“I am quite lost” smiles her frail upturned face.
I have instinctively put my arms around her. I was not sure if I would until that moment.
I feel very protective of her.
There are two little salty globes rolling down her cheeks. They rim around the lower edge of her spectacles.
These perch on the lower end of her nose.
There is something so strangely familiar amongst the wrinkling between her cheeks and eyes, cheeks and nose, wisps of grey-white hair, as this lovely confusion hovers between us. I can’t stop looking at her. I am not sure if she knows it’s me.
She seems to know, but then I realise that she doesn’t quite know who I am.
This is not fair, because I know so clearly who she is, and I have surprised her.
Recognition comes in like a wandering tide. ” you don’t look the same as your photo”
We are speechless with the moment. I still can’t stop looking at her. She is a bit like a mirror. …. a time-travel mirror. We are even more alike this time.
All the lights come on. A quiet drama today.
There is a gift that helps to balance the subterranean bruising of early separation…… the sense of never-ending searching for something, that has so expressed itself in a life time of music.
I am free from the encumbrance of personal history, the weight of baggage or constraint of definition. I am neither daughter nor not-daughter. I am free to relate from choice.
How wonderful to still have the choice.
This time, 58 years ago, in the early days of September, Penny Pether walked into an adoption office to hand over her 5 week old baby. …. countless single mothers were faced with little choice in the 50’s…… she had to leave empty handed and in the days to come, watch other perambulators “for Christ’s sake” and behave as normal and pull her life together.
It would be 40 or so years before we met again.
It feels ok now.
(Our first meeting, is it 18 years ago? made me feel as though I had been hit on the side of the head with a shovel. )
I am in Canada to see my natural mother, Penny. We have some more catching up to do.
A huge thank you to Susan (my ‘little sister’ ) and husband John.
Your warmth and ongoing generosity has made it so much easier than it might have been.