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LOVE IS NOT ALL WE NEED

We’ve heard it all for centuries, especially in the adoption community.

“ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE”

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Well I’m here to express my desire to not only have love but my truth. Love wasn’t all I needed.

I needed my truth

THE TRUTH MEANS NOTHING HIDDEN

Yes, you guessed it. I’m an adult adoptee who has grown into my own woman. I have developed my own opinion, and I have been on a healing journey for 3 years now, attempting to heal from the lifelong struggles being adopted have brought my way. When I was growing up you weren’t supposed to talk about it. The less adoptive parents talked about it the better. Well, that was probably the worst advice that could have ever been given to adoptive parents.

TODAY…

I don’t have to be quiet, because it’s not a secret anymore. It might have been in the 1970’s but those days are over.

John 8:32 Says, “We shall know our TRUTH, and our TRUTH shall set us free”.

This scripture is what I stand on for all adoptees all over the world that are fighting to find their truths.

Love is good. Love is great.  Love isn’t everything. Love definitely wins. But Love isn’t all I needed.

I believe all adoptees are different. Some are perfectly content with not knowing who they look like or where they come from. They don’t need to know their answers. A lot of times adoptive parents come to me and say, “Jonny is fine with being adopted, I ask him how he feels and he says “Fine”, and he never brings it up. He appears to be happy.”

I think parents, adopted or not naturally want to protect their kids. I find this to come natural as a parent of 3 children. I would never want my poor kid’s hearts broken, but the truth is when you adopt a child, you adopt their broken, tainted, tore history while you adopt them. You also adopt the beautiful history some of us have.  It’s a part of them. I believe when you adopt a child, you have to accept this as a part of the child, and learn that there will be a day that child will start asking questions about their first family. They deserve to know their truth.

If LOVE was all I needed I would have been in great shape growing up. I believe with my entire heart that my adoptive parents and family LOVED me with everything they knew how. I have always been closer to my adoptive dad, yet he has always been so far away. But he’s been amazing. His wife, my step mother of over 35 years has also loved me the best way she knew how. We’ve all had a roller coaster ride over the years, but at the end of the day I know they have loved me, and they haven’t lied to me to gain anything. I respect them for that.

I still needed all the answers to my history. I needed my truth. I needed to know who my siblings were. I wanted to meet my biological grandparents. I have searched for every clue to WHO I AM and learned that I’m not like anyone of them! I’m the child God created me to be, but I needed to know and see this for myself. I needed to make the choices on my own, without everyone telling me and making the choice for me.

Saying “Love is all we need” is like putting a band-aide on our wounds. They are still deep down there and will surface as root issues later on in life.

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 THE TRUTH HAS HURT MORE THAN ANYTHING ON THIS PLANET.

I experienced failed reunions and rejection from both birth parents, yet I am happy every day I got one AMAZING brother out of the deal, and his AWESOME siblings have accepted me as their own.  I will always be grateful for them, and their relationships. ALTHOUGH THE TRUTH HURT, I WOULD RATHER KNOW IT, ACCEPT IT, AND BE ABLE TO HEAL THROUGH JESUS AND MOVE FORWARD WITH MY LIFE!!!!

We can’t heal if we don’t know our truth.

If I can share something with all my fellow adoptees out there, I would like to say to never give up hope in finding your truth and as much as it hurts to say, be prepared for anything. Most of the time relinquishment isn’t a “Pretty Story”.  I most certainly don’t want to discourage anyone from searching, but reach out to another adoptee that can pray for you, or help walk you through the emotions of the reunion and search experience.

My reunion doesn’t define me. My biological parents don’t define me. My adoptive parents don’t define me. My history doesn’t define me.

They are indeed a part of my Her [Story] – History! 

WHO I AM IN JESUS DEFINES ME!

I learned I’m really not like anyone, yet God made me (and YOU) special and unique in his own way. After learning what I know about my birth parents, TODAY I’m extremely thankful I’m not like any of them. The difference is, I know JESUS and neither of them did/do. I have his peace. I don’t have to drink today to handle these emotions, and the pain that goes along with this journey. Being adopted is a lifelong thing, it doesn’t just go away. This is something I will be working through for the rest of my life.

LOVE IS GREAT & LOVE WINS

But LOVE isn’t all I needed.

I needed my TRUTH

I thank GOD today, I’m no longer fighting for my truth.

How do my fellow adoptees feel?

Is love all you need?

Pamela A. Karanova,

Adult Adoptee Reunited

http://www.facebook.com/howdoesitfeeltobeadopted

http://www.facebook.com/askanadoptee1

Please read “About” section of both pages

Twitter: @pamelakaranova<– FOLLOW ME!

