Book Review ~ You Don't Look Adopted by Anne Heffron
It's been a while since I've posted. I broke my wrist, in two places in late March. I'm just now finishing up physical therapy and can finally type again. It feels good to be able to write again on the keyboard.
While recuperating, I've been doing a lot of reading. This last book I read was by adoptee/author/screenwriter/movie producer Anne Heffron. It's a memoir about her thoughts on being adopted and how she feels it has affected her life.
Written in her unique style, I was hooked on the first page and couldn't put the book down until I was finished. It's an easy read and her voice resonated with my own story in so many ways. Anne gave me some new thoughts to think about, and how adoption might have affected my life in ways I never thought of before. It made me reflect on many things that have happened over my life.
There is depth in her writing, weaving in emotion, insight and sometimes, that insecure world of the adoptee psyche. Anne includes her great humor and honest, forthright truth that makes you want to know and thank this brave woman in real life who bears her aching soul to help others. I feel like I know her and that she is a friend of mine. I'd surely like to meet her one day. We'd have a lot to share and talk about over coffee.
Here's an excerpt:
"I was four people jammed into one: I was the me that my mom wanted; I was the me I would have been if my birth mom had kept me; I was the me I would have been if another family had adopted me; and I was the me that was just me. I couldn't commit to one, and so I was a little bit of all four, and this made me unpredictable and unknowable both to those around me and to myself." ~ Anne Heffron, You Don't Look Adopted
I can so relate to this. I still ask myself, "who am I?" Do we all? I know that can be a life question for many, but I believe, like Anne, that adoption exasperates life questions because we don't have answers and most of us coming from the closed adoption era didn't have any answers until well into adulthood. Some of us still know nothing. It's hard to figure out who you are when you don't know how you began...
I loved this book. I think it should be read by every adoptee and a "must-have" for the adoptee's library. I hope others in the adoption triad read this book too. It would give a glimpse into an adoptee's thoughts and emotions and hopefully help those in positions to allow the adoptee to feel free to talk about their feelings and questions. We need to be able to do this without feeling guilty or made to feel bad. We need to know our history. It's a basic human need to know where we have come from and it helps us to heal the broken parts we have.
An important book giving people an insightful look many adoptees wrestle with all their lives because not all adoptions are Cinderella stories we've been led to believe in.