Delivering the DNA Results with Grace

 

hope

Wow, hard to believe this is the next hurdle I will be experiencing.

It’s very emotional but I know God is with me!

It’s nerve wrecking considering what I have already experienced with my biological father and this adoptee journey!

The greatest part is that I have a new found cousin who I have connected with via DNA who is not only AMAZING but she is SO SUPPORTIVE of me through this journey. She seems to “Get it” and no one really gets it unless they are adopted, and she’s not adopted! I can’t help but KNOW God planted her in my life at the perfect time because I know I couldn’t do this alone. Thank you God for LINDA! Thank you LINDA for your help, support and new found friendship!  This is a really emotional journey for me as I know my fellow adoptees can relate.

So the story goes as I’m sure you read my last blog post. My birth father has always said, “What are we going to do, get a blood test 40 years later?” He knew nothing about me, lies and secrets prevented him from knowing so I don’t blame him for being skeptical all these years.

My new found cousin, Linda has showed me the ropes on all this. I have gotten a DNA test and it has linked me to his DNA and family line. He hasn’t had a DNA test done, but my DNA test has made DNA connections via 23andMe to his mother’s line, who is my biological grandmother. I don’t need HIS DNA to be linked to HIS DNA LINE. That’s the cool thing about DNA. There are so many ways to trace and confirm. There is no way I would share DNA with my distant cousin where our connection is our grandmothers are sisters, if J.J. (birth father) wasn’t my father. It wouldn’t be possible.

HE IS MY BIRTH FATHER

But he doesn’t know I am confirmed his daughter via DNA

Just YET…

whos_your_daddy_truck

My new found cousin suggested I contact the local Catholic Priest to see if he will collaborate a “meeting” with J.J. and his wife to present the DNA results. Yes, they are catholic. The last time I spoke to my birth fathers wife, she mentioned them wanting to get back involved in the Catholic Church and she wondered if I knew the dates J.J. was married to his previous wives. I shared with her I would try to obtain that information to help her out. So this has let me know they are Catholic and reaching out to the local Catholic Priest seems to be the best idea so far. Thank you again, Linda!

GOD CAN DO ANYTHING!

With HIM all things are possible.

I know there are people out there that might be saying, “Why would she go through all this heartache. Why can’t she just accept it and walk away?” Let me share that until you have walked in my shoes or another adoptees for that matter you really have no idea what loss, grief and trauma is involved in this journey. I can share there is nothing that can be done to me that hasn’t already been done. I have already been rejected by this man, but if there is a little chance that DNA will make a difference than I am willing to take that chance. You see, being adopted we are constantly putting ourselves out there all for a chance to be loved, accepted and for a chance at a relationship with those who were STOLEN from us. My adoption was an illegal one because I was adopted without his knowledge or consent. I don’t blame him for being skeptical. There is a HUGE chance I will be getting the door slammed in my face again, but at least at the end of my life when my story is all said and done I won’t be saying, “ I WISH, I WISH”. My wish will be “I TRIED”. Who is anyone to tell me I should just give up HOPE and WALK AWAY? I am not a weakling, and am not a sissy. I’m not walking away. I am going to PROVE I am J.J.’s ONLY DAUGTER if my life depends on it. The next few months are going to be pretty nerve wrecking and significant in my life. This is a huge step.

I would like to say to all the people who think I’m crazy or nuts and who think I should just walk away and accept this as my life

WHO ARE YOU TO TAKE AWAY MY FAITH? WHO ARE YOU TO TAKE AWAY MY HOPE?

WHO ARE YOU?

ENOUGH HAS BEEN TAKEN! I’M NOT LETTING ANYONE TAKE MY HOPE AND FAITH AWAY.

GOD IS LOVE

GOD IS HOPE

GOD IS FAITH

GOD IS TRUTH

Every sense I was a little girl I have fantasized and had visions of “These People” meaning my biological family. I have spent my entire LIFE fighting to PROVE I am SOMEBODY regardless of my birth parents decision in rejecting me. Today, I don’t need them to prove WHO I AM. I know who I am. I’m God’s daughter, and that is the most important thing to me. This does NOT change the fact that I still need to TRY to prove what is TRUTH when there have been so many lies in my story.

WHAT IS SO WRONG WITH BRINGING DARKNESS TO LIGHT?

“For all that is secret will eventually be brought into the open, and everything that is concealed will be brought to the light and made known to all” – Luke 8:17

I know secrets and lies are not from God, they are from the enemy.

My God is a God of TRUTH and the TRUTH means NOTHING HIDDEN.

In 2010 my biological aunt who is my birth mother’s sister is the one who came clean and told me “MY STORY” as she saw it. She shared that my birth father was married at the time of conception, and this was a big part why my birth mother chose adoption. I was able to put myself in my birth mothers shoes, and have some compassion for her and her decision. It brought me healing to know this “TRUTH”. I have written about it many times, and I always encourage my fellow adoptees to TRY to put yourself in “Her” shoes in attempts to feel what she felt and try to understand WHY she made the decision she did. This has helped me gain acceptance and forgive her.

Recently I have believed to uncover that it is a lie that my birth father was married at the time of my conception. I have had to dig and dig and to find out this TRUTH. I don’t understand why people don’t understand how important it is to adoptees THAT WE RECEIVE OUR TRUTH!! So now I don’t know the truth and for me, it’s an important and critical part of my healing because

IF I DON”T KNOW THE TRUTH I DON’T KNOW WHAT IM HEALING FROM!!!

I CAN’T HEAL FROM LIES AND HALF TRUTHS!

“You can’t heal a wound by saying it’s not there!” Jeremiah 6:14

WHY ARE ADOPTEES FIGHTING FOR OUR RIGHT TO HEAL BY SIMPLY WANTING OUR TRUTH?

