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Why I Love This Photo...

As I've mentioned before, the emotional journey to find biological family can unravel quickly without true respect all around. It's the core of each search, and something I insist remain as consistent as possible.

I've been lucky enough to meet several birth mothers, and their feedback is something I take very seriously. Were they treated with dignity and empathy when contacted? =

I just love this photo of AJ and his biological mother, Sharon. Meeting her was a true honor and I continue to be thankful for the experience.

I hope you enjoy reading AJ's story:

On the morning of October 8, 2016, a morning mountain bike ride with close friends turned catastrophic. Ninety minutes later a friend rushed me to the emergency room. The doctors told me I was having a heart attack. Moments later I was getting a stent valve placed in my left anterior descending artery and life as I knew it had changed forever.

Sitting in the intensive care recovery room on the cardiac floor, the strangest thing happened. As soon as the nurses felt comfortable that I was stable and left me alone to my thoughts, a voice spoke to me. It was if someone was whispering in my right ear. The words were very clear and I had never heard them before. I actually looked to see if someone was in the room speaking to me, but I was alone.

“Find your birth parents.”

It took 46 years and a dangerous heart attack to prompt this adoptee to search for my biological family and learn about the circumstances that led to my creation, and my relinquishment. What I found was shocking and made me rethink my dismissive attitude towards the age-old expression, “everything happens for a reason.”

I am a changed man and I have thankfully learned the meaning of my life. Being a father and husband, I was pretty sure I knew my life’s purpose. Now I have beaten death and expanded my family. I eat and sleep better. And I have what I call Survivor Superpowers, a very special set of gifts that allow me to slow down and appreciate the little things. Further, I feel compelled to share what I can to benefit others who may be in similar situations.

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