Have you ever felt as though a part of you was missing?

It’s no secret that I was adopted – I can’t even remember being told that I was because it was such common knowledge in my home. When I was old enough to start to really understand what it meant, my parents gave me a half of a necklace, the other half belonging to my birth mom.

Throughout the years, I received some other small gifts – a journal with a note from my birth mom, a bracelet on my 18th birthday – but never any identifying information due to Missouri adoption laws.

As I got older, I got more curious. Shortly before getting married, I looked into what it would take to find my birth mom. At the time of my limited research, it appeared as though without an (expensive) private detective, I was out of luck.

I tried again this Spring, as thoughts of future babies popped into my head, realizing how little I know about my health history, my family, and selfishly, my future looks.

My best friends had always suggested using Facebook, but I shrugged it off. In my eyes, Facebook is a business tool for brands to reach customers, and a tool for every person I went to high school with to announce their engagements and pregnancies. Luckily, after a few glasses of wine on a beautiful February weekend, I caved in and shared my story.

142 shares later, all I had was a timeline full of me in that red dress (thanks, Rent the Runway!), and upset parents for not telling them I was doing this. However, the one plus was that my mom shared this little detail: there was a photo of my parents in my file at the Children’s Home Society. I quickly shot a note to the adoption coordinator my parents worked withย and got my first glimpse of my birth parents.

I went back and forth for weeks on whether or not to try one last Facebook post featuring my birth mom, and finally decided to do it. Within 12 hours, I had three people contact me saying they knew who it is, and after a good stalking session across social media, I worked up enough nerve to send her a message. A few hours later, I got my answer – I had found my birth mom.

As I write this, I’m still incredibly overwhelmed that after 28 years, I know who courageously gave me up for adoption. I now know that I was born via c-section, and that my birth mom demanded I stay with her during her recovery, even though it’s not allowed. I know that my birth aunt, who was 8 at the time, made me an Easter basket as they celebrated three days after I was born on Good Friday.

I now know what has been missing all this time.

Ashley Parks

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2 Comments

  1. Reply

    Laura Reece

    May 4, 2017

    Hi Ashley, I just had to reach out to you to tell you what an amazing biological mom you have. I just recently stopped working with her. She is hands down the most selfless woman I know. Despite the struggles she is facing with Izzy, she maintains a positive attitude and is always willing to help out however it is needed. She has supported me through my daughter’s medical journey, and I like to think I have been an outlet for her. I am so happy to hear your story, and I continue to pray for you both as you begin this new journey together. God Bless you!

  2. Reply

    Jodie Green

    May 4, 2017

    Ashley, I would like to tell you how happy we are that you found your birth mom. Tina is one of the sweetest, most caring and definitely the most giving women I know. I know you have been blessed with the best parents that you could have asked for and they did a fabulous job raising you. This will be a wonderful new journey that you and your parents get to take in getting to know your awesome birth mom Tina and her loving family. I wish you all the very best. Great things come to those that wait and your wait is over.

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