A note from Elaine
Adopted shortly after birth, I grew up in a very loving home. I was always loved by my parents and was never treated any different because I was adopted.
I had your basic childhood: attended school, church, summer vacations, get-togethers with relatives … and, when I was 15 or 16, my parents told me I was adopted; at the time, I didn’t fully understand it, nor did I question where I came from.
Shortly after graduating high school, I married and moved from South Florida to Central Florida. Though my marriage ended a few years later, I soon remarried and had the fortune of gaining two stepsons; I loved them as if they were my own. My husband and I later had another child, completing our family.
Since then, I’ve often wondered where I came from … if my birth parents were still alive, if I had any siblings. Sometimes I even looked at people and wondered if we were related. Though I contemplated searching a few times, I never followed through. I didn’t want to hurt my adoptive parents, even though my mom told me she would help me find my birth parents if I ever wanted to.
Over the past decade, my husband has passed away, as have both of my adoptive parents. As I dealt with my losses, I really began thinking about the parents who gave me life. At first it was mostly medical – I wanted to know my medical background not only for me but also for my daughter.
But after the passing of both my parents, I requested a search for possible reunification with my birth family.
Less than a year after I made the request, I was reunited with my birth mother! We have lived in the same county for more than 10 years; I could hardly compose myself when I talked to her on the phone and learned where she lived. In reuniting with my mother, I also learned I have three sisters, one brother and several relatives.
When I met my mom, I also met two sisters, two nephews and a brother-in-law; I’ve since also met my brother, my other sister, my sister-in-law, two more nephews and a niece.
My mother shared with me a bit about my birth; she had me at a very young age amidst difficult circumstances, and she was very grateful to hear I wanted to reunify.
In many cases, including my own, adoption is the best choice for everyone involved, and I feel fortunate that I had the chance to grow up in such a loving family. And I feel especially fortunate to have also found the “missing piece” to form relationships with my birth family.
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