Photo By: Salvatore Vuono @freedigitalphoto.net

Great Morning Midnight!

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Well, 2017 Has Arrived…

I’ve spent the last 2 hours watching Elevation Church Online.

The name of the sermon- “GOOD MORNING MIDNIGHT

 Hashtag for this event was #praiseparty16 

I had to share a little of my evening with you!

“The miracle of midnight is not that you just made it through 2016, ITS HOW YOU MADE IT THROUGH. IT’S THAT YOU MAKE SOMETHING OF IT! If you’ve come to a place where you’ve made it through a few midnight moments (dark moments), you see it coming and you wave at it. GOOD MORNING MIDNIGHT! Maybe we need to wave GOOD MORNING to our MIDNIGHT? Maybe the only difference between the two is how you choose to see it?”

– Pastor Furtick

Elevation Church.

WOW WOW WOW! 

Pastor Steven Furtick is ON FIRE!

3 Key points he shared:

Memorize-Mobilize-Maximize

I changed GOOD to GREAT in this blog post because good negates great! So why not say GREAT instead of GOOD?

Oh my gosh I absolutely love his preaching style! In my life I’ve experienced multiple pastors preach, and I’ve noticed some I can tune into and some are hard to tune into. I think this is similar for everyone. Well he’s ON POINT and I understood him 110%. This sermon was filled with fire! Fire meaning GOD’S GOODNESS & TRUTH! I’m so excited I was able to tune in!

Pastor Steven described MIDNIGHT as our dark times. He explained [which I agree with] that we run from the hustle and bustle of each day and when midnight hits, our head hits the pillow and all the background noise from LIFE comes flooding in. Many times our MIDNIGHT is filled with tough thoughts!  We all have a choice how we respond to these thoughts.

Over the last week or so, I’ve been reflecting on 2016. For some reason automatically I start thinking of all the bad things that happened, [ midnight? ] and moment after moment is highlighted in my mind. The sad, bad, negative, heartbreaking and depressing things. I’ll just be honest, lots of times my mind is plagued with these THINGS! Day in and day out. Pastor Steven mentioned how we can easily remember the bad things about someone as if our brains are stuck with that memory that plays over and over and over in our minds!

 MEMORIZEI started to think of my life. I have these negative thoughts, experiences and emotions MEMORIZED in my brain. Many of them go all the way back to my younger years. Some are new and fresh. They play over and over like a broken record. I will just admit, 99% of them are adoptee related. Adoptee grief, loss, trauma, abandonment, disconnect, etc, etc, etc. It’s like a mental torture over and over and over.

MASTER YOUR MEMORY! 

DON’T LET IT MASTER YOU!

“I’m not memorizing my pain this year! I’m making a movie this year but I’m skipping some scenes! It’s my memory & I’m remembering it WRONG! The way I respond has to do with the way I remember! First you have to MEMORIZE then you have to MOBILIZE! The magic isn’t what happens AT midnight! It’s what happens AFTER midnight!

NEW YEAR=NEW BEGINNING=NEW SITUATION!”

– Pastor Steven Furtick

MOBILIZE: Over the last year many things have happened. If I choose look at the entire piece of the pie, not just a piece of it there are many many things that are great that happened. Of course some not so great things happened. Sometimes I wonder how life would be if everything was perfect all the time and people never had any struggles. What good would that person be to the kingdom of God in being able to reach other’s that can relate to their situation? I know all bad things that have happened to me have added a layer of toughness and strength to my core being. I’m not easily shaken! I’m tough! I’m a fighter! I know this! If I hadn’t experienced anything in life I would blow over and fall down over the smallest things that come my way. With these storms, I’ve made the choice to mobilize moving forward as they come. I’m not gonna lie, some days it’s easier than others. Some days I can barely function in day to day living. Some days I feel stuck. Some days I feel HIGH ON LIFE! Naturally, of course!  

I have the choice to sit and wallow in my “midnight” [ hard times ] or I can tell my midnight’s; GOOD MORNING.

I fail. 

A LOT. 

But I’m trying here! 

“God’s going to use the very one that wounded you to heal your wounds and serve you dinner! Watch God work! WORK YOUR WINDOW! I’m coming out of this year! I have some battle scars! I made it! I’m coming into 2017 full of JOY & EXPECTATION!” – Pastor Furtick

MAXIMIZE: This sermon filled with wisdom and truth really helped me open my eyes and try to do my best to MAXIMIZE in all areas. What does this mean for me? Try to re-remember all the GREAT things God has done in my life this year! To try to remember all the hard times that God has brought me through. PRAISE HIM in His Goodness and when things aren’t going as planned. Try to find the blessing in all things, yet acknowledge my hurt and process it at the same time. Be TRUE to myself and share how I really feel with no holding back but also try to evaluate what my GOOD MORNING IS in ALL SITUATIONS.

