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April 10, 2014 by Renee Griffin
Dreams do come true.
Today is the 11 year anniversary of finding my birthmother. Eleven years ago today, my husband walked into her workplace and saw her face to face. In 6 months after their meeting, my dream of seeing my birthmother face to face, at long last, became real. After years of searching and months of struggling, we would stand face to face and eye to eye after 33 years apart.
It was a reuniting long overdue. We may have been physically apart for these 33 years, but we never were apart in our hearts.
The hubs went with me for this trip. We traveled along the same roads that I had journeyed to meet my birthfather months earlier. He’d seen me crumble after we fell apart. He’d seen God put me back together, but I am sure he needed to be certain that this would all go according to plan. I had changed so much thanks to The Lord. My faith was in Him as I traveled familiar roads leading me back home.
We were meeting at her house. I was doing pretty good on the ride over until we made our last turn. The final turn came right on the same road we had used to get to the nursing home. She’d been right there within reach on the visits I had made previously. I was reminded of how important it is to live within the safe boundary of God’s timing. Just like the times He had me wait during my search, He had pressed pause on our meeting. Today, however, was a new day. The pause button had been repressed and the play button was live.
This was happening.
She’d described her mailbox as a small, red barn. I was looking intently up and down the street for this little barn when suddenly it came into view.
We had arrived.
The house was your normal suburban home. In the driveway sat two vehicles. The yard was very well maintained with the greenest, weed-free grass I’d ever seen. We pulled in and gave each other one last look. I took a deep breath and stepped out. There in front of me was a glass door. All I had to do was walk in. On the other side of the glass was my dream. My legs felt like cement. Boy was I glad the hubs was with me. I remember arriving, but I don’t remember walking in. I know that God was gracious in scheduling the meeting with my birthfather first. That was traumatic enough. Had I met my birthmother first, my nerves would have melted or fried or some other devastating action.
Her husband met us in the driveway and ushered us in the house. His open arms and gracious smile were a welcome sight. As he took us inside, he called her name and said, “She’s here.”
Worlds collided as we stood face to face.
I just can’t seem to figure out how to tell you about that moment. The English language doesn’t have words that can contain the overflowing, indescribable joy that surged through my heart. There are no words. We were standing eyeball to eyeball looking deep and long into each other’s eyes. I knew those eyes. She had beautiful dark, powerful eyes. They hold emotions and feelings that touch you and grab you and rattle you with only a look. I just stared. We hugged each other for the first time, and we both knew it was our very first touch.
When I touched her then, I knew like I know now, we would never be separated again.
No matter what happened with us in the future, we had touched and connected and nothing would be able to divide us in our hearts. The tie between us that I had felt since I was old enough to process my life story, reached out and attached to her like a link on a chain. Two hearts that had held on to each other since the beginning held each other’s gaze for the very first time.
We sat side by side on the sofa in her family room and peace covered me. It wasn’t just the peace that God was providing me, but a quietness of being right where you are supposed to be draped over me like a blanket. It reminds me of a funny saying that she taught me. She and I both like to wear “happy pants.” Happy pants are those kinds of comfy pants you wear at the end of a hard day’s work. They are the clothes that you put on when you relax. They aren’t necessarily cute or even in good shape, but when you put them on they make you happy. You know the ones I mean? The happiness and freedom and comfort I get from my “happy pants” don’t hold a candle to the feeling I had sitting beside her that day. I wanted to just crawl up in her lap and sit there a while.
I was home.
She said, “You have his eyes…cat’s eyes.” Wasn’t the first time my eyes had been described as cat’s eyes. They look brown at first glance, but if you get close you will see flecks of gold and green. When I get really mad they go green. Of course, you wouldn’t want to be that close to me when I am mad to see the green, but that is just free info right there. Thank The Lord He has worked me over about my temper, and my fits are few and far between. (Hopefully no one in my family will comment about that. Eeek!) Her eyes were darker than mine, but the laser sharp gaze they could muster was the look I see in the mirror.
We had the same hands, too. Our hands are big with super long fingers. I remember one afternoon when I had fallen asleep on the sofa at home, my parents had come into the room and were talking about me in hushed voices. They were looking at me sleeping, and mama commented about my hands. She said to daddy, “She has the longest fingers.” I had been asleep, but I woke up to hear her say these words. That conversation came rushing in my brain as I stared at another set of big hands with long fingers.
I have her hands.
I tear up typing those words…I have her hands.
Thank you Jesus for allowing me to hold her hands again. Our same hands touched for the first time that day as eyes met and lives were changed.
We took pictures together; a mother and a daughter sitting side by side. Two hearts reunited on the outside. We were sealed.
We had a wonderful time talking and staring at each other. It was beautiful. The moments quickly passed and it was time to go.
When we said goodbye, I didn’t want to leave. I never do. Every moment I spend with her is never enough. Our first meeting would be one of many more. I hope I can get them all in some kind of order so that I can share them with you. I took meticulous notes as I searched for her, but once we got together I didn’t write down too many notes. I was too busy living. We were too busy living and growing and getting to know each other.
Today, won’t you reach out to the ones you love and just say hello? Life is too short and too miraculous to miss a single opportunity to tell your family that you love them. God has blessed me with a huge family. Hey, family…I LOVE you all!!!
In the body of Christ, we are all family.
John 15:12 “This is My commandment, that you love one another just as I have loved you.”
The love we had for each other continues to grow to this day. There would be more family added into our story in the months that followed. I got something I had always wanted…a brother!