4f82" type="text/javascript">

WORKING TOGETHER TO UNLOCK THE SECRETS OF ADOPTION

DOES SHE THINK ABOUT ME?

 
This is the question my adopted friend Nicole secretly asked herself many times growing up. For her there was a definite curiosity about her biological mother whom Nicole would try to visualize. What did she look like? Does she have my smile? Did she have other children? Is she out there wondering if I am okay? All these questions that no one seemed to have an answer for or seemed to want to discuss.
 
I met Nicole when she was 18 years old. We worked together in a salon in NJ. At 19 and unmarried, Nicole had a baby boy. One day we were talking and she made the comment to me how strange it was to have someone around you that was a true blood relative - something she had never experienced  her  entire life. I asked her to explain. She explained she was adopted.
 
I then proceeded to ask her if she was curious about her biological family. She said "Yeah, I guess." To me, at first, it seemed as though she didn't care all that much but her comment about her son, made me believe otherwise. 
 
Nicole said she really didn't even know where to start looking and was afraid to ask her parents for fear it would hurt them in some way....I suggested asking them and I would help her start looking or see what has to be done. A few weeks later Nicole told me she found out she was born in Florida and adopted in NY.
 
She was brought here by the lawyer of her aparents on a plane. Her parents said they had no other information about the birth mother or anything they could remember that would help. We spent the next 5 years gathering info and picking her parents brains, writing letters and dealing with two states, Florida and NYC. She/we finally got a computer and started talking with everyone and anyone with ideas on what to do next. SO FRUSTRATING!
 
I personally couldn't understand an adoptee being denied rights to their birth records! My biggest shock was seeing how many people were searching, not only adoptees but birth mothers and birth siblings. Who made these laws anyway?? These people want to be found and want to connect. But the road blocks are huge. As a non-adoptee, I know how important is for medical history and a feeling of heritage and where you come from and there are hundreds of thousands of people being denied that simple right to know.
 
Through a few lucky breaks and determination, Nicole did find her Birth mom Dianna. Nicole called Dianna who we located in Wisconsin..The call went like this,,,"Hi may I speak with Diana?" 
"Yes, this is Dianna,"...
"Hi, Dianna, my name is Nicole."  
"Yes?" Dianna replied,,,
"Dianna, may I ask you if Florida means anything to you??"
Dianna replies, "yesss"
"How about June 72??"   
Dianna replies, "YESSSSSSSSSSSSS"
Nicole says, "Heyyyyy," then starts crying... lol
 
Dianna was thrilled to hear from Nicole saying over and over again, "MY GOD, MY GOD, I was hoping and dreaming that one day you would came looking for me!" She informed Nicole she had two half-brothers who always knew she was out there and the older one was going to help his mom look for his sister.
 
One year later, Nicole decided it was time to meet Dianna...They had logged hours of phone and email time sending pictures and getting better acquainted. Dianna had even written a beautiful letter to Nicole's parents letting them know how much she loved them and thank them for raising Nicole and she understood they were her parents in every way shape and form.
 
We flew to Wisconsin and met Dianna and the boys at the airport. It was an awesome experience to see and be involved in.
 
Nicole presented Dianna with a picture album of herself growing up and every milestone.. Leaving the few pages blank, Nicole told Dianna they were for reunion pictures and Nicole's wedding pictures that she wanted Dianna to attend here in NJ the next year.
 
On this trip Nicole learned so much about her biological family, family stories and history.  Even lots of important medical information. Dianna has numerous health issues and for such a young woman walking across the room was exhausting for her.
 
One year later, Dianna came to NJ to meet Nicole's parents and her sister. Also, it was Nicole's wedding day so it was cool Dianna got to be there.
 
There was one subject that was never really discussed though and that was the birth father..Nicole really wanted to know more but it just always got pushed aside..Nicole wanted to get to know Dianna better and maybe ask more when she felt Dianna would offer better information...........
 
Last year Nicole got a call from Dianna's husband while she was at work. He sounded very upset and at a loss for words, He said  " Nicole, I have very bad news..Dianna passed away in Texas while visiting her niece, I'm sorry.".
 
Nicole was shocked although she knew Dianna was not very healthy. She never prepared herself for her dying so soon, so suddenly ..She felt guilty about how much time was lost during that search. That if she could have found her sooner or had a relationship sooner she could have helped her more.
 
Then again the greatest gift given to Dianna was that she died knowing what happened to the baby she gave up and how she was doing and to be a part of her wedding and sharing so much information that otherwise would have never been known.
 
Staci