“Can you imagine that someone just threw her away?” The someone they were referring to was my daughter's birthmother.
* * *
“I don’t look it at that way. She was not ‘just thrown away’. In a country where families can be fined one year’s salary for an ‘overquota’ child perhaps they had no other choice. Indeed, in a country where a male heir often is his parents' only ‘social security’ - daughters marry and leave but sons are bound by filial piety to stay on and care for the aged and infirm – what is a family to do?
Moreover, in a country where gender-determining-ultrasound and abortion clinics sit side by side on backstreets, though both illegal, the fact that our daughter was carried to term says something. In a country in which infanticide is often seen as a better choice than being prosecuted for abandonment, a life saved, albeit later left to be found, says even more.”
I will admit - we do not know the circumstances of our youngest daughter’s birth. (Because of China’s system of anonymous abandonment and adoption we do not even know who her birth family is.) And given mounting media reports surrounding child trafficking among orphanages, I am increasingly afraid to know.
But I do know that a woman conceived this child, carried her to term, and has been forever separated from her. That woman is my daughter’s first mother, her birth mother, a woman my daughter has grieved for and still thinks about, and that woman deserves a place of recognition in my heart.
Still hoping for change
2 months ago