I think adoption is one of the most wonderful and at the same time one of the most difficult things I have experienced in my life. The joy of adoption can best be described by the quote that begins this blog.
Losing ones family obliges us to find ones family. Not always the family that is our blood but the family that can become our blood.
However, no matter how great my adoptive parents have been, growing up as an adopted child was not always easy. The most difficult emotion I have ever had to deal with was the uncertainty that came from being adopted. I imagine that most if not all adopted persons go through a similar experience sometime during their life.
Perhaps in my case these feelings might have been harder to deal with. For my parents did not even know birthday never mind how I came to be adopted. Today I could not imagine my life without my adopted family but back then having them was not enough.
There is just something about your birth-mother/birth-father that you can never forget or completely let go of. You want to know what they look like, if you look like them and what kind of people are they. But most importantly you want to know: Why was I given up?
To this question there is no easy answer. It is something that I struggled with and watched my friends struggle with. Some were more vocal than others but you just knew even the quiet ones were thinking about it too. You wonder how can the people who gave you life simply give you away? Well I’m sure it’s never that easy and I’m sure they never forget either.
I used to sit at night staring out of my window wishing I could just see my my mother. I thought if I could just see her, she would make everything better. These feelings never went away, no matter how hard I tried to fight or ignore them. But that all changed when I met my birth family.
Being reunited with them was incredible to say the least. I went from not knowing my birthday to having three new siblings and a huge family that had been looking for me all along. It seamed to answer all my questions about who I was and if I looked like my parents (I’m practically a carbon copy of my father.)
However I feel like I am very lucky in this respect. I have herd a few stories of people who went looking for their birth parents only to find they had nothing in common and could not relate to each other. I wish I could say “Don’t worry one day you will find your birth parent too and everything will be alright” but I know that’s not always the case. Not every adoption story has such a happy ending.
In the end I wonder how much finding your birth parents really matters. Yes finding them did answer a lot of my questions and it did take away the awful feeling of uncertainty but I don’t think that’s what mattered most. I think what mattered the most was the family that we have became.
I hardly think of it as my adopted family and my birth family anymore. When people say “oh you found your real parents” I say no I found my birth parents. I don’t even like to make the distinction between them. I just like to think I have two sets of parents and one BIG family.
Family is more than just being related because sometimes even our own blood doesn’t treat us as they should. Family is about caring for people and loving them unconditionally. Family is what we found in them and what they found in us.
Not always the family that is is our blood but the family that can become our blood…