Other People’s Kids
Friday, in the café Anna comments to Tina about both of them having “other people’s kids, hope you have better luck than I’ve had.”
The story of the week was Anna and Faye and Tim – and police and social workers. Tim having bought a sofa bed, Faye took that as her cue to have sleepovers at Dad’s. When Anna refused that, Faye escalated it to moving in to Dad’s. After Anna refused that, Faye alleged Anna had hit her. After having been removed from her home during the investigation, it finally dawned on Faye that she was being taken very seriously and maybe this was going to have consequences greater than just her getting her own way with her mother.
Waiting at the police station, Izzy, Faye’s temporary guardian, responded beautifully to a difficult situation. Asked by Faye if Anna would go to jail, Izzy said “that depends on you.” Faye retracted her allegations, and all agreed that Faye was a very troubled child. I’ll say! I’d go back to sleeping with one eye open.
Faye got her way in the end, and Anna really had no choice. Faye has moved temporarily to Tim’s sofa bed. We’ll see how that goes. Very real issues affecting adoptive children and parents are being raised in this story. A Guardian article talks about the new minefields presented by social media like Facebook, which of course was how Faye found Tim in the first place.
Tim gives my husband and me the creeps. But then so does Faye, so maybe it’s just a family trait. So as of Thursday, my only dilemma was which gut-wrenching scene to choose.
Other people’s unborn kids
Then Friday the story moved to another complicated parentage story – Izzy, Gary and Tina. Tina had a prenatal class and Izzy and Gary were going with her. Makes sense they’d go, even though Beth questioned why Izzy was taking time off work for it. After all, she pointed out, it was Tina who had to know about childbirth.
Beth’s words came to Izzy’s mind, and ours, when they were actually in the class. Pregnant women and partners all sat on the floor and Izzy in her chair. Tina and Gary sat on the floor. Tina, like the other expectant mothers, needed a partner for the exercises and, of course, for the forthcoming big event. Izzy realized she was in the way, so she had to navigate her way across a floor filled with pregnant women-and-their-partners to sit in the back, out of the way, out of sight, out of mind.
Tears came to her eyes as she sat off to the side like a fifth wheel. Beautiful camera work and acting in conveying the emotion. Leaving aside where this story looks to be heading with Gary getting too interested in Tina, this moment was heartbreaking. Izzy, feeling extraneous to her child’s development, watching her partner busy partnering with the woman who is carrying the baby. What, she must be wondering, are the next months going to be like?
Anna’s comment about other people’s kids was fair enough, but she might find she could also extend her sympathy to Izzy. She too feels like ‘her’ child is not really hers after all.