• I Am But I'm Not

Longing to belong…..

I have always felt that there were missing pieces to my puzzle.  It took until I was an adult to realize what the missing pieces were.   I had a longing to belong to something, a purpose, or to a group of people that I had shared a strong commonality, like a biological sibling bond.   I am an international adoptee and a women of color who was raised in a caucasian family.  My four older siblings are caucasian and much older than me.  I have one sibling, who is also adopted, but she is not a biological sibling.   I have always wondered if I had any biological siblings.  Honestly,  I have always wondered if I had any family members in India that looked like me.   I have yet to find anyone, but I have had the opportunity to connect with fellow adoptees like me from the same orphanage.  In a way, these individuals are like siblings.  We all come from the same orphanage in India and can relate to each other in ways no one else can. 

Thanks to a series of fortunate events, I was connected with Nisha and Shalisa, with whom I have a pleasure of being in this documentary with.  These two women are very passionate, strong, and have wonderful stories to share.  Having the opportunity to spend multiple days together with them, uninterrupted from everyday life, was amazing!  We cooked together, shared stories and experiences, and learned from each other.   A sisterhood bond of understanding, compassion and friendship was created that will be in my life forever!

I was both excited and nervous when the opportunity to participate in this documentary was presented to me.  I knew that by participating in this documentary, I would explore ideas and thoughts that I had not yet discovered or put into words.  Once the dates were set and plane tickets arrange,  I was on my way to film my part of the interview.  This trip ended up being more than just being in front of the camera telling my story.  Upon returning home and revisiting my thoughts and feelings about the trip,  I realized that missing pieces of my puzzle were beginning to fall into place.  I get to belong and be part of something that will be very beneficial to current and future adoptee families, and my own family.  

There has been numerous times I have had to explain to my daughters that I do not know much about my background and in turn, they will not know certain things about themselves either.  Through my participation in this documentary, I am hoping to show them that it is okay to be different and to ask questions.  That it’s okay not to know everything about yourself, and that you should love yourself no matter how different you may be. I want my daughters to enjoy the journey of self discovery and to be open to meeting new people who may affect their lives in unpredictable ways. I want them to embrace their journeys and be strong women who draw strength from their unique cultural background. Finally I want my daughters to know that I built a solid foundation for them to stand on as their curiosities and understanding about their background grows.