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Archive for September 30th, 2018

a brother for my birthday

Note:  In this blog post, when I reference my parents – my mom or my dad, I am referring to the ones who adopted and raised me; they are my “real” parents.  When I write about my biological mother and father, I say birth mother or birth father.  And since all my found siblings are half-siblings, I describe them simply as my sisters and brothers.


I’ve written about finding my birth family, then meeting (and loving!) my sister, Barbara, who lives close by.  This summer I got to meet three more siblings.

First, my younger brother and sister on my birth father’s side: Kathleen and Scott came up from Arizona with their spouses & kids to nearby Saratoga to see relatives.  I visited them at a camp they’d rented and spent some time with all of them for a BBQ outside.  It was fun; they’re good people with happy families.   For my birthday, Kathleen and her husband & only daughter mailed me presents (including a huge home-made card her daughter colored) and a framed photo of Scott, me, and Kathleen from the day I visited them:

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I’m less than a year older than Scott, and 6 years older than Kathleen.   It’s weird to be oldest because I’m the youngest on my birth mother’s side – and after all, I was an only child for the great majority of my life.

Now I’m one of seven.  The mind reels.

Of course I’ll always be an only child where my parents are concerned.  That’s cool too.  Hell, I’m probably the only person for miles who is simultaneously the only, oldest, and youngest child.  Best of all worlds.

So Barbara and I flew down to see our big brother Philip for the first week in September.  I had the idea to turn it into an ocean vacation because he lives in Alabama and some of the Florida beaches are less than 2 hours from him.

As it turned out, he drove to us on the morning of September 2 – my 49th birthday.  When I opened the door, he grabbed me up in a huge hug that felt like he’d never let me go.  It was a reunion for Barbara too, for she hadn’t seen him in person for a few years.

The three of us had a ball.  We had beautiful, sunny days and fun-but-not-dangerous storms, too.  The place was right on the beach and we cavorted like kids, swimming and laughing and playing.  Philip and I hit it off right away; I marveled at how much we looked and acted alike.  The three of us sit the same way and have so many of the same mannerisms.  Plus we have other things in common – bits of geeky weirdness – that I never thought could be genetic.  Barbara even gave me a shirt that said “Majestically Awkward” with two flamingos on it; she’d bought one for herself as well.  It’s perfect!

Here are some photos from our time together:

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20180907_121520  20180908_112113  20180906_143904

20180908_233136   20180902_064637

Philip has stayed in touch with both of us since we came home.  He worries about me and loves me and checks in on me just like he’s always been a big brother, something I’m not used to at all.

He makes me feel valued and safe, and I’m grateful for him.

“I like having you for a brother…
I like having you for my big brother.”

~Rainman

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