Title: I Define My Own Truth: Love Yourself First-Blog Post #12

Subtitle: Do I Matter? An Adoptee’s Perspective through Her Relationships

I’ll never forget that momentous day at age fifteen when I discovered that I was adopted. It felt as if someone had cut my heart into a million pieces. I no longer celebrated my life; I simply braved it. Yet somehow, I knew that I would embark on a journey of healing. A journey to accept myself. Or maybe even find the Divine in me?

The seven crucial  emotions below were the hallmarks of my twenty-nine year journey to gradually loving myself:  Abandonment, Denial, Anger, Depression, Forgiveness, Acceptance of Self and Celebration of Self.

Celebrating self is two-fold:  First you must learn and trust to accept self. My truth—my bliss—lay in my heart. When I was ready to accept ME, I found some semblance of peace, which lead me on an unfolding path to […]

Title: Everyone is Equal-Blog Post #11

Subtitle: Do I Matter? An Adoptee’s Perspective through Her Relationships

I treat everyone that I meet as an equal. Prior to discovering peace, it stung to fill out a medical form, because my records do not exist. I could be walking down New York’s 42nd Street, passing by my blood sister, half-sister, brother, cousin, aunt, or uncle, whomever—anyone out there might be related to me. I have a wistful longing to be loved by all humans; something everyone desires. I am gratefully blessed with two strengths: Will and Love.

In the act of having dreamt that my biological father died of a heart attack, this was enough to have a fantasized image in my head. Then my cousin, Ina related to me about my biological father being an American soldier. He no longer existed as a phantom with no identity. I finally had some closure, but I will never know if he ever […]

Title: You Can Never Do Enough for Your Kids-Blog Post #10

Subtitle: Do I Matter? An Adoptee’s Perspective through Her Relationships

My relationship with my children had many challenges; being when my boys, I thought appeared to not be listening or when they lied to me. Could it have been that my words didn’t register with them? Might my annoyance with their response have derived from a possibility of them not understanding me? Which is not to say that they didn’t pay attention to me? This might explain why our children then tune us out. I’ve discovered that it doesn’t serve me to say “you’re not listening”, or “you didn’t hear what I said.” From my experience, this fuels the communication barrier. Alongside these challenges and from my own experience, I believe that “parenting’s” most challenging task would have to be persistence; therein lies “unconditional love”—a staple for every parent(s) who desire to achieve success. I remember Dad related to me: […]

Title: I Felt Abandoned-Blog Post #5

Subtitle: Do I Matter? An Adoptee’s Perspective through Her Relationships

The morning after my discovery, I searched the house looking for familiar surroundings. I noticed several Arabesque prints, and tall East African ebony statues. They’d constantly reminded us where we had been, who we were, and who I was. But who was I?

My self-worth plummeted overnight. One day I belonged to this family. The next day I found myself in a stupor playing ring around the rosy with, “Who am I”? I never found my answer. I didn’t know who I’d become, let alone how I’d heal. After learning that Dad adopted me, I disliked the “A” word with a vengeance. I never wanted to hear it spoken. I hated repeating those three words, “I was adopted”. How would I ever forgive my parents?

I dropped into the matching couch opposite Dennis, who was reading a book. He looked so calm […]

Title: Her Pride Stood In the Way-Blog Post #4

Subtitle: Do I Matter? An Adoptee’s Perspective through Her Relationships

Late one evening in 2011, my mother confided the truth to me: that my biological father held three different professions. I slept peacefully and relieved that night believing that my biological father was a famous person. I was ecstatic to have finally found my truth. The following morning, I received a page-long email in my inbox from my German cousin, Ina, who lived in Berlin. I’d recently turned 51. Throughout her lengthy email she explained that she always knew about my adoption. I’d never discussed my adoption with anyone and she’d simply assumed that I not only knew but was OK with it. She then shared something related to her mother Helga. When my mother was pregnant with me, she wanted my Aunt Helga to talk some sense into my biological father by telling him that he had a child […]

Title: You Ask A lot of Questions-Blog Post #3

Subtitle: Do I Matter? An Adoptee’s Perspective through Her Relationships

My relationship with Mom became more and more strained. I went from being an extrovert to an introvert. I urgently wanted to know everything that there was to know about my biological father. Every time a thought popped into my mind, I stored it away to ask Mom later.

