group, managed to wrangle our way into the Festival Club, where, after each evening’s carry-on, all the performers would go. We were thrilled to catch up with Mr Ken and have an all-too-brief beverage with him. Meeting him almost eclipsed our photo op with the Improvarios, Brendan Hunt and Michael Orton-Toliver. Two lovely guys who were a fine example of American talent sneaking nicely into a very Irish festival.

The night also saw Des Bishop perform Léim Thart (Jump Around), both as Gaeilge agus as béarla. The man is very funny, and while he might not be my favourite comedian, he is one of the most provocative and inspirational I’ve seen in years. He is one of the reasons I’ve started to learn Irish (all over again).

The great Jason Byrne also posed for a photo-op with us, but I was too nervous to ask for a photo with Máiread Farrell (I’m not joking). I love her on Ray D’Arcy‘s show and she was very funny on the Panel when I saw her earlier this year in the Mermaid Theatre. I need to grow a backbone, or ask Darragh to attack more people for me.

We were the last to leave the club that night and is it any wonder – we had the privileged opportunity to perform on stage at the Smithwick Cat Laughs Festival.

A night that should have ended in a long queue for a taxi a number of hours earlier ended up being an amazing amalgam of meeting great people, dancing madly and admiring others from afar. We left the Ormond around 5am and, magically, a taxi was waiting for us. Mr Reggae Taxi Driver brought us home to Graiguenamanagh in the bizarre fog of Kilkenny and we all flopped straight into bed, already looking forward to what the second day might bring.

For more succinct retellings of the weekend’s events, please visit Lottie’s blog here or Anthony’s blog here and there.

8 responses so far

May 24 2008

Adoption – One Year Later

Published by under A Year in my Life,Adoption,Blog

Click for larger imageIt is exactly a year to the day since I met my birth mother, and yesterday we met again and looked over one of the most eventful years in both our lives.

Lunch seemed like a good idea, except I really wasn’t feeling well, but we gave it a go in Davy Byrne’s on Duke Street. Soup and brown bread is all I could manage. One year ago in the Berkeley Court in Ballsbridge, around the same time of day, we had a glass of wine together and began to ask questions, as we both tried to hold back emotions and nerves. Well, any nervousness or apprehensions that may have been there then, have now all completely disintegrated, as we hug and immediate begin chatting about our respective lives.

We both have been very busy of late; I’ve joined the Blogosphere and as a result have gained an extra branch to my already hectic social life. She has been on holiday after holiday this year already, has had the twins confirmation, has been dealing with the kids breaking up for the summer holidays, worrying about her husband’s burgeoning music career (he’s joined a band as a drummer), on top of her already exhaustive mothering duties, and her own job. So, sadly, we have not had as much time to sit down and talk as we would have liked.

Click for larger imageAllow me to recap: 26½ years ago, I was given up for adoption and gained a great home and a new name (my original birth certificate calls me Dominic). Early last year, I finally got up off my lazy arse and registered with the Adoption Preference register. Almost immediately there was a match, Teresa having been on the register since its launch three years earlier. After exchanging letter and emails we quickly arranged to meet and instantly hit it off. No awkwardness, no discomfort, no tension at all. On the same day, I met her brilliant husband (not my birth father) and not too long after that, I went down to Clare (the opposite side of the country to me) where I met my half-brothers and -sisters. I have two brothers now and two additional sisters (twins) to add to my own sister.

This last year has been fantastic. I have been down to Clare a number of times (the last time was for the twins confirmation and I wrote about it here and here), and they have visited us in Greystones. Towards the end of last year, the eldest of the four, Sean, who is now 16 (10 years my junior – oh God I feel old), stayed with us for a week and did Transition Year work experience with Lottie. It was wonderful having him up and being part of his life as well a the lives of my other new siblings.

So, one year on, conversation flows freely and easily and range from my reaction to meeting Teresa’s mother to Indiana Jones, from metaphysical discussions about fate to the final episode of Desperate Housewives. I only wish I was feeling a little less under the weather, but it was lovely seeing her again and I am happy things are still going so well.

Previous Posts

Adoption – In Search Of My Biomammy

Adoption Worries

Weekend In Clare – Saturday

How To Lose Your Good Mood In Three Easy Steps Hours

12 responses so far

Mar 27 2008

Adoption Worries

Published by under Adoption,Blog

I was asked by a female friend recently, who is considering adoption, whether I am missing a connection, whether I view my mother as my ‘mother’ or simply someone who raised me. It’s a simple answer for me, and one I think (I hope) most adopted children find easy to answer.

