Sofia gave her son up for adoption when she was only 16 years old. Years later, she decided to find him but to no avail. Little did she know, he was looking for her too. During a charity event, someone gave Sofia an envelope with a special note that would change her life.
“I want to find my son, but I have no idea what to do next. I’ve exhausted so many options,” Sofia told her friend, Marissa, during a coffee break at work. They were both executives at a tech company in Anaheim, California. Sofia thought Marissa would have some insight on the matter, given that she had two adopted kids.
“I can’t believe you got almost no information when you chose open adoption. That agency did you wrong. It also doesn’t help that you gave your son up 25 years ago when people still chose to keep physical records. My kids are only six and four. If they ever want to find their bio-parents, they’ll be able to do it easily,” her friend explained.
“I don’t know what to do, then. Do people still hire private investigators? Is that a thing? I don’t know!” Sofia wondered in frustration.
“How about taking a DNA test? Those things have databases and show your relatives. At least, that’s what I’ve heard. If your son ever takes one, he’ll be able to find you,” Marissa suggested. Sofia thought about it, and it seemed like a great plan given the few options she had at the moment.
“Ok! I’ll do that! But maybe after this weekend’s charity marathon. I’ve been working so hard to raise money for the Second-Chance Children fund, and I won’t let them down,” Sofia agreed. They both returned to their desks and continued working, but Sofia began to reminisce about the past.
She was only 16 years old when she discovered her pregnancy, and it was a shock. Her mother, Judy, was supportive but told her that it would be hard to have a baby. Their family was already struggling financially in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Judy knew Sofia had big California dreams. Therefore, they put the baby up for adoption.
Although they chose open adoption, the agency didn’t give them any information about the birth parents. At the time, they didn’t have many options or other resources, so Sofia still consented. Years later, she learned that it was borderline illegal to do that and started looking for her son.
At 41, she had done pretty great for herself. She went to college and moved to California. Meanwhile, her family back home was not struggling with money anymore either. But Sofia had yet to find her son. Maybe he doesn’t want me to find him. He’s probably happy, right? Oh, dear. I really hope he had a happy life, she prayed and snapped out of her memories.
Marathon day came, and Sofia was ready for it. Marissa would be running with her too. There was a registration booth before the starting line, where everyone was supposed to check in and get a number for the race. When Sofia finished signing up, the older volunteer handed her a bib number and a strange envelope. “What’s this?” she asked, confused.
“Open it and see,” the lady said and smiled mysteriously. Sofia looked around and noticed that no one else received anything similar. She showed it to Marissa, who shrugged and encouraged her to open the envelope.
For some reason, Sofia was anxious. “I know I’m being silly. What could it be?” Marissa told her to snap out of it, so she took a deep breath and finally ripped the envelope. There was a note with a short message inside. It read: “It’s been 25 years since you last saw me. Let’s change that. Turn around!”
Sofia turned around and saw people warming up for the marathon. She had no idea who had sent the note, but her instincts told her it had to be him. Suddenly, she noticed a young man looking at her. He looked precisely like Sofia’s father and was smiling. The note fell from her hands when her fingers started shaking.
“Is it really you?” Sofia asked, tearing up as she approached the young man.
The man nodded. “It’s me. My name is Brandon,” he answered.
“But how? I’ve been trying to find you for years and couldn’t,” Sofia blubbered. The man also had tears in his eyes.
“I also tried to find you for a long time. When I turned 18, my parents told me I was adopted. A few months ago, I asked them to help me find out more about my biological parents. They said that they only received the name of my bio-mom: Sofia Markson. But they also told me the adoption took place in North Carolina, so I started investigating,” Brandon revealed.
“I can’t believe it. You wanted to find me too?” she cried. “Can I hug you?”
“Of course,” Brandon whispered, and they hugged tightly. The marathon started, but neither of them moved. They stayed like that for a few minutes. Marissa was sobbing right next to them.
“Ok, ok. We’re in public. Maybe, we should sit down and talk more,” Sofia said, wiping her face after releasing Brandon.
“There are several chairs over by that tent, Sofia. I’m going to leave you guys alone and start the marathon. But I’m so happy for you,” Marissa said, pointing at one of the event tents, which was empty at the moment. She left while Sofia and her son took their seats.
“Ok, so you found me using my name only? God, I wish I had your parents’ names. It would’ve been so easy,” Sofia said, feeling silly and awkward.
“Well, I used Facebook. You were right there. Your profile was public, and I saw pictures of you with your parents. I look just like your dad, right?” Brandon explained.
“That’s how I knew who you were just now. I have pictures of my dad at your age, and the resemblance is crazy! Thank you! Thank you for finding me. You have to know how much I regretted giving you up. I mean, I hoped and prayed that you had great adoptive parents, but I always wondered if I did the right thing. I’m so sorry,” Sofia justified, not knowing exactly how to express all her feelings to Brandon. “I want to know everything about your life!”
Brandon told her a few things, but then Sofia remembered something. “Wait. You found me on Facebook. But how did you know I was here? And did you give that envelope to the lady?” she wondered.
“That lady, who has been watching us all along, is my adoptive mother, Fiona. My dad, Charles, is right next to her,” Brandon revealed, pointing at the older couple by the check-in stand. “When I found you on Facebook, I discovered that you supported this organization and attended events. You shared today’s event a few weeks ago, and we came up with a plan.”
Sofia started crying again. “That means you have great parents, so I didn’t have to worry so much over the years. I’m so happy!”
“Would you like to meet them?” Brandon asked hopefully.
“Of course!” Sofia answered immediately. Brandon introduced them, and they decided to go to lunch together after the event. His parents had no idea that Sofia had not received any information about them during the adoption.
“No wonder! We were told it was an open adoption and that you chose us. They gave us your name but nothing else. We went through with it because we were so happy. We should’ve checked things out better. Later, when Brandon started looking for you, we called the agency, and they told us we were not even in their records!” Fiona said, concerned. Luckily, they were all happy with this reunion, and the past didn’t matter anymore.
Sofia smiled during their lunch, knowing that despite her worries, she had done the right thing. Afterward, she got to build a relationship with Brandon, and his parents treated her like family.
What can we learn from this story?
- Research and get informed before giving a child up for adoption. There are many resources out there for people looking to give their children up for adoption. Also, make sure everything is done legally.
- Sometimes, adoption is the best choice you can make. Sofia might have struggled and never fulfilled her dreams if she hadn’t given up her son. In the end, her decision worked out for everyone.
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