Extraordinary Lives by India Hicks & “39 Years of Silence” by Rita Tanos

 

Rita Tanos  _J7A2651

Rita Tanos:  Extraordinary Lives!   by India Hicks  –    ’39 Years of Silence’

 

I am honored and deeply grateful to India Hicks for sharing my story with the world.

This is the fist time in four decades of my life that I have openly shared my story of loss, grief, and transformation.  While it is heartbreaking, it is also heartwarming.  

 

“Rita is one unstoppable gal. Her courage, resilience, tenacity and imagination bowl me over. She proves just how strong and capable we all can be – even when faced with the most terrible misfortune.”

~ India Hicks

Post:

Extraordinary Lives: Rita Tanos

 

’39 Years of Silence’ is an important book about adoption, the right to life, and the right to know the Truth about oneself.  This book will serve to enlighten and educate people with regard to the complexities and implications of adoption.  It will also become a guide to law makers, attorneys, counselors, and students of the adoption process.  Most importantly, ’39 Years of Silence’ will serve to heal millions of Birthmothers and Adopted Children who have experienced this sort of loss, and shed light and truth to everyone touched by adoption.  And I believe it will change legislation in States like Florida that are still ‘closed’ States, where birth records remain sealed under lock and key, hidden away by an antiqued belief system that forbids children and mothers to know each other, or their medical history.  

 

’39 Years of Silence’ is a book that reflects the lives of millions of silenced birthmother’s and their adopted children around the world during these dark ages of adoption.  Today in 2016, there are more than 6 million birthmothers and adopted children in the U.S. alone who remain silenced by the shame and secrecy of giving up their child to adoption. 

 

As an unwed pregnant mother in 1969, I was coerced into silence and surrendering my child and placing her for adoption.  Ostracized by society’s moral compass, it was forbidden to keep your baby and raise them.  Motherhood was synonymous with marriage.  The moral code and social ethics of the day gave Birthmothers one of two choices:  either kill and abort your baby illegally, or give them up for adoption.  To this very day in 2016, State records remain sealed, hidden and locked away by shame, silence, and secrecy in an antiquated and dark belief system that prevents Birthmothers and their Adopted Children from connecting with each other.  Even health records are sealed in the State of Florida, where I gave birth to my daughter.  After many years of searching, I finally wrote a letter to then Governor Jeb Bush, asking him to open up the sealed files so my child and I could finally find each other.  He said no.  And his letter is in my book. 

 

While laws have changed over the years in many States, these dark ages of adoption still hold these antiquated belief systems in place, where records remain sealed and locked away with deep scars, and silenced secrets for millions of children and mothers around the world.  Their voice is longing to be heard.  

 

I was forced into hiding and thrown into the outcast role with my choiceless choice,  silenced by shame and secrecy.  I became the “nameless, faceless, voiceless mother” who was not allowed to keep my baby.  As a young Birthmother I was silenced by the most traumatic event in my life. . . giving birth to my beautiful baby and then being asked to surrender her at birth.  How does a mother separate from her own child?  

 

It left a hole in my heart that pierced by very existence.  Like two atoms splitting in half, I was split in two, hiding from my own feelings so well that I could not find myself.  My unprocessed emotional pain and loss became hidden from my conscious awareness.  Even the grief of losing my own child was not allowed to be expressed, and she was alive, living somewhere else, without me.  

 

Four decades of silence later, after finding my daughter and committing to a path of self-transformation, I finally gave way to the divinity of my powerlessness to change anything.  I entered into the mysterious domain of being transformed in desolation, though my darkest hours.  The healing balm of forgiveness and acceptance became the portal to deep transformation in the midst of my greatest struggle.  I learned to trust again.  I learned to love again.  I learned to live again, even after losing my child a second time.

