I’m not asking “who am I?” Because I think I know myself well enough now to tell you who I am.
I don’t think we ever know ourselves completely, but as the kind of person who tends to think a lot, I think I can explain myself at least a little.
Where to start, though?
I was born in Hong Kong thirty years ago. My mother was practically a school girl, seventeen and still at home with her parents. Being born out of wedlock it was admirable that my birth mother and my pawpaw tried to raise me even still.
It was actually because I became seriously ill that they had to give me up.
I was placed in an orphanage, the Po Leung Kuk, and due to circumstances out of their control I was there for three years. I like to believe that it was all part of God’s plan and timing.
To explain my view further, my parents, Alison and Bruce, applied for adoption and the day I was born was the day they were approved. Bear in mind, they didn’t know I existed at that time. They didn’t find out about me until I was 2 1/2ish.
That’s definitely God’s doing.
Anyway to cut a long story short, mum and dad picked me up on my third birthday and took me home to Melbourne, where I lived for seven years.
I had some great experiences while living there. Made lasting friendships through primary school and church.
We also adopted my younger brother in this time
And I met my birth mother.
We moved to Townsville in 1996, and I feel I remember more of the time we lived there than in Melbourne. I formed few lasting friendships (Sarah came to my wedding this year) and for the first few years we were part of a group of families who were all adoptees/adoptive.
It was great to be able to be part of a group of people who had shared stories. I wonder what happened to those families?
In this period, we went back to Hong Kong to meet my birth mother again and also to meet my brother’s birth mother.
On a related tangent, I think it’s absolutely amazing that my parents were able to connect me with my birth mother. My adoption was a closed one, which meant that it wasn’t actually supposed to be allowed for me to search for her. But, mum and dad believed it to be important and I am grateful that they did. I personally don’t remember how I felt the first time, but even now it’s still kind of surreal when I think of her, as I consider my parents to be my parents. As it should be.
Another note, I probably faced racism in school, but it wasn’t something that ever fazed me any, it was all kind of just a part of the ingrained culture of high school and wasn’t any more bad or worse than any other form of teasing.
Even as an adult I don’t really get any negative racism from anyone. And I think the fact that I was brought up to tolerate and accept people who are different from me helps in this. Also my upbringing in the Church.
I know I haven’t mentioned much about that, but, I’m talking on more of a broad view of my life as an adoptee. However, in essence, God is at the centre of all of it. So, there really isn’t any need to delve into my faith right now.
I must mention briefly that when I was in high school and doing my first degree while living in Townsville, we went to a Presbyterian Church that I eventually started to only go to once a month or so, because it just wasn’t drawing me. I never moved away from God, even when studying a science degree, but I just became jaded about the church itself.
Fast forward to when we moved to Perth, and I found my second home, Riverview. But, that’s a whole other blog post. Suffice to say that my 9 years in this city has helped me grow even more in myself, and forever reminds me of how grateful I am for the opportunities I’ve been afforded because I was adopted, and the people I’ve met. Including my wonderful husband, who is also adopted (along with his sister and her husband).
Adoption is special. Adoption is about creating family. Adoption is all about love.
God bless you all.
**Apologies for the disjointedness of some of this blog. I don’t think in perfectly, grammatically correct English.