While I’m flying to Mumbai, I’m having mixed feelings. I’m looking forward to visit Mumbai again,
go to my orphanage and continue my roots travel to Chennai. However, I’m at the same time sad to a certain extent. I’m sad because I will miss my home and significant ones.
It feels like that I’m not that unhappy after all in that small and crazy country. I even feel surprised to question why I’m away from home (again) to explore India and find possible traces of my past.
I wonder if I will find some clues or even concrete signs of my past in India. Regularly I read stories, testimonials and sometimes even nightmares of fellow-adoptees that have found their birth family.
For some, a search for biological relatives results in positive experiences, cherished moments of reconnecting with their roots, often a renewed drive to further explore what live could have been. Regretfully, there are also other, more dark sides of adoption. Regrettable cases in which the birth family does not accept the re-united adoptee, protect potentially harmful secrets or simply they moved on with their lives (and got other children which in turn are complete strangers to the adoptee).
Even more, a potential big culture clash should not be underestimated. Adoptees often feel as “white and western” in mind and body as they grew up in environments with mostly white people.
Meeting biological relatives looking similar in nature, but completely different in thinking and attitude, might be quite hard to do.
I don’t know how I would react when I would meet my birth family – to be honest, I don’t have high expectations. Probably to be seen as an instinctive attempt to protect myself against painful disappointments.
While I’m writing this post, a very pressing question comes to my mind. Assume that I am reconnected with my biological family, will that experience help to fill the void in me? Will it help me to get rid of lonely moments? Will it suddenly boost my self-esteem? Would this become the recipe of successful relationships?
I’m anxious that finding your birth family will not dissolve the feeling of emptiness that a lot of adoptees are struggling with. It’s most likely not a beautiful movie with a happy ending like in Lion where Saroo is re-united with his mom and sister in Ganesh Talay.
So what is it that helps adoptees feel strong again, feel confident about themselves and the future? What is it that re-ignites the spark in adoptees’ lifes? I always thought it’s about finding the missing link, completing the puzzle, understanding yourself (again).
I think that tracing back your roots and finding pieces of your authentic self (as opposed to or sometimes even as a complement to the false self that has been created over years), might be equally powerful to finding your birth family.
My roots travel this year, starts in Mumbai. I will visit my orphanage and hope to get answers to my question this time. I also wanted to visit the High Court in Mumbai who should, according to me, have legal documents regarding my adoption on file. When heading to the airport today, I however realized that this government authority could be closed because of Diwali festivities in India.
I checked with my local agent and unfortunately it got confirmed that the High Court closes for at least a week (I would already be in Chennai by then). A planning glitch or a mere sign of life that the High Court will probably not be helpful in my roots search?
To be continued…