One of these things is not like the other

For the first 22 years of my life, my family history was a mystery to me.

I’ve never felt like my parents weren’t my parents, but I did feel like I couldn’t claim their heritage as my heritage on account of they look nothing like me.

Not even a little bit.

My father is Middle Eastern and my mother is Russian and Polish.

One look at my family and the song “one of these things is not like the other” plays.

I always wanted to meet my birth parents because I wanted to know my family history.

My DNA, as it turns out, tells me that I’m Norwegian and Portuguese on one side while the other side is French, German, and British.

Quite the hodge podge of DNA.

I’m about as blond and blue eyed as they get.

Well, I had NO IDEA where the Norwegian came from until I talked to my PATERNAL aunt who reminded me that my birth mom’s father was Norwegian.

What a roundabout way to find out where you came from!

I had a great-grandmother named Engaborg (Ingeborg?) who loved the Lawrence Welk Show and giving sugar eggs for Easter and was actually full-blooded Norwegian.

So, if any of you wonder why I look Nordic but cook Middle Eastern food like a native and can make pierogis and stuffed cabbage like a true Polish mother, it’s because I get to claim ALL OF MY HISTORY NOW.

I think the best part about being an adoptee is getting to be a blend of a little bit of everything from your birthfamily to your adoptive family.

In a way, I feel like the patchwork quilts I make:  a little of this, a little of that, and a whole lot of love packed into a nice bundle.

Reunited!

When I was 22 years old, I met my birthmother.

I called her on the phone and for the first time she answered.

She had the most beautiful voice I’d ever heard and I knew someone with a voice that kind would NEVER be mean to me.

So I told her who I was and asked if now was a good time to talk.

The rest is history.

In 17 months, I will have known my birthfamily LONGER than I haven’t known them.

I find this a strangely reassuring milestone.

It’s as if I went away for a little while, or took a long vacation, only to return.

I have three families now – mine, my birthmother’s and my birthfather’s.

Try juggling holiday commitments when you’ve got three families.

[ASIDE: If I was married, it would be EVEN HARDER].

Two weeks ago, I made the trek to Santa Rosa to visit my birthfamily and I had a really great time.

My birthmom and I got to hang out and chat before the rest of the family showed up.

I talked to my sister, who was so nice I can’t help but think there’s potential for a real relationship to develop.

We shared a meal before I drove for three grueling hours (it normally only takes two) during a deluge where even my wipers on hyper speed couldn’t keep up with the rain.

And just cuz I love them BUCKETS, I’m posting a pic we took that day. . . in all our clever goofiness.

We’re in DISGUISE!

fullsizerender2

One Lucky Baby

IT’S MY BIRTHDAY!

I was born first to Paul and Sherri, two teenagers living in Sonoma. They accidentally conceived me in a treehouse during their eighth grade year in school.

Sherri was sent to live with her aunt and uncle in San Jose to await my birth.

I was born on November 2nd. I was a forceps baby and I came out with a banged up, scratched up head (see pic below) but no worse for wear.

FullSizeRender FullSizeRender(1)Alice and “Mario”, my parents, got the word that I’d been born and I’d be joining my 5 month old sister Lisa. My dad got to the hospital and looked at his itty bitty newborn daughter and declared that I looked like a frog on account of my legs stuck out sideways.

Screen Shot 2015-10-26 at 4.19.46 PMI will forever be grateful to Sherri and Paul for putting me up for adoption. I was lucky enough to meet them when I was 22 and they have been a part of my life ever since.

IMG_7821Nothing pleases me more than explaining to people how lucky I am to have two sets of parents who love and adore me.

I am one lucky baby.

Happy Birthday to me!