November 21, 2012

Catch up on the first two posts of this series here:

As I type this, I’m going through the binder I haven’t looked at since 2006. It includes my “papers” and some other things I’ll get to later.  This is a longer post than usual because I’m including a lot of information that you will find interesting and that will answer your questions. Enjoy!
So, after finishing writing this post, I came back to reread it and decided to delete a lot of the information, while it’s relevant to me, it really doesn’t mean anything to you. I’ve decided to give you a brief overview of the details I was given.
Here are some excerpts from the first page of info from the adoption agency:
On April 24, 1985 {my birthday is 3/16} your birthmother signed her consent to have her name and address released to you should you request it after turning 18.

Your birthfather has not signed any statement of consent or denial with the Michigan Central Adoption Registry so his last known name and address (from 1985) can be released to you.

My birthfather has the same name as my cousin. No, my cousin (a year older than me) is not my father. But that does mean my mom's maiden name is the same name as my birthfather. A brother she never knew she had? Am I really related to my parents? What. The. Heck?

Your birth name was “Baby Girl”

Thank goodness my name was later changed to Chelsea haha

Non-Identifying Social History of Chelsea—my papers and {my thoughts}
Birth History
You were born by Caesarian section at 1:20 p.m. Labor was 13 hours. You weighed 9 pounds, 5 ounces and were 22 inches long.  {For reference, my son was 9 pounds, 10 ounces and 21.5 inches long} Your respirations were spontaneous and you had Apgar scores of 8-9. Your gestational age was determined to be 41 weeks {sorry! Haha}

Birthmother’s History
Your birthmother was 23 years old and unmarried when you were born. The record indicated that your birthmother was 5 feet 1 ½ inches tall with a usual weight of 100 pounds {we definitely aren’t similar in that sense} She had light brown hair, hazel eyes and fair skin. {I am 5’5 with dark hair and blue eyes}

The record indicated that your birthmother was in good health. She did have a history of alcohol and marijuana use, but stopped using all substances when she learned she was pregnant. {Duh, she was in college—no surprise there!} She received prenatal care.

Your birthmother was a sophomore in college when you were born. She was attending college part-time and also worked as a waitress. She liked racquetball, bowling and being with people. {I was a waitress and love being with people.}

The worker described your birthmother as being “a bright, lively young woman with a good sense of humor.” {I am, too!}

Birthmother’s Family History {short version}
I found out who is dead, who is alive, how many siblings she has, as well as their descent (Irish, English, French), medical, educational and job histories.

Birthfather’s History 
Your alleged birthfather was 29 years old and not married. He was 6’ and 170 pounds. He had brown hair, green eyes and fair skin coloring.

The record stated that he was in excellent health. He had his master’s degree in education. He was teacher of English as a Second Language. His interests and hobbies included travel, anthropology, reading, film and outdoor recreation.

He described himself as “easy going, shy and introspective.” He enjoyed life and people

Your birthmother described your birthfather as being a heavy smoker and heavy drinker. She described him as “quiet, not real outgoing, sincere and concerned about people.”

Birthfather’s Family History  
I found out who is dead, who is alive, how many siblings she has, as well as their descent (Irish, English, French), medical, educational and job histories.

On May 30, 1985 you were placed in the home of TBird and Lady {my parents, my name editing} for the purposes of adoption.  On July 21, 1986 the judge confirmed your adoption. Your name was legally changed at that time and you were subsequently discharged as a ward of the court.

So . . . now you probably want the juicy details. Fine.

The night {I think} I received my background info, I did some searching online—Facebook was still only available for college students at this time, so it was a lot of searching on whitepages.com and peoplefinders.com.

Since I was given my birthmother’s first, middle and last name, as well as last known address, it didn’t take long to hunt her down. I paid $10 for her phone number and left it at that. I didn’t have the guts to call, even though I am a gutsy person. Well I had the guts, I just didn’t know what to say.

