Candace Cahill placed her infant son in 1990. The adoption was semi-open adoption for awhile, but closed when Michael was 8. Shortly after he turned 18, he reached out to her. After navigating the complexities of reunion for 5 years and only a single face-to-face meeting, Michael died in his sleep of natural causes at age 23.
Shocked and devastated to lose him a second time, Candace attended the funeral, where she encountered unexpected compassion from Michael’s family. They proudly introduced her as Michael’s birth mother, which contradicted years of self-sabotaging internal messages. Their acceptance, along with her husband’s encouragement, launched Candace on her path to healing.
Candace is an artist –- silversmith, musician, storyteller, and writer who lives in Denali, Alaska.
Episode 204 of Adoption: The Long View will help you understand mothering in surprising ways, and you won’t want to miss it.
The murder happened first (duh), but I’ll start with the funeral.
Thousands of people attended the memorial services for Officer Gordon Beesley, who had been the School Resource Officer at my children’s middle school. I’m tempted to say 5,000, but my estimation could be off by a little or a lot in either direction. At least half of the attendees in the megachurch were men and women in uniform. The rest were friends of the Beesley family and members of the school community.
The service lasted more than 2 hours and was brilliantly done. It reversed what I’d been doing all week — thinking of Officer Beesley’s death — and took it back to where our attention belonged, on his life.