Where are all my Christian friends at during this topic? Where are all the people who simply believe in RIGHT & WRONG? Why aren’t more people taking a stand that ALL ADOPTED PEOPLE DESERVE WHAT’S RIGHTFULLY THEIRS, THEIR Original Birth Certificates & their TRUTH & ANSWERS and ALL OF THEM.

½ Truth + ½ Truth = A WHOLE LIE

So here you have it, at 41 years old adoption loss and grief is still very strong in my life, and will always be strong in my life because I am still fighting for my truth. When I find my truth there are thousands of other adoptees who do not have theirs. I will never sit down and be quiet about this until all adopted people all over the world have their truth. God has given me GRACE and I plan on using it.

As I have decided to take the advice to contact the Catholic Priest in Leon, IA where my birth father lives, I made a few calls and left a few messages for him to get back to me. Finally we caught up with one another. I explained who I am and what I was calling for. After sharing I desired his help to deliver the DNA results to my birth father, he asks some questions and told me it was very important that I’m able to answer these questions. He said it appears J.J. has some knots that are tangled up and he wants to try to untangle the knots so he can figure out the truth as to why J.J. would deny me. My point is that he denied me before, but now I have the DNA results that prove I am his daughter. So regardless of the past, and why he originally denied me is really irrelevant because now DNA proves that any reasons he believed I might not be his are not valid.

TRUTH IS TRUTH

“It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail” – 1 Corinthians 13:6

I could tell by the accent of Father Felix that he is of African descent which leads me to believe he’s African American. I can tell you he was extremely friendly and was very comforting in his words to me. He said, “Mam I want to help you but one thing I need to share is I don’t want you to feel rejected.” I said, “Thank you sir, but I have felt rejected my entire life. In this situation it’s hard to not feel that way” He said “I’m so sorry you feel that way but I hope I can help you untangle this knot and be prepared it might take some time”. I was gracious for him talking to me. He gave me his email and asked me to email him all the information I have about J.J. and his marriages, and my biological mother. He said when he goes he needs the armed with the facts and the DNA proof. I let him know I would email it to him in the near future and we would be in touch.

I can’t help but believe that GOD is in the center of this because when my birth father found out I had bi-racial children he gave me a few choice words about his opinion regarding me having kids by a “black man”. I let him know I didn’t need his acceptance of my kids or I and that isn’t what I was there for. It wasn’t pretty and I will just leave it at that. He said conflicting things during my 2nd and final visit ever seeing him, but in the end his tone came around where he had compassion and he was interested in meeting my kids. That topic is a whole different blog post in itself. But I have prayed that God just change his heart and his mind on how he feels regarding this matter. I am NOT taking my kids to meet this guy, not yet anyway.

So thinking that the local Catholic Priest is an African American man I believe with my entire heart that God is behind this meeting that is about to take place. How else do you explain that? The town of Leon, IA is population is 1900 and it’s a very small town with little to no diversity. And he is willing to set up a meeting with J.J. and present him with the DNA results. WOW. I just get chills thinking of it. If anyone can change J.J’s heart it’s GOD!

In the next 24 hours I will have my email compiled to Father Felix and I will email it off to him. And the wait will begin. Seems us adoptees live our lives waiting. Its torture but I know that if God is behind it, I have nothing to worry about. I feel like once the DNA TRUTH is presented I will know at the end of my life that I tried, and I did all I could do. I can tell you this journey has been an emotionally and mentally exhausting one. I listen to the song “Happy” by Pharrell and I wonder when I’m going to experience happiness like that. Not just on the outside but on the inside too. I want to move past this place in my life, but as you see I still have some loose ends God is guiding me to tie up.

Some might say, “What if you present him with the DNA and it changes nothing?”

I would say, at least I tried. At least now I know it’s not a DNA matter with J.J. but it’s more of a heart matter. If he’s presented with the DNA TRUTH and he still rejects me I will be much more able to accept that as the TRUTH than him never knowing I’m his only living daughter and him never knowing I’m really his or not. He rejects me again, he has to live with that and he has to answer for that. My job is over.

See where the fight has come in at? I’m so sick of fighting and I’m NOT going to stop until I receive all my truth! Why would I give up now? Why would I let the devil have his way by discouraging me and taking my HOPE away? Why would I accept something when the truth hasn’t been presented yet? Once the TRUTH (DNA) is presented and nothing changes and ALL J.J.s family is made aware of the DNA results then I will be at a place where I am able to accept the truth because now there are no secrets.

I’m forever thankful for all my blog readers who are supporting me and who are on this journey with me. I couldn’t do it without God, my close friends and family that support me, my amazing new found cousin, Linda and those who I have a special place for tucked away in my heart of hearts- ALL MY FELLOW ADOPTEES WHO GET IT!

mystory

If secrets and lies weren’t the ROOT of my life and where it all began I wouldn’t be uncovering the TRUTH at 41 years old.

WE ALL DESERVE OUR TRUTH NO MATTER HOW HARD IT MIGHT BE!

I will be sure to update you all on the outcome.

Thanks for reading and send me a word of encouragement if you have one!

PRAY FOR ME & I WILL PRAY FOR YOU TOO!

 With God all things are possible.

If you need prayers send me an email and I would be happy to pray for you! If you can relate to my story at all, please leave me a message.

2016-01-10 18.04.25

Advertisements

When the Wall Comes Tumbling Down…

wallsdown

 

You make the choice to pick up all the pieces, try to put them back together again.

