I find myself stuck in the past these days. Perhaps the present seems just too unbearable with all the crap that’s going on in the world. It’s nice to reminisce and going through those old keep-sakes while I packed for the move gave me the perfect opportunity.
It’s funny how my perspective changed over the years. When I look at those old photographs, I notice now how much I stand out. It’s as if I had been cut and pasted into the photo. While I’ve never begrudged my parents for adopting me, there has always been this hole, a dead end when I try to look beyond the adoption. I have my adoption papers, a Vietnamese name, a place of birth and an old passport. That’s where I seem to begin and end. I have no lack of love or gratitude for my adopted parents, but that remains a shadow that haunts me.
I have often wanted to ask my father more questions, find some way to pursue my past and possibly find family still alive. I’ve fantasized about it, prayed for it but have never gotten the courage to ask or to pursue it. I felt in some way that it would be an insult to them. That I would be hurting their feelings by wanting to know. I also felt it didn’t matter. It was the past and gone. Perhaps there are things that I wouldn’t want to know. Lately I’ve had a change of heart.
One of the things that has kept my father and I so close is the past that we share in Vietnam. I have no doubt that he grew to love the country. It would make sense that he would want me to love it, too. Insha’Allah, I’ll be able to go visit before we leave for Bahrain and I’ll be able to gather the nerve to ask.
I want to tell him the things I’ve never had the to courage to say. I’ve already gone over what it’s all meant to me in previous posts, so I won’t bore you with that again. I lost one family but gained another and much more. Ahhh, I’m starting to feel sappy and babbling will soon follow. Suffice it to say, I think I’ve had it pretty easy. The truly painful things happened when I was still an infant, beyond my capacity to remember. I only feel the emptiness, not the pain of the loss.