I’ve been thinking about this project a lot lately – mostly out of guilt because it has been laying nearly dormant for quite a while now – and I know that it’s time to get back to the work at hand. I won’t bore you with the gory details of my hiatus, just suffice it to say that I’ve made some pretty big changes to my life and lifestyle in the last few years, and those changes have really monopolized my time and attention – in a good way. However, this morning, one of my daughters jolted me to action: she had posted a thread on Reddit about my Adoption Reunion and sent me the link so that I could reply to some of the questions. One of them really hit a chord with me:
Has the reconnection (with her birth family) caused any major changes mentally to your mom or grandma?
Honestly, it changed everything for me, in ways I never could have imagined. Every Thing. Clear down to my core self-image. I like who I am now. It sounds so silly, but that’s a big deal – to like the person you are, and not need other people to validate you, your abilities or your choices constantly. It made me so much more confident, and clear about who I am and what I want in this life. It’s been 7 years now since my reunion, and in that time, I’ve gained the courage to make some huge, critical changes in my own life. My daughter (who posted this thread) probably doesn’t even know how profoundly my reunion affected me, and consequently her and her sisters. I’m writing a book – working title is Little Circles.
There’s a lot more to my answer than that, but that’s the nutshell version. I know that it took me a number of years to be able to see the changes my reunion made to me, and likely I will continue to see changes as time goes on. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has had this experience either, so I thought it would be good to pose the question here:
How has your reunion with your birth-mother/family changed you?
Alexis W. ~ 68.100908
My sister, Patricia Jean Perkins gave birth to a son at White Shield of Portland in 1968 or 1969. I did not know for a few years about her having this child and giving him up for adoption, but when the same man, James Amauba, got her pregnant the second time, she did tell me about the first pregnancy. At that time she also told me that part of the program was that she was not supposed to see the child when it was born; but she did see the child and it was a beautiful boy. She told me that a very nice couple supposedly adopted that child and one of them was a doctor and either had connections in Africa or was going to be in Africa for a while (the paternal father of the child, James Amauba, was an African).
When she got pregnant the second time by the same man, she was determined to keep this child. This time I found out about the pregnancy and supported her in any way I could. She finally told me about the first child when the second son, Aaron, was born. After that, I would find her outside many times over the years looking up at the stars and telling me “he was up there.” She and James had 5 children (including Aaron). My sweet sister just died at the young age of 62. James was deported back to Africa many years ago and Patty raised those 5 children all alone and they are all wonderful marvelous people. All she wanted was to know that her first son was OK and that he knew she loved him deeply.
Can anyone help me reunite this family? I have tried all the on-line avenues and they are a hoax, they all want your money and offer you no information. I sat with my sister as she died and I have to find this child. He needs to know he has a chance to meet 4 sisters and a brother and that his mother loved him more than he will ever know. How in the world do you chase a dream and the unbelievable commitment I have made to my sister? Any help would be so appreciated.
Thank you so much ~ Alexis Warner
Diane ~ 72.070908
My name is Diane, I am 51 years old and am a birth mother who lived at the Salvation Army White Shield Home in Portland, Oregon in 1972… I have many memories from my 3 month stay at the home… When I stayed there is was still very secretive. Birth mothers used fake names (so no one could look us up later), were not allowed to tell very many people where we were (only close family in my case) so my memories seem like a dirty little secret but I know they are real and I have a very big need to let them out… Just to let you know, my son and I found each other 10 years ago. The reunion has been wonderful in so many ways and we are both thankful that we know each other and know “our story”.