Baby Darren

My mother will always be my mother. She’s the one who fed me, clothed me, housed me, laughed with me, fought with me; she is the one who watched The Late Late Toy Show with me each year. It’s easy. I am very happy and proud and excited that I have met my biological mother – but not because I feel there’s been ‘something missing’, not because I needed the connection, or closure, or questions answered. It’s because Biomammy is one of the most loving people I’ve ever met. She has raised four beautiful, clever, funny children. She has a husband who is a gentleman, who has welcomed me into his house like one of his own.

I have been very lucky when it comes to the ‘adoption thing’. My parents always made sure that I could ask any questions I wanted about it. In fact, I cannot remember not knowing about being adopted. As I was growing up, I knew a number of other adopted children. So I never felt I was odd for that (I was always an oddball, but I never felt it was because I was adopted). No, there was nothing missing in me, no need to connect a missing link.

I want this friend of mine to know that she would be giving a very loving home to someone who wants it, who needs and yearns for it. That child, whoever it may be, already loves you. How could it not? You would not be a parent by accident. You, more than most, will be making the decision to give a child a home, a life. The genetic connection is overrated. Love is far stronger than biology.

Baby Feet

6 responses so far

Mar 10 2008

Weekend In Clare – Saturday

Published by under Adoption,Blog

So, after the fiasco of Friday evening, which has led me to vow never to get on a bus again, I found myself waking on Saturday morning in Clare. It was my twin sisters’ confirmation day and a chance for me to meet my many new relations.

I guess the first genus of Neo Familius I met are not strictly relations of mine. They are Biomammy’s husband’s brother and his family. That was fine and easy, no complications, or discomfort. I could only hope the rest of the weekend would go as smoothly.

I struggled to recall the last time I was in a church. I think it was my Otter Half’s mother’s wedding two Christmases ago. Prior to that it was a similar length of time. I wasn’t really mentally prepared for it. I forgot that being a kids confirmation, there would be singing, embarrassing sermons from the Archbishop and, of course, surreal performance art. What? You mean performance art is not a staple of confirmation day? Well, apparently it is in Clare.

[youtube:http://ie.youtube.com/watch?v=jzHJEKpDAwM]

Naturally, and rather shamefully, I took to a fit of the giggles. I couldn’t help it and I couldn’t stop. The Archbishop did not help the situation by exclaiming, “Now boys and girls, I’ve got a little something to show you”! He was, of course, referring to a picture of the Holy Trinity….ahem…..of course.

Is giggling at mass a mortal sin? Well, it doesn’t matter – i think I’m already condemned to hell for living in sin with my girlfriend, takes the lord’s name in vane, coveting my neighbour’s very sexy, truly beautiful, sleek, black, 42″ Plasma television. Oh and let’s not forget that genetical modified microwavable meal I had last week. I really don’t think I’m suited to Pope Benedict the Idiot’s Sixteenth’s new batch of no-no’s. (Have a look at Bock’s Blog on this or Grandad’s ‘Bless me Father’ post.)

Truthfully, the slightly lengthly ceremony was quite nice. The twins looked lovely and seemed very proud to be there. As I sat there (holding back the giggles) I did find myself looking around at the very beautiful building and the interactions between the community. I always thought the moment at mass where everyone shook hands and declared “Peace be with you” was one of the better Catholic customs. Why can’t the church be more about that and less about the condemnation of my microwaved pasta dish.

The twins seemed to have a great time and they made a fortune in confirmation money which is, I’m sure you’ll all agree, the most important thing. I was just happy to be down spending a bit of time with them all, even if it was in a church.

The ceremony finished 367 hours later and we legged it home to watch the oh-so-brutal Ireland v. Wales game. The most entertaining part was watching George Hook border on a coronary.

I spent much of the day drinking, eating, eating more and drinking more. Meeting random friends and family was going very well (I have no recollection of most of their names, but I think I bluffed it well enough). Next came the terrifying meeting with Biomammy’s mother. She got quite the build up. I was more than a little nervous (though I hid it well under my guise of Mr Easygoing Man). The first thing that shocked me about her was the wheelchair. I’m sure Biomammy mentioned it, but she spoke of her as such an imposing, almost battleaxian, figure that I pictured her with eight legs and towering just slightly higher than the house. Secondly, her age – she was far older than I had imagined. Again, this came from the build up she got. If I’m honest, I had prepared myself to really dislike her. In particular, I was all set to have an angry debate with her, should she turn out to be some mad religious zealot. As it was, she was a kindly old woman – she held my hand and told me how wonderful it was to meet me. She hugged and kissed me and tears welled up in her eyes. How could anyone dislike this person? I thought she was lovely. And later, we drank together, which is always a good thing.

