Some people celebrate their 50th birthdays by jumping out of airplanes.
I belatedly marked mine in a similarly adventurous way, minus the parachute and clouds zooming by: Yesterday, I met my natural father.
I’m an adoptee. Three years ago I found my first mother and an extended family that welcomed me with open arms. Still, I had to know the rest of my story.
Earlier this month, I learned my father’s name. It took only a quick Google search to find him living nearby.
I hesitated briefly: Should I call or leave it be? Try to get the remaining answers to questions I’ve asked for a lifetime? Or retreat to that old default, setting my needs and wants aside rather than make waves?
Turns out I’m a “go big or go home” kind of girl. Who knew?
And I needn’t have worried. He embraced me immediately.
You see, he had been wondering for 50 years, too.
Over pizza yesterday, we began the process of connecting, filling in gaps, learning about each other, searching for features and personality traits that match.
As was the case when I found my first mother, I’m awash in emotions, many of which I can’t name or quite understand. It will take time to absorb and process it all.
I have no idea what my “new normal” will be; what other things I’ll learn about my origins and roots; or how my reunions will progress.
But once and for all I will know. I will no longer need to guess or wonder about my origins, ethnicity, medical history or any of the other things most folks take for granted.
It’s hard to articulate just how important this is to me.
Here beyond the shadows of five decades’ worth of secrets and lies, I can finally begin to see myself not as someone’s mistake, shame, or problem to manage, but for the full sum of who I am, shaped both by nature and nurture, and honed by a tenaciousness and drive all my very own.
So excited for you!!!!! ❤
Thank you! This is quite a journey. Can’t wait to hear about yours!
Hi, Fab blog! Very inspiring!! I have just set up mine, but still in the very early stages! Just making efforts to link in with fellow bloggers to improve our followers and get the word out there for us both. I would appreciate you having a peek at my blog, as I have just published my second post. Feel free to like, comment, follow or just take a peek. Thank you 🙂
Congrats on your new blog! Just followed you!
Thank you for the congrats and follow! I should be following you also 🙂
I love your story, it makes me all warm and fuzzy inside!! 😀 I’m also an adoptee, 6 years in reunion. The one thing that never gets old is remembering the excitement of Reunion- and the one unavoidable part of reunion is the anxiety!!! I’m in some adoptee rights groups and adoption triad support discussion groups, as well. The one thing that everyone asks is ‘what was the best resource for you in dealing with X?’ Were you able to prepare yourself at all or did you do the brave thing and just jump right in? 😀
Not sure you can be prepared! Would love to chat with you for the book I’m writing. Would that be of interest?
What a nice story.
Congrats! Happy for you, Terri!
So very happy for you Terri. The finding and knowing and learning about each other, heals so much for sure. No more secrets. Good stuff. Oh squeeee I’m so so excited and happy for you both. Happy for you and ALL your family. What a lovely picture.
Thank you, Cindy!
Congratulations on finding and so special to find two people who welcome you into the family! Best wishes that the majority of the roller coaster ride is over. Good for you going LOUD!
I have been looking forward to reading this and so happy for you that I’m teary eyed! How important the knowing is to adoptees, and how difficult it sometimes seems for others to understand the depths of our longing. You both look so happy in this picture and definitely share appearance – you look related! 🙂
Thanks so much Kristin!
This is just awesome Terri. I can only imagine how this must feel for you. Wishing you an incredible journey post 50!
You were a great gal in high school and a strong wonderful woman now. So happy for you and your newfound extended family.
Thanks, Coach, for the kind words and support!
I am so delighted for you! We really need to catch up. Both of you look so happy and content.
Reading this makes me so happy, Terri! I look forward to hearing more about your “adventures” with your first dad. 🙂
Congratulations! I finally found my father in 2014, but he was gone by then. Still, I know the emotion of finally knowing. It certainly is hard to articulate. He looks like a really nice guy, and you can sure see the resemblance!
Thanks for your kind note!
I’m so very happy for you, Terri. This event brings it all back for me from when I found my son in 1990. The emotions are so profound. Congratulations to you and your entire family.
Terri, meeting my birth father was possibly the most extraordinary event in my life. I too was 50. It was great for me and it looks as though it will be great for you. Chris
Wonderful….so happy for you!!
From the 2 sista peas: Carole Sanguedolce and Jeannie Lachman
Thanks so much Carole!
Your incredibly inquisitive, courageous, positive and determined nature could only lead you to this moment, Terri. What a happy birthday! Congratulations to both of you — all three of you — for this wonderful result.
This is wonderful! I am so happy for you, proud of your perseverance to find your truth and the courage to follow through. No matter what happens, now you don’t have to wonder any longer.
Thanks, Pris, for your kind words and support all through this journey.
Challenging journey you undertook, and I’m happy for you that it has a happily ever after transition.
Thanks so much, Judy!