My beautiful family was created through adoption - my older brother was adopted from South Korea, and I was adopted right here in the state of Arkansas. We have both learned about true love through our adoption stories, even though they are quite different. Without Jesus's example of sacrificial love on the cross, our family would not have come to be. Without His grace, I wouldn't be here to tell my story of how it all came full circle to reuniting with my biological family, almost 20 years later.
Growing up, I asked my parents a lot of tough questions about my biological family. The simplest of those questions was, "What did they look like?" In an effort to protect their identity, the answers I received were very ambiguous. As a kid, vague answers satisfied me. As a teenager, I grew more and more frustrated about the great unknown of where I came from. I started going through this identity crisis that led to rebellion - weekend parties where I came home too late or not at all, cutting class to get away and unwind. I had all these hormones and emotions overwhelming me, and school became a daily reminder of what made me different. In Biology, I sat out of several assignments because I couldn't go home and do a punnet square to find out where I got my curly hair from, or my green-gray eyes. In English class, we had to write a paper about our family's country of origin. Because my background was lost in the adoption, all I knew is that my family came from somewhere in Europe. So instead of writing a paper about the country, I had to write a paper about adoption.
My senior year of high school, I took a creative writing class that became my outlet for my identity crisis. I learned how to write my feelings in a way so others, including my parents, could start to understand. I'm not the most talented speaker. I fumble on my words, and have a tendency to word vomit on my listener, or worse - speak without thinking. When I wanted to talk to my parents about the struggles I was going through, I grew fearful. I didn't want to hurt their feelings by asking too many questions about a family that would also call me by the same name: daughter. But through this creative writing class, I was challenged to take the time to process what I was trying to say. I could see the words as they came through the end of my pencil, and I realized the power behind meditating on the message. Since that class, expression has come easily to me. I've learned how to be still in my thoughts and proactive in articulating them. That school year taught me many things about myself, but most importantly I learned what was really going on in my own head.
Since then, God has blessed me with answers to the questions I struggled with the most. It is the desire of my heart to come alongside my fellow adoptees, listen to their stories of heartache and celebration, and give them hope from a full-circle perspective. So often you hear the adoptive and biological parents' side of the adoption story, which is just as important to be told. But what has been lost is the experiences of the children. Before meeting my biological family, I scoured bookshelves looking for a memoir from an adoptee's perspective of being reunited with their long lost family. I never found one book which fit that description, and that made me feel more alone than ever. It is my mission to put a halt to this loneliness by writing a book about my own full-circle experience. It is my hope that my fellow adoptees no longer have to fear asking the tough questions... because we've all asked them, too.