 

Millions of Birthmother’s from the 1960’s to present day have suffered in silence, shame and secrecy, without ever uttering a single word about the depths of their heartbreak and sacrifice.  They’ve buried their story somewhere in the deepest, darkest night of secrets, feeling terribly alone, unworthy, and silenced by shame.  Their ‘secret’ became the event in their life that defined them, and it also silenced them.  I am one of these women.  But I am one of the lucky ones who found my child and had a three year relationship with her.  Through every obstacle I forged ahead.  I never gave up.  Something deep within me knew it was possible to find my child and have a relationship with her.  Thank God I did!

 

My transformation of consciousness arrived in the form of an epiphany while on spiritual retreat in Santa Barbara, just days before the third attempt to meet my daughter.  When her cancellation came, once again in the eleventh hour, instead of breakdown, it lead to breakthrough and an extraordinary peace that surpasses all understanding.   There are no words to describe this extraordinary peace and the power of Love, but I know for sure that my daughter felt it too.  A year before she passed through the veils she told me that she had never known or felt such unconditional love in her life until she found me.  Thank God she felt my love for her.  In her heart of hearts, she knew the power of this love.

 

’39 Years of Silence’ is a profound book that is ready to find a leading New York Publisher and Documentary Film Maker.  It is my living Legacy and I’m certain it has the power to heal millions of lives affected by adoption. 

Even famous people like Oprah have been affected by adoption.  Her mother was silenced by shame afer giving up her child to adoption and only recently revealed the truth to Oprah.  She never knew she had a sister.    

Louise Hay, the well known publishing giant of self-help books gave up her baby to adoption when she was a teenager.  So many women have had to bear this kind of loss and grief in utter secrecy.  Why?  The social stigma and the shame of giving up your own child to adoption, no matter what the circumstances, leave a deep inner scar inside the soul of every woman who has surrendered their baby.  

It’s 2016!  It’s time to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.  There is work to be done and adoption reform has a long way to go.  There are still closed States where records remain sealed and hidden.  It’s the law. . . and these antiquated belief systems keep these records sealed.  Every child has the right to know the Truth about themselves, who their real mother and father is, and what their medical history records contain.  It may save their life one day.  

 

’39 Years of Silence’ invites us to look deep inside our own hearts and inner knowing of the soul, as we walk this path of transformation to bring forth our own higher potential and our greatest contributions to the world…as women, as mothers, as daughters and sons, and as enlightened spiritual beings, living a human experience.  I invite Birthmother’s everywhere to stand tall and proud, and to find the courage within your own hearts to speak the Truth, in your own voice that has been hidden, silenced, and held hostage for far too many decades.  My personal mission is to heal and empower Birthmothers and Adopted Children globally to speak out and tell the Truth about their wounds, so they may transform their decades of silence, pain, and suffering into a new decade of liberation, joy, freedom and discovery of their highest self.  

~ ~ ~

 

India Hicks post about my story:

“Rita is one unstoppable gal. Her courage, resilience, tenacity and imagination bowl me over. She proves just how strong and capable we all can be – even when faced with the most terrible misfortune.”

http://blog.indiahicks.com/extraordinary-lives-rita-tanos/

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(photo credit:  www.AndreaDomjanPhotography.com)

 

“Madly Deeply Love”

“Madly Deeply Love” 

I love this phrase from India Hicks “Madly Deeply” as it describes perfectly all the madly and deeply places and spaces my life has taken me to, through each decade of my life. From the deepest darkest corners of a dark night of the soul, to the lifting of the heart through Grace, Gratitude and God! “Madly Deeply” can be everyone’s place and space in their lives, from the past to the present tense. It certainly has been mine. It exemplify’s everything great and grand in one’s life, as well as everything that one struggles with from time to time, and even throughout a lifetime.

 

Before I go on with my own story, I want to share with you what I think is absolutely gorgeous and fabulous about India Hicks. First of all, she is a very Modern Woman! India holds the reins of her own life, in her own hands and takes complete and total ownership of it all, from her family and lifestyle to her many creative expressions, including her fabulous new company “India Hicks: London – Harbour Island”. She gives it her all, in every way! Total commitment, exquisite Pizzazz, and undeniable talent…India has a gorgeous and attractive combination of vitality and glamour that touches the heart of every woman! Her authentic warmth, humor and style are evident in how she lives her life, and in every design and product she creates. From handbags and jewelry, to fragrance, gifts, scarfs and accessories, her signature style is in everything she does.  India is a passionate force of Love, Beauty, Style and Humor! Take a peek here. 

