Wednesday, January 14, 2009



It has been exactly a week since I got the phone call that my birth mother and birth father are alive, living in Korea, and waiting to meet me.

Ever since that moment, life has been a whirlwind in some ways. And in other ways, it has been moving painstakingly slow.


The first step toward contact, at this point, is to exchange photos and letters through the agency.

I have already emailed the agency a handful of photographs ranging from my childhood through adulthood.

I composed the individual letters to each one of my birth parents over the weekend, and fortunately found a dear, selfless soul who was willing to translate them for me. I forwarded the translated versions to Duk at Dillon, and she in turn, forwarded them to Mrs. K in Korea.

Now, I, myself, am anxiously awaiting the reception of photographs and letters from my birth mother and birth father.

To set my eyes on their faces and to read their words for the first time is going to be an absolutely inexplicable and intense moment.

All of my life, I have tried to imagine and conjure up images in my mind of what their faces might look like. But I could never see anything.

Now, very soon I will be holding photos of their faces in my fingertips, and hopefully, will soon be able to touch their faces.


As I searched through all of my photos, I began to wonder what my birth mother and birth father would think about my appearance. Will I be pretty in their eyes? Or will I be ugly? Will they be disappointed? Or will they be pleased?

And then I began to wonder what there initial impressions of me would be? Am I going to be too American for their liking? Are they going to be upset or disgusted that I do not speak Korean and that I am not a big fan of kimchee?

One of the first things they requested to know about me is whether I am married and is my husband Korean? I laughed out loud and delighted in this first encounter with the inquiries and concerns of typical Korean parents.
Truly, this is surreal. Fortunately, I am married. However, he is not anywhere close to being Korean.


Our poor mediator in Korea, Mrs. K, got sick and has been out of the office since last week. She is expected to return this Friday.

Until then, we must simply wait.

In the meantime, each day feels like a year.


Third Mom said...

Oh, my, this gave me chills!!

And the wait has to be excruciating - you are one patient person, that's for sure. I'd be off the walls.

You're in my thoughts!!

And a quick PS - is the "Duk" you mention Ms. Um? If so, I know her! She's a friend of a friend, and once spoke to our Korean Focus group in DC. Small world!

Gene said...

My best wishes for you and your family!

Mila said...

Yes, Duk is Ms. Um! She's so amazing! She has been with me every step of the way for the past six years. If i get to go on the tour, I'll finally get to actually meet her!

Mila said...

Thank you, Gene, for your thoughtfulness.

Anonymous said...

Oh, wow. I certainly will be able to relate to the first time you see your parents' faces looking at you.

That has to be SO exciting to think about!

Good luck... and hold on for the ride!