February 25, 2013

Am I a Success Because of Adoption?

“Adoption is the reason you are a success today.”

I have heard this, a lot.

Many adoptee friends have shared with me that they hear this quite a bit too, as the reason for their successes in life.

Photo Credit: Mirimcfly, FlickR
Since I started this blog I have been contacted by everyone from attorneys to professors to extremely wealthy people...adoptees who, no matter how many material possessions they have or what they have achieved, are hurting.   They long for peace. All the while, many in their lives say, "Look at all that adoption made possible for you! You would have no success, were it not for adoption."

February 24, 2013

When It's Hard to Breathe

There are six to seven million adult adoptees in America, alone. This doesn't count the many adoptees outside of the USA, many of whom greatly struggle with significant loss each day of their lives. Countless numbers are currently trying to find their original families through Facebook and other social media venues.  Unfortunately this is one of the things they have to resort to with the unjust laws that are in place in all but a few states. 

I am so grateful for everyone who reads here at Adoptee Restoration, and among the readers are my friends Steve & Indy Dixon. They are not adoptees. But they are listening. They are among my non-adoptee friends who "get it". They care and they want to help.  Steve & Indy are music pastors in New Bern, NC and also operate 120db productions. They have a desire to join with us in spreading the word about adoptee loss and pain and the need for change and reform. Recently they said, "Deanna we have this song that we wrote that we want to use to help bring awareness to adoption issues..." and so we have this collaboration between 120db and Adoptee Restoration!

This video features Steve and Indy’s original song, “Hard to Breathe” and many of the photos we have all seen on our Facebook newsfeeds of people searching for family members. I believe you will be very touched by the video. Many people have already told me were affected by it in a profound way. Please pass it on! It is our prayer that this YouTube video will help raise awareness.

Also, if you would like to download this amazing song, Hard to Breathe, for free so that you can listen to it anytime, anywhere-- just go here. 

I normally don’t post here on the weekends, but I’m making an exception for this. Hope you all are having a great day. I am praying for all of you, as always and hold you close in my heart. 

I love you all ~ 

February 22, 2013

When Adoptees Want to Die

 I was born in 1966.

Even if it would have been legal, my mother told me the night we reunited that aborting me was never even a thought in her mind.   

This nullifies the notion that was proposed to me on quite a number of occasions: “Just be grateful your mother didn’t abort you.”  Or, “aren’t you so glad your mother chose life?” 

 I was so in the fog that I even used to get up and testify in church, thanking God that my mother chose life.

But, abortion was never even a factor in my adoption. 

So thanking her for letting me live was a moot point. 

Photo Credit: Markoz46, FlickR
This realization was one of the things that accelerated my journey out of the fog.

February 20, 2013

Dear People Who Aren't Adopted:
My DNA is Important Too!

Passing the nurse’s station of the maternity ward of a local hospital, my husband and I made our way to the room where our church member was located. Taking a customary spritz of the hand sanitizer outside the room in the hallway, we paused a moment to rub it in, knocked on the door and went inside to find a beautiful newborn girl and her parents.

Photo Credit Gregoryrallen, Flickr Creative Commons
After settling in and oohing and ahhing over the baby for a few moments, a hospital employee came in wheeling a cart with a computer that contained the proofs of the baby’s first photos. “Is this a bad time to review and select your photos?” she asked.  Before the parents could answer, we interjected that we would be perfectly happy to visit with them another time, and give them time in private to view and discuss the proofs. “No…please” they insisted, “we’d love it if you’d stay.” So we did.  

February 18, 2013

How The Church Hurt Me
An Adoptee Speaks Out (Part 3)

What happens when adoptees share their story at church? The result can bring healing, or harm.

Today's story comes from my friend and fellow Lost Daughters blogger, Samantha. Her story breaks my heart, but also makes me glad I'm a pastor. I want to do absolutely everything in my power to make sure that this NEVER happens at our church. And I want to do everything I can to increase awareness in my sphere of influence with other pastors and leaders.  I am passionate about bringing change regarding this issue, if you can't already tell!  

You can read more of Samantha's writings at her adoption blog, Neither Here Nor There.

As with Part One and Part Two of this series, I will let the story speak for itself and not comment further on the actual post. I look forward to joining readers in the comment section.

