We all grow up with the weight of history on us. Our ancestors dwell in the attics of our brains as they do in the spiraling chains of knowledge hidden in every cell of our bodies. ~ Shirley Abbott
Once your relationship progresses, the subject will arise about meeting in person. If you live near each other, you might arrange for your first face-to-face meeting shortly after your first contact. If distance separates you, your first contact may take longer.
The first meeting is generally a significant and momentous event, and the timing is important.
My first face to face with my son took place early in our reunion
. I flew into the city where he lives only a few months after we spoke on the telephone for the first time. This photo
was one of the first ones taken of us together. It was taken during that first face to face meeting. The blog entry that accompanies this photo relates our first contact. We are both very talkative, so a telephone call was perfect for us to begin our reunion.
Points to consider about your first face-to-face meeting:
- Consider carefully who will be present for that first meeting.
- Find a mutually convenient location for your first face-to-face.
- Try to be as calm and relaxed as possible and be yourself.
- Make the first meeting a time to get to know one another, not a time to resolve the past. Keep the conversation light unless you both agree otherwise.
- Enjoy the day to the max and relish every moment!
- The first meeting should involve only the two reuniting birth family members. If you feel a need for other family or friend support for that first meeting, have them nearby. There will be plenty of time for your birth family member to meet the others later.
- Choose a spot for the first meeting that you both believe will allow for the best experience for both of you. Some experts advise that you meet on neutral ground, such as a coffee shop or restaurant. Others feel that the occasion merits a visit in your home or that of your birth family member.
The White Oak Foundation is a non-profit group based in Illinois that has some good resources regarding search and reunion. “The Initial Meeting
” on their Web site discusses some factors to consider in deciding how to orchestrate that first face-to-face meeting.
Your first contact with your birth family member is an important moment. Telling you to be calm and relaxed is somewhat like giving that advice to a person on their wedding day! However, do your best to savor every second.
Previous Chapter | Table of Contents | Next Chapter
© Excerpted from the Adoption.com Guide to Search and Reunion, published by Adoption Media, LLC
Credits: Jan Baker