The “What If” Monster Almost Ate My Dream!

imagesEver awakened from a dream and wished it could’ve been real? What about those dreams that seem to be sending a message? Are they prompting us to do something we may, otherwise, not have had the courage to do?

Last April, I had a dream. Not one of those “I can’t remember much about it” dreams, but one so vivid that it haunted me.

I’d searched for my biological family for twenty years. Without knowing a single letter of my mother’s name, much less her age or where she lived, it was a mission for which success seemed unlikely. Each time I set out, determined to kick down doors, I quickly hit walls.

Not surprisingly, most of the walls were in my head (our thoughts have the power to destroy our dreams.)

“What am I thinking? I’ll never find them.”

“What if they don’t want to be found?”

“What if they’re terrible people?”

“What if I was the product of rape?”

“What if I ruin their lives by showing up, unannounced?”

What if … what if … what if …

Every time I began a new search, I would “what if” my way right out of it.

There were a few times when I managed to shut the “What If” monster down … or at least quiet his growls long enough for me to scoot past him. That’s when I’d run into insurmountable legal hurdles, and then the “It Wasn’t Meant To Be” creature took over.

In order to get the two beasts out of my head, I would typically give my search a rest for a few months. But, without fail, that gentle whispering would begin again …

“I wish I knew where I came from.”

Anybody who knows me can tell you that I’d talked about finding my birth family to the point of exhaustion. But, early in 2013, I finally told myself it was time to give up. The “It Wasn’t Meant To Be” creature had beat me down and I was tired of the battle.

“If they wanted to know me, they’d have found me by now,” I reasoned.

But it seems God had other plans. Who knows? Maybe He was just waiting for me to finally step out of the way, so He could take over.

In April of 2013, I awoke from the most magical and vivid dream I’d ever had. For the next three days, every breath I took included an image I’d seen in my slumber. Try as I may, I couldn’t shake it, and I have to admit, I didn’t want to. When I recalled the story, which had unfolded in my sleep, I experienced a mysterious sense of comfort.

Two days later, I finally told my husband.

For the first time, I admitted it out loud. I did feel different by not knowing where I came from. My life was good, but my soul felt incomplete. I finally confessed that I was afraid.

In the past, I refused to verbalized it. When people would ask me if I was letting fear affect my search, I’d confidently answer, “Nope! It doesn’t matter to me if they don’t want to know me. My life wouldn’t change a bit!”

I’d usually follow up with, “It would just be nice to know my medical history.”

But that night, when I shared my dream with Ed, I was finally honest. If I found my birth parents and they wanted nothing to do with me, it would hurt. In fact, there was a chance I’d tumble into a deep, emotional pit and things might get pretty ugly in this crazy brain of mine.

But if there was even a tiny chance that I might experience the wholeness I did in that dream, it would be worth it.

Not expecting our future results to be any different than those of our previous pursuits, Ed and I agreed to search one, final time.

The way it all happened is a story for another day, but I’m happy to say …

Two months later, on June 20, 2013, I found my birth mom. What an AMAZING adventure!

The day I met my birth mom (blue shirt) in person for the first time. Here we are outside of Olive Garden with Ed and a few of my kids!

The day I met my birth mom (blue shirt) in person for the first time. Here we are outside of Olive Garden with Ed and a few of my kids!

The first night we were together, we stayed up late, just the two of us in my dimly-lit living room. My mother lovingly answered all my questions, even those that made her squirm a little! She openly shared everything I wanted to know about her, my ancestors, and my birth father.

On November 12, 2013, five months after I met my mom, I found my biological father.

By God’s grace, my mother instantly welcomed me and my father, who was previously unaware of my existence, embraced me with the affection of a father who had treasured his child since conception.

My handsome birth father and beautiful sister

My handsome birth father and beautiful sister

In recent months, my two moms have met. Each share a mutual appreciation for each other. I’m trying to make arrangements for my two dads to meet later this year. There are sure to be plenty of laughs as my adoptive dad tells tales of my childhood to the father I just found.

If you’re reading this, you have a dream! We all do! Our greatest visions are those that seem the most impossible to achieve, but remember, God doesn’t give us impossible dreams!

Don’t let the “What If” monster or the “It Wasn’t Meant To Be” creature eat your dreams. Be courageous! Fight the beasts! Gather an army of people, who believe in you, and charge the battlefield.

Let’s destroy the monsters who eat our ideas. They’ve eaten enough and they don’t need to get any fatter!

A poem, which my birth mom found from an anonymous writer. She sent it to my adoptive mom after they met. It beautifully expresses the heart of a biological mother for the child she could not keep:


My two incredible moms. Left: My mom who raised me. Right: My birth mom

“Once there were two women who never knew each other.

One you do not remember, the other you call mother.

Two different lives shaped to make your one.

One became your guiding star, the other became your Sun.

The first gave you Life, and the second taught you to live it.

The first gave you a need for love, and the second was there to give it.

One gave you a nationality, the other gave you a name.

One gave you a seed of talent, the other gave you an aim.

One gave you emotions, the other calmed your fears.

One imagined your first sweet smile, the other dried your tears.

One sought for you a home that she could not provide.

The other prayed for a child, and her hopes were not denied.

And now, you ask me through your tears,

The age-old question unanswered through the years.

Nature or Nurture, which are you the product of?

Neither, my darling, neither; just two different kinds of love.”


4 thoughts on “The “What If” Monster Almost Ate My Dream!

  1. That was beautiful. Stephanie is my sister-in-law. She told me the wonderful story, but it was so neat to hear it from your perspective. I read that poem many years ago and it had special meaning to me as well, since four of my five children are adopted. I am so grateful to their moms for giving birth to them, and so thankful to God for bringing them into my life.


    • Hi Dee! Thank you for reading my story and for the lovely comment. It is always so WONDERFUL for me to hear from members of my birth parents’ families! Hopefully, I will get to meet you someday! Bless you!


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