Recently my brother and I held a burial service for my mom and dad. Dad died in 2014 and mom died in 2018. Both loses were not easy because of the lessons we learned from them and because of the blessed lives we have had. Being adopted, this has been a tough loss as I have been reminded of the fact that I could have ended up anywhere in my life.
I always thought it was a cool thing to be adopted. Loved the jokes I could tell my friends about learning the “Adopted Kid” song or that one of the biggest challenges in my life was the never ending and quite daunting task of teaching my parents to look like me.
But the thing about being adopted is that when your parents die, the loss sort of forces you to take a long, hard stare at how amazing your life has been. My brother and I have both recognized the fact that we could have been anywhere – and ended up with a different family and in a different place. We are beyond blessed with regard to the life and the opportunities they provided for us.
When my dad died, I never wanted to lose track of the many things he told me. “Guard your credit with your life”, “don’t go to sleep angry” or (probably the most prevalent in our family) – “finish what you start”.
I started writing everything I learned from him and then from my mom; and the end result was a poem that I titled “Life Lessons x 2” (posted below).