When I reunited with my sisters and family in Taiwan, I was so curious about our family history, about what led up to my adoption, and of course, about my country of origin. I had so many questions about our parents and family, but I wanted to be sensitive to my sisters and not press them to reveal things unless they wanted to. It was such a joyous event just to be with them and to meet my extended biological family, to share a sisterly connection despite a language and cultural barrier. I continue to learn about my cultural heritage, although sadly, there isn’t much Chinese or Taiwanese culture in Arizona.
I often wondered prior to reuniting with my birthfamily if we shared any similar characteristics, physical features, but also areas of interest or special talents. I grew up playing the piano and studied piano performance in undergrad. I love classical music, learning, academia, drawing, writing, singing, drama/theatre – really, anything related to the arts. I learned from my sisters that our mother also enjoyed classical music and had a love of learning. When I was a young girl, I drew a lot and kept a sketchbook. Who knows whatever happened to that sketchbook – it probably ended up in the trash at some point. In any case, I posted some of my artwork on Facebook recently, and my oldest sister messaged me saying that she also loved to draw. She sent me several recent drawings and gave me permission to share some of them here. I’m so impressed with her artwork, but even more, that we share a common interest and passion. One of my favorites is a drawing my sister made of three little monkeys – of course, my sisters and I! 2016 is the Year of the Monkey, the ninth of the 12 animals in the recurring 12-year Chinese zodiac cycle, so the drawing is especially meaningful. My sister also told me that our brother is very artistic and a gifted photographer. Our father was a skillful calligrapher. So, I’m inclined to say that art is in our genes.
I’m so happy that social media allows me to stay connected to my family in Taiwan in a way that would have been impossible years ago. I hope to travel to Taiwan again in the near future. I had hoped to return years ago, but things seem to come up that prevent me from traveling back. It’s been 4 years since our reunification.
I’ve posted some of my eldest sister’s drawings here, as well as one of my own. I wish that I had more time to improve my drawing skills. It seems that at this stage in my life, I’m getting further and further away from the things I most enjoy artistically. Sad, but true. I’d like to find meaningful work that allows me to use my artistic talents to a greater capacity, as well as my experiences as an internationally adopted person. I haven’t quite found my niche yet, but there is always hope.