As I write this, I’m sitting on aim airplane awaiting takeoff. It’s the first flight of 2 I will take today. My husband is coming with me, but it isn’t really a trip for him.
It’s finally retreat weekend, easily one of my favorite weekends of the year. This retreat is where myself, and other birth moms (moms who have placed children for adoption) come to get together.
It’s a weekend full of pain, grief, and acceptance. Not acceptance of the decisions we’ve made, many of us don’t have that, but acceptance of one another.
To be in a room full of other people who just…get it like no one else does…it’s so meaningful.
While the retreat related activities don’t actually start until tomorrow night, I always get there a day earlier along with a few other people just to…be. And to really take advantage of the space that I have the opportunity to have.
This weekend is about my son. It’s about honoring him and me, and the incredibly painful journey that we as birth moms go though.
Losing a child, through adoption or otherwise, is…it’s the most painful thing a person can go through.
I spend so much time in avoidance, in refusing to feel and acknowledge my pain. This weekend doesn’t allow for that. It forces us to be present and not shove those feelings away. It’s a celebration of us as birth mothers, but also an amazing acknowledgment of the pain and the heartache that this really is.
It’s incredibly emotional, but also very healing. I’ve met some of my closest and favorite people over the years through these weekends, and I’m so, so grateful that they exist.
This weekend is about my son, and even though it will be extremely difficult for me, it’s something that I really do need.
Just being with other women who really do just get it is healing in it of itself.
I had an incredibly rough time here last year, and I drowned out the pain in a shit ton of alcohol and honestly wanted to die. This year, there isn’t any alcohol, and my husband came with me to help out in those quiet moments when my mind gets just a little too loud.
It’s funny how a weekend designed to be supportive (and really truly is), also requires a certain level of support to get through.
I’m sure I’ll be writing a lot this weekend and trying to process everything that I’m feeling. It’ll be rough, so bear with me.
I’m already lined up waiting to board my second plane. I’m nervous, but excited. Even though my husband isn’t going to any retreat activities with me, I’m still really glad he’s here.
I hope it goes well, I hope I handle it all well. Dealing with emotions isn’t exactly my strong suit, as we all well know.