Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Tempted to Write a Thank You Letter...

I have never been tempted to write a thank you letter to a stranger before today.

Call me schmaltzy, overly-sentimental, whatever.
I am very tempted to write a thank you letter to Oprah.

On yesterdays episode of Oprah, she revealed that she had an unknown half-sister.

In the announcement of her sister, Patricia, Oprah recognized that Patricia had reservations about contacting her birth family because of how it could potentially affect he half siblings.
That recognition, combined with Oprahs openness and receptiveness is what has me considering writing a thank you letter.
Nineteen years ago (almost to the day!) I contacted my birth fathers family. Prior to making contact a number of factors crossed my mind. Obviously, the first was to prepare myself for the worst case scenario - potentially having the door literally slammed in my face. However, my largest concern was the effect that my sudden presence would have upon any family that my father had - a wife, young children. The possibility of disrupting the lives of small children was what gave me the most hesitation. My own questions of my family origins had distressed me enough that I did not want to potentially cause that kind of emotional stress and anxiety upon any other kids. Ultimately, I overcame those fears and hesitations and made contact with my paternal family - a story that I think is due to be shared in very short order.

But first, I want to say thank you to Oprah. Thank you for showing the world a level of openness and understanding that gives children, even adult children, permission to find their families.