I was too dark, or I was a girl, or the father didn’t know about me. Who knows? No one could understand me, I thought. Sometimes people made it worse by asking, “Why don’t you look like the rest of your family?” It was hard to explain since no one really understood what being adopted meant.
It hurt, and I always felt like crying every time I had to go into depth about being adopted. I talked about it, but not very openly.
We moved to London when I was about four and lived there for about 7 years. London became my second home. I had moved up the pre-teen ministry while I was there, and I loved it. I had a lot of close friend in the church, helping me to pour out my feelings. I learned I could tell them anything and not be judged, unlike at school. I could talk to them about how I felt towards adoption and they would listen to me willingly.
Hearing my parents say, “Your best friends will always be in the church,” didn’t help me much since I thought that was the case for everyone. But when I moved away, it was those friends who kept in touch and helped me despite the distance between us. I could email them and tell them anything, just as if I were talking to them.
Moving back to India was something I had always dreamed of, but I didn’t know how hard it would be. To me, being back in India meant that I was closer to ‘my’ people and I could relate to them. However, it also meant that I felt more pain recognizing that I was abandoned in this city and that my birth parents could be out there.
As we drove by beggars, my heart went out to them. I imagined myself in their place, and knew that one of those girls, outside my car window, could have been me. It made me think how fortunate I was and I knew that without God I could have been in this situation.
I started studying the Bible, which was a slow process. It took a couple of years for me to make the decision, but when I did, I knew there was no turning back. I knew I could be used for God. I was not only adopted, but I was adopted into a strong Christian family.
There was only one reason for this, and I was ready to dive in headfirst. I knew I could help my people come to God.
Sitting on Bible studies, I see the teenage girls of India, and I realize that I’ve been through nothing. Their pain seems unbearable to me, but they can live on thinking that is the only way of life. I hear about girls my age (16) who have been sexually abused by their own family members and women who have had their second child at my age.
I see the pain they are going through, knowing mine is nothing compared to theirs. My heart sinks deep inside my chest every time I hear such a story. I want to help my people, and I know I can. That is why I am here.
Vol. III: The Blessing of My Adoption by Esther Templer
Written by Esther Sonali Templer -- New Delhi Friday, 14 August 2009 07:56
Everyone has something special about them that makes them unique and different from everyone else. Our experiences make us individual people. Here are my unique experiences... I was adopted at six months from an orphanage in New Delhi, India. As I grew up I found it hard and painful to think about the reasons why I was given up.
Published in Teens