Most people who know me or who have followed my blog will be familiar with my story but for those who aren’t aware I’m adopted. I was born in Waterloo, IA in 1974. I spent 20+ years searching for my biological family. Over the years I spent time battling an alcohol addiction and I suffered from anger, rage, low self-esteem, and lived a completely hopeless life.  I had abandonment & rejection issues from my adoption experience and I grew up in an emotionally, mentally and sexually abusive adoptive home. It’s taken me years to move towards accepting and acknowledging the truth, and asking God to come into my life and heal me from all these different “things” I have faced in my lifetime. Today I live in VICTORY. The devil had his way with me for far too long and TODAY because of GOD my life is on the mends. I share my story so other adoptees know they aren’t alone and with the world because adoption is much more than the label “A beautiful thing!” I desire to bring hope to the hopeless adoptees because having someone that UNDERSTANDS is HUGE!

Being adopted isn’t for sissies!

We are strong, resilient and we are fighters.

With that being said, as I was reunited with both my birth parents, they both met me and then rejected me. I hear people say, “You know, what feels like rejection is God’s way of protection!” I believe that to be true, but I also know in life especially in adoption I have always found people to want to silence my pain with reasons I should just be thankful for the circumstances I was born into. Let me just share that with this mentality I was never able to heal growing up. My healing was stalled, because the WORLD didn’t want to hear my pain, or acknowledge it in anyway.

Even the 20 counselors I saw growing up NEVER ACKNOWLEDGED MY ADOPTEE GRIEF, LOSS & TRAUMA!

Not even a little bit.

All I hear is, “Aren’t you thankful you weren’t aborted?” or “Aren’t you at least thankful for your life?” If you want to know the TRUTH, I spent 37 years being angry my birth mother didn’t abort me and I STILL struggle being thankful for my life! If I hear that one more time I think I might lose it.

Being transparent is the only way I can share things. I refuse to be marginally deceptive to make other people feel comfortable.

Spend some time RESEARCHING Complicated Grief, Loss & Trauma for adoptees. GOOD LUCK finding it because there are no resources ANYWHERE for us but if you find any please share them with me! A few books here and there and on a rare occasion one of us might come across a therapist that specializes in adoptee issues but that’s very rare. They aren’t common at all but there are adoption therapists for adoptive parents on every corner, not to mention agencies.

When you silence our pain with comments like that and refuse to acknowledge our pain you cause us more pain!

What does this mean?

When the walls come crumbling down we are left to figure it out on our own!

I have quickly learned that those close to me who WANT to learn how adoptees feel will make the choice to actively listen and try to understand that there is more to adoption than just a pretty little story.

JUST LISTEN!

As I was rejected by my birth parents, I was reunited with a half adoptive sister that relationship fizzled. She hated that I shared my less than perfect feelings on how adoption has impacted me and she has given a baby up for adoption. This caused an immediate clash between us and there seems to be no middle understanding. Her story is her story and mine is mine but she HATED that I shared adoption has been painful because she refuses to acknowledge her pain regarding losing her son to adoption. She lashed out on me and that was the end of that relationship.

I have had 3 biological family reunions and 3 fizzled reunions. Words can’t even begin to express the pain involved with these losses. I spent MANY years in denial, and really angry. Today I have gained acceptance but I had to step out of denial and the only way I could step out of denial is by learning my TRUTH! Shame and secrets stepped in the way so this is why I’m healing so late in life. The younger we learn our TRUTH the earlier we begin to heal. Secrecy and lies prevented me from healing. Today, as heart breaking as it has been at least I have my truth at least I’m healing!

Today I’m not as angry as I used to be but what fuels my anger is that society still fails to realize that adoption is loss & trauma which causes complicated grief, sadness, anger, rage and a lot of pain! Until this pain is acknowledged and understood on a deeper level the adoptee suicide rate will ALWAYS be 4 x more likely than non-adoptees. Check this article out if you don’t believe me. Preventing Adoptee Related Suicide

I have written for the last 5 years about how God saved the best for last. I didn’t find out I had a brother until 2010. I searched for him for a year in November 2011 I finally found my brother. We shared the same father. December 2011 was the first Christmas I ever spent with a biological family member. I can’t even tell you at the excitement and happiness to have finally found the BEST PART of my adoption search and the reunion was a great one. My brother was accepting, his siblings were accepting, and his children were accepting. We spent the next 5 years making up for lost time. I can tell you that he was and is the first person I ever felt like I had a biological connection besides my own kids. It was something only my fellow adoptees could appreciate because you had to grow up being denied that right, in order to understand how important it is.

FINALLY GOD SAVED THE BEST FOR LAST. MY BROTHER WAS AND IS THE POT OF GOLD AT THE END OF THE RAINBOW FOR ME.

Adoptees know that desire, that need to just feel like they belong, that deep desire to have that deep connection with their blood kin. Non-adoptees can’t relate because they haven’t gone without. It’s something most people take for granted.

pamngreg

My brother has given me hope, that finally I will have some biological connections with someone somewhere. I imagined that one day when I get married he will be there at my wedding and he can meet all my adoptive family and they can finally see someone else that looks like me, acts like me and who has similarities as me. They will be able to see how awesome he is. I’ve been elated because my niece had her first baby, and I got a card in the mail that said “Auntie” with a Christmas picture with him in it. She kept me up to date about her pregnancy, and it’s been fun slowly building relationships with all of my brothers 4 kids and his siblings. They have all accepted us, loved us, and warmed us into the family. We traveled back and forth to Texas to his crawfish boil. He has been to Kentucky many times and celebrated a few Christmas’s with us. This past Thanksgiving 2015 we drove to Texas and my kids and I spent the first Thanksgiving in 41 years of my life with biological family. For me this has been a dream come true to a pretty tragic story.

God saved the best for last!

Indeed!

What feels like REJECTION is God’s way of protection might be true, but that doesn’t mean I still don’t have pain, grief & loss associated with the situation. I know that God understands the pain because he too can feel the deepest parts of my heart, every little broken piece.

