Not So Permanent & Irrevocable After All

A little over a year ago, the daughter I had not seen since just a few months before her second birthday was in my arms again. You can catch up on that BY CLICKING HERE ON THIS HYPERLINK.

I never would have imagined we’d be where we are now. Without going into too many details, I’ll just say that the same rights a parent has to their minor child have been returned to myself and my husband via a permanent order of custody.

I spent last week reading IKL the story of my pregnancy, her birth, & relinquishment by way of the book I wrote covering it, Whispers of Grace.  How surreal to read the book I wrote about her, written just before we had contact with her, while she was sitting next to me, living with me, her bedroom just across the hall. I made it through almost the whole thing without shedding a tear. But there is no way to read aloud about what it’s like to permanently and irrevocably surrender your rights to your newborn TO that once newborn who is now beside you without shedding some tears. Her arms flew around me fast and she said, “It’s okay. I’m here now.”

How did I get this lucky? Why does my luck have to come at the expense of her leaving her friends, her culture, her home? How does she handle all of this with such grace?

I don’t know. I just know that I love her. It doesn’t feel like she’s been gone all these years. At the same time it’s so obvious she has and that hole where those years are can never be given back. We can only move forward. One day at a time.

 

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Search Angels – Assistance For Your Adoption Search & Reunion

Finding people can be hard. Throw in adoption and it can be even harder, or seem impossible. Many times adoptees or their families are at a total loss on how to even begin. I would like to talk to everyone today about search angels. I have had the privilege of learning so much, over the years, from these wonderful people. They have taught me so much about not only becoming a search angel, but helping others navigate search and reunion.

What is a search angel?

A search angel is someone who, free of charge to you, uses their own resources and time to find someone you are looking for, typically in an adoption situation. Many times search angels have had their lives touched by adoption in one way or another and this is what is the driving force to do what they do. Each search angel has their own resources. Some of these are in the form of paid databases and some of these are in the form of hard to get birth indexes. Utilizing just one search angel can definitely lead to a successful reunion, but I would like to point out the “new” way of doing searches.

Search angels that work WITH each other, combining resources and talents, to give the greatest chance of a successful search. I have seen, time and time again, through Facebook groups made specifically for this reason, the magic of search angels working together.

Before I end this article I will give you the links to a new search angel group that a very good friend of mine runs. She is probably one of the best there are out there and I have learned a lot from her.

Upon entering one of these groups, you will need to keep some things in mind.

Typically, search angel groups will not search for someone under the age of 21 without prior approval from an admin and then only under unique circumstances. Search angel groups will not search, in most circumstances, for an adoptee that was removed from the home under CPS. Search angel groups do not have magical access to hidden date of birth registries for everyone born in this country. They use intuition and the resources they have to paint a picture and connect the dots. Why is this important to know? Because you need to have a few things in place if you want your search to have the greatest chance of being successful.

Non-identifying Information

Non-identifying information, and how it is obtained, will vary from state to state. Typically it will include details about birth parents, or adoptive parents, such as what they do for a living, things they enjoy, what their health is like, and possibly way more stuff. What makes one search successful over the other? It’s in the details. In other words, the non-ID. Before initiating a search it is imperative that you look up your state’s laws on non-ID and what you are able to get and then get it. If you are unable, for some reason such as money, to do this then you should definitely still start your search but try to save, over time, the money required for this information. I do find it deplorable that any agency would charge hundreds of dollars for this information, but it is such important information to have. Some states or agencies won’t charge anything or will only charge a very small fee to cover their ink and paper used to print it. I’ve seen others charge upwards of $800. Which leads me to my last point.

Search angel groups can also be a valuable resource for finding out exactly what you will need to do and the steps to go ahead to get more information. Be sure to read any group’s rules before posting as there are usually specific requirements that are needed to proceed. This isn’t to be mean but, rather, to make sure your search has the BEST chance of success.

For any search in any state I would like to introduce you to Research & Reunion Team. You can find your way there by clicking their name in this post. It will open in a new tab.

If you or the person you are looking for was born in California, however, you are asked to join California Search Group. You can find your way there by clicking on their name in this post. It will open in a new tab.

Finally, if you have any questions don’t hesitate to comment. I wish you the best in your search!

-Astrid

My Desperate Plea – Searching – October 29, 1993, Kingsport, Tennessee

There are SO many people that are searching for birth family or for the child they relinquished. I know that this may seem like one of the many thousands, but I really need everyone’s help here. Tawney is such a wonderful person. She has been through so much as a birthmom. More than anything I want to be able to give her the gift of knowing that her daughter is alive, happy, and healthy.Even though her child’s adoption was done in 1993, it was a traditionally closed adoption and she knows next to nothing. I have watched this brave mama celebrate in the reunions of others, help in searches for other people, and still have no peace of her own to be found. I hate that I have not been able to help her, or the many other people that have tried. I know Tawney’s daughter is out there somewhere and, as a last resort, I am hoping that social media can help us find her.

Tawney has two Facebook pages to assist in her search. The first is October 29, 1993 Searching for My Daughter 10-29-1993 Kingsport, TN and the second is October 29, 1993 Searching for Hope.  Tawney’s daughter, who she named Hope, was born October 29, 1993 in Kingsport, TN. Tawney suspects that Hope was adopted across state lines because of one of the stamps on her non-identifying information (which is all on her facebook pages). There was an ICPC stamp on it which stands for Interstate Compact for Placement of Children. Hope was born in the Holston Home for Children.

One of Tawney’s posts from her page. It is absolutely heartbreaking.

tawney2

This is a desperate plea to anyone who has gained anything from reading my blog. Tawney means the world to me and I cannot sit around waiting anymore. PLEASE share this post, share her page, share her flyer, just share! Get the word out. Any search angels who think they may be able to find Hope please do try! Help Tawney’s heart find the peace it needs. Adoption should never be this way, cause this trauma.

Thank you,

Astrid

TAWNEY** Special thanks to Indiana Britt for her beautiful flyers.