Adoption and Alzheimer’s two things that people don’t often put together, but there are some similarities. Their “month’s” for awareness, though awareness is needed year-long; are both in November, both can leave one feeling emotional, lost, and searching….searching for an answer, a light that is “to be found,” but you must stay the course. Whether you’re a caregiver losing a loved one to Alzheimer’s or Dementia or you’re an adoptee searching for your birth parent(s) or in foster care wondering how or why did I get here and if/when…will I be adopted?, we all have to stay the course for the glory.
Easier said than done, I know, but what prompted to write this (a few weeks overdue) was after a very good conversation I had with Muzik, a young lady I met on twitter (there go those twitter connections) who I found out about through someone else’s retweet. After seeing her twitter page and then website about her life and journey to find her birth mother, I informed her about an anthology I contributed to, “Gumbo for the Soul – Here’s Our Child, Where’s the Village” which conveys stories/poems about adoption, foster care and the message that all children are deserving of a loving home, family – village.
Through her tweets, informative and very personal, speaking on her truth; we became frequent tweet and RT buds, that led to planning a conversation to talk about Gumbo and the next call for contributions. We spoke a few weeks ago and though we never met, just through words, in her openness, I felt trusted and I felt very comfortable talking with her, sharing with her, and being open, as if we were old friends. We weren’t before the convo, but I got off of the phone, feeling as if I have a new friend.
In her mission to be a voice and advocate for other adoptees and those searching for birth parents, she has become a recognized symbol for her cause, is a writer and public speaker who is often called for TV appearances, conferences and panels. She also has a family member who had Alzheimer’s which I’ll address in another post, but in our discussion about our separate missions, I found many similarities. If you care for someone, who has Alzheimer’s especially a parent or parents, it is a loss of who they were as a parent. Biologically you know they’re your parent(s), but as brain cells and memories are lost, it takes them further away from you, leaving them without knowledge of who you are and in some ways you feel like a child lost.
With adoptees, not all are on a journey for their birth parent (I don’t know statistics), but for those who searching, it’s the attempt to gain the loss of knowing of they are. They have biological parents who know they exist, but don’t know who they are.
Alzheimer’s and Adoption; in both cases we have a longing, a want for our parents or loved ones “to be” or “to be as they were.” We’re looking for ways to find and meet a need. We have a loss that we’re trying to physically or emotionally fill, but we must recognize that we get “spiritually filled” by sharing our truth, our journey and from our words touching other’s lives, we gain strength, we gain light, we gain love.
November is National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month and National Adoption Awareness Month, take the time to get to know about both. Hug a caregiver, hug an adoptee….support both! (Another small thing I noticed, both use the color purple.)