The Day My Heart Smiled a Million Smiles – a Birth Mother’s Reunion

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Did you know that today is World Smile Day? I didn’t. I didn’t even know such a day existed. It turns out Facebook is pretty educational. I’ll take any excuse to smile so let’s celebrate it, shall we?  How about with a story that will make you smile? Yes, I think that’s a good idea. Remember the post I wrote about the day I gave my son up for adoption? (The Day My Heart Ripped Into a Million Pieces – a Birth Mother’s Story). Today I will tell you about the day we were reunited.

It was a day like any other. I had just gotten home from a busy day at work. I was tired but my hungry family awaited a meal and I was in the kitchen cooking. I was stirring a pot of something or other on the stove when the phone rang. My husband answered it and a few moments later he came into the kitchen. His exact words are kind of a blur now, but he said something about “sit down”, “you want to take this phone call” and “son you gave up for adoption”. My heart was pounding and skipping beats. My head was reeling. Was this really happening? Was the day I had longed for for 25 years finally here?  I felt excited and terrified at the same time. I don’t know what I was scared of . But I was definitely scared. My hands were trembling so hard I could barely hold the phone.

My mouth was dry and I felt like my throat was closing up on me. Nonetheless, I manged to get out a feeble “Hello”. A woman’s voice responded. “My name is so-and-so and I’m calling about the son you gave up for adoption. I am his girlfriend and he has been looking for you.I’m so glad I finally found you!” She told me that he had been trying to find me for several years.  I was a traveling nurse back then and moved around a lot, so every time he would find me I was gone. Thank God I stopped traveling, and thank God they found me before we all got rid of our landlines or this day may have never come!

She proceeded to tell me my son’s name and that he was very kind and handsome. My heart flooded with joy but I was skeptical. Could this just be a cruel plot? Somebody I knew from high school that decided to play a horrific joke on me? Somebody who found me on the internet who was trying to extort me? But then she talked about the letter that I wrote him when he was born. I had given it to my lawyer for the adoptive parents so they could give it to him when he was older. They did give it to him, and she knew about it. This was real.  All those years of not knowing anything about him, or whether he was even alive, were sheer torture. I never stopped thinking about him. I never stopped loving him. Now I knew that my beautiful baby boy turned into a fine young man. I was at peace.

When I heard his voice on the phone I was taken aback. He sounded exactly like my next-born son. Exactly. If I hadn’t known better, I would have thought it was him on the other end of the phone. We talked for a long time and I learned so many things about him. No more wondering. I found out he was an artist – just like my mom, and dad, and nieces and nephews. He loved music just like I did. He even studied audio production like my next-born son did. All of these were genetic ties. They were not environmental because they were not present in his adoptive family. It was very surreal. There really are no words to describe how I felt that day.

A few weeks later, just before my 40th birthday, he came to visit me. He stayed to celebrate my big day, and let me tell you — it sure took the sting out of turning 40. When we picked him up from the airport it felt just like my long lost boy coming home. When I had to say goodbye again it was very hard. It ripped open old wounds, but they needed to be ripped open so they could heal properly. Now, 10 years later, he is still very much part of my life. If that doesn’t make you smile, I don’t know what will.


And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. – 1 Peter 5:10

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