What’s in a Name?

I received my OBC on Wednesday, which was an amazing 10 day turnaround. Go Illinois Public Health Department! And there it was, staring me in the face. The name of my mother. Age 17. No name for me except her last name as my last name, no name for my birth father, but his age also noted as 17. Her address listed as 1720 W. Polk, which at the time was a home for unwed mothers called “The Foundling Home.” It’s all true. I am smack in the middle of the ‘Baby Scoop Era’ just like I thought.

I uploaded it to my Search Angels and within minutes they sent me the birth records for a “likely” match, and her Facebook page. It was so thrilling – this was IT!! And probably setting a landspeed record for discovery to identification! I spent hours combing through her Facebook page and the pages of the family I could identify, searching for commonality with myself or my daughters. I showed her picture to a few of my friends. Some said, ‘Yeah, totally’ but my longtime companion immediately said ‘No way.’ I began to doubt myself and ask ‘do I see  resemblance because I want to?’

I continued my own researching and started really doubting the information on the OBC. The mother’s place of birth was Cincinnati, but I have since found the one my search angels pointed me to going through all of her high school years in Freeport IL – so she was living there before she got pregnant with me. The OBC says ‘place of birth’ so I searched for her family in Freeport and couldn’t find it. The intelius search yielded nothing for her parents that were listed in the information the search angels sent, either in Cincinnati or Freeport. Nothing was lining up.

I was introduced to a natural mother who relinquished in the era, and she has been so incredibly kind with her time and her insight, and open with her own personal story. My original need for her was to try to understand someone who is about the age of my mother, to hear what she went through and ask her advice for how best to make contact. I felt an immediate connection to her and I was struck once again how much all of the members of this strange circumstance band together. We are, all of us, aching and in mutual understanding we reach out to comfort and support one another. I feel that I have mostly been on the taking end of that, but intend to be available if I can help someone else in turn.

I asked her if it was possible that any or all of the information on the OBC could be false, and she said yes. I despair of ever knowing the truth.

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