Samantha shares:

I am an adoptee in reunion, and love both my families, yet I still have healing to do. I recently joined a women's group at church that is going through the 12 steps of spiritual recovery. I have joined this group in hopes of moving further along on my journey. 

February 13, 2013

"I'm An Adoptee And I Don't Have Issues!"
A Closer Look...

“I know a person who’s adopted and they’ve had absolutely none of the issues you speak of…” 

 “I’m an adoptee, and I’m just fine…”

“Everybody doesn’t struggle with adoption. I’m one of those people. I’m so happy that I was adopted!”

While it’s a fact that people are different and not everyone’s story is the same, I take issue with the statement that any adoptee can be guaranteed to be void of post-adoption issues simply based upon their current state of being.

My question is: are they still breathing?

February 11, 2013

What Do Sore Nipples and Pastoring
Have in Common?

Before I  wax eloquent about the commonalities of sore nipples and pastoring, I have an  announcement to make...

Today is my debut at Adoption Voices Magazine. I was recently asked to serve as a regular contributing writer there. After they see I am writing a post about nipples it may change things. The first post they have chosen to publish is one that ran here first. Apparently they kinda like what I write here. I'm humbled and, still finding my way. All of you who read here...thank you. I wouldn't be at Adoption Voices were it not for you. 

Now, on to pastoring and sore nipples.

 Service had ended at the church where I serve as co-pastor. After greeting  a few people, a young lady approached me and quietly said, “PD, can I talk to you for a minute?”

She said something about it being “kinda personal” so I motioned to her to join me in an area off to the side, away from other groups of people who were milling around, talking.

February 8, 2013

How the Church Hurt Me
An Adoptee Speaks Out (Part Two)

This post is part two in an ongoing series here at Adoptee Restoration. If you missed the first post, go here and check it out. 

I don't know when I'm going to end this series. The sad thing is, it could go on forever and there would be no shortage of people's stories to tell.  

Today's story comes from my friend and fellow Lost Daughters sister, Julie. She is an adult adoptee who was born, adopted and raised in a closed-record state in the northeast United States. She has been in reunion with her paternal and maternal natural families since 1998. In addition to serving on the boards of two adoptee rights organizations, she is a published journalist and an award winning copywriter. She blogs regularly here as well as serving as co-editor and a columnist at Lost Daughters. 

As I did previously with Jenn's story, I will give no further remarks at the end of Julie's story here on the post. I encourage you to read and give your thoughts in the comment thread.

Julie’s story

My original parents were high school sweethearts, attending a religious school. My natural mother was raised in a very strict religious home. When they conceived me during their freshman year of college at a religious university, they decided to get married. My paternal grandparents offered their home and full support in raising me. My maternal grandparents did not approve of my father and immediately consulted the pastor.

February 6, 2013

How The Church Hurt Me...
An Adoptee Speaks Out (Part One)

Since I've been an active part of the adoption community, I've heard countless stories from my adoptee friends about how they've been hurt by the church, and why many of them want nothing to do with it. It breaks my heart. There are nights I read their stories with tears streaming down my face.  

Hearing their stories is part of what compelled me to start this blog. There are so many to share, it will take more than a post. Therefore, this is part one of an ongoing series.

Am I sharing these posts with the goal of bashing the church? No. Please understand, I love the church. Not to mention my full time vocation is serving in the church. However, God hates injustice and we should too.  Those of us who are aware must speak up so that change can come. For those of you who think this type of behavior only existed in past, think again.  

Many of my adoptee friends have never openly shared their stories of how the church has affected their lives. They have only told other adoptees. Now they have bravely agreed to open up in this forum, because I have asked them to.

February 4, 2013

The Purpose Driven Adoptee

“Why search? Your identity isn’t about your earthly family. Your true identity is in Christ.”

“Your home is in heaven. What does any of this matter in light of eternity?"

"You're adopted by God. We're all adopted, as Christians. That's who you are, and why you're here."

"Don’t get stuck on all this adoption stuff and searching for your birth family. It’s a distraction from what God has for you in life. He's called you to minister to people, not get wrapped up in this.”

I’ve heard all these things. 
I experienced it back when I was searching, before reunion. 
And I sometimes still get things like this from other Christians, now. 
I know other Christian adoptees hear these type of things from people too, because they've told me.