Friday, July 17, 2009

Birth File

Adoptee Rights Promo - v2

**** For many people who were adopted are not allowed access to their birth records or birth files. They are denied access to their own Identity. A written statement that holds your past, your traits, heritage, and future denied for you to claim. Imagine.

Birth File:

Discovering my family was a miracle. It all started with a phone number that Louie, our Tour Guide, had jotted down when we went to visit the adoption agency that my sister had turned to for overseas adoption. From that number came a chain of events and a three day journey to rediscovering my past and rebuilding my memories.

It was our last day with Louie and we had no set plans. We had travelled and seen so much of Korea in the short time we were there. I told myself, the last thing I wanted to do was to turn our honeymoon into a wild goose chase searching out my family. So, we decided to retrace some of the places I remembered from my childhood including where the adoption agency once stood. Some time back, I had phoned the agency in my attempts to search out my family. After some failed attempts to communicate I was connected to a person who spoke English. It was on that night, I was told the agency had turned into a Daycare Facility.

I was wrong. My memories flooded back to me. Little had changed to the place. We took a deep breath and entered into the building not sure what would happen or what we would discover. It wasn't what was inside the place but the place itself had not changed. I could see images of my sister sitting in the waiting room and the over sized bin filled with toys that were offered to me the day I last saw her. Like a house from your childhood or an old familiar street, I found myself leading the way down a narrow hall. And there, we were greeted by a rush of social workers who listened to our story and led us to a little room. Our journey had begun.

I was full of hope and uncertainty. The social worker was very polite but questioned why we did not search the agency out much sooner. I explained how I received information stating that the agency had turned into a daycare center. I followed by expressing how happy we were to have found them. She noted that there were information in my File of a call received a few years back but had no way of reaching this person since they did not have a contact number. She further explained the sensitivity of this situation and how sometimes people do not want to be found. I found myself watching her as she spoke but I could not focus. I was much too anxious and excited to hear what she was trying to convey in our meeting. I wanted to hear those words,"It's all here in your file. Your Sister has been contacting our office to see if you have reached us!"

I continued to stare at the case file needing to believe it was ALL there. One surviving folder that awaited for my return held my past, my identity, and my dreams. Breaking my visions, reality kept speaking to us, telling us that the process would take weeks and that the hopes of finding them was very slim since my sister left very little information with the agency. Again,she added that my siblings may not want to be found even if we would searched them out. As she walked away, she politely reminded us that we could look though my file but could not copy it due to privacy concerns. As she left the room, Louie, quickly jotted down a phone number that was written inside the file. This is where our journey began. It began with a number that gave us hope and courage. A number that brought forth the past and led us to an incredible adventure.

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