This is a picture of a teen buckling her seatbelt like before an adoption reunion. She must be aware of possible rejection and this post prepares a searching person for that.

Adopted and Foster Kids: Buckle Your Seatbelts Before Birth Parent Reunions

It’s hard to believe this initial contact with my birthmother….she rejected me in less than a month.

A voice that sounded like mine said, “Hello.”

“Marjorie?” I said.

“Yes,” she said and we began talking about trivialities.

“What do you look like? How tall are you? Do you have a dimple in your chin?”

I frantically took notes the entire time, not wanting to forget a single detail. Minutes turned into hours as she told me about her successful social and professional life as an interior designer.

“Clients used to send their personal jets to pick me up for jobs.”

Hmmm, I thought. I had always loved interior design. In fact, I almost studied it in college. People tell me I’m good at it. Now I knew where I got the talent. But I kept having to reassure myself, “Sherrie, she’s your mother.

She’s not going to reject you because you are a woman with an unexciting life like hers.” Still, that fear kept popping into my mind.

My mother told me later that she called her priest in the morning and as he listened to her reveal her long-guarded secret (me), he reassured her that I would be a source of blessing.

The next week a hand-addressed envelope came in the mail. I tore into it and found two photos. My first reaction was one of disappointment. She looked so different than I had pictured her. Along with the photos was a note:

Enclosed are two photos — one taken last week and one when I was nearly your age. I didn’t sleep a wink last night, as I’m sure you didn’t. Best wishes to your husband and thank you for the lovely visit. I am reeling from all of it. Hoping to hear from you soon.

She received my letter and photo the same day. Later when we talked she said, “I just got your photo and you know what? When I look at your sweet face, I just know that you’re mine.”

Those words were like those of a new mother adoring her child and I will always treasure them.

I entered the reunion door unprepared for possible rejection.

Adoptive and foster parents can help their kids prepare for that possibility.

That will be the next post.

(This is an excerpt from my book called 20 LIFE-TRANSFORMING CHOICES ADOPTEES MUST MAKE. For more info:

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