Tag Archives: #puzzle

Puzzle Pieces

18 Jul

My brother and his family came to town. I don’t get to see them often because they live far away. It was the first chance I really had to talk to him about everything going on so we took a few minutes away from the family and I sat down and told him everything.

I was really nervous because I was afraid of how he was going to respond but I needed to tell him. It wasn’t something I wanted him to find out from anyone else. He was only five years old at the time my mom got pregnant but he still had memories. I told him how this all came about and the process I had been through and the connections I had found. As we talked I could see the wheels turning in his head.

He seemed most intrigued when I told him father #1 had been a police officer. He recalled a picture of himself when he was a little boy wearing a police t-shirt. He said he had always thought it was random he was wearing a police shirt but maybe it made sense now. He too was trying to make the connections. He wondered how old father #1’s daughters had been at the time. Maybe one or both of them had been his babysitters. What?!? I never would have even thought of that possibility. Maybe! I am not sure where they were at that time but they would have been old enough.

Pieces started to come even further together as he filled me in on different details of their living situation, his father, and the things he remembered. Snapshots of his past.  It made my brain start turning again. Darn you brain!!!

Extra, Extra….Read All About It

12 Jul

News!! She has news!! I am in the dressing room at the store, trying on clothes for my upcoming vacation. I stop instantly and start reading.

Anna’s father had reached out to father #1’s eldest daughter. She had not responded so he made the decision to go directly to father #2. He approached him and explained the situation to him. Father #2 said he did not recognize my mother’s name and to ask me to please not contact him because he did not want his wife to get mad.

Heartbreak. Confusion. Questions. Reality. My mind was racing in a million different directions! Please don’t contact him because his wife will be mad??? That was a statement I was not expecting. Not because I didn’t understand that this could obviously be an issue that could potentially cause tension (hence the way I was trying to approach everything in a way to protect everyone and their privacy and relationships) but because it had a guilty tone. It just opened the door to more questions, but at the same moment slammed the door in my face because he did not want to talk to me.

The emotions hit like a train off the rails. Silent tears in the dressing room as I processed it all. There was nothing more I could do. All the was left was to accept the fact that yes, I was disappointed I could not get a definitive answer, but be grateful for the fact that I came from a place where there was no hope of ever knowing who my father was and somehow, I had it narrowed down to two people. That had to be enough and I knew after a few days of raw emotion, I would be able to accept that. That is me. I am able to see the bigger picture. Sometimes I just need a few minutes to process my personal feelings.

Of course I had every intention of honoring his request. I told Anna to please have her father assure him that I understand and will not bother him. I went home that night and cried. My search was over. The conclusion, there was no conclusion. There was no definitive answer. All that work. No closure.

I won’t even begin to try to list all the thoughts running through my mind, but I will say that it is crazy how many scenarios you can come up with for just one statement made by another person.

The next morning I was still a little sad but there was no room for a pity party for one. I got up and went off to work. Work was a welcome distraction.

That afternoon I got another message from Anna. She wrote to tell me that her parents had told her grandmother (my aunt) about me. They had not said anything before because they were waiting to get as much information as possible, but now that we knew Anna’s father and I were 1st cousins, they were ready to tell her. At first she was in shock and could not believe the news but then……then she seemed kind of excited to have a niece!! She was going to have Anna over the next week to help her scan pictures for me. What’s more….she would love to talk to me!

Oh my goodness how the emotions changed. From sad to happy in seconds.

The Moral Debate

14 Jun

It took a few days but we finally got word from Anna’s father. He said that he did not want to get “Father #2” involved at this point so he was going to reach out to the eldest daughter of Father #1 to see if she could help.

I wasn’t really sure about that one. I don’t know his reasons for not want wanting to involve Father #2. Maybe because he did not want to stir up any trouble if it was not yet warranted? Maybe because he is married (and was married at the time that my mother got pregnant)? I could come up with a countless list of possible reasons. However I was more surprised by the idea of reaching out to the eldest daughter of Father #1. Maybe he has a closer relationship to that part of the family. I have no idea. But my internal moral debate was that this poor woman’s father had passed away just under 5 years ago. Maybe he was my father too but wouldn’t it be better to just ask Father # 2 and if it is not him then just let Father #1 being my biological father be the secret of the three of us (Anna, her father and me)? I hate the idea of hurting his family. Imagine, they find out they have a new sibling or step daughter but can’t even go to their father/husband for answers. It seems to me that if it were him, the kindest thing would be to let them continue living their lives with the memory of the person they loved intact.

It might sound silly, but either way…whomever my father is…I want it to be his decision as to whether or not he wants me to know his family. My journey is to find him. To know who he is. To have a name. A face. Know who the other half of me is. If he wanted me to be involved with his family…to know him, my half siblings, etc I would be open to that. But that is his life and while we intersect, we each also have our own paths. If I am welcome in his world, I would embrace the chance with open arms. If he prefers for his own reasons to keep me a secret, as long as I have my answers I can respect and understand that.

With Father #1 having passed away, he is not here to make that call. By introducing his daughter, who we know is his daughter, into this, I worry. I worry about hurting her. The memory of her father. Especially if I am not even his! Then it would have all been for nothing.

As for Father #2, he is married. To the same woman he was married to when my mother got pregnant.  My dilemma in trying to reach out to him is how to do it discreetly. Out of respect to him and his wife, especially as I am not certain he is the one, I would like to have that conversation discreetly. But how do you do that with someone who lives states away and is retired, at home with his wife all day?

I want answers. I want to solve the puzzle. I want to be able to walk away from all of this with no regrets. I don’t want to come this close and settle for the fact that I narrowed it down to two people and didn’t try to find the answer. Father #2 is getting older. I don’t know how much time I have (he was considerably older than my mother). I don’t want to let the days slip away.

People tell me not to worry about everyone else. Not to worry about the wife and relationship of Father #2 or the family of Father #1. That this is my story and I deserve the answers. But I can’t help it. While I am determined to continue moving forward towards the truth, I still want to protect the second half of my DNA. I want to make sure that whomever he is, that his family is treated with respect. They deserve that. As much as I deserve the truth, they deserve respect and consideration.

I am waiting patiently for Anna’s father to get back to us. I am trying to give him the chance to do things his way. It is after all his family and he knows them. He knows what they can handle so if he feels that it is ok to approach Father #1’s daughter, then I am ok with that. After all, that is his decision, not mine! He took the same test as I did and got the same results as I did so if he too wants to know, then it is up to him. Maybe she knows something. Maybe she doesn’t. But it is a starting point. In the meantime I am working on my own backup plan so if they come back to me with nothing, I will be ready to move. No time wasted in between. But can you really ever be ready for something like this?

All morals aside, my mind started to consider the possibilities. Was there a way to figure this out if the daughter of Father #1 was willing to help?