I am often told I am just like my mom. We work at the same business, and frequently our fellow employees compare us.
“When something goes wrong, you both say, ‘shoot it’.”
“You’re both so patient and kind to customers.”
“You’re just so much alike.”
I never mind being told I am like my mother. She has a generous spirit, a solid work ethic, and most of all, she has hard-earned wisdom. Yet, while we act the same, we do not seem to look alike. She has those green-blue-hued eyes that change with what color she wears. Her hair is curly, blonde, and coarse. She has slight dimples that frame her naturally straight teeth.
I am often told I am just like my dad. Our church congregation continually makes these comparisons.
“You have the same humor as your dad.”
“You’re good with technology just like your dad.”
“You’re just like your dad.”
I never mind being told I am like my father. He is passionate, driven, and most of all, he values his time and uses it wisely. Yet, while we act the same, we do not seem to look alike. He has hazel eyes, a balance of green and brown. His salt and pepper hair carries a few strands of red in the middle of his even hairline. He has a longer nose, and his chin is more defined than mine.
Despite the fact I am so much like my parents, I am not their biological child. I was adopted from China when I was eleven months old. I share no blood with them and no DNA, yet I am so much like my parents. For as long as I can remember, I knew I was adopted; it was never hidden from me. How could it be when I clearly have white parents? I have one brother. He shares their blood. He has their eyes, their chin, their smile. Yet, he is not loved more than me. He is not treated better than me. He does not act as if he’s better than me.
I believe in unconditional love. I am different than my family. I have silky black hair, brown almond-shaped eyes, and a pudgy nose. I share no DNA with the people I have lived with for the past 18 years. But blood has never mattered, and it never will matter. I have always felt love and acceptance from my family; there was never a time I doubted my place in our home. A family must be built upon unconditional love. How can we be expected to live with people if we cannot look past their flaws or outer appearance? Unconditional love has the power to unite even the most opposite of people.
Most of the time, people forget I am adopted because all they see is the love shared between our family. It does not matter how one comes into a family; a family is made through love.