Sometimes I forgot. When my family was around, my smaller cousins running after each other, uncles and aunties laughing and sipping wine and beer, the weirdo of the family spilling some kind of drink somewhere on the furniture or floor, all the colourful humanity made me forget that I did not belong there. But it was right there, in front of my eyes, each time I looked myself in the mirror. My skin was not the same colour, the corners of my eyes higher than those of all my family, my thick black hair screaming out in the sea of golden heads in each family picture. Of course, I knew I was adopted. My parents did not find shame in that. They do not need to. They opened up their arms for me, they were good, decent people. Even more than that, they were deeply kind-hearted people who raised the child of a stranger as their own. But me, I did feel shame. My adopted parents tried to erase the ugly truth, but it was there each day looking at me. I was an unwanted child, abandoned at the side of the road as if tossing an old piece of paper. I was so young that it was not possible that I was abandoned for something I did, because if it were so, I would have gladly apologized. Instead, I was left behind simply because I existed. My breathing was a threat to their existence, my tiny hands and feet, grasping the empty air, were too demanding to for them. Them. Who were they? These monstrous cruel beings who felt so dismayed by a guiltless new-born to get rid of it just a few hours later?
I hated them because I was afraid of being a selfish monster myself. The more I feared, the worse I became, rejecting others, treating them with cruelty, then justify my behaviour because I was born from such selfish parents. How could I have been different, if I were the product of their flesh?
The auto destructive blame spiralled me in a corner so dark that I did not dare look at my soul anymore. Whatever drug, alcohol, pill I could put my hands on became my only companion, I tried all to forget who I was.
Until one day I got pregnant. By no one. Maybe I had been raped but I had no memory of it. I just found myself growing a little thing within my wrecked body. I was 15. Warm tears flew for days, as I rubbed my belly and told this little thing inside of me that I would not be rejecting it, that I could choose, I wanted to choose it, to show them that they could have also chosen me, if they really had wanted to. But life has a sick way to teach you a lesson. I went back home, rubbing the whole time my belly as I told my adopted parents, waiting to get inside and become a good person, a good mom. They turned me away. I did not meet their expectations anymore and they did want me there. At that moment, at the doorsteps of the kind-hearted people who raised me, who were now tossing me aside, like my biological parents did long ago, my legs could not move, and I was barely breathing. That was me. And maybe that had been my mother too. Stupid with fear and utterly unprepared to be a mom on her own. Who was I to judge now?