As the story unfolds, my biological father doesn’t claim me and he shared doubts with me about my half-brother. My brother is 10 years older than me. He was always told growing up that J.J.; our birth father is his father. Our birth father even acknowledged him at a few different times in his life but they hadn’t had a relationship in many years. I found my birth father in 1999 and mailed him a letter sharing with him who I was. I waited every day for the mail and had high hopes he would respond but after giving him 11 years I never had confirmation he received my letter, so I decided to drive to Iowa to see his face at least one time in my lifetime. 2010 was the year my birth mother died and we had only met one time. It was also the year I laid eyes on my birth father for the first time. During this visit he shared with me I had a half-brother, He said he had some doubts he was his or not, but he was believed to be in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, he gave me his name and off I went. The search was on.

In my heart I felt that if my birth father didn’t claim me, and he wasn’t for sure claiming my brother I would leave it up to my brother and I to determine if we were siblings because as soon as we saw one another’s childhood pictures, and pictures through life we just knew we were siblings. We spent some time together and our similarities are astonishing! We have so many of the same mannerisms, we’re both tall, we have the same complexion and if my hair was natural we would have the same hair color. We are so much alike, and in my heart I finally felt a connection to someone I shared DNA with, which was a connection I had never felt in my lifetime aside from my relationships with my kids. It was amazing to finally feel like I connected with someone! So over the years building this new found relationship has been challenging due to the distance, but we have made many phone calls and visits back and forth. We have done the best with the circumstances. I have struggled in my own personal way I know my fellow adoptees get this  with the fact that so much time has been lost. I get angry regarding this matter. I missed EVERYTHING with my brother, and I get emotional about it, thinking of missing his weddings, his kids being born, having that brother/sister relationship bond that is indescribable and PEOPLE chose to take our relationship away from us. Time is the most valuable thing in the world and 38 years gone, never to return. This has been one of the deepest parts of my hurt, and of course these feelings aren’t welcome anywhere because non-adoptees just don’t understand and they all say “Well aren’t you just thankful you found him and you having the future to look forward too?” Yes, yes of course I am but that doesn’t change the facts which have caused me a great deal of pain.

Thanksgiving 2015 I asked my brother if he would consider doing a DNA test so that I could present it to our birth father. Over the years he has said numerous times, “What are we going to do, get a blood test 40 years later?!” Well, actually that’s a great idea. If PROOF I am his child and my brother is his child might sway him into letting me meet my grandmother for the first time before she dies than for me it would be worth the hassle and cost of 2 DNA tests. (Mine was already uploaded to 23andme and GedMatch) My brother understood in my needs in wanting to do this due to my circumstances regarding my “Story”.  My only purpose was to upload my brothers DNA to GedMatch and we would be able to use the “One to One” compare feature comparing our KIT #’s and BOOM… I could print this out, and compose a letter and mail it to my birth father. Once and for all we would have proof and he couldn’t say we weren’t his. DNA doesn’t lie. Now that doesn’t mean anything would change with him, but I hung on to the little piece of hope that maybe DNA PROOF would maybe change something, after all he said over and over, “What are we going to do, get a DNA test 40 years later?”.

Well, as a matter of a fact…

 I mail my brothers DNA off to AncestryDNA and the waiting begins. 2 days after Christmas his results come in. Dec 27th I uploaded his DNA to Gedmatch and I waited a day to make sure they results were fully uploaded and in the system.

As I compare the “One to One” feature I couldn’t believe what I found.

“No shared DNA segments found”

I tried it again, and again and again.

“No shared DNA segments found”

I got the same thing every time.

“No shared DNA segments found”

NO WAY!

angeremotioncon

 

My first thoughts were, “There is no way I’m believing this. This has to be a mistake” but deep down my heart sunk. I reached out to a few ladies I’m close with that were more familiar with DNA than I am and they both confirmed that the results are true.

I refused to accept this.

I called my brother a few days later, and I shared the news with him. HONESTY IS EVREYTHING EVEN IF IT HURTS! He also refused to accept this. We did not believe these results. I had many people say, “The DNA test could have been faulty”. Well, if there was even a TINY chance the DNA test was faulty I was running with that, and so was my brother.

I mean we are NOT ACCEPTING THIS!

All the adoptee “fears” come rushing in. Thoughts like “I knew I was going to lose him too” and “I always knew he was going to disappear too”. The enemy was having a field day with me. I was NOT accepting this.

It was obvious that the next move was the prove weather his test was faulty or not. So in order to do that, I started to contact his highest DNA matches on Ancestry DNA to find out some of their surnames and see if I can make connections to his mother’s side. If I was able to make DNA connections to his mother’s side, than that would mean the test is not a faulty one.

Of course we want the test to be faulty!!!

As a few days pass, and I explain to my brother what I’m doing and make sure he is okay with it, I uncovered his DNA has many ties to his mother’s side which indeed was proof his DNA was not a faulty one.

HEARTBROKEN AGAIN!

EVERYTHING IS ALWAYS TAKEN FROM ME! EVERYTHING REGARDING MY ADOPTION EXPERIENCE EQUALS GRIEF, LOSS & TRAUMA!

Deep down I was…

And I still am…

crying-729439_960_720

This is the most devastating news to me, and it seems there isn’t anyone in the world at this point that can relate to the deep level of pain and sadness I am experiencing regarding this matter. I cried for 3 days straight before I could even tell my brother.

So what does this mean? I was able to trace my DNA connections to J.J. my biological father which means if I share DNA with J.J. and my brother and I share no DNA J.J. is not his biological father. What turns out to be something that started out so simple turned into something far more that what we ever expected. I was not only experiencing my own shock and sadness, but I was also feeling some major sadness for my brother because now I had to tell him the TRUTH and I know the TRUTH might hurt.

