Prepare for the Worst, Hope for the Best

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Prepare for the Worst, Hope for the Best

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Posted: 4/1/2009
Note: Names, Identifying informaiton and details may have been altered to protect personal identities.

"Prepare for the worst and hope for the best." That's Debbie's philosophy for life in general, and she approached her search for her birth family with the same attitude.

"I was adopted at 2 days old. My adoptive parents were always very open with me about my adoption. I was five when they explained that I was very special because I was 'chosen.' I have always wanted to find my birth mom and thank her for taking the time to search for the right parents for me. My birth mom is in her 70s. Time is running short. I have started searching for my birth mom and dad many times but have had to stop due to my own family crises. Would you please help me?"

That was the email Debbie sent to Search Quest America last October. "I had faith in Search Quest America because I watched The Locator show and saw that everyone is treated with so much respect. I wanted my case to be handled with that same regard."

Like most clients, Debbie expected her case to be solved within six months. "When they found her within 4 days I was stunned." Even more amazing is the fact that Debbie's birth mother is still alive and will be celebrating her 80th birthday in June. In fact, she was overjoyed to reconnect with Debbie over the phone. She said, "I missed you and I thought about you every day, and especially on your birthdays."

Meeting her daughter will be the best birthday present she has ever received. Debbie will be flying from California to Maryland to meet her for the first time April first. She has already met three of her half-sisters and her half-brother. "It has been exhilarating to get to know my half-siblings. I couldn't ask for more."

However, Debbie's reunion isn't picture perfect. She was very disappointed to learn that she was conceived from infidelity. Her birth mother was in the midst of a divorce and her birth father was a married man. Finding her birth mother enabled Debbie to find her birth father's name and birth date, which led her to his family in Hawaii. Unfortunately, by the time Debbie found him, he had already passed away. Although she has 2 half-siblings on her father's side, they are not as receptive and do not plan to pursue a relationship with Debbie.

"I have experienced both sides of reunion. I have felt the joy of finding my birth mother and siblings and being welcomed into a new family with open arms. But I have also felt the disappointment of finding a birth parent deceased and family members who are not eager to reunite," Debbie says. She wants to encourage others to recognize that both situations are plausible, and when beginning your own search it is important to "prepare for the worst and hope for the best."

Yet finding her birth mother has provided Debbie with priceless information, including her heritage. She found out that she is half French and half Norwegian. After all is said and done, Debbie is happy she searched. She feels blessed to have the opportunity to say 'thank you.' "I feel so much respect for both of my mothers. There's no jealousy or animosity. Just joy."

(Written by Mica Burton on Debbie's behalf.)
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