Post the Biomammy’s-mammy-meeting, I completely relaxed. I felt very comfortable wandering through the house between different groups of family friends, siblings and other assorted relatives. And, I particularly hit it off with a chap who introduced himself as my ‘Cuz’. The night gets blurry after this. There was more food (a lot of prawns), some Singstar on the PS3, a variety of bizarre world music (that I felt obliged to say “yeah, this sounds really great” about, even though it sounded like something early on rejected from Paul Simon’s Gracelands album), then there was Brendan Grace’s pub and I know I played Darts, because there’s photographic evidence.

Darts with Michael

After that….there’s nothing…..

One response so far

Mar 08 2008

How To Lose Your Good Mood In Three Easy Steps Hours

Published by under Adoption,Blog

I was in great form, cloud nine, fucking jubilant in fact. It’s Friday, I got out of work (every so slightly) early, and then….I got on the Limerick bus from Busárus.

I can’t blame CIE for my being stuck at the back of the queue and therefore getting the second last seat on the bus. Equally, I can’t blame CIE for the man I got stuck sitting beside, a man endowed with Charlie Landsborough‘s looks and the temperament of Gorgon Ramsey. Couple him with the loud chatty woman in front of him and you have a recipe for disaster.

Sidenote – why did I not sit in the other available seat? I could smell that guy from four rows away. People were standing and that seat was still vacant.

The entertainment begins when her phone rings….loudly….a number of times….before she finally answers it. At this stage Charlie is already irritated. He’s mumbling (not very quietly) things about ‘bloody women’, ‘fucking mobiles’ and ‘cupid hunt’ (I may have misheard). When Chatty finally answers, it’s clear Charlie would prefer to still be listening to her ringtone. To say she was loud would be a gross understatement.

Let me paint you a picture: Chatty is in the front leftmost seat of the bus, Charlie and I are directly behind her. At the very far back of the bus on the right hand side, there’s a young couple, clearly in love, longingly looking into each others eyes. Although they’ve only been together for a short time, they have promised eternal devotion to each other. For them, there is no one else in the world; for them, there is only the eyes of the other; for them, there is no bus. And yet, even they were startled back to reality by the noise of this woman’s voice.

“Hello! Hello! Hello, can you hear me? Hello? Who’s this? I can’t hear you! Hello? I can’t…..oh, hello Margaret, how are you? What? What? WHAT? Oh, yeah, I missed a few calls and text things. I don’t know how to work it so I just let it ring. WHAT? No, no, Michael’s dead! Sure, he’s gone before Christmas. I know it’s terrible! Young? No, not at all, he was older than me. Oh, MICHAEL!! He’s fine! Has his Leaving this Summer. Listen Margaret, I’m on the bus, so I’ll let you go. What? WHAT? Yeah, Limerick! We’re just pulling out of Busárus now. What? Ah, he’s not is it? Well, send him my love. What? I know, I know!”

This went on….and on…..and on….until Charlie snapped. Again note, we’re still in Dublin city centre on the start of a three and a half hour journey! He stood, or at least he attempted to stand. It was then I noted he probably had a few drinks on him, although he didn’t smell like a brewery, so I didn’t mind too much. I wish I had a few! He stood up and shouted at Chatty to “quiet down and stop annoying everyone”. She promptly lowered her vocal volume and soonafter finished her call to Margaret. I think much of the bus saw him as a hero – I just saw a scary person.

The bus was quiet for a while (very quiet) and a pleasing side effect of his drinking set in. He nodded off to sleep. I relaxed, I listened to what was going on around me and I took out my phone to began this blog.

A guy on his phone close to me says, “…the blood, unless it’s in very close proximity won’t have any effect”. An odd comment! I think it has something to do with farming and cows.

According to Matt Cooper on Today FM, Gerry Ryan and his wife have separated. And that was the moment Chatty got going again. Apparently, she is friends with the woman sitting beside her, who has so far been silent. Seemingly, the news of Gerry and Moira’s separation was of dire consequence to everyone’s lives. Well, so Chatty believes. Her initial volume returns briefly, but she quickly realises and lowers it down. Apart from a mumbled ‘fuck sake’, Charlie remains reasonably stoic.

