Lost and Found

I was lucky enough to be adopted at the age of 3. It was an open adoption, but I was young enough, that I don’t really remember it. I do remember the social worker coming to our house to do interviews and observations while we were still going through the foster care process, but that’s about it. Pretty sure the other “memories” I have are actually just figments of my active imagination. Your brain does that (fills in the gaps with ideas of what things may have been like.)

Fortunately, my mom (adopted) kept a journal of pretty much every day during that process, and about once or twice a week during the first few years. I wish I could remember where I put it, because some of those anecdotes are just plain amazing. Pretty sure I’ll find it when we move again.

I’ve always known that I was adopted, which has been a blessing, I think, growing up in today’s society. My parents were always completely open and honest with me about my infancy.

As the story goes, my mother (biological) was very young, and believed herself unfit to be a mother. Apparently she had a meltdown of some sort when I was about 6 months old, and she left me, wearing only a diaper, in an abandoned apartment. The local authorities discovered me, after an unspecified amount of time, when residents in the next door apartment called about the non-stop cries of an infant.

I am pretty thrilled to have zero recollection of these events, but even today, some 28 years later, I have scars (one on my foot, one on my forehead) from the broken glass that was strewn about in that empty apartment.

There was never any conversation, that I can remember, about my biological father. I only knew my mother’s name. In high school I got a little curious, like most adopted teenagers do, and tried to find her. Hooray for the birth of the Internet! With the internet being what it was 15 years ago, I struck out pretty fast. This was okay though, because it was really just an itch that went away after a little harmless scratching.

Several years later, I was planning my wedding, and that itch came back. It was a bit stronger this time, but when Facebook, MySpace and Google failed me, I gave up again. I decided that it was time to move on for good. I was starting my adult life, with my own family, and that was that.

About a month after the wedding, we received a card from my old foster mom, to whom I am still related to by marriage, but that’s a long confusing story. In that card, there was an email address belonging to my biological grandmother, on my mother’s side. To my surprise, she has been living a mere 45 miles or so from where I have always called home. She wants to meet me, and talk to me, if I am willing. All of my prior curiosities instantly turned into bitterness and anger. “I’m 22, just got married and started a family of my own, and all of the sudden she wants to be a part of my life? I don’t think so!” That’s where I left it. I was upset, and pretty much over the whole thing.

On July 23, 2011, I received a random friend request on Facebook. It was accompanied by a message that rocked my world…hard

It was from a woman named Cathy. She seemed to know who my parents (adopted) were. She knew my birthday, my maiden name, etc…

Cathy is my father’s daughter, and is close to me in age. She told me that her father had cheated on her mother with mine, and boom, half-siblings created. Turns out, I have a crap-load of biological half-siblings!!! There are 6 on my father’s side alone. I finally learned my father’s name and saw pictures of him. He’s not a bad lookin’ fella.

Cathy and I haven’t met yet, but we’ve shared some pleasant conversations. Today happens to be her birthday, which is why this has all been on my mind.

I’ve said all this to say, happy birthday to my long lost sister!

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