If you missed it...read here for background.
I received my original birth certificate a few months ago. It turns out that I barely made the cutoff to simply fill out a form, have it notarized and write a check. My brother, on the other hand, is stuck in limbo. If he wants his original birth certificate, he has to obtain a court order. Thanks a lot big-huge-church that has a giant lobby and who happens to be in a neighboring state, where accusations of coercion abound making it more difficult for the rest of us who like to do things ethically and in the best interests of everyone in the triad. *ahem*
Anyway, a few things were revealed just by receiving my birth certificate. One, my mom kept her maiden name (or wasn't married, not sure). Second, she hyphenated my last name. Third, having my bio-father's full name and age turns out to be not as helpful as I would have hoped. My mom never sent on the information to my brother, and he has since dropped the whole thing like a hot potato. Anyway, I'm not particularly motivated to really search for my bio-dad.
I'm shocked by the hyphenation and my mom keeping her last name, however, and would be interested to know what my brother's birth certificate looks like. Why am I shocked, you ask? Well, my mother has always turned her nose up at hyphenation or women keeping their last name, to the point of making it sound like a stupid thing to do. It created a conundrum for me, because I am decidedly more feminist and really struggled with what to do with my name when I got married. She pushed me to take S's name and drop my maiden name, but I wasn't sold. What I ended up with is a hyphenated name that isn't hyphenated, and all kinds of problems since then. Because I didn't just own it and stick that stupid hyphen in there when I filled out SS paperwork, I'm stuck with two last names and the morons of the world don't get it (literally, I have gotten a "that's weird" more than once). Maybe I'm lazy, or maybe I don't want to spend the time and money, but I don't think it's worth getting a court order for a hyphen, IMO.
So, what do I do now? I'm waiting for my brother to want to try to search for family. I don't feel that motivated because I'm afraid of what I might find. As this was a divorce and abandonment, I don't know if it would be a good thing or not to try to find someone who didn't want me in the first place. I fully realize that my story is not a traditional adoption story, but it remains that throughout my life, I've had similar identity and behavioral issues, and have grown up with a healthy disgust for deceit. These experiences may have made it easier for me to embrace the idea of opening my heart and home to my child's first-family, as difficult as it can be. I didn't like growing up being silenced by my parents, and I am not going to silence Baby X or his sibling just because I might get uncomfortable. But maybe it won't be too bad because I already know what it's like to be told that all I'm doing is making someone else uncomfortable, when it's my life, not theirs. It's all speculation at this point, and only time will tell if I can be as open and supportive as I think I can be.