My Adoption Story and Coming To Terms With My Story


I know this is the place I normally share my DIY projects, home design and makeovers, but today I'm doing something a little different.

I'm sure not many of you know, unless you follow me on Facebook,  that I'm adopted.  I was adopted by my parents from LA County adoptions when I was three days old.  I was lucky enough to have a family that wanted a child and was willing to open their home to a stranger's baby.  

When I was 6, my parents told me I was adopted.  Looking back, I can't remember what my reaction was.  I do know that ever since that day I fantasized about who my birth Mother was and why she would give me away. The fact that I am adopted has deeply affected me all through my life.  


I would look in the mirror and see this blond haired, blue eyed girl looking back and wonder who I was.  My adopted parents both had brown hair and brown eyes so I didn't look at all like them.  

Not only did I not look like my parents, I was the polar opposite of both of them.  This caused issues over the years.  My Mother hoped for a cuddly baby/child and I wasn't.  They both hoped for someone similar to them and when I wasn't that child, they tried to make me something different.  Their way of doing this wasn't positive and this shaped the way I think of myself today.  

I've always searched for acceptance and unconditional love.  When it came time for me to start my own family and I was unsuccessful I decided it was time to find my birth parents and get some answers.  It became apparent that I needed to find my birth Mother to hopefully shed some light on what was going on with me medically. 

I hired someone to find my birth parents and once I received the name of my birth Mother, I my search started there.  I called complete strangers on the phone putting myself out there each time.  it was like that Dr Seuss book, "Are You My Mother?"  The women I called were sympathetic to my situation, but they weren't my mother.  


Finally I found the right number.  It took all my courage to call this woman and ask her that dreaded question, "Are you my mother?"  It turned out she was my Mother.  She was willing to meet me and I arranged a trip to meet her and her family in person.  

I flew out a few weeks later, along with my adopted Mother, and anxiously awaited the moment I'd been waiting for all my life.  

I knocked on the door and when she opened it, I couldn't hold back the lifetime of emotions and the tears started flowing.  I saw myself in her face and it was more than I could handle.  

Her reaction was quite different from my own.  She didn't cry and I could immediately tell she felt nothing for me.  I won't get into the details of our meetings, we had two in total, but she felt nothing for me and made it quite clear.  

I left each time I met with her more hurt than the time before.  I'd been searching for not only someone who looked like me and shared my DNA, but someone who would love me unconditionally.  

During this time I wasn't a mother and yet I still couldn't understand how anyone could relinquish their child, all while feel nothing toward them.  This was amplified after I gave birth to Hunter.  While I was pregnant I was overcome on a daily basis by the love I had for this child growing inside my body.  I felt connected to him the moment I learned I was pregnant.  

I've dealt with the pain of being rejected by my birth Mother not only at birth, but after meeting her as an adult.  I don't think of her every day, but she does come to my mind quite frequently.   Over time I've wondered where she is, if she's happy, if I ever cross her mind and if she wishes things were different between us.


Yesterday she came to the forefront of my mind.  I had this overwhelming feeling that I needed to check on her.  I Googled her name, as I have done so often in the past, and I came across her obituary.  She passed away this in May of this year.  I stared at the picture on the obituary site and all I could do was cry.  

I felt overwhelmed by loss, sadness and missed opportunities.  I'd always hoped in the back of my mind that she would change her mind one day and want to grow a relationship.  The little girl inside me hoped she would finally share the name of my birth Father with me.  I wanted closure, I wanted love and I wanted a relationship with both my birth parents. 

I spent my entire day thinking about her and all the 'what ifs'.  Then I realized as I tucked my sweet 10 year old boy into bed, that this was my legacy, he was my legacy.  No I may not have blood relatives or a close family in my life, but God gave me this incredible gift.  I stopped and looked at him and I saw my face looking back at me.  The blond hair, the blue eyes, the smile....all mine.  My husband and I created this amazing gift, that I cherish more than life itself.  Without her, none of this would be possible.

I came to the realization that my birth Mother missed out on so much.  She missed out on knowing me, but she missed out on knowing her wonderful, bright and caring grandchild.  

I decided the best way to get it all out was to write her a letter.  I know she's no longer here on this earth, but I hope somehow she will hear these words and understand my love for her despite the hurt.  




To my birth Mother

Thank you for giving me life. You may have had other options, but thank you for carrying me for nine months and caring for me during that time.  

