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the first few weeks of my search

Here's what I know to begin (the true story of my relinquishment):
  • I was left at SOS Children's Village in Daegu, S. Korea on July 21, 1972 around 7pm
  • Local police escorted me to White Lily Orphanage (that evening?)
  • August 23, I was sent to Holt Children's Services in Seoul (second orphanage?)
  • October 13, possible registration to foster family in Seoul
  • December 19, 1972 - emigration to the US to join my adoptive family at JFK airport, My mom, dad, nana and papa were there to meet me off the plane.

Here's where I've begun:
  • Email inquiry sent to SOS Children's Village who says they have no record thus far, but are looking into a more thorough search with further info I provided. 
  • Step 1, to initiate a search through my adoption agency, complete - confirmation of adoption facilitation through Holt International. Access to forms to request Post Adoption Services. 
  • Step 2, Petition notarized and mailed to US office in OR, to be matched with information via their HQ in Seoul to determine if they have enough information for a possible birth family search.
  • Begun the process to cross reference my 23and Me results with other DNA matching sites, sourced through other adoptees (Family Tree DNA, My Heritage, GED Match)
  • Printed form for DNA collection via a program just launched this year through the Korean Consulate and the S. Korean government, as they have been compiling a database of families searching for their biological children.
  • Joined 2 world-wide FB groups for Korean Adoptees - it's staggering the number of people searching for their birth families

Here's what's coming up:
  • There are a lot of new questions and a lot of new feelings to reconcile staring directly at what's true. 
  • Since becoming a mom, I always now feel things from both the side of the child and the perspective of a mother. It's a very, very strange dissonance as an adoptee. 
  • The intersection of my story and my parents story. How a month after I was born they had already begun the process to adopt a child, which also means their journey and desire to become parents started long before then.
  • I likely had a foster mother/family too. It's not a part of the adoption story that gets spoken about very often, and there is loss there (on both sides) too.  
  • The multiple layers of early, preverbal grief and loss
  • The industry of adoption (from a capitalist perspective), and what we think constitutes 'a better life' 
  • So many relevant thoughts on Little Fires Everywhere, which I just finished - would love to hear other people's thoughts!
  • There are so many adoptee resources available, and how I wish I had had them as a kid growing up (another kind of grief and loss)
  • Going back to S. Korea with my kids
  • How much I truly love my family
  • The complex and hard truth, that love is not always the same as belonging
  • Did I mention all the feelings?