Earl Bartman, 37, was once convinced that his mother bore him and loved him. But recent discoveries have caused him to dismiss his old beliefs as mere myths.
“I began to study the events surrounding my so-called birth. There were many discrepancies that just did not make sense. My so-called mother had one account in her diary. My so-called father had another verbal account which I had transcribed. Many so-called facts simply did not match. There was also a birth announcement in the local paper that was well-preserved, but it was not in line with some of the statements of my so-called mother and my so-called father.
“My so-called mother didn’t even have a typewriter at the time of my birth. Therefore, the newspaper account must have been a forgery, typed by someone else.
“My so-called mother told the story of how, immediately after I was supposedly born, two nurses took me and cleaned me. While, my so-called father had a completely different memory of only one nurse who bathed me and measured me immediately after I was born. These inconsistencies cannot be reconciled.
“All of the so-called records of my birth have been completely destroyed. I performed research at the hospital and all that remains are copies of copies of copies of all the original paperwork. And these copies are not even on paper, but on microfilm that must be printed to get a paper copy. When I print out the copies, they are not always clear. So to believe I was really born to this woman and man at this hospital, I would have to believe that this information stored on this film was actually created from real documents from the time of my so-called birth and signed by my so-called mother and my so-called father over 37 years ago and somehow preserved through time. I can’t even find last month’s electric bill in my house, and I’m supposed to believe that some disinterested parties have taken the time to preserve my birth records from 37 years ago?
“When I interviewed my grandparents, they all seemed to have very close to the same story. But not one of them was in the room during my so-called birth. My so-called mother’s mother, who I used to call Grammy, said that I was born on March 5, 1972. I asked her how she knew for sure, and all she could do was say ‘because I remember’ and went to get the same newspaper clipping I had already dismissed as a forgery.
“My so-called father’s mother, who I used to call Me-maw, also claimed the same date, but also was not in the room of my so-called birth. She tried to explain that my so-called mother’s belly swelled slowly over 9 months or so. She tried to explain that it went down a little after that, and my so-called parents brought me home on March 9, 1972, but she again had no proof other than her memory. Her memory was not reliable because I asked her to show me her latest electric bill or just tell me the amount of it, and she failed that test.
“I discovered that all of these so-called witnesses to my birth were simply stating what my so-called mother and so-called father had relayed to them. The divergence of facts of my so-called mother’s and so-called father’s stories only compounded the questions.
“I went back to the hospital that stored the documents to let me speak to the doctor and nurses who delivered me. I only received blank stares for the first few moments. The lady at the information counter stumbled and stammered over quite a few words, tripping over herself continually, and then she went back to a state of blank stares. I refused to leave, and to my shame, even became a bit violent to the point that I was escorted out by two security guards. I could tell by the way they were staring at each other that they were part of a vast conspiracy. They did not want to say it, but I could tell on their faces by the way that they glanced at each other when I asked for proof of my birth. They knew they were caught. They would not admit it, but they knew that I knew that I had never been born.