My Birthday (Part 1)

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It’s my birthday. Sixty five years ago my mother expelled me into the world. I had just spent nine months getting to know her intimately, and my brain was wired in preparation to meet her. But it was not to be. I arrived in the world and was whisked away from everything I knew. There would never be those familiar smells and sounds and tastes that would have provided a secure foundation for relationships in future. I would forever feel lost and abandoned. My primary relationship with my mother was severed, torn asunder at birth.

People say ‘Happy Birthday’. And I know they mean well. And I want to be happy. But I want them to recognise this is the day my body screams out at the loss of my mother. How do they expect me to celebrate this enormous loss and grief? I think of my mother, and what it would have been like for her to have to give up the child she had grown inside her on my birthday. Certainly I was exhausted and hormonally and emotionally re-arranged after giving birth to each of my children. But I had a healthy baby to take home each time; the bond was not broken. My mother went home alone, to people who did not know, or expected her to forget and not talk about what had just happened.


I was born in Rose Park to a mother named Rosa. My adoption was pre-arranged by the local doctor.