Apart from Cooper on the radio, things remain quiet for a while.

The bus is unpleasant. It’s too warm, it’s stuffy, the coughing from behind me is giving me the shivers and the broken light above me is beginning to piss me off. It’s neither fully on nor completely off. It’s in some kind of limbo state. If light bulbs walk towards the light as they expire, this one was definitely resisting. This one was clinging to life by a thread. Perhaps it has unfinished business back home – a wife, kids to look after. As I sit here feeling sympathy for the dying light, rather than pissed off, I realise I’ve got slightly mad. iPod time, methinks!

We’ve stopped to take on more people, onto the already overfilled bus. The last guy to get on was black. And the bus really had reached it’s limit. The painful struggle and fear on the face of the busdriver, as he told Mr Black that the bus was full was a treat to watch. I know Mr Busdriver isn’t racist, Mr Busdriver knows he isn’t racist, Mr Black knows that Mr Busdriver is not racist, but the fear of what may be perceived was scribbled all over his face. He got up from his seat and searched down the bus, desperately seeking a seat for Mr Black. He soon returned and I really had to hold back the laughter as Mr Busdriver innocently delivered this line: “You’ll have to sit at the back of the bus!”. 

Charlie started mumbling again: “I can’t see myself making it, I can’t see myself making it”. Now, the first thing I thought this meant was that he was about to snap and kill someone – me perhaps. But then I relaxed when I figured he probably just needed to pee. The panic returned again, when I thought of him relieving himself on the seat next to me. I swear I can feel the seat getting wet.

Two hours on the bus now. It just dawned on me I haven’t a clue where I’m getting off. Mr Busdriver says he’ll let me know when we get to Birdhill. He seems trustworthy, but fingers crossed.

We’re at Portlaoise (I’m told it’s an hour from Birdhill) and Charlie is getting off. I’m tentative about moving in to the window seat. I doubt he’s peed, I really doubt it, but I don’t want to check. Alright, alright, people are getting on.

Well, it’s dry! It’s warm! It’s a window seat! Things are looking up. I miss the train. Well, why didn’t you get the damn train? It’s so expensive, that’s why! Is it any wonder people don’t use public transport. The only service halfway comfortable costs a mint (€28.50) and the cheap option (I paid €10 single journey) feels like I’m living the final moments of a not-yet-dead hamster, whose owner is burying it in a shoebox in the back garden on a sunny Summer’s day. Hope comes in the form of the neighbour’s doberman.

Oh God, hope is fading. The nice quiet, not smelly woman who boarded at Portlaoise and sat beside me, is travel sick. While she hasn’t vomitted yet, she’s close to it.

There she goes!

Well, at least she had a sick bag with her. That’s thoughtful! It smells awful in here now. The aircon is on full, so instead of roasting to death, I’m going to freeze. Do they have hamsters in the Arctics? Is there such a thing as a Snow Hamster?

If anyone manages to read this far down, thanks for hearing my moans. I guess, it’s not that bad. I’m nearly there and the smell is subsiding (or I’m just becoming accustomed to it). I should have gotten the train. I know this. I could stretch out. I could use the toilet. I could have my book out on the table in front of me. I could cut and hour off my journey time. I could get a beer or two. Mmm beer!

Anyone want to know why I’m making this trip? It’s my twin sisters’ confirmation tomorrow. It’s great getting down to celebrate (is celebrate the right word? I guess so) with them. So, wish me luck for a good weekend. I’ll talk to you all on Monday.

I’m getting the train next time!

Final Note: As Chatty alighted, she announced in her very loud voice to Mr Busdriver –

“Thanks very much! I had a lovely ride!”

The whole front of the bus fell into hysterical laughter. It’s been a long journey, I think we all needed a good giggle.

6 responses so far

Mar 03 2008

Adoption – In Search Of My Biomammy

Published by under A Year in my Life,Adoption,Blog

It is one year since beginning the process to find out who my Biomammy is. Indeed, it’s a full year since I ticked the boxes and registered with the Adoption Board‘s Preference Register. And since then, it’s been one of the most hectic, stressful and fun-filled years of my life.

 

I have found a whole new group of friends (the best I’ve ever known), an entire family who have made me feel so very welcome; I have a working life I enjoy and a social life that’s wearing me out, but I’ve no intention of giving it up.