One day, I asked her if my biological father had blue eyes like me. She answered, “Yes. He was tall and handsome.”

I asked eagerly, “What did he do?”

“He was an architect.”

I frowned. “That’s not fair. I thought you couldn’t remember.”

Mom looked agitated. “Did I say that? You ask a lot of questions.”

It was clear that I was on my own. I’d become my own “Inspector Clouseau.”

Later on, Mom confided in me that my biological father was never around. He drank too much. I was skeptical about everything she told me after my […]

I Felt Embarrassed By My Adoption-Blog Post #2

Subtitle:  Do I Matter? An Adoptee’s Perspective through Her Relationships

I hadn’t the slightest notion of how to act. No matter how hard I tried to pretend that everything was ok, nothing was the same since my traumatic discovery. It would not be for many years that I could express or even understand how embarrassed I felt after finding out by accident that I am an Adopted Child. Or how powerfully it affected how I viewed myself, and my self worth…

Now, every time I asked Dad something, it sounded strange to say “Dad”. I felt embarrassed to mention the word.

Dad winked. “Hey, Carina, “Let’s pick up some skewered chicken and watermelon at the suk.”

“Awe, do I have to, Dad?” I frowned.

He smiled, hoping to win my approval. “Come on Carina, it’ll be just you and me, kid. We’ll have fun.”

I forced a smile. “Oh, alright, I’ll be right out after I […]

  • My Family
    Title:  I Don’t Remember His Name-Blog Post #1 Title:  I Don’t Remember His Name-Blog Post #1

    Title: I Don’t Remember His Name-Blog Post #1

Title: I Don’t Remember His Name-Blog Post #1

Subtitle:  Do I Matter? An Adoptee’s Perspective through Her Relationships

I learned of my own adoption shortly after my fifteenth birthday while growing up in the Middle East, and it came as a shock. Two weeks after my mother returned from attending her mother’s funeral in Germany, I had an important question for Mom. I had no idea that those irresistible urges to snoop inside of Mom’s jewelry box would jumpstart my journey of self-discovery. What I’d most recently discovered inside of the Syrian jewelry box was entirely different from the truth I’d known my entire young life. I noticed that the date inscribed on the inner band of Mom’s wedding band was 1962, two years after my birth in 1960. I thought it odd, then deduced that they’d simply married two years later and six months before my brother, Dennis, was born. I knew that I could handle anything […]

  • Welcome! Welcome!

    Welcome!

Welcome!

A recent New York Times article by Herszenhorn and Eckholm, “Putin Signs Bill That Bars U.S. Adoptions, Upending Families” ; it states that a significantly large number of children are without parental custody in Russia. I remain deeply concerned about this heart-wrenching news. My prayers go out to Robert and Kim Summers of Freehold, N.J. hoping that they will reunite with their Russian boy after waiting two years.

 

_______________________________________________________

1. “Putin Signs Bill That Bars U.S. Adoptions, Upending Families”, New York Times, December, 2012, “A version of this […]

  • Downtown old Jeddah Downtown old Jeddah

    Downtown old Jeddah

Downtown old Jeddah

I strolled downtown old Jeddah. I will never forget the suk’s (traditional market). Frankincense, myrrh, cumin, clove, cinnamon and cardamom teased my nostrils. Then the “muezzin” called out its daily prayer vibrating through the still air.image12

“Muezzin – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A muezzin (Turkish müezzin from Arabic: مؤذن mu’aḏḏin), or muzim, is the chosen person at a mosque who leads the call to prayer (ahan) at Friday services …”