As for my birthfather, his name is much more common than F's. This will take some time and some searching. 
A few nights  and a few beers or cocktails later—who knows, I was in college and drank cheap, nasty stuff. I stumbled {not really} into my roommate’s room with my cellphone and F’s number. {We’ll refer to my birthmother as F}

I called the number and said my name was Jessica and asked to speak to F. The person who answered was her sister and asked for my number so she could give it to F. I told her I was a college roommate looking to reconnect. Whatever, I was drunk, nervous and had no idea what to say.

Now that I’m writing this, I can’t remember the sequence of events. I think a few minutes later, I called her back and told her the truth because I wanted F to call me back. It’s strange that this is a blur to me right now, but it was a blur to me then, too. Ok we’ll stick with that story, I’m pretty sure that’s how it all went down, then I went to bed wondering if I would ever hear from anyone ever again.

I wasn’t looking for a relationship or a new family, I really just wanted to see what everyone looked like. I know some people who are identical to their parents, and some who look nothing like their parents.

I was in a lecture hall when a number not programmed into my Nextel called me. I looked at my roommate and we both knew—so I left class and answered. It was F. We laughed about my lies when I called her sister and she told me about her family. She is happily married with twin daughters C & K. They were about 7 or 8 when I first talked to her.

We kept the conversation pretty short since I was in class. We exchanged email addresses and promised to send photos as soon as possible. I couldn’t wait to get to my computer!

I went home for the weekend to hang out with my family and friends. I received an email with photos from F while I was home. I was sitting at the computer with my best friend, Katie. We opened the email with excitement then got really confused—we thought did we just open the email I sent her with my photos?

We double and triple checked. Holy crap – she sent me photos of herself at my ages – which were identical to me!  

F's college graduation day
Holy crap.  We were in shock. How crazy is that? Minus the 80s hair . . . it’s me. When I don't have eyeliner on - it's me. 

I wasn’t sure if or how I would tell my parents that I decided to find out more. They’ve always been open to me doing it because they know I wasn’t looking for another family or relationship, just curious. I still thought there would be some emotions surrounding it, since it’s not a typical situation.

How was I ever going to tell my parents about this? Once I got the photos, I knew. I printed the first photo and went into the kitchen, Katie and I were laughing our asses off and couldn’t contain ourselves. My mom was in the other room and my dad was cooking dinner.

I handed the photo to my dad and asked if he knew who they were. He looked at Katie and said “are these your grandparents?” We kept laughing, so my dad asked my mom to come in the kitchen and my mom was like oh yeah, those are Katie’s grandparents, such sweet people.  We couldn’t contain ourselves. I told my mom those weren’t Katie’s grandparents—she sat there trying to figure out who they were. Then I told her it wasn’t me.

Her first assumption was that I photoshopped my head into that photo. Why the heck would I do it on that random photo? 

Then it clicked.
picture me without eye makeup on
We sat down and I told her everything. She asked if I had met F, and I told her no and that we didn’t have plans to meet yet. If we were to meet up, my mom didn’t want to be there. Not that it would be a bad thing, but she wasn’t ready for it. Understandable.

Stay tuned next week for the final segment of this series. Life now – is F in it?  What about the birthfather?

What questions do you have that I have not answered? 

if this is what she looks like, are you even sure i have a biological father? what features could I have received from him? I am F down to the neck wrinkles! 


  1. Holy DOODLES do you ever look like F!
    I still find it wild how much you resemble your parents too though!

  2. Wow! You look SO much alike! Again, loving the details:)

  3. This is a great piece! I can't believe how much you look like F.

  4. Very well written-- I'm so into your story! It's crazy how much you look alike, can't wait to find out more!

  5. WOW, that is crazy!! I don't even look like my mom! lol
    I am really enjoying this series, thank you for sharing it.

  6. Wow! What an amazing story! And yes, you're the mirror image of F. Glad you were able to connect and it sounds like you were placed into a wonderful family.