So, today I received an email from someone in my past. First, let me say something about my past. Many of my readers will not know my story, many will… but before I tell you about my day, I have to say something about my past. I have lived a life that many people only see in movies. I have seen and experienced things in my life that I wouldn’t wish on my worse enemy.
My father was a tormented man that struggled with many devils in his life; drugs being the biggest of them all. Because of this, my brother and I were often caught in the wake of whatever poor choices he made. 20 years ago my father’s fight in this life ended in suicide. At the age of 11 I lost something grander than I would, at the time, understand. Not only did I lose my father, but I also lost contact with a half-brother and half-sister; and their mother, who in my young life wasn’t always the brightest spot. As a child, I did have love for this woman, and like my father she had her redeeming moments, however most of my memories attached to her are not always positive.
In spite of this, I have searched for them for the last 20 years, hoping and wishing that I could find them. Albeit, most of my desire was to see my siblings, I have always known that with them would most likely come their mother. Now, before I move forward, I will say that in my years of searching I have always thought and feared that they wouldn’t remember me, or if they did, they wouldn’t want to see me. I have honestly feared the worst about what they think, feel, know, dream, whatever.
So, when I saw the friend request (and a later message) from their mother this morning waiting for me, my heart plummeted in a gamut of emotions. I was taken by surprise, to say the least. However, my emotions overcame me when I saw the name of my half-brother in the comments field of one of her photos. I sat, staring at his name for the longest time, tears streaming from my eyes. Realizing in that moment that 20 years of searching had finally come to fruition.
I will just go ahead and say that the excitement wasn’t shared by many in my family. But, I, holding out hope for the goodness of humanity, want to believe that 20 years has changed some aspects of this woman’s personality and behavior. With that being said, my heart is guarded, understanding the reality that most likely, 20 years hasn’t changed much. Also for me, this reunion is placing a patch over a part of my heart that has been missing for so long. Good or bad, changed or unchanged, for me, this is something I have prayed about for a very long time. In my prayers I have not only prayed to find them, but also for God to prepare my heart for whatever will happen as a result of finding them.
My biggest fear is allowing these people into my life, and being hurt and disappointed all over again. I fear that my children will now be exposed to a part of my life that for so long I have been able to hide from their innocent little minds. I fear that, I will not be able to emotionally handle all the things that are going to come up in my heart and mind as a result of opening this door. I fear that memories and scars will be opened that I would rather keep closed. I fear. I just plain, fear.