So many dynamics to this situation but the end result is that the TRUTH is ALWAYS better than living a LIE.

I have sat and tried to figure out what God has taught me in this situation… I know there had to be a lesson and some areas I am going to grow in regarding many dynamics to this. One thing that comes to mind is that I have never experienced a DNA felt connection with anyone aside from my kids until I met my brother. Now, knowing he’s not actually DNA connected I can TRULY say I still have a connection to him and for me that’s a big deal. It has helped me learn that I can have a close connection with someone I am not DNA connected too. I had a few close connections growing up with a few of my adoptive family members I was close too, but I never felt similar to anyone until I met my brother.

The other thing that I feel God was teaching me is to share with ALL MY FELLOW ADOPTEES that DNA TESTING IS CRITICAL! Don’t just assume and go off of what you are told. Even if the reunion seems to be the PERFECT FIT like mine did with my brother, GET DNA TESTING ANYWAY!

I CAN NOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH! GOD HAS THIS HEAVY ON MY HEART TO SHARE! SO MANY LIES AND SECRETS IN ADOPTION, DNA TESTING IS CRITICAL TO CONFIRM! NO MATTER WHAT!

As far as I’m concerned he’s still my brother. I cried and was really upset for about 3 days, and I had to get myself together so I could share this information with my brother. I prayed and I called him.

My fellow adoptees understand the FEARS associated with reunions, and it seemed one of my greatest fears of my brother leaving might be coming true, but I knew I still have to share the truth. I have heard many people say, “Family isn’t always blood, family is what we make it!” and I find this to be true. But as an adoptee that has already lost so much it’s hard to not fear abandonment again. It has happened with every “reunion” I have experienced with ALL biological family members. I have LOST every single one. So naturally based on my experience I am in fear. Maybe my brother will not want to be my brother anymore? Maybe my nieces and nephews won’t want to be in my life anymore, even if they are all far away. I will once again feel all alone in life, and that happy ending wasn’t happy at all. My pot of gold at the end of the rainbow has been snatched away and God didn’t save the best for last, he took the best part of my reunion away. I have felt like this was some evil trick someone played on me.

I had to think about this for a few days. Process everything. I had to feel the emotions and allow myself the room to feel them. I had to cry. I had to cry out to God and ask him to SHOW ME what he is trying to teach me here. I knew there had to be some reasons. 

All those years of my hopes being high for these WONDERFUL DNA relationships, these fantasies of these AMAZING people that I would look like and act like and have so much in common with are really nonexistent and I can’t begin to describe the sadness and loss attached to this disappointment. Of course I had no other options than to believe it would be all wonderful to connect with DNA “Family” because I hadn’t ever experienced it and I always had such a longing to see where I came from and who I looked like. I had HIGH HOPES ALL MY LIFE! After all, “Your birth mother loved your so much” left the imprint deep in my mind all the way back to the first time I heard it that my biological family loved me, and why would they be anything less than wonderful?

Adoption stole A LOT!

I could go on ALL DAY about what has been stolen!

So what do you do when the wall comes tumbling down?

I’M NOT LETTING THE DEVIL STEAL ANYTHING ELSE FROM ME!

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” John 10:10

The devil is not taking my relationship with my brother, or my nieces and nephews. He’s not taking anything else from me. He’s taken my relationships with both birth parents and my birth sister and I’m NOT letting him take my relationship with my brother.

TO HECK WITH THE DEVIL!  HE IS A LIER!

I believe God started preparing this for me early, as I began to build my church family and I started to experience that type of “family” that I had never experienced before. There is nothing like it anywhere and I am not DNA related to any of them. Not DNA from the world anyway. I do share DNA with them regarding us being in the body of Christ together and I must say THEY HAVE SHOWED UP AND SHOWED OUT WHEN NO ONE ELSE HAS! They have shown me the true definition of love, loyalty and what a “Family” is all about. At my church, we call them “Family of Choice”. I couldn’t imagine my life without them. I never knew how special and awesome they were until I experienced it. I can share how empty my life was without them. But learning and building these relationships I have TRULY understood and realized family isn’t always blood, but I had to experience this and experience that latter to actually “Get It”. People just telling me that wasn’t helping me. I had to experience it myself.

WE ALL HAVE TO EXPERIENCE THINGS ON OUR OWN!

So today, with the new found results in my life, I can say I’m still sad and I still have fears that my brother is going to disappear being an adoptee I have that fear anyway about everyone   and maybe “Change his mind” about wanting to be my brother. But our last words to each other were, “IT’S NOT GOING TO CHANGE ANYTHING” And if I have Jesus in me, I have his hope in me too. I am making the choice to hang onto his word and I am NOT letting GO of my relationship with my brother. He is still my brother and I don’t care what DNA says. YES, I am glad we know the truth now because what that means I need to help my brother find his TRUTH!

 “Then you will know the TRUTH and the TRUTH will set you FREE” –John 8:32 is the verse I stand on!

I can’t help but wonder if that is one more reason God put my brother in my life 5 years ago?

As adoptees we receive every little puzzle piece about our lives, any little clue we can get. We piece it together as one overall goal..

puzzle-1152792_960_720

This has let me know that not only adoptees deserve their truth, but EVERYONE deserves their truth. We all deserve to know the answers to the question

“WHO AM I?”

“WHERE DID I COME FROM?” 

I will share as I end, that secrets and lies hurt and they destroy lives. If you are holding back sharing the TRUTH with someone please know that God is a God of TRUTH. Truth means NOTHING HIDDEN. This is why the Adoptee Rights Rally 2016 is so critical!  We all deserve to know our truth no matter how painful it might be. This has literally crushed me, but I would still rather know the truth ANY DAY! What we choose to do with it is our business. I’m praying for everyone involved with adoption realize that secrecy and lies HURT and TRUTH HEALS. We all deserve to know our truth and we all deserve our BIRTH RIGHT so we can move forward and HEAL!

