Tag Archives: adoptlit

Emma Stevens Finds her True Self Despite All Odds in “The Gathering Place”

When Emma Stevens learns her birth mother wrote and signed a letter about her to the adoption agency, she knew she had to have that letter. Her birth mother had used a fictitious name at the maternity home and an assumed name on Emma’s original birth certificate. Emma takes bold measures to get ahold of that letter and start solving the puzzle that is her life.

Emma was adopted into a family that expected her to conform to their expectations of who she should be — but she did not arrive as a blank slate. Unable to see that her relinquishment and adoption were not her fault, her soul split into pieces. In order to put the pieces back together, Emma embarks on multiple journeys and adventures towards both solving the mystery of who she is, and healing from the pain of separation from her origins.

The Gathering Place memoir by Emma Stevens

Below is an excerpt from The Gathering Place: An Adoptee’s Story, Emma Steven’s newly released memoir.


The Letter

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Julie McGue Searches for Identity, Family, & Belonging in Her New Memoir

julie ryan mcgue, author and adoptee
Author Julie Ryan McGue

To launch the probe into her closed adoption, Julie McGue first needed the support of her twin sister. They made a pact: Julie would approach their adoptive parents for the adoption paperwork and investigate search options, and the sisters would split the costs involved to locatie their birth relatives. But their adoptive parents weren’t happy that their daughters want to search for their birth parents — and that was only the first of many obstacles Julie would come up against as she dug into her background.

Below is an excerpt from Julie McGue’s newly release memoir, Twice a Daughter: A Search for Identity, Family, and Belonging, which tells the story of her 5-year search for her origins.


The Twins

Lisa gives me a warm hug, and I introduce her to Jenny. “This is my twin sister.”

Jenny laughs and glances over at me. “About a month ago, we learned through DNA testing that we’re identical.” This isn’t a setup. Jenny and I hadn’t planned on bringing this up today.

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“I Want My Real Mom!” — says Sara Easterly

Ever on the lookout, I love finding adoptee voices that help me better understand the mosaic that is the adoptee experience. So many generous adoptees over the years have made an inestimable difference in the way I connect with my children. My entire family benefits when I listen to understand.

Enter Sara Easterly. Sara is new on my radar, but already an accomplished author and writer. I met Sara last month at the Tattered Cover for an author event around her new memoir, Searching for Mom. In this guest post, Sara explores a word that can roll off the tongue just as easily as it can pierce a heart, with or without that intention.

Sometimes, as Sara tells us, that word can be a sacred invitation to abide with someone in their grief.

when real interferes with intimacy in adoptive parenting
Continue reading “I Want My Real Mom!” — says Sara Easterly