 

As for me and my “Madly Deeply” in this moment, today is the day I gave birth to my daughter.  She would have been 46 today.  But two years ago she passed through the veils of life into the ethereal ever after.  I can’t possibly tell you about the pain and grief and sorrow. I can only tell you that she is my “Madly Deeply”.  Her life still lives on, inside of me.  I know she is in the hands of God, just as I know she is also here with me, somehow… someway, over the rainbow, beautifully and intricately woven inside every madly deeply corner of my soul. She breaths my breath and I breath hers.  It is an eternal breath of life that lives on, past death, into eternity. 

 

Her last gift to me was a gorgeous enamel frame with a ladybug, vines, and crystal flowers. She is and always will be my “Madly Deeply”. I have her photograph inside this frame with ‘Angel Gabriel’ in front of it at all times. Somehow I feel she is safe and protected here. And when I look at the video of India’s “Madly Deeply” with her beautiful daughter, Domino popping up out of nowhere, I am reminded that life is full of beauty and surprises. It makes me smile and feel happy and proud to be a part of India’s Team. I am Madly Deeply in Love with it all. Thank you India for all the reminders of how Precious Life is!! 

India Hicks & Domino – Short Video:  https://vimeo.com/143421912

#IndiaHicks  #MadlyDeeply #Heritage #Love #RitaTanos #Halloween2015India Hicks with her Dog

The Madly Deeply Tote

The Madly Deeply Tote by India Hicks

A Dog’s Love

Little Buddha Dog Cover

A Dog’s Love . . .

March 20, 2013

 

A dog’s love. . . It’s like no other love.  This kind of love melts your heart, like ice cream on a warm summer day.  It keeps dripping off the cone as you keep licking it, because it’s so delicious!

It’s the heartbeat at my feet every day, and every moment that I am home, and away from home, with my Beloved Dog, Countess.

She likes to snuggle up in my arms when I’m driving.  She feels close to me then. . . like the time I took her home for the very first time as a puppy, wrapped up inside my arms, and warmly placed on top of my heart.  We both felt a connection to each other in that moment, grateful to have found each other.  That was the beginning of our bond.  When she rests her chin on my shoulder and finally lets go with a sigh, I know this is the moment she feels safe and loved, warm and protected. . . and she simply lets go.  I can learn a few things from her about letting go!

Through the years she has always come back to that same place inside my arms.  This is where she feels safe, protected and loved.  It always made me smile, especially when she was older and wanted to be a baby dog inside the comfort and safety of my loving arms again.  I welcomed it, for I knew that if she found her ‘zone’ inside my arms and rested her chin on my shoulder, she would find her peace. And she would feel the Love!

I was also consciously aware that Peace and Love is what we are all longing for, in our daily lives.  There was a simple kind of peace between my dog and I that allowed us to feel Love in many splendid ways.  The kind of Love that lets you know “all is well and I am loved”.  No doubt, we both felt that in our embrace.  A sweet embrace that only a dog can give you.  It’s special…and it’s uniquely theirs.  Only you will know what that is.

With my Beloved Dog, Countess, it was a simple thing.  A gesture, a posture that only she would do when we were alone and with each other.  It was her way of expressing her love for me, and our love for each other.  I choose to honor it whenever it arrived, for I knew it was her way  of expressing her special and unique love for me.  It was my dog’s way of saying, “I love you Mum….I belong to you…I’m here with you…and you’re here with me!”

A Dog’s Love….It’s like no other love!

For more information about “Little Buddha Dog” and Countess, please visit LittleBuddhaDog.com, a best-selling book on Amazon published in the fall of 2012.

Link on Amazon:  www.amazon.com/dp/0988407418