There's always been a hole in my heart where you should have been.  Each day I longed to know you and bond with you.  I longed to see my face in yours.  I always hoped we'd be similar, love the same things and maybe have the same talents.  

These were all just wishes that didn't come true.  The loss I have felt over my lifetime has at times been hard to bear.  I've always looked for that connection with someone, until I was given the gift of my son.  

Yes, you gave me up, but after I met you and you decided not to be a part of my life....you missed out.  You missed out on seeing the love I have for my husband and my child.  You missed out on seeing Hunter smile, talk for the first time, his first day of school, losing his first tooth, riding his bike for the first time without training wheels and becoming the sweet, compassionate young man he is today.  

You also missed out on knowing me.  You missed out on seeing me get married, grow my family and have successes in my life.  Yes YOU missed out.  I missed out on knowing you, but ultimately YOU missed out on so very much.  

I will always love you in my own way and I will probably always carry some sort of hurt from what happened.  However, I thank you again for my life.  Without you, I wouldn't have my loving husband who takes care of me and loves me unconditionally.  I wouldn't have my caring, healthy child who also loves me no matter what.  

Thank you for the gift of life.  I hope you're now in a better and peaceful place.  I hope you're looking down and are proud of the woman, wife and Mother I've become.  

RIP birth Mother....I'll always love you.


Thank you for taking the time to read this.  I don't know if this will help anyone out there who's going through something similar, but I know writing this has helped me.  Thank you for being a part of my healing.


19 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing your story! You always hear of the happy reunions and I often wonder about the other type of adoption stories. The not so happy ones. I hope you find healing as you process the news that she is gone.

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  2. You are a sweet and tenderhearted person... I choose to believe you may not have been so caring if you had been raised by a person that is capable of shutting you out like that when it was so very obvious that you desired a relationship, when you finally did meet her. You are so very correct, she really did loose out on knowing such an empathetic & kind soul. Your Hunter and your Steve are blessed as are you, your family completes you! xoxo

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  3. Melody,
    As much as I know this must have been a difficult, emotional, hurtful time for you to live and write about your feelings. You let it go in a big way girl. I am so happy and proud of the beautiful woman and mother I call my friend.
    Hugs sent with love,
    Karen Marie

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  4. GAH....Im a mess..LOL You girl...You are amazing. The letter idea is awesome..at least it lets you finally put on paper all those things you wanted to say. I think you should tie that letter to a balloon and send it up to the heavens. Then hopefully it will give you the closure too, of sending the letter. So many raw emotions. I have to say..I am happy that these experiences haven't made you a bitter and angry person. They made you sweet and tender..and a little bit sassy...compassionate and empathetic...so for all the hurt...at least so much good has come out of it. She surely did miss out on YOU...<3
    Hugs,
    Karin

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  5. I do not know you but you could be anyone. My nurse. My helper--she was not raised by her parents but abandoned. My physical therapist. My co-worker of long ago. Thank you for sharing what was always kept so secret. And truthfully my two girls are such total opposites and not like me so it just happens. And that's another whole can of worms but today it's about you. Willing to share what I've never heard told this not fairy tale life. But yes. You view parenting so precious because of it. Thank you for sharing that😍. May the Lord continue to heal the broken hearted as he has for over two thousand years...

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    1. i was raised by birth parents, along with a younger sister, and baby brother. by all appearances, we were a typical middle class family. after my brother was born, mom told sis and me repeatedly that if she would've had a boy first, she never would've had another child. after she divorced my father, when i was 12, she campaigned to have us kids tell dad we didn't want to see him anymore. he finally quit paying child support, changed his name and ss#, and built quite a nice life for himself, his new wife, and stepson on the east coast, incognito. ironically, in his late 50s he contracted some undiagnosed disease that left him paralyzed from the neck down (the runner couldn't run anymore). he eventually died, and stated in his will that he had no children. mom is still the self-serving individual she's always been. my sister and i finally stopped speaking to her 9 years ago.

      the moral of this story: birth parents don't mean squat. they can be as mentally absent and emotionally inaccessible as any stranger.

      i hope your experience helped you find your peace in this world. Blood-shmud. TV and movies can paint a very Norman Rockwellian view of family life for us, but reality is, it's never quite that idyllic.

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  6. I wish you peace and contentment with the beautiful family you do have. Your husband and son are so fortunate that YOU are their family. YOU are their blessing.

