Monday Notes: Finding My Biological Family (Part II)

I’ve been trying to figure out how to begin this post.

Humorous? Those ancestry.com commercials are cute, right? White people finding out their brown, African roots; black people finding out their white, European roots. It’s all fun and games, until you click on that other link and find out who your biological father is.

Somber and Poetic? Aunt Catherine said she asked my pregnant mother one question, who’s the father? Joyce looked at her, lifted a finger, and pointed at the janitor, a lanky, white man. DCFS had reported a janitor found me as a baby. Not thinking there could be more than one, the storyteller in me put two and two together and made myself biracial. Turns out, I’m not. My father is an African American male. I know because of an ancestry DNA kit.

Straightforward, yet Cheeky? Like 4 million other people, I thought I’d spit into a tube, mail it off through UPS and find out from what part of Africa I hailed. Cameroon/Congo, Benin/Togo, and England/Wales are the top three. But ethnicity isn’t all you can learn there. When I clicked on the little green icon called, View DNA Matches, the full name of my biological father appeared. This is how I found him.

My feelings about finding my biological father, who we’ll call CB, are just as varied as these introductions. I’ve been trying to pin them down, but they range anywhere from a #KanyeShrug to elation. Those of you who’ve followed my blog for the past four years might understand clearly.

img_9137Much of my time has been spent healing and talking about my adopted father, who passed in 2015. His death brought pure peace to my being. An integral connection ended for good. Although a different person, CB is still my father, and finding him had the potential to open another relation called, father. Was I ready for this? Did I need this? These questions swarmed in my brain.

It is my belief that no matter what your head says, your heart and soul always know better. I’d released the idea of knowing my biological father, not because I didn’t want to know, but rather because I thought it an impossible feat. I’d forgotten my own 2018 mantra: Anything is possible, especially finding your father via 21st century methods.

So, I am ready for this. Relating to my deceased father and processing hurtful emotions has prepared me to connect with whoever CB is. I’ve learned not to judge as harshly as I used to. This has been useful. When CB described the circumstances surrounding my conception, a one-night stand, I felt liberated, not judgmental. Who am I to judge a one-night stand, or a baby born out of wedlock to two unprepared people?

img_8993I also needed this. It might seem shallow, but I finally have a complete picture of who I am. This is something I’ve noticed biological families take for granted. Growing up, I always felt physically out of place. No one’s skin color was like mine. No one shared my body type. No one walked like me. No one held their head like mine. In fact, the size of my butt was often the topic of conversation; I now know that comes from my mother’s shapely frame. I was also often told to stop walking slew-footed and to stop walking like a turtle. It might not be healthy, but now I see why these things were challenging for me to “correct.” CB and one of my sisters have similar characteristics.

I’m prepared for this. Learning to love myself has had one major impact. I no longer seek relationships to fill a void. This means I now enter situations as a whole person, with clear boundaries. Therefore, I am good no matter what may come from this new connection. And if I’m not, I’ll add it to the memoir 😉

Part I

43 thoughts on “Monday Notes: Finding My Biological Family (Part II)

    1. Awww thanks again! Yes, it took me all of my teen and young adult years to figure out how to do this, but it’s so much better entering relationships as a whole person (sounds like a duh moment, but really), as opposed to entering all needy, with broken parts you hope someone else will fill 😉

      Liked by 2 people

  1. “When I clicked on the little green icon called, View DNA Matches, the full name of my biological father appeared. This is how I found him.” — This is so wild to me! Living in the future is wild. I mean, that’s really all I can say about that.

    Also, Kathy with straight hair!

    I get shallow when things get serious. That’s how I process. But! I will say that I’m glad you’re sharing this journey with us.

    That whole last paragraph, though. I love it. I am moving toward that place.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ummm…it was insane. And then everything after that went super fast.

      LOL about the straight hair. Wearing my natural hair was actually a pivotal point in my becoming my true self…when I think about it, that one decision opened up so many more.

      Is that also a part of being passive aggressive…the shallow when things get serious part? I’ve found a lot of people are like that. It lightens the mood because who wants to deal?

      ❤ about the last comment.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m not being passive aggressive when I do it. Emotions make me uncomfortable, so my initial reaction is to side step serious emotions. So I comment on your hair even though it’s the least important part of this post. I understand this about myself so now I just let it be and then figure out what I’m feeling underneath that original response.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Aha! And because I run towards emotions, I’m over here like what’s “the feeling underneath the original response.” I wanna know girl! I mean not right this minute but that’s what I usually wanna know.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Kathy some of this sounds harrowing to me – someone who grew up with my biological parents, and took all that means for granted. I’m glad that you’re finding peace and resolution in this deeply-involved work of finding your biological family.💞

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Leslie! That’s a good word: harrowing. I’d agree. It was a bit stressful for me initially as I tried to (and tried not to) take it all in. I’m definitely at peace, but you know what? I’d actually lived in a state of acceptance prior to finding my bio father, which I think was helpful in the way things have flowed so far.

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  3. Not being adopted, but having three fathers…I can totally resonate with the lesson that needed to be learned “I am good, regardless the quality of the connection”.
    Your story will inspire and empower so many, I am sure of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You’re one of the writers that I learn so much from. Your writing style comes across, always, as effortless. I always tell people about you when they ask who inspires me. Your style reminds me a lot of Tayari Jones. Anyway, thank you for including us on your journey! I’ve always known WHO my father is but I didn’t reconnect with him until I was 19 and that reunion was incredibly emotional. Write that memoir, Kathy! I’m definitely reading it. 🌸

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Awww thank you ❤ I really appreciate your saying this. I suppose you never know who you're reaching! I haven't read Jones' work yet, but now I will.

      You're so welcome. I just want people to be less shame when it comes to life, you know? Even if you're not adopted, there's always something nagging at you from childhood (or wherever) and I want people to know it's okay to work through it.

      Anywho, I'm working on it 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  5. This post as well as so many of your others have been so powerful and thought – provoking. You always have a positive perspective on life experiences! Sidenote: My folks are doing the DNA Ancestry-thing…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Marquessa! I absolutely have to; otherwise, I’d be a hateful little woman lol

      Brace yourself. These kits have brought all kinds of foolishness into the light…so much so that Time magazine has a column specifically for them.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. You are such an inspiration, Katherin and I’ve found myself fascinated by your stories – you write with such much heart and insight. You really put into practice a positive mindset. Thinking in such an open way leads to feeling better. I love how you are doing that.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. There’s no way to know the truth if we don’t pursue it. Glad you found your biological father and your aunt. I loved the part about “feeling physically out of place” in your adoptive family because of the way you looked and moved, how you discovered these things were your biological heritage and therefore, the “right” ways of being FOR YOU, natural and expected, not something that needed correction. When you love yourself and be who you are, it puts the ball in the other person’s court; they can accept you, or not. Either is OK when your self-image doesn’t rely on their approval. Peace to you as your journey continues to unfold, KE. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for understanding that Joan. “Feeling out of place” stayed with me for a long time, and it wasn’t until I traced it back that I began to see why this was a recurring theme in my life. And yes, indeed. This helped me to learn to love who I am, just the way I am.

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  8. Your story is affecting, fascinating and inspirational. I’m looking forward to reading that memoir, Kathy. Because you are writing it, no matter what comes from this connection, right? I think even some of us with biological families can learn a lot from your story. Thank you for sharing very personal account. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. so well said, The V Pub – my sentiments exactly. goodness, Kathy, you’ve once again reminded me that how we react to what we’re handed is truly what defines us. you are gorgeous inside & out, & you’ve got much to teach us. many many tx for sharing ❤

      Liked by 2 people

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