You see, adoption is far more than adopting a beautiful baby to complete a family or to make someones dreams come true to be parents. For adoptees, adoption is rooted in grief, loss & trauma. We have to deal with the life long consequences for decisions that were made for us, decisions we had no choice over and we have little to no support in processing the grief, loss & trauma we face. I have found that societies ignorance to this grief, loss & trauma has only stalled and prolonged adoptees in receiving truth & healing. I’m praying more and more adoptees speak up and speak out and society starts to open their eyes, ears and hearts to receive what adoptees have to say.

If there is anyone on earth that is for TRUTH & HEALING it’s

2016-01-10 18.04.25

Thanks for reading.

Twitter: @pamelakaranova

Would you like to share your story on How It Feels To Be Adopted blog?

Click Here!

How Does It Feel To Be Adopted?

Would you like to connect with other adoptees?

Click Here!

How Does It Feel To Be Adopted Facebook

Would you like to join our ALL ADOPTEE Grief, Loss & Trauma Virtual Open Share Group? Send me a Friend Request on Facebook.Send me a message and I will invite you to the group. This is a “SECRET” group for adoptees ONLY and you can only join by invite.

CLICK HERE!

Pamela Karanova Facebook

Never give up hope in finding your family. You aren’t alone! Can you relate to this blog post? If so please comment, share and let me know your thoughts.

 

Adoptee Rights Rally Petition Signing Party!

$11 Could Change Everything!!! 

If we could all consider this, we would have our 100,000 signatures in no time.

We need 100,000 Signatures For the for the President to enact an Executive Order which would restore the Original Birth Certificate to every ADULT ADOPTEE in America in one fell swoop because it is a civil and constitutional right! This seems like such a HUGE number but if we break this down this is what it looks like.

We already have 15,000 signatures so we are only seeking 85,000 more.

I spent $11 yesterday making 100 copies of the petition, and 20 copies of the Adoptee Restoration Act. I purchased one small pack of file folders. I’m putting 1 Adoptee Restoration Act and 5 Petition sheets in each, along with my contact information via a business card, but could be as simple as a label or your name and number written across the top.

I’m also including a personal letter from me into each petition packet, because as we share a piece of our hearts it seems peoples heart strings get pulled and they are more likely to sign and even get on board with adoptee rights. Here is a sample of my letter. Feel free to use it or ask me for a copy and I can email it to you, and you can change it around to suit you and your experience. I will be hand signing each one and include one in each file folder with the Adoptee Restoration Act and 5 petition sheets.

ScreenShotKitLetterPK

Over the next week I’m building my own campaign team in my area reaching out to my fellow adoptees who are local first. I already have 3 signed up to help. Next I will be reaching out to my close friends (have no family here) but I have plenty of people who claim to “Love Me” so I plan on taking advantage of that and asking them to HELP ME! 🙂

20160113_071007

You can find both the petition sheet and the Adoptees Restoration Act sheet on the Adoption Alarm Website  website under “Document Library”

AdopteesRestorationAct09_2015

If I find 20 people to help and ask them to fill 5 sheets each, that’s 50 signatures each. Multiply that by 20 and I will have 1000 signatures myself.  All I’m doing is reaching out to my local people and ask if the would like to get on board and help this cause. Even people that aren’t adoptees would like to help because they might have someone impacted by adoption in their life. Some businesses would like to help and maybe sponsor us.

If we need 85,000 signatures that means if 85 people step up and take on this challenge to create their own local teams we would have all our signatures in the next few months. If we can double that to 170 people taking this challenge we would only need to get 500 signatures each which would make it even quicker and faster to gain these signatures.

85 people is not a lot!

If we split that load in half  that would be 170 people. The price would be $6 each to print the supplies. 

WE CAN DO THIS! 

It cost me $11 and a little time, and networking locally but in the process I will get my name out there for a great cause, and hopefully inform more people about the rally and what’s is involved with it. Each person we contact is one person we can share our desire WHY this is so important to so many adoptees all over the world!

ALL WE CAN DO IS TRY!!!!!!! If we commit to trying, we can keep track of how many signature sheets we have here and motivate and inspire one another. We can share who we have targeted in our area and how their response was to helping.

I’m asking for all those reading if they would commit to getting on board and helping with the Adoptee Rights Rally from the comfort of your own home and town. This offer is for EVERYONE who is reading this. No one person is excluded. If we get more signatures, that’s even better.

If you would commit and join our Adoptee Rights Petition Signing Party PLEASE make a commitment, you can email me at pamelakaranova@gmail.com or comment on this blog post. You can send me a Facebook Message and you can also share this challenge with all those you know and love. Feel free to share it, copy and paste it or whatever you need to do to get the word out there.

Blessings,

Pamela Karanova, Lexington, KY

Adoptee Rights Rally 2016

Campaign Team, Media & PR

2016-01-10 18.04.25

Add Pamela to your Facebook!

Pamela Karanova’s Facebook

You can look her up by email pamlakaranova@gmail.com

You will find thousands of adoptees at “How Does It Feel To Be Adopted?”

Please visit:

How Does It Feel To Be Adopted?

FOLLOW PAMELA’S BLOG!

Twitter: @pamelakaranova & @adopteereality

Instagram: @pwishes & @howdoesitfeeltobeadopted

Trust & Adoptee in Recovery

“The Bible doesn’t command we trust people, it commands we trust God. It’s critical we know the difference.” – Unknown

ID-100144433

How does it feel to live a life based on marginal deception?

Ask an Adoptee!

Trust is something many people struggle with, but me being an adoptee I am sharing from an adoptees perspective.

