National Adoption Month

She Feared Being Rejected By Her Biological Sister, But What Happened Instead Was So Rewarding

"Five minutes later, after realizing I was the real deal, she called me in hysterics."

November is National Adoption Month. In honor of the month, we will be bringing attention to the thousands of people in foster care awaiting forever homes, as well as those who provide and advocate for them. These stories emphasize the idea that families are bound together by the love they share, rather than their biological roots.  

My hands were shaking. I was alone inside a Starbucks in the middle of Chicago, and I was about to take the biggest risk of my life.

You see, I was adopted at birth. Through my own investigation during adolescence, I learned that I had three full-biological siblings who were older than me. I found out their names and had been secretly keeping tabs on them via Facebook for nearly a decade. I was always waiting for the "right" time to make my move until that chilly, rainy December afternoon when I realized after years and years of pondering that there is no such thing as a "right" time.

I had recently come across a quote by Jack Kornfield in Buddha's Little Instruction Book that kept circling around my brain: "The trouble is, you think you have time." To me, he was saying that humankind delays taking action either because of fear or because of the fairytale idea that if we wait long enough, what we are hoping for will fall neatly in front of our feet. But what if it doesn't? Not only was I getting older, but my birth parents and siblings were getting older, too.

As I sat drinking a piping-hot Americano at a tiny wooden table and reading a book on twins separated at birth who reunited, the quote once again forced itself to the forefront of my brain. This time, it propelled me forward. I gently closed the book, grabbed my phone, and found the paragraph of text I had saved in my phone's note section for over a year. It contained what I would want my first words to my birth family to be. I clicked on that text, selected "copy," and carefully opened the Facebook application. I typed in the name of a sibling and went to her profile, and then I pressed the "message" icon for the first time. There it was: a blank page with a flashing cursor. I tapped the cursor and clicked "paste." The string of words I had once mulled over were now one button away from serving their purpose. My head was spinning, and there was only one way to make it stop. I closed my eyes, took a deep breath, and hit "send." Not even a minute later, I got a message back that read: "Wait. Huh? Lol"

With those three words, my body felt like it was on fire, and I began pacing back and forth so fast, it was as though I was running in circles.

She didn't know.

Five minutes later, after realizing I was the real deal, she called me in hysterics. I thought she was mad and apologized profusely for dropping this bombshell on her, but she kept telling me she loves me already, and she would have searched for me if she had known. After our short phone call, I immediately messaged her and asked how to refer to her. Not even two seconds later, she said, "You are my sister if you are comfortable with it."

And that I am. A shoe has never fit so perfectly.

This story is from Chicken Soup for the Soul: Step Outside Your Comfort Zone: 101 Stories about Trying New Things, Overcoming Fears, and Broadening Your World © 2017 Chicken Soup for the Soul, LLC. All rights reserved.

Cover image via Antonio Guillem I Shutterstock


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