I’m believing 2017 is going to be the best year yet! I’m claiming it not only for me, but I’m claiming it for you too! This doesn’t mean we won’t have any bad days. This doesn’t mean we won’t still have challenges in life.

 It means I’m going to do my best to re-examine my memories and make the choice to mobilize each of them and use them for maximizing God’s Glory. I plan to continue to share the TRUTH about where I have been and what God has brought me through!

My prayer for all my followers and fellow adoptees, friends and family near and far is that you have the blessed 2017 possible and you live your life filled with God’s greatness and trust HIM through all valleys of your life!

Happy New Year Everyone!

Love from me to YOU!

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A Reflection About Christmas

Moving away so my kids and I could have a better life is something my kids, thankfully will never understand. If they understood this they would have to experience all the hell I went through growing up. I never wanted them to experience these things, so moving away to protect them was all I knew to do.

I am constantly hearing many people share experiences about their families, and the good and bad times. Many times I learn of dysfunction and toxic situations that people are in while they are grumbling and groaning about certain people. Many times they share situations about family members who have “crossed the line” or “got on their last nerve”.

This holiday season I was reminded on many occasions why I moved away. To me there are so many dynamics to this. There are pro’s and con’s. The sadness I feel from having to make this choice of moving away just to have some normalcy in my life, and my kids life really never leaves. Aside from all the other adoptee issues, this sadness is always in the background lurking, especially on the holidays.

All those around are sharing their holiday “CHEER”

I just can’t wait to get on with the new year!  

I never want to be a Grinch and spoil anyone’s holiday so I keep my opinions to myself. Holidays are painful! Triggers Triggers everywhere. Everyone is talking about their families, blah blah blah…

This year was different. I’ve found 2 of my 3 amazing kids are in relationships with significant others. This brought a new spin to our holiday season. 2 of my 3 kids were able to experience a “Family Setting” from other families and it brought them great joy and fun to experience this type of “Love & Welcoming” from other people, in other families.

It dawned on me that this is something I can’t give them and I never will be able to give this to them. 

There is little ole me.

I’m just mom.

I feel terrible about THIS but no one else would understand unless they were an estranged adoptee in a similar situation. I don’t have parents that are active in my life or my kids lives. They don’t have active grandparents, cousins, aunts or uncles. I could have stayed around all the toxicity and dysfunction and everyone would have been major damaged goods, just like I was. If I stayed in the situation I was in, I wouldn’t even be able to be “Mom” because I was so broken that drinking alcohol was all I knew to numb the pain.

Of all people to know how important a mother is, I know. I know because I have never had one so I know first hand the heartbreak and loss involved in this situation I have had no control over. My birth mother rejected a relationship and abandoned me twice. My adoptive “mother” should have never been given a chance to adopt. She was never a mother. My adoptive dad moved far away and LEFT US with the adoptive “Mother” who didn’t have the capabilities to be a “Mother” and my birth father has rejected a relationship with me. I’m trying to embrace family isn’t always blood, it’s who you make it and teach this to my kids.

How can an adoptee be adopted, yet be parentless in the parent area?

Back to CHRISTmas…

My 2 children were able to experience all the fun, love and excitement of being a part of another family. My heart was exceptionally excited for them to be able to experience something they should have never had to go without. I feel guilty as a parent, but I can’t change a thing about who our family is or isn’t. I have had no control over being adopted or the family I got in this deal.

One thing I know is that I pray daily for my kids to have significant others who have big wonderful families who love them, accept them and treat them with love and respect each of them deserves. I pray they gain a wonderful family in their significant others. I pray they are strong enough in life to be able to have healthy and happy relationships around them. I pray they are strong enough to let go of all things unhealthy and toxic no matter who inflicts this on them. I want them to find happiness in life. They deserve it.

It might have taken me many years to get my “stuff” together but one thing I am certain of is that my kids have me, adoptee in recovery. Holiday’s come and go and there are constant reminders of all that has been lost in my life because of adoption. Triggers come 100 X a day it seems. Adoption doesn’t only impact me, but it has greatly impacted my children. I know on many occasions they have expressed feeling alone like I do. It breaks my heart in another type of way.  I’m their mother and I’m not going anywhere but I never can or never will be able to give them the wonderful happy family they deserve. Not on Christmas, or any day of the year. It saddens me but at the end of the day…

We do have each other minus all the family drama!

