When I got the response from my brother regarding our genetic match from a DNA spit test, I immediately felt optimistic. His response was at once sensitive and genuine, his writing so authentic, and his declaration of his intent to avoid ’disrupting anyone’s life or causing any distress’ was at the same time sweet, and symbolic of the closed adoption process of the 1960’s. It was a note that I had waited my whole life to receive. The elation of ‘finding’ our brother was enormous. As weeks passed with exchanged messages which have become ongoing monthly email tomes, we have become heart friends, soul siblings, connected by humor, wit, verbosity, and ultimately, acceptance. I will admit to wallowing in guilt and sadness for who my teenage mom had needed to be to give him up, the adoption process for him, and our collective lost experience. I struggled with wanting to care for my perceived rejection on his part that it took ‘so long’ to find him and waiting until mom was gone. He did not hold that against me. In fact, my existence was news to him. I had never considered that he didn’t know he had sisters, a lagniappe to being connected genetically to our shared mother. Perspective is a heavy influence to my understanding of all of the parts of this, our siblinghood. His graciousness in accepting that mom had passed, but joy to have undiscovered relatives, was a relief. He has been most gracious in having done so much in his own life to accept decisions and outcomes not made by either of us.
And now, I just have a brother. I have told everyone in my life that would listen. I save reading his emails until I have a coffee and devoted time to belly laugh. We met and it felt right. Pandemic says we won’t meet again for a bit, but I’m not worried. I have a brother for life, I’ve stopped feeling rushed. He said it was ok for me to write about him and share this miraculous connection as, ‘he feels certain that having my name associated with yours can only inure to the benefit of my general reputation.’ Ha! He writes like that, he’s a lawyer, you know, and a fine fine man to be a sister to.