My parents adopted my brother through a “sealed adoption.” The identity of his birth parents would never become known to anyone. On the surname space of his birth record appeared the Latin word ignotus, “unknown.”
My parents named him Gregory and gave him their surname, but the secrecy around his genealogy coloured his whole life. Legally unable to remove the word ignotus from his birth record, “unknown” became his identity. It was worse than that; he felt unwanted.
As a young child, he struggled in school. He ran away more than once. As an adult, he changed jobs frequently and was often unemployed. He drank and broke the law. He wrestled with his health. He had a terrible temper and was prone to violence. He tested everyone.
My parents remained steadfast. Greg took them on an unimaginably painful journey, but they were enmeshed and embedded with Greg; we all were. He was ours and we were his, come what may. Through it all, a painful self-sacrificing truth emerged in the living of our lives; Greg was loved and there was nothing he could do about it. Love could endure anything.
Greg was adopted with a loving, gracious, all-encompassing love. We all are. God loves us like that?and more.
Adoptive God, bless you for making us heirs of your love. Amen. — LH