Archive for October 18th, 2011

October 18, 2011

My Adoption Story – The Next Step

“The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change your life; and the process, if nothing else, will be its own reward.” Amelia Earhart

I left you with this quote toward the end of my last post regarding my adoption story, which you can find, here. As I had written, this quote has pertained to dozens of different situations in my life…and I can always find solace in the words of the quote.

Monday, was no different. I mentioned yesterday that a new series was beginning to unfold, but I guess it’s really a continuation of an old series. This is the next step in my adoption story.

I’d like to back-up just a bit, and share with you what the time in between the posting of My Adoption Story – Parts One and Two, and now, has brought.

First, the amazing emails and messages I received regarding my story from adoptive parents and adoptees all over the world, left me speechless. I want to thank each and every one of you, your support was completely unexpected, but gave me strength, and a sense of belonging within a community I had no idea even existed. I have been completely overwhelmed by your graciousness.  Again, thank you so much.

About a week after the My Adoption Story, Part Two, was published, I received an email from my mom, Mom CYL, explaining that I had some of the information in the post incorrect, and that she wanted to talk to me about some of those things…and that she’d really been floored by my thoughts. She was obviously upset. At lunch a few days later, she brought an entire file full of information regarding my adoption, and birth mother. We talked about things we had never talked about before, or at least feelings we had never talked about before. I grew to understand her feelings regarding my birth and adoption, the joy and pain surrounding it, and what learning how I now felt had made her feel. We had a truly amazing conversation that day. I hope that she will guest post in the near future regarding her story in my adoption. She’s really an amazing person.

Moving on from that lunch, I had much of the information I would need in order to truly search for my birth mother. I now had all of my adoption records, and even some information about my birth mother that I had never known. As I had written earlier, I felt like I had gone as far as I could, searching myself. There were just too many variables present that made me feel like I was chasing ghosts. I was at a point where I felt completely lost in what the next step could possibly be.

Because of the blog posts, and a woman I had met through guest posting on Adoption.com, I had learned about an organization called, Search Quest America. Search Quest America came highly recommended by the woman I had written back and forth with, at Adoption.com, had a really good reputation among the adoptee community, and is the official search entity for the popular cable TV show, Troy the Locator, who also came highly recommended. Search Quest America seemed like the right place to start, in my journey to find my birth mother.

I decided to truly take the next step.

I jumped online and filled out a short questionnaire regarding my situation and was told that someone would contact me shortly. In the meantime, I spoke with Mom CYL about the process, my decision to search with Search Quest America and how the process might unfold. She seemed very onboard with the process, and offered to help in any way I needed. When I mentioned Troy the Locator, she said that she too had looked into Search Quest America because of the show, and that it was a company she also believed in.

The next week, I received a call from a woman at Search Quest America, named Linda Rasmussen. She collected a little more information about my birth mother, talked with me about my story, explained what Search Quest America’s process would be from beginning to end, and discussed with me my options for when they found my birth mother. In just a few short minutes, I felt a connection with Linda, and developed a trust in her, and in Search Quest America, almost instantly. This conversation happened the afternoon before we left for Jackson, WY on vacation, so I told her that I would try to get back to her the next day with some more information she requested.

We had terrible phone reception on the drive through Wyoming, and once we arrived I was consumed with…relaxing. Last week, playing catch-up at work consumed my workweek. So, Monday morning I decided I had some time to get back to Linda. I sent her a quick email apologizing for my slow response, and ask her if it would be ok that I document my experience here on Cue Your Life, as well as on any guest posts I may do.

Five minutes later, I received a phone call from Susan Friel-Williams, the CEO of Search Quest America, thanking me for offering to write, and letting me know that she would be taking over my case. I gave her a little more information and some insight to my story, and again, felt really good about the conversation. Search Quest America is staffed by people who have searched for lost relatives, birth families, and friends, and who have firsthand experience with the feelings and frustrations that go along with the process. Susan said that she was really excited about my offer to write about the experience, because she felt like not enough people do. Like me (before my adoption story posts), very few adoptees understand that there is an entire community of support available; people who understand and can help support adoptees in all the emotions that go along with being adopted.

I really had a feeling that regardless of the outcome, Search Quest America was the right choice and that it would be an amazing experience. Linda and Susan had both already supported me, just by listening and truly understanding where I was coming from. No matter what happened…I was learning that support is out there, and that there is a unique bond that adoptees share. It is very comforting.

Earlier, I wrote that Monday was no different, as far as the solace I find in that the words of Amelia Earhart as quoted above. This is true.

Monday morning I decided to take 5 minutes to shoot out an email regarding some follow-up, and the search for my birth mother. Monday morning, I got to speak to yet another woman (Susan) about my adoption story, and received support from someone who truly understood what I was feeling, and who appreciated my desire to write about my story. Monday morning, I brainstormed some ideas for what I might write as a next post in my adoption story. Monday morning, I hung up with Susan, feeling like the process would truly be its own reward, and that I was really excited for the months to come and what they might bring.

Monday morning, ten minutes after hanging up the call with Susan…she called me back.

Sometimes, the next step takes you far beyond what you may have expected.

The fears are paper tigers, right?

On Thursday, I’ll give you the details of that final conversation Monday morning. It was, unexpected…to say the least.

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