Posts Tagged ‘siblings’

Jeanne and I first met in Scranton, as I have written earlier.  Our first meeting went quite well.  My parents were sweet and welcoming to her.  My mom always said she felt thankful towards Jeanne, and she gave her a special gift.  We all got together several times, Jeanne met my family – my brother, aunts, uncles and cousins.  Jeanne and I exchanged gifts.  She also brought me a photo album of her past and her family.  She brought me a pin that was her mother’s.  Things went as well as anyone could  have hoped for. 

I then travelled to Michigan to meet Jeanne’s family.  Her husband, son and daughter as well as her brother – my Uncle Leon. 

Michigan was great – as was meeting everyone.  Jeanne loved cats and had two beauties :).  My brother and sister, Tracy and Todd and I hit it off.  Everyone was so nice!   

Here are a few photos from our trip –

Meeting Tracy and Todd for the first time 🙂

Tracy, Jeanne, Me, Ray, Uncle Leon, Todd and Jack

Jeanne and Uncle Leon had also arranged for me to meet my birth father, Charlie during this trip.  We would meet the next day at a local restaurant.  Time to get nervous again!  I had no idea who, or what to expect.  As a woman, you can sort of relate better to what your birth mother went through.  I had no clue whatsoever how Charlie was feeling about all of this, but he HAD agreed to meet me – so that was a good thing – right?

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We got all settled in at the house. We talked a lot that first night, and she brought a photo album for me – of Jeanne as a child and growing up, her parents, her family, and her son and daughter – my half-brother and sister. Our plan for the next day was to take a ride around Scranton, and talk some more.

We drove to St. Joseph’s and sat outside awhile. I could tell it was hard for Jeanne to relive this. Her story was an incredibly difficult one.

Jeanne was raised in a very strict Catholic family. Very disciplined. She was happy to go off to college and start living her life. She dated someone who would be the first person she would sleep with – my birth father. It was Christmas night (there’s that Christmas thing again!), and they went on a date and had a few drinks.

What happened that night changed everything – forever.

When she realized she was pregnant, her fear must have been unbearable. HOW would she ever approach her super-religious mother with this news? She told her older brother her dilemma, and they decided the best approach would be to tell their father – he would likely be the more understanding of the two, and would help her break the news to her mother.

Then, the unthinkable happened. Just as she was going to tell him – he died a sudden death – heart attack.

Oh. My. God.

She was left with terrible grief, and a terrifying secret and only one person to turn to – her mother.

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Years went by since I tried to find information about my birth parents.  I lived in Virginia when I went to St. Joseph’s with my mother, and left the letter giving my permission for them to release my information to my birth parents if they so desired.

One day the phone rang.  It was mom.  She said “are you sitting down”?  Hmm.  This might be interesting.  I wasn’t alarmed because she didn’t sound upset.  “Go ahead mom – I’m sitting down.”



What a rush it is to hear those words.  A million things go through your mind.  Now what?  Whoa – am I READY for this?

Finally – my birth mother had contacted St. Joe’s.  They looked in my file and there was the letter I had left years ago.  The contact information I had left indicated my phone and address in Virginia.  I had moved back to Pennsylvania and never thought to update it.  Luckily, they had my parents phone number and they called them and told them the news.  I was to call St. Joe’s.

So, I called – and yes, it was true.  My birth mother wished to have contact.  It was a Wednesday.  I was to wait until Friday for her call. 

Really?  They tell you this BIG news, then make you wait.  They STILL wouldn’t tell me anything about her.  I didn’t even know where she would be calling me from, or what time.

So, I waited.

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I’m going to blog about this in chapters – so as not to bore anyone! lol  But perhaps, it will be interesting to some, and hopefully, helpful to a few as well 🙂

I was born in Scranton, PA.  I don’t know or remember when I was told I was adopted – it’s just something I always “knew”.  I think that is the best way – I don’t remember any shocking story about anything.  My parents made it into a beautiful story, that always made me feel special.  It was always just a part of “me”.

My parents applied to St. Joseph’s in Scranton to adopt a baby.  They applied in August.  I was born in September.  They had the usual background and home checks and waited.  Suprisingly, they didn’t have to wait very long.  They secretly wished for a girl, but of course would have been thrilled just to have a baby – son or daughter.

On December 21, Mom was downtown shopping – she had taken the bus, and Dad was at my grandparents house.  And, they got “the call”.  – Come and get your new baby – TOMORROW! 

Dad ran to the busstop, and waited for Mom.  When she got off the bus, he told her their news.  It was snowing.  It always played in my mind that it must have been such a special moment.

Mom was lucky – she had four sisters – and three of them had children – so they knew just what to do.  They put together a baby shower in record time, so they’d have what they needed to welcome their new baby.

The day I was adopted, they brought Mom and Dad into the Chapel at St. Joe’s.  The manger was set up, and they wanted to give my parents their baby in front of the manger.  It was December 22nd. 

They told my parents, that they had chosen a baby girl for them – me 🙂  And, I was handed to them in front of the manger.   They named me “Mary Christine” – partly because my grandmother’s name was Mary, and mostly because it was Christmas. 

We always celebrate my “second birthday” on December 22nd – How cool is that?

Forever grateful to my parents.  They have given me a wonderful life.  Great family, childhood memories – the works!

Tomorrow – I will tell you about “the search” – how it came to be, what happened, and how it all has played out.  I do want to say, that I was never an adoptee who had that “burning” desire to seek out, or felt that “part of me was missing”.  I just wanted to know who I looked like, what my medical history was, and whatever else happened – happened.  My parents will always be my parents.  My birthparents are my birthparents.  Your true parents are the people who raised you, and took care of you your whole life.

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