#21 Our family moved to California in 2005, six months later I found out that my birth mother's family was living only two miles away! I was able to meet my birth aunt.
The problem with a 100 list is it's long and you are often pulling random thoughts and memories out of your head just to fill it up. As one can imagine, this was no small event in my life; however, with time and a general suppressive attitude - it's become more of a small anecdote of conversation in my life. In a way, having #21 listed for today's SPT has been good, as I've needed to repress it and bring it out in the open.
Me in 2006 with the girls.
I've spoken a lot about adoption - how it felt to adopt, what it's like to be and adoptee, but what is it like to come face to face with the parents that "gave you up?" Quite frankly, I'm not sure, only because once I met my birth family, I quickly put it in the back of my mind. It's a big deal, but I made it into a small deal. Here's the story, the best I can tell it:
In 2001, my brother Richard came out to visit Craig and I while we were living in Alexandria, VA. A couple of the days he was in town, I was required to work. While at my desk, hopefully on a lunch break, I was surfing the Internet adoption registry sites. Something I had gotten in the habit of doing; I happened to be taken to a site called adoptionregistry.com. I typed in the information, as I had done many times before on other sites, and pushed return. To my great surprise, there was a match to my query; not only to my information, but my brother Richard's.
I quickly phoned the company and by that evening Richard and I had spoken too my birth aunt and my birth father. I loved hearing their voices and realizing that these people were connected to me. Later that year, we had the opportunity to fly to San Fransisco and meet them...this is where I begin to suppress feelings...there just wasn't the bond I had imagined. I figured there would be more joy, but there just wasn't. I felt out of place and a little upset that the father who had relinquished me spoke more about himself the whole time. Not even, so - what are you up too? This said, what a blessing it was to find some closure, as not all adoptees get to have this.
The only thing he could muster about my birth mother -that I can share- was the last he had heard of her was ten years ago somewhere in the Antelope Valley of Southern California. We all flew back to our homes, and life continued. In 2005, our family was transferred to the Antelope Valley for Craig's work. Within the first month, my husband, upon a pleading request from me, called the only families in the area with my birth mother's last name - but no one had heard of her...fast forward, a year.
My mother-in-law, Sassy, has a dream about genealogy, impressed more to help me find my birth family, she calls the same names Craig had called a year ago. Only this time, the people on the other end, admitted the relation, that they had talked about it, and felt that if ever someone called again - they would open communication with them. My birth mother had not been stable or sober for years and at the time of Sassy' calls, they had no idea where she had disappeared too, this time. I met my birth aunt later that week and was privy to receive several photos of my birth mother - for the first time.
I can't say much else about the experience because I'm not sure how I've absorbed all of it. I will say that I am grateful for my life and thankful for my parents. I will say that life goes on without my birth family in my life and I am neither better or worse for meeting them. I will say that I have lots of genealogy to work on in the future and a connection to my ancestors I didn't have before finding this information.
The day we were to leave for Montreal, I got a long awaited call from my birth aunt, telling me that my birth mother had surfaced. She was out of rehab and ready to meet me and that my phone number was in her possession. I never got her call - but maybe I just wasn't ready to answer it yet.
What do you think?