Growing up adopted was never easy. I remember days when I felt lost as a child. I would always wonder where my real parents were and what they were doing. I never even had the chance to see them in person. Growing up with my younger sister could have been better. We both were split up into two separate foster care families. I rarely saw her. There would be times when wish I could just talk to her on the phone, but even that was very challenging to do. While I lived in Southern California, my sister was in Northern California. Not only has being separated made us stronger, we’ve also been able to fend more for ourselves. Even though I miss her, now that I’m older I have the ability to at least drive to her.
When I was younger in elementary and middle school I would feel so terrible when there would be nothing for me to do. I would feel handcuffed when I couldn’t see her for long, extended periods of time. Even though we had cell phones, it was very hard to stay in contact. It really sucked not having my little sister to take care of. At the orphanage it was easy to look after her and protect her, but the long distance was hard to keep up with.
Even though being adopted has been very tough growing up, I have learned a lot about being a stronger individual. It’s only in the hard times in life do we really start to become a different person. When life is easy is when we are taken advantage of. You never want to settle in life, and being adopted has fueled the fight in my spirit to keep pushing everyday. At this point in my life I can’t look back. I’ve been through so much to feel bad for myself anymore. Gone are the days of me crying in my room because I could never see my real family. The man I’ve become today has been a direct result of everything I have been doing within the last ten years of my life. I’m a firm believer in having things happen in life for a specific reason. For all the adopted kids out there I’d say, “never leave your past, always try to go back to your family and loved ones. After all they are blood to you.” It’s never easy having new parents, but after all it’s best that you have parents then be stuck in an orphanage. It’s proven that if a kid lives in an orphanage his whole life, he has less chance of succeeding in life than if he or she has a family to grow up with.
Growing up with new parents was a lot easier when I had other friends from the orphanage around to help me out through the process. Getting new parents is a long procedure that typically takes months to fully kick in. Once the orphan finally has foster parents, the process has just started. On a constant basis, government agencies are checking up on orphans and attempting to see if everything is working out alright. I’ll never forget the government agent that I was able to build a long relationship with.
When I first met Steve I was a little scared to be completely honest. Steve was a large guy with brown hair and a very serious face. Behind the serious face was a teddy bear. He was the first to truly introduce me to sports and specifically, football. I remember being a young boy playing catch in the park on the weekends with him. When I started to get into high school, Steve would buy me all the sports equipment I needed to be successful. Steve was very so much apart of my life. I’ll never forget having a second father in my life like Steve. When college came around I was very eager to get out of the house, and start my own life. Everything leading up to college is still considered your childhood, but when you turn eighteen and have the ability to attend college your adulthood starts to unfold. College was just what I needed to grow up and expand my mind to new people, places, and ideas. After all we need the ability to grow as individuals, and college universities give young adults that opportunity.