That’s something HUGE to smile about! 

Thankfully we have each other.

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Around The World & Back Again…

This is pretty random, but I’ve been watching the news.

This has pros and cons for me. 

I stopped watching television 4 years ago. Why? Well, because it was just so heavy. Everything was heavy. News is nothing but heartbreak and doom and I made the choice to opt out. Television programs seemed to be the biggest waste of time to me. I love controlling what I let come in my life and what I let influence my mind. Television has been something I eliminated. It’s been great.

Until Now. 

I decided I needed to get up to date on some of the happenings in our country and around the world. My GOD at all the things happening in our world today. I’ve spent about 6 weeks trying to learn about Aleppo, Syria and the war that has been happening for the last 4 years. My heart has been torn to shreds seeing on the photos and videos online of all the horror all the people of Syria have been going through. To learn that the U.S. has played a major role in funding this war, where thousands of lives have been lost, including women and children of all ages I became so saddened and upset.

Here are some photos to give you an idea if you haven’t seen so far…

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I have cried REAL TEARS about all that is going on in this world! These are human beings being treated as if they are nothing and the world has sat back and remained silent. Mass genocide is going on in our world and it sickens me.

WHY WHY WHY?

Can you imagine being a mother or father and hearing 30-40 bombs go off in your neighborhood daily and you never know when one might strike your home? FOR FOR YEARS this has been going on! Children MURDERED! Newborn babies MURDERED! Innocent women & men MURDERED! I even saw a video of a 15 year old boy being beheaded! YES! This goes on in the world!

I’m praying for these people who are so innocently being slaughtered for no reason at all. The more I learned the more I became humbled in my life. Not only for me, but for all those around me and the people right here in the USA who are living lives where we are more free than so many of the countries around the world.

I have issues, but my issues are things I can and will overcome with God on my side but my things are nothing compared to what is going on around our world. 

We really have so much to be thankful for you know?? 

Thanks for reading.

P.K.

A Wave of Uncertainty

I’ve always been petrified at the thought of things not being “CERTAIN”.

Uncertainty brings a gray area.

I like things to be black and white.

It either is or it isn’t!

Gray area’s and Pamela don’t work very well together.

Gray area’s bring me fear and anxiety.

OVERWHELMING SOMETIMES!

 Over gaining the control over MY LIFE, breaking FREE from what always was and how other people wanted me to be or not be I have gained this great feeling of controlling MY LIFE. I know many adoptees have control issues! I know I’m not alone.

But there is a problem with this.

How do I let God do what he does if I want to be in control of my life all the time?

Well…..

I must say I’m growing somewhere because at this point of my life I’m experiencing much uncertainty and I’m actually at peace about it! I truly believe this must be something God has planned, because normally I would be freaking out right now. I am not freaking out. Woot Woot!

It’s almost as if I’m on a magic carpet ride and God is directing my ride. I have always trusted God. People, not so much.

So now what? 

I’m praying more.

Journaling more.

Listening for God’s voice more.

Worshiping more. 

Reading the word more.

I honestly think this is why this “transition” in my life has not been as painful as it normally would have been.

Trusting God is the KEY! 

Amen,

Have a blessed day!

Pray for me and I’ll pray for you too!

Pamela Karanova.

Withdraw & Retreat

I don’t consider it isolation. 

I consider it me getting alone with God. 

That’s a wonderful place to be IMHO. I’ve come to a cross roads in life. I feel like I’ve come to many cross roads over the last few years, but none quite like this one. I feel a total peace about the place I am, and this is why I know it’s from God. 

I’ve learned over time it’s so easy to become co-dependent on people, places and things. I am striving to be free of codependency of people, places and things. The more I let go of people, places and things the more free I become. The more free I feel. Free to me is a “Safe Space” for me to be in. The less people, places and things the less drama, hiccups and nonsense I have that comes my way.

I’ve had a love/hate relationship with Facebook for quite some time now. I am learning that Facebook is just a tool used for everyone to be up in your business, when reality is most of those people aren’t even in my life. It’s almost as if I’ve noticed Facebook has a sort of control over me. I have made the choice to “Opt-Out” of allowing Facebook to have this control over my life, at least for the time being. It’s apparent in my life anyway, something can happen spur of the moment and I make the choice to log back in and there I go… Wasting time, very valuable precious time on meddling in what others are doing. I put up a status that is heartwarming for those who read it and go about my merry way. There is much more to Pamela Karanova than what I share on Facebook. I have many layers as we all do.

