Thursday, July 23, 2009

More Information to Obsess About

The file about me, hidden safely in the Catholic Charities filing cabinet, surely could yield more. Certainly I should be allowed to know what "spanish descent" meant--vague 70s terminology meant nothing to me. It seemed reasonable to ask about discrepancies in the report, such as the remark that there was no cancer in the "alleged" birth father's family, while his brother was listed as having died of leukemia.

The Thing About Information

Those first pieces of non-identifying information provoked a watershed moment for me: there were actually REAL people who had loved me and given me up, presumably for reasons that they believed to be in my best interest. Prior to seeing them described on the page, they had been no more real than characters in a well-known children's story or familiar heroes from Greek myths. They were shadowy, illusive, undefined, much imagined and even more--safe. Safe from being identified, safe from being a disappointment, safe from breaking my heart as the people who gave me up...who didn't want me...who opted for a life without me in it.