Memory Page

My Son Michael or at least that is the name I gave him and will call him for now, at least until I know what name he was given and chooses to use. I am Michael's birthmother. I have been searching for him for many years now. There is not a moment since his birth I have not grieved for the loss of him in my life. The reasoning for placing him for adoption were sound at the time, yet now I find it impossible to believe I was so manipulated and frightened in both heart and spirit. I will find you someday dear son, and I will tell you many things. But for now maybe you will come across this page and realize you were loved and you were wanted always.

This picture of the fairy and child was done by Billi, it is a beautiful piece of artwork unto itself, yet lending to the topic of this page sends a powerful image of love between a mother and a child which bond never breaks no matter what end of the adoption triad you may be. She graciously has allowed me to use this for website. She is also an adoptee. Please let her know how wonderful her artwork is at

Marty Duswalt-Pinney






~ Birth ~

I remember the day of your birth so well. The years never diminish the miracle of that day. It started as a usual morning and I woke touching you and talking to you, singing to you as I rubbed my belly were you so safely lay. I talked of dreams and hopes for you. Of the love I had for you.
I got dressed and the first twinge of labor began. I was excited for both of us. We would finally meet. I never once allowed the fact you would be taken from me to enter into my mind. Somehow I still was believing a miracle would happen, and they would allow you to stay with me. The labor was quick and then you were there. Oh such joy in seeing you. You were beautiful. As they were wheeling me to my room, they allowed me to hold you for just a second, your hand grasped my finger and held on so tightly. And you looked up into my eyes. They say babies cannot see when they are born. But in your soul and in my own we saw each other. And a love for all time was formed that moment.

~ The Answer to Why ~

I remember so much more now. The searching process has brought back not only the emotions I had buried so deeply, but the love for my child I have kept hidden so deeply inside.
In a way as a young child-woman I had rationalized that the memory could be safe there. No one could diminish, belittle, nor shame me to give the memory away.
My story is I am sure very similar to other birthmothers.
It begins 3 years before the birth of my second son. I was just turned 16 years old when I discovered I was pregnant with my son James. When the SECRET came out, many things happened. My son's father deserted me, marrying another girl instead. My mother took me to a doctor in Newark NJ for a pregnancy test, but in reality it was an abortion. After I finally understood what they were really wanting to do, I walked out of the office and left them all behind and wandered around downtown Newark for what seemed like hours. Trying to figure out how to save my baby.
Well I guess I got her attention because I was ALLOWED to keep him if I did not run away again. I would have to support myself and my child.
Then my grandparents all were not going to accept my child. My maternal grandparents when they finally saw James took him to their hearts. But my paternal grandparents banished me, I after all was not a good Catholic girl and brought them shame. My grandfather finally forgave me before his death, he wanted to meet his great-grandson, but my grandmother never spoke to me again before she died.
Then 3 years later I am pregnant again. I lie to the baby's father as he is a heroin addict, and he would want to be a part of this child's life. But I could not protect this child from his friends, or that lifestyle, thus the lie. I wish he could know that it was not about what kind of man he was, that was a beautiful thing. It was about what surrounded his life. Still part of me wanted him to see, part of me wanted him to help me make this right.
But years of believing I was not of value played into this.
All I understood was that I was alone against the world with one child already to protect.
I hid the pregnancy till my 8th month, I was not going to abort this child, so I finally told my mother. This time there was not going to be any compromise, and no choices. This child must be given to a WORTHY HOME. I would never be that. I would be a worthless no account whore (quoting my mother). How could I raise two children? When I could barely support the one BASTARD I had.
So I made the decision to place my second son Michael for adoption. To WORTHY, STABLE, FINANCIALLY SOLVENT parents. (This is what the agency said over and over and over again).
The day I gave birth. I remember seeing him shortly after he was born. He was a beautiful baby, and his little hand reached to me. Yet they would not let me hold him for long, only minutes. I asked to see him again and they would not allow that. So I snuck to the nursery to see him. I loved him so. And I made a promise for a good life for him, were people would be kind, and allow him to grow up cherished and loved. Not live in a shadow of shame.
The day I left the hospital, I was dry eyed, but my heart was broken none-the-less. I had just learned not to let them see the pain. They had no tolerance for that. And my older son needed me to be strong. I was his barrier from the rest of the world as well as my family.
So I raised my head high, buried my heart, and took my son's hand and left them behind emotionally.
Thanksgiving holiday came within days, and I was to appear at my grandparent's home for dinner. What a travesty that was. But I was good at secrets now, and I could disassociate from all emotion so well, my mask firmly secure. They all saw what the wished to see. It had nothing to do with reality.
It was not over yet, a few weeks later I went to sign the papers, hands shaking, pleading with the social worker, asking if my son wanted to could he find me? She said they would keep records available for that when he was older. HA!!! What a joke that turned out to be. Everyone over and over telling me this was the only way to protect my child from his father. To protect him from the hardships life with me would entail. OH!!! how I have regretted the weakness at that moment. I just could not say no to all of them.
So every birthday, every holiday, there is a place at my table, a place under the Christmas tree, empty, along with an emptiness in my heart, these belongs to my second son Michael.
So now I search. Michael was born 11/20/71 in Dover NJ. He was and has always been loved all his life. He just doesn't know it yet.

~ Your Dad ~

In searching for you son, I have located your father. I had heard he had died in 1981 but that is not so. He is alive and has gotten his life free from the drugs and is a father you would like to know. You have three sisters now. I had posted on the web for information on your Dad for you. I wanted to be able to tell you what happened to him. So one day I received a letter from your half sisters trying to do the same. With a little information from them and one phone call I found your uncle Ernie, and then he led me to your father. Now I don't know if he and I will ever speak, but I can give you what I gave them. Contact. He has truly turned his life around and I believe he would want you as much as I as a part of his life. God Willing.


~ Anthony My Son ~

I have dreamed and prayed for this day for many years. Some days it still feels like a dream. Your re-entry into my life brings so much emotion and a touch of fear. Each time we speak a piece of my soul heals. The sound of your voice brings such a profound sense of connection that astounds me still.  Your name is now Anthony. A good name, a solid name.
I sense your confusion and at times the need for you to pull away from the emotions our contact brings. Yet you still pursue the connection and have reached out to your Uncle Jim and your Aunt Jean. This is a wonderful thing for you as they are exceptional people.
You had the life I wished you would have. You are the man I hoped you would become. You are sensitive, caring, and forgiving. You are a spiritual being with a deep faith. All things I prayed you would find in life.  I am forever in debt to your parents for their love and nurturing they are responsible for who you are. 
One of the greatest blessings in my life is your acceptance of me. The compassion that allows you to forgive and understand why I made the choices I made. The commitment to pursue a relationship and allow me to be a part of your life. This is more than I could have dreamed would happen.
I will always be here for you. I will always love you. I have all your life.  This will not change.

The phone call it begins


That first moment we met








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