I find myself taking a figurative breath for the first time in a long while, and I’m looking back at how I arrived here. And yes, I do mean right here……sitting on a DART, writing a blog (a what?) on my lovely Pocket PC. It’s a far cry from sitting in Business Studies class in the De La Salle ten years ago, beside my only friend Fergal, listening to the teacher drivel on about the weekend’s football results, all the while being stabbed in the back (literally) with a compass. I don’t recall any strong desire or ambition beyond one day getting out of that cess pit. I certainly couldn’t in my most fantastical dreams see myself settled in my own home, with a beautiful, amazing girlfriend, surrounded by a large group of friends whom I trust, and yes, love. But that nerdish little teen was in existence ten years ago. Right now I’m trying to recall only one year ago.


Sligo Picture

 

It all began in Paris a year and three weeks ago and has been a year of journeys, both physical and mental. I have met piggies in Galway; drunkenly conducted a ‘traditional Irish folk group’ consisting of a Romanian and a Latvian in Sligo; played football (for three minutes before suffering some kind of attack, reserved only for the unfit fool who stupidly believes that a little kick-around can do him no harm) in Navan; discovered that everyone in Clare knew all about me before I had even arrived to meet my brand new familial branch; fell head over heels for Sushi in Sotogrande, Spain (before taking a 220km per hour taxi journey back to the apartment in 20 minutes when it should have taken an hour); I bought an eight thousand euro bathroom in Greystones, and came to the realisation that I had become an adult. But one of the longest journeys I undertook began in the Burlington Hotel (a twenty minute walk from my workplace), where I met Teresa, the Biomammy, for the first time (well, the first time that i can remember – she recalls a time when i was a damn sight smaller and far less talkative).

 

I’m not sure exactly when I began jokingly referring to my biological mother as the Biomammy (actually, i would imagine in was in a drunken conversation with a friend of mine, Gary, during which he devised all the best ways to take the piss out of me, after i told him i was adopted – “So, what was it like when you found out you were abandoned on a doorstep?” – Honestly, this is humour for him Update: Apparently it was my Otter Half and not Gary, as they have both now informed me), but Biomammy always seemed far less serious and clinical that biological mother. Biological mother! It sounds like I was designed in a lab.

 

From what I’ve heard, read, been told, the process of linking with a Biomammy (or any other long lost biological parent) can take a very long time. Even when both partieds are on the preference register, the process can still be quite drawn out. The generous side of me wants to say it’s because many people need time to emmotionally prepare for the meeting, and the adoption board is aware of this. But I think it’s fairer to say that the board is another state body that is underfunded, inefficient and painfully beurocratic. The reason I say that I want to give themn the benefit of the doubt, is that my story was so very different to all the horror stories, the failed meetings, the tears, the sorrows. Mine was a simple process. Mine was quick, easy and straightforward.

 

I was lucky enough to register at a time when the Board was undergoing some changes. Barnadoes, who usually handle the mediation (I think that’s the correct word) were overworked and unavailable and the Adoption Board’s administrator, Grainne (to whom I’m eternally grateful) saw my file, saw Teresa’s file, put them together and made two phonecalls. Within two weeks, Teresa and I had exchanged letters and less than two weeks after that, we found ourselves in the Burlo Berkley Court.

 

Teresa First Meeting

 

So, was it difficult? Not in the least! In minutes, Teresa and I were chatting like two people who had known each other for many years. We exchanged photos, stories of our lives; I met her husband and we hit it off too. It was all very comfortable, very simple and, of course, highly emoptional. However, both of us managed to maintain our cool and held back the blubbering tears (in front of each other, at least).

 

In no time whatsoever, we were exchanging emails and I was Bebo-ing my little brother. Indeed, I have gone from having just one sister to having three (Teresa has twin daughters aged 12 now) and from zero brothers to two (a teen and a ridiculously cute 10 year old). And they are all wonderful. The eldest (of my new siblings) has just turned 16 and I was very worried that he might have a problem with me. But no, he made it all very easy for me. On Bebo we discovered how very similar we are in our likes and behaviours. It was very surprising.

 

It was wonderful then meeting the entire family for the first time. We (the Otter Half and I) drove to Clare and had an amazing (and drunken) weekend. Since then, things have just gotten better and better. We’ve all become very close and I am looking forward to going down to Clare again for the twins Confirmation this weekend.

 

Well, I’m very glad to share my success story. I hope to expand on it and gloat a bit more about my great life and if you have any comments, questions or gripes, please let me know. I’m an absolute open book and I hope people enjoy what they read.

17 responses so far