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  7. I always knew I was adopted. My adoptive parents were not vetted very well, as was the case all too often in 1951. I always wondered about my biologicals, as do most adoptees. I found my birth mother when I was 20. After 6 months of anguish, I had my doctor call her. She drove to meet me that weekend. She was full of apologies, but little else. I could tell immediately that I was a disappointment to her. I never thought about it at the time, but she had 3 brothers who lived in my city who I am sure she came to see. I never saw her again, though we corresponded for a few years.

    She passed away Christmas Eve 1998, without telling a single person in her family that I existed. Not her husband or her 4 children. As fate would have it, two of her daughter moved to the same Atlanta suburbs where I had relocated. I contacted and met one of them. I was so hopeful I could have them in my life, but it wasn't to be. They wanted nothing to do with me. I mourned, knowing God had not brought us so close without a reason. It took me years to realize he brought us to the same place and time for me to realize that I would love nothing more than to be a part of a family who would welcome a found sister, but I have no use for one who would not. I am enough.

    I have one son, whom I adore, and he has 2 daughters, one of whom resembles me. They are my DNA connections. I will be satisfied with that. They can never fully understand their importance to me. As you, I was the odd person out. I had nothing in common with my adopted family as I grew up. Now I can see myself in the kids.

    Our journeys are not unique, but I don't think we represent the majority. I know so many people who make instant connections with their biologicals. Perhaps they are the lucky ones. But perhaps we are the ones who learn the most about ourselves...just maybe.

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  8. I am sitting here in a puddle of tears. What a beautiful letter you wrote to Bernie. With all my heart I wish things hadn't turned out this way. She missed seeing how talented you are, your kindness, your fierce love of Steve and Hunter, how every time you move you buck up and make the best of it and, she missed hearing your beautiful singing voice. Melody, you are aptly named.
    I cherish the picture I have of me at 12 years old sitting on the grass in the back yard holding 5lb. 11oz., baldy headed you. I'll always remember you telling Mom, "Grandma I drowned", when you rode your big wheel around the pool and fell in (she always knew a grandchild was going to drown once your parents put that pool in.) I remember letting you drive Stan's new Firebird when you only had your permit. Bernie truly missed out on the wonder of you. We are the lucky ones, we got to experience it all and have years to see what will com.

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  9. You have done what so may have had to do...you have created the kind of family you would have loved to be a part of. My family is great, but there were no hugs or kisses growing up--tat's not what my British mom did. I shower my little family with them (even though the baby is 25!) and I hope they know they are loved every day. You and your boys have so much love--it shows every time you post a picture.
    I believe we create the family we are meant to have. As women, this is our power. (And even if men don't want to admit it, it's the only power that has the ability to hold the universe together.)

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  10. Melody thanks for sharing with us and I hope it has helped you find some closure. Hugs xoxo

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  11. Your Mother missed out on a talented and caring individual. That is really sad for her. I am glad you are sharing your talents here and having a wonderful life. My daughter is adopted. It is hard but she is a gift to me and I have made sure that she knows her birth mom. We are doing well and I hope that she and her birth mom can someday be good friends. God bless you!

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  12. Good blog!
    Thank you for sharing such a interesting blog and informative blog. It is always good to know about home decoration plans. Please keep us informed like this.

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  14. You sound like an amazing and talented young woman. I am certain your son knows he is loved because you have the ability to love. Evidently, your birth mom did not.

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  15. Melody,

    My situation was a little different than yours, however, I know the hole well. Our mother passed away when she was 27, I was 5 my sister was 3. To our really good fortune, our dad married a woman, who from the very outset, took us as her own. I'm 69 now, and I still wonder what my birth mother was like, her voice, her laughter, did she have a temper? We always called our step-mother "Mom" and to this day still do. I would never disrespect her in any way. Growing up, never once did I feel like a step child (I didn't even think there was a word). Mean stepmother? What was that? My Mom and Dad went on to have 7 children of their own, never ever making a difference between my sister and theirs. To this day all 9 of us have a close knit relationship. God has blessed us in so many ways.
    But to to my point, there is still the yearning to have been able to know her. (She was so ill, that she was in hospitals so much that my sister and I spent a lot of time with relatives) I don't really remember her at all. But God had blessed us with our "Mom" and I believe one day I will meet my birth Mother and we will have a good conversation!
    Peace

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