July | 2011 | A portrait of one Korean Adoptee–Kim Yunmi Dot Com

Archive for July, 2011

My mom’s selective memory…

Why did I friggin’ open that stupid email anyway? I could have just filed it under adoption and been done with it. But there it was, I opened the damn thing and I went from sleepy and almost falling over to mad in a second and then my brain snapped awake. A thousand things I wanted to say to her rushed forward including the snarkiest lines I could come up with.

Hardly mature, but who expects maturity when you’re angry. Maybe restraint is maturity rather than thinking evil thoughts.

To be fair, she disputed that she ever said anything about Asians not being able to be actresses. That they would only play stereotypical roles. That she ever said those words over and over again while I ignored her.

So my snarky brain came back with, “You want to know where I got that from? The same mouth that said, The Japanese person spoke Japanese…” in the most hurt voice ever. But then I reconsidered actually hitting reply, remembering that I need to treat her like a dog. Reward only good behavior. Reward only good behavior, making me feel sick and resentful at the same time. Making me remember the incidents where she wouldn’t be a parent because she was more the victim.

But still, rejecting that my brain came up with other snarky lines. She doesn’t remember under the haze of Marijuana, because, remember, no matter what MJ is more important that your emotional being or existence.

Somewhere along here, I fall into the old pattern of wanting to be wrong, to want to remember wrong, but I remember again, this is how I got myself here in the first place. Wanting the world of a lie more than the reality and facing the reality of the cost it takes to myself. I remember, and through the remembering, I realize that it’s sadly not myself. It really is her and her inability to be able to define herself–to accept who she is and then find a definition of self from that.

I have to say to myself that no matter what, I will always come last in her world until I am gone. I don’t have that power to change her. No matter what I say.

Yes, someone is suffering as much as you are

I will not be popular among my fellow adoptees for saying this, but I’ll say it anyway. Somewhere out there, there is someone suffering more or as much as you are. I say this because I dislike using any label as a particular excuse to blame someone for not being able to accomplish something. I understand things can be harder but it’s never impossible.

Someone out there has a pot belly and is hungry and starving because some government is being a jerk to its people saying they aren’t growing enough food, which are total lies. How does that compare to adoption being the fault of everything that went wrong in your life?

The blame game. I know. People love the blame game. Because I am a woman, I don’t make as much as the average man. Because I am Asian, I can’t make it in acting. Because I am X, then X is true.

Seriously, there is a limit. Because I am an adoptee, I missed the green light and because I am angry at being an adoptee I went and ran the red light and a cop caught me in the act now I have a ticket and need to go to driving school? Seriously? Do we really need to blame adoption for every single last thing and say we suffer more than anyone else on the planet, because we got the worst of the stick ever?

I don’t buy it. I’ve gone through little bits of hell, whether through my own making or through others, or just a string of events that just lead me to that spot. That was not adoption’s fault. I know that others have suffered worse fates than I have. There is a time to stop the blame and saying, “Ah! But look at my shiny victim trump card!! Lookie here! I can use it for life, harp on it and say I suffered more than the parents that had their child ripped from their arms, a war-torn country, the infertile adoptive parents and a world where there is sexual abuse, murder, rape, war, disfigurement, poverty, and hunger.”

Grief is one thing, playing victim is a whole other ball game. There is a point where you have to stop using the trump card of victim and just get over yourself. Because like it or not, someone out there is suffering more than you are. They just lost their only child. They were sold into slavery. They are inhaling glue for sneakers that will someday give them cancer just to give their family a little bit of rice. The difference is that they aren’t wallowing in blame and doing nothing about it. They still are fighting somehow to get out and because they fight, others are willing to fight with them.

No one is suffering as much as you are? No one feels the same as you do? No other label on the planet has identity crisis on it? It’s time to look outside of the one-man universe and commiserating with people you think should feel like you do, and look outside to the larger universe. Because the sky is pretty on a pitch dark night, but you only know that is so when you look up.