My perspective.

Having your life based on shame and secrecy, never knowing your [His] Story or [Her] Story left me feeling isolated, alone and unwanted. It left me feeling like there was something wrong with me because if there wasn’t why wasn’t I getting the truth about WHO I WAS? Why did I have to come up against the world and the closed adoption laws in order to find my truth only leaving me with more feelings of lonesomeness, unwantedness and isolation.

I never received the full TRUTH, nothing but the TRUTH, so help you God…

WHY?

Why was the person closest to me lying to me to benefit herself?

Why was there such sugar coating going on? 

Was it to make me “FEEL BETTER?” or protect me? 

I was getting watered down versions of why I was adopted in the first place. I was fed lies about my birth mother and how she “Loved me so much, she gave me away to be raised by someone else”.

I made that “Someone Else’s” dreams come true at being a mother, and she was very clear how happy she was I was adopted by her, and my birth mother gave me away for her to raise specifically because she couldn’t have babies of her own. I was the best thing that ever happened to her.

“Your birth mother loved you so much, I love her too because she made my dreams come true to be a mother. This is why she gave you to me to raise.” – Adoptive Mom,1979

I was purchased at a cash price for $24,000.00 so someone’s dream could come true. 

The lies associated with this transaction have hurt me deeply.

As early as I can remember my adoptive mom was talking to me about how she never wanted to go to a nursing home and how my birth mother made her dreams come true. As I grew up and grew into my own woman, things started falling into place as to what her motives were in adopting in the first place. Not only did adopting give her a ticket to being a mother, but it also gave her a ticket to never having to go to a nursing home. This is something she never stopped talking about, it’s almost like she obsesses over it.  During my history with her, (see this blog post for details) The Narcissistic Manic Depressive Schizophrenic Adoptive Mom it’s clear that her intentions to adopt were not for me the child, but to only benefit herself. This has left me feeling even more used and lied too, manipulated and the whole 9 yards when it comes to feeling like a piece of property than a human being. I was a child that needed a mothers love, but I never did recieve it.

My trust for people on this earth is limited to very few people, let me share why. 

When I trust, it has to be earned. Once you earn  and prove you are trust worthy we are good. One thing I see people, (adopted or not) fretting about is “I don’t trust people, I have trust issues!”.. Well, I don’t see whats so wrong with that considering our lives experiences have brought us to this point.

Which brings me to my next point. 

As long as I trust God, I am good.

I don’t need to trust everyone.

Who says we need to trust everyone anyway?

Who believes that?

Who’s rule is that? 

Closed Records in Adoption Laws have a lot to do with this. How can a LAW prevent me from knowing MY TRUTH and how can the WORLD support such activity? This lets me know that so many people all around are supporting a corrupt industry and this has hurt me DEEPLY as well as thousands and thousands of my fellow adoptees.

Yes I am an advocate for CHANGE for adoption laws to let adoptees have access to their Original Birth Certificates but more so I’m an advocate for TRUTH. What is the opposite of TRUTH?

Lies & Fiction…

How would you feel if your life was surrounded by lies & fiction and those closest to you supported it?

When your life is surrounded by lies and fiction it’s almost impossible to trust people so our trust issues stem from something we had no control over but I find them to be very legitimate and valid.

I say to my fellow adoptees, don’t beat yourself up because you have trust issues. It’s natural to have them considering our circumstances.

I will share that trusting God is more important than trusting people any day.

When I trust people and they break that trust it’s next to impossible to trust again. I am speaking for myself. I consider myself a very honest and trust worthy person and I expect the same in return, especially anyone that is close to me. If you lie to me, I will forgive you and even give you another chance but if you lie again you might as well forget ever having a chance to lie again. Reconciliation is next to impossible. I can’t tolerate liers and lying hurts me very deeply.

I speak a lot about the Rally adoptees are fighting to receive our Original Birth Certificates. This is HUGE to so many of us, and I still see so many people cast judgement on us (adoptees) for embarking on the fight for TRUTH and so many say we need to just get over it, move on and let it go.

If shame, secrecy and lies and dishonesty surrouned your entire life, and it impacted you greatly and continues to impact not only you, but your children and your future grandchildren would you just move on and get over it?

NO! 

You would join the fight in the rally for truth. So you see so much secrecy and lies, shame and guilt and lies in adoption, even down to us fighting for what is rightfully ours, yet our society who is filled with non-adoptees haven’t even taken a stand with us to find our truth. How could this be? How can so many people know that the adoptee suicide rate is 4x more likely than non adoptees, yet sit back and do NOTHING?

This is why I share my voice and experience. Someone has to speak up for the hurting adoptees who haven’t found their voice yet, the adoptees who are in such pain they are on the brinks of SUICIDE and they can’t TRUST ANYONE because the WORLD keeps lying to them.

This is serious folks.

While I don’t trust people unless they earn it, I TRUST GOD!

John 8:32 says “Then you will know the TRUTH and the TRUTH shall set you free!”.

You are either for TRUTH or you are against it!

Falsifying documents, changing names and identities, and keeping medical records a secret is not rallying for TRUTH.

I will gain more trust in people as people begin to help adoptees bring the TRUTH to LIGHT.

Until then, I will focus my trust on God, because Romans 8:28 says “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

Thanks for reading.

Pamela A. Karanova

2016-01-10 18.04.25

Adult Adoptee, Reunited

Twitter: @pamelakaranova

Facebook: Pamela Karanova

Photo Credit: freedigitalphoto.net

By: Stuart Miles

The Value of a Memory

“Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment, until it becomes a memory” – Dr. Suess 

The holidays have passed and I’m thankful they are over. I feel like 2015 was the worst year I have ever had in my entire life which means 2016 is probably going to be OUTSTANDING!