Most of the time I wonder who is REAL in my life and who ISN’T. Who will even notice I’m gone? Hardly anyone ever does. I find it so interesting. The people who I REALLY have in my life I’m close to and we talk on the phone, text, and see one another and don’t need Facebook to tie us together. I’m clinging to those REAL relationships with my REAL friends. If we have a relationship in “real life” I don’t need Facebook to have that. I am keeping my “Like” pages up and going, as well as sharing adoptee stories at How Does It Feel To Be Adopted Website

Many transitions are taking place in my life. I’m in a discovery phase of WHO I AM and listening what God is going to do next in my life. I’m going through emotional highs and lows in LIFE in general. God is weeding out people, places and things who don’t serve a purpose in my life anymore.

 John 5:8 says, “”Stand up, pick up your mat, and walk!”

And so it is… 

I’m happily embracing on a season of self discovery moving forward while acknowledging all that has been might not be a part of what will be. I’m okay with this. I don’t feel the need to explain my journey to everyone. Most people only want to hear warm fluffy stories anyway! I feel those who will really want to know will take the time to reach out to me and find out how I am, what I’m doing in my life. 9 x out of 10 they won’t have time to meet you for coffee with their busy schedule, so WHY would I share my life with them? Real relationships takes real action. I don’t believe in telling people “Good-Bye”. If you were ever a real part of my life there will be no “Good-Byes” only more “Hello’s”. If you weren’t a real part of my life, you might consider saying “Good-Bye” but may I suggest you save it for the next person you would like to have a “Fake Relationship” with?  Why would you tell someone “Good-Bye” if you have a real relationship with them? I sure wouldn’t.

I’ve seen a lot in my little 42 years of life here on earth. I’ve been in large groups of people who say you are a part of their life, and I’ve been in small groups of people who say the same. I’ve been naive for many years of my life. I’ve wanted to be accepted and belong somewhere for so long, that I’ve been blinded many times over at synthetic relationships that come my way. Just because I speak to you and see you as we pass by one another doesn’t mean you are my friend. Friendships take work. They take time. They take sacrifice to put your friends before yourself. Friendships take intention. I try to see the good in people, and for most of my life I’ve fallen head over heels in love with the idea of so many people who “love me” or “accept me” and those who say they WANT TO BE MY FRIEND.

It’s take 42 years for me to be OKAY with the idea that people are full of it. They can say words like “Family of Choice” so easily. In the next breath they denounce the very words they spoke the week before.  What is “Family of Choice” anyway? To me it sounds like something that separates and divides us away from our family of origin or our adoptive family or whoever we have close to us we call family. Family is a variety of things. Family is those who you invest in, you take time to reach out to them and you make it a POINT to be in their life. This can even happen from a distance! Family isn’t something that I take lightly. I’ve had blood and adoptive family and church family. People can say they are family and back stab you or betray you in a heartbeat.  One thing I don’t do is FAKE. If I don’t like you or want to be around you, you will not hear from me. I won’t respond to you and I will always try to do this in the most elegant & graceful way possible. Just because I’m a CHRISTian doesn’t mean I have to allow everyone on God’s green earth to see inside my life. I am called to love people, and that I will do. It doesn’t mean I need to continuously let my guard down, allow people to come into my life only to dismiss me in the next segment of this thing we call “Life”.

It’s a freeing feeling to CHOOSE who I allow in my life.

 I can honestly smell bullsh*t a mile away! 

Relationships are reciprocated.

If I don’t reciprocate I don’t want a relationship with you.  

If you don’t reciprocate a relationship with me, I KNOW you don’t want a REAL relationship with me. 

It’s SIMPLE. 

End. Of. Story.  

I remember the days where I would allow people in, and they flat out didn’t deserve to be in my life. I wanted and needed to be accepted SO BAD, I was blinded by so much.

Those days are over. 

Today, the title of this post is “Withdraw & Retreat” for a reason. I’m not all alone. God is with me! My close friends know pieces of what’s going on in my life, and the REAL friends I have are on this ride with me. My kids are with me. They are the most important thing TO ME! So today I’m at a peaceful place filled with many transitions taking place. God is weeding things OUT and I believe with my entire heart he will replace all those things with better things.

It’s critical I trust Him.

Growing in my relationship with God is something I put at the front of my life, each and every day I’m committed to THIS. For my fellow adoptees; I will always be around for YOU!  Please believe this is no good-bye letter. Only a post explaining some things are changing in my life, for the better and I’m excited to share it.

God is about to use me in a new way because it’s a NEW DAY in this thing we call LIFE.

Thanks for reading.

I’m going to try to write more in the near future.

Pamela Karanova

Adult Adoptee