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Developing Story: The Family Story Pt II

Updated: Mar 30, 2020

A couple years ago, I got a call from my older brother Dylan. He left a voice mail, "Hey Kenz, when you get this please call." Well that was rather odd, 1. Dylan NEVER leaves voicemails 2. he sounded a little, off. I called him back and he said, "Kenz, I didn't know who else to go to..." interrupting him, " What's wrong? Did something happen?" When your older wiser brother turns to you in such a vague way you wonder what is going on. Naturally I was worried...

This is when he began into his story. "Know how I'm on to find out my lineage/heritage? How it got it for Dad too? Well you can message people through it and connect, and some guy just messaged me and he thinks we are cousins..."


He went into more detail and shared with me what he knew to that point. Then he asked a series of questions:

- Do you ever think about your biological family?

M: Yes. Always have. In fact sometimes I imagine I was born into the mafia and for my protection was put up for adoption (we both laughed).

- Do you think Mom and Dad would be cool about it? Would it upset them?

M: Ummm YES they are going to be cool with it. Are you serious? No it won't upset them.

- Wait, have you talked to them about this before? You didn't tell me about it? (I'll admit he seemed disappointed I didn't go to him about it... not sure if he or not but it seemed that way). M: Yes, lots on and off through the years. Do you remember my sweet sixteen Dylan? I asked for donations to Adoptions Together instead of asking for gifts. Then I delivered it to Janice and got to ask some questions starting then... Mom knew I've always been curious.

- Should I try to connect? I'm so overwhelmed, its such a weird feeling - I don't know how to describe it. It's surreal. I wasn't even looking for them...

M: Overwhelmed? This is AMAZING Dylan! I'm so excited for you especially since I've always wondered what it would be like!

(In reflection... boy I had no idea what it would be like, but now I know exactly what he meant.)

- When should I tell Mom and Dad? How?

M: Whenever and however it feels right.

We both talked about how happy we were to have each other to talk to about being adopting and the overwhelming feeling it is. He thanked me for talking and said I was the only person who would understand and he was glad it was me. I was so touched. '


I didn't hear more than that phone call until the day we celebrated Father's Day, now three years ago. Dylan decided with the development of what he had learned to share with the whole family. He talked about his birth mother (Dana), tante Linda, his many half siblings. He shared little stories or bits about each of them, having been in conversation with many of them. Talking about how they connected, how many of them there are, about where they are now and so much else. Dylan talked about going out West to meet some of them and he was so excited to share. He brought a book that was written by a relative of his (not sure which off hand) about their time in Japan. It was amazing. And naturally, I wanted to know more too. Mom and Dad added a piece of information we didn't know... part of the reason they decided to adopt me after loosing Catherine was because his birth mother and my birth father shared the same name... Dana. It was wild, I was so curious. I wanted to know more. Dylan shared and the conversation was still going around, I asked my Mom is she knew anything about my birth parents beyond what I knew. She said, its a story for another time.

After everyone else left, Mom sat me down and told me about what she knew. She told me that my birth parents had an affair and that she had to make a very difficult decision, felt putting you up for adoption would be best, knowing you'd have a family. She told me that my birth father really wasn't in love with the idea of giving me up but knew he couldn't raise me on his own and ultimately agreed, but was quite saddened. Then she took me down to the filing cabinet with the adoption papers, Dylan's, Catherine's, and mine. She couldn't quite remember my birth mother's name but we found her hospital bracelet from when I was born in the folder and it had her full name, address etc. I came across a 1st Birthday card from JoEllen and Dana with a note saying they'd always love me and that my Mom and Dad had agreed to give me items as they felt I was ready. There was apparently a necklace that he gave me that he wore to match. My parents and I couldn't figure out if I had it and what it looked like - I was so bummed. From what I could tell, Dana really wanted me in his life and really struggled. I asked what else they might have sent, she said that shirt growing up you wore to shreds (is somewhere hidden and stored away from you) is painted by him. That the red jewelry box that I so loved growing up was from him... I had always thought it was from my Grandmama who loved giving me music boxes. I ran upstairs and grabbed it, I had recently cleaned out the room and had put it in the giveaway pile.... I felt guilty but Mom reassured me that it never would have made it out of the house. Then Dad joined, claiming we had one of Dana's paintings... Mom disagreed and Dad went looking but couldn't find it. But I didn't care, I was so overwhelmed. Mom did sit me down before I left and started to cry, I didn't know what was going to come out of her mouth. She said I never met your birth parents, but I know it wasn't an easy decision for either of them. I heard much more about your birth father and knew this day would come... through tears she told me that when I was about 11 years old, my birth father died. She didn't know how but knew from what Janice shared that he was very troubled when they gave you up. I teared up a little, but snapped out of it. How was I allowed to cry - I literally barely knew anything about him?

I drove home and the song "Wait" by M83 came on.

And for whatever reason, I cried all the way home. As if I had known him all along, as if I could feel his presence - I cried. It was really late and also knew I'd be taking Sunrise Yoga for the Solstice the next morning. I got little sleep that night for a number of reasons. I remember being in a fog... present but not as focused as normal. Yoga with Jeramie Vaine was a treat and pleasure as always and I had the pleasure of sharing with him my news.