I can only hope and I’m expecting nothing LESS! It’s nice to have a new year to start over with new things, but I would like to think I have that chance every single day, because I do. We all do. But there is something about turning over a YEAR to a NEW YEAR that is fascinating to everyone.

New hopes, new dreams, new goals, new memories to be made, with hopefully some new and old people.

NEW BEGINNINGS.

That’s exciting, right? Or at least it should be.

What happens when you don’t have the memories like most people do? What happens when there are no memories? What happens when you have a few memories and look forward to making up for lost memories but that is shattered with lies being uncovered for TRUTH. There is no future for some memories. What happens when you see other people gloat over their memories with loved ones, and you have nothing to gloat over?  Do they realize how much a memory means? Just one memory is EVERYTHING to some of us, yet others have years and years of memories, yet they are mourning because someone is gone, yet they have all the memories to remember them by?

How do I mourn over someone when I have many memories with them? At least I have the memories to cherish. At least I have something to hold onto. Yet I’m supposed to cry invisible silent dry tears for those who I didn’t get any memories with? Or wait, my right to cry dry invisible tears for my first family was taken from me, because I spent 38 years being told I should be thankful, grateful and I should be thankful I wasn’t aborted.

For me a memory is everything. Having memories that are nonexistent have made me cherish the memories that do exist, and it’s helped me to learn that TIME makes MEMORIES and some TIMES we are denied TIME with those who should be the closest to us.

It’s hard to see people mourn about the loss of loved ones when at least they have MEMORIES with them. Some of us don’t get that and we aren’t allowed to mourn the loss. Let me just say, today and for the rest of my life I’m allowing myself the right to grieve my losses and mourn for all the lost memories that never will be and all the time that was stolen never to return. Crying over memories that don’t even exist?

YES! That’s right! I’m allowing myself the right to grieve my loss of memories that will never exist. Since no one else in the world would allow me this right, I’m giving it to myself. I have a right to mourn the loss of never having one Sunday dinner with my grandparents. I have the right to mourn the loss of never having a generational picture of my birth mother, and her mother and her mother. I have the right to grieve the loss that I will never have a memory of having my grandmother teach me her favorite recipes, or having special talks about life and love.  I’m giving myself the right to mourn the memory of spending one mothers day with my birth mother or a fathers day with my birth father. I mourn the loss of never having a memory to celebrate one single birthday in my life with my birth parents, the 2 who created me. I have a lot of mourning to do.

I cherish the memories I have with people because to me, in the end that’s all that matters.

There is nothing more valuable on the earth to me than time, and memories. There really is nothing of monetary value in this world that excites me. I could have the biggest most expensive house, car and watch and clothes, or the least of all those things and still feel the same way. None of it makes me happy.

Memories with those I love make me happy. Memories with those close to me makes me happy. Helping others makes me happy. Pictures that are a reminder of memories make me happy. Sharing feelings and thoughts make me happy. Talks make me happy. Sunrises and sunsets make me happy. Spending TIME makes me happy. There is nothing of monetary value that makes me as happy as time which makes memories. Another thing that makes me happy is when people share feelings about me, us or life. Life talks make memories.

I saw a quote once, “When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure”- Author Unknown

Adoptees are left with no treasures. 

So much lost in adoption, but the memories has been hard for me to just “GET OVER”. But I have learned NOTHING in ADOPTION is something we can just GET OVER. We have to process things, so here I am processing.

At least with so much LOST never to return, I DO KNOW THE TRUE VALUE OF TIME AND MEMORIES. Holidays are always a reminder there will never be a holiday with my birth mother or birth father or biological grandparents. Not one memory exists and it never will.  If you have even ONE memory with your FAMILY even when you fight, carry on and can’t stand one another remember some of us never get even one memory with our biological parents, or biological grandparents.

The memory bank is zero. 

This is why I know the TRUE Value of a MEMORY. 

Yes people can say, “Oh, so and so is like family”. Nice thought but it’s not the same. I love you for hoping it is, but until you experience it you can’t compare.

Today I remain thankful for my kids, my church family, my far away adoptive and biological family I have relationships with. I hold you all close to my heart.

For my adoptee family, I love you all! I know you get it! 

I can say learning the true value of time and memories has helped me in many ways. I’m content with the simple things in life. I don’t need fancy things. I love simplicity and “things” don’t make me happy. I would say that’s a pretty good quality to have. My kids say I’m cheap, they make fun of me for being frugal. But I say why buy something at the mall for 3x as much money when I can buy it at Goodwill for $4 and it all brings me the same amount of happiness? Why shop at the mall when yard sales are much more exciting?

So you see, the value of a memory has pros and cons. TODAY I will focus on the PRO’S because focusing on the CON’S doesn’t bring me happiness.

Time and memories bring me happiness.

For those who have memories with loved ones, never underestimate the value of time and a memory. We can’t take the rest with us. Some of us aren’t so fortunate to have something so many take for granted.

Are you an adoptee and have a special value for time and memories? What about pictures? Am I the only adoptee who feels this way? Have you allowed yourself the right to grieve over the loss of so many memories you will never have that so many others take for granted?

Allow yourself to grieve and mourn what will never be. What was lost never to return. You have every right to grieve over the family and memories you lost. Don’t ever let anyone tell you different. And remember, time does NOT heal all wounds. Grieving your losses in healthy ways, sharing feelings and acknowledging your feelings allowing yourself the right to grieve heals your wounds. It does take time, but it’s not going to go away by letting time pass and not addressing these things.

Yes, I’m in my feelings but that’s OK!

Join our all adoptee group for Grief, Loss & Trauma by sending me a message. The only way to join is invite only, I would be happy to invite you!

Thanks for reading.

P.Karanova.

12301494_867390250048922_4988011613038332192_n