As many of you probably know, I am adopted and so proud of my adoption story as it is such a love filled one. I was adopted as an infant and my parents have loved me and cared for me and been there for me for my entire life. I was so lucky because not all adoption stories are like mine.
I have been wanted and loved and been given a beautiful life that I have enjoyed fully. In fact, it never really occurred to me to seek out any “biological” parent because I always felt like the universe placed me with my parents, exactly where I belonged. But, like most adopted people I would imagine (I can only speak for myself), I did always wonder about siblings and if there was someone out there that looked like me. As I grew older I also wondered about medical history as well. I live with a hormonal disorder called PCOS and few other things and was always curious about their origins.
When I met my husband and we considered options for growing our family (specifically pregnancy), I of course also wanted to learn what I could about what may or may not be lingering in my genetic history. Then the restaurant had a fire in October, and 6 months later the pandemic hit, and with it came multiple shitstorms happening every day so curiosity about my medical history (and everything else) took a back seat to survival.
Sometime in summer of 2021 when I came up for a little air, it occurred to me that one thing I could do for myself (of many things I needed to do for myself that I have been working on) was to do a DNA test with ancestry.com and at least get to the bottom of my origins. While my heart and soul are pretty much as Italian as it gets, I was like – TOTALLY awed to discover that in addition to the Greek heritage I knew of, I was also Northern European, from the Aegean islands, the Baltics, Northern Africa (Morroco!), Sweden and a host of places. I mean, when I tell you I could not have anticipated those results I really mean it, LOL! But how cool to have this answer and see this journey of what makes me, me.
And then just like that, I started to see hits on the website with blood relatives including a first cousin. I was thinking about how to reach out to her when she beat me to it and we began communicating via email to discover that her uncle was in fact my biological father and that I have not one, but two half siblings!
My half sister is named Nicole, which is my middle name. We share the same dimple when we smile and have the same hands. Our voices are similar and our personalities are too. The same with my two female cousins, Amy & Sofia, that I had the chance to meet. The beautiful thing about these wonderful people is that they welcomed me into their lives with open arms and tons of respect. Never pushy, always there and really warm. When we finally met a year later I felt like I had known them my entire life and it brought me such peace.
That my seem like a strange word to use, but it is exactly what I felt. There was no turmoil for me, no drama. My parents were aware of everything as it unfolded, my biological family also always respected them as well. Truly meeting these three beautiful, strong women made me feel connected to my own genetics for the first time in my life. Remember I have never known anybody related to me by blood (always by heart!), so seeing women with similar features and voices was so cool!
Nicole, my sister, has a really big heart. She is funny and has a quick wit, is so close with her family and has this great relationship with her husband. I am always seeing laughter and fun in our communications and it shows you the kind of person she is. Like me, she is hard working and not afraid to pursue her dreams in life. Already for me she has become someone I love to hear from who is always sending support my way.
I have yet to meet our younger half brother but am very much looking forward to that day as he has a beautiful family of his own, and a life that he has worked hard to create, and I cannot wait to get to learn more him too. Already we’ve chatted a couple of times and I look forward to that developing over time.
But today, on National Sisters Day, this one goes out to my younger sister Nicole who I felt an instant harmony with, and am so grateful to now have the chance to get to know!
And to Amy & Sofia for always supporting throughout this journey, thank you!
Happy National Sisters Day to you, sorellina mia! I am excited for what the future holds for us. 😘