Life as a single Mother-Empty nest, Dating, Ex-husband, Best Friends, Full-time Employment, Unemployment, night school...How do these all relate to one another? Come with me:

Sunday, April 11, 2010

We acquire the strength we have overcome. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

If you have not read my story part 1, part 2 and part 3 you may want to read it before this post.

There is so much more to this story than this small segment from my teen years. And I may share more of that story here. For now, just this.

The year following the birth of my baby, T and I continued to date. That following May I graduated from high school. We spent our summer apart. He at basic training at Ft Leonard wood and I  worked the summer at the wonderful grand canyon. The time apart was hard and it was probably good for us too. 

We married the next June and within four years we had three more children together. We were a family, a happy family. It is funny how your mind works. Like a keyword into a computer search, a particular word or event would bring something to mind. When I was pregnant with my son, Jeremy women would often tell me what to expect with the pregnancy. It was so hard not to say 'I know'. I was honest with my doctor, he knew about the previous birth. He had to. But it was a strange feeling to have 'been here before'.

Many times through life, I would wonder where he was, and was he happy. Would I someday discover him on a news story or in a store? Evey time I heard the name Caleb, I would take a second closer look. I wondered would I recognize him if I did. 

After nine years of marriage, we were divorced. That is a story in itself. It was a bit bitter at times, his second wife could be really mean with me, with my children. T and I had always said we would, when we felt the time was right, sit our own children down and tell them about the past, about their brother. But when is the right time?

I didn't have to answer that. While visiting their father one weekend when my oldest was just in the sixth grade, my ex felt it his place to make that decision. When my children returned to me that Sunday I was stunned to hear them ask. 

"Do we have a big brother?"

I sat my children down and we talked. I explained to them that yes, they had a brother. That there was a chance they may meet him again some day. But that it was up to him and we must respect that. I explained how some families cannot have children and that what their father and I had endured although not easy, was a miracle for another couple. They had a lot of questions but in their young minds, made some sense of it. 

In the years since that conversation, he has come up a few times. My children ask me if I would like to find him. They would tell me that they would like to find him. I explained that it was a closed adoption and that it was up to him, when he turned eighteen, he would be able to get information to find us if he chose. If he chose not to dredge up his past that too was his choice. 

October 2004 Caleb turned eighteen and he was once again on my mind. I knew the files were legally locked but hoped that someone, somewhere had information. This is the time of the internet,I just wondered where he was, what he looked like and how he was doing. I didn't want to interrupt his life if he was happy. I had given up the right to be his mother. 
But I did search. There were sights with men named Caleb. I would peruse photos of these men, looking for traces of our family lineage... But always came up short and really with little information to go on, it is like finding a needle in a haystack. 
I remember finding a site it was a virtual version of a bulletin board. You could read through the heartbreaking stories of people searching for adopted family members. Some were taken from drug abusing parents and siblings were searching for them. Some were born in the fifties and sixties and were taken from their young parents because of what was seen as guilt or family disgrace.
Reading those stories I was grateful that I had the choice to make. It was a huge site with pages and pages of posts. So many lost souls. 
I searched the site the best I could for a Caleb in California. And although California is a large state and Caleb is a pretty uncommon name, I came up short. If he had been awaiting his eighteenth birthday to find his past, if he was out there looking for me. ( and I had no reason to think he was) he had not been to this site. 

And life went on. 

Until July 21st of last year. 
I received a message on my facebook account. An account I had opened to get back in touch with many old classmates following our 20 year class reunion. Facebook shows that you have a message similar to email and there is a small thumbnail of that users profile picture. I clicked on the message and before I had a chance to read the message, that tiny little picture took my breath away.
It was as if my ex husband was staring out at me from the screen, but not quite. Then I read these words:

I'm sorry if you can't help me, but I've been looking around for a person that may or may not be yourself.

I was born in Provo Utah on October 2, 1986. I was adopted and moved. After various searches online your name came up with a variant spelling of my own. Yours as the birth mother and mine as the adoptee. Should I know you better than I do? 

Yes! Yes it was him.My son had found me and there was no mistaking. I cannot tell you the strange feeling to be looking at your son, a son you have not seen since he was born, since he was 8 lbs. And here was a man staring back at you and you know he is your son. There was no mistaking.

We have chatted many times online. He is a happy, healthy 23 year old living in an adjoining state. We have made plans to meet, the kids, I and Him. He calls me mom. We are all excited to meet. He has asked a few questions but he understands. He has told me that in that situation he feels he may have done the same thing. He is not hurt, he has had a wonderful life and he is grateful.
This summer the kids and I hope to drive to see him. He is full-blood sibling to my children. They all have the same genes. I suppose there may be more to this story after the meeting.  Things have a way of working out.

I know God will not give me anything I can't handle.  I just wish that He didn't trust me so much. - Mother Teresa


  1. What a wonderful blessing! Love how our lives work. All will be as it should be.

  2. I came back to see how it all went. I'm glad I did. This is a beautiful story. Not just for you, but for him. Can't wait to hear about your meeting. Congrats...all over again.

  3. Mark- Love that. All will be as it should be.

    FAM-Thanks for coming back. I cant wait myself.

    Thank you both for reading this portion of my story. And for your support in my choices


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