Sister Surprise

As an adoptee, I have often speculated about whether who we are is influenced more by the environment we grow up in or our genetic makeup.  This week my mental tally of votes for each court received another vote in the genetic makeup category.

I met my birth-sister Wendy when I was about thirty years old.  She came to my home and we spent that first night sitting up all night talking. I couldn’t stop looking at her face that had many similarities to my own.  We learned that we had much in common, and were stunned to learn that we had lived in the same city for a number of years as children, lived just a few blocks apart, and even went to the same school at the same time.  It’s very likely that we could have passed each other in the hall or come across each other on the playground.

Over the years both of our lives have taken unexpected twists and turns – some good, many not so good.  We’ve kept in contact with one another, although sometimes a long time as gone by between phone calls or emails. Every time we connect we immediately pick up where we left off last time though.

As I worked through the last pages of my memoir last weekend, my thoughts turned to my sister and I gave her a call.  We caught up on each other’s lives and had some good laughs.  I hadn’t told her about my book yet because I was waiting until it was in more of a finished state so I could share some pages with her before sending it to anyone else.

As the phone call was winding down Wendy said something that stunned me.  “I’ve written a book.”  My talented sister has written a book about her experience with breast cancer.  Neither of us knew that the other was working on a book, neither of us knew that the other had a desire to write a book.

You tell me: nature or nurture?


I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things and the thin places where faith intersects.
  1. Linda, that's incredible! And how exciting.

    I know my answer.

  2. That's incredible how your sister and you have pararell lives!!! And what a blessing that you found each other!

  3. wow that is incredible…I think it is a little of both…genetics and environment….

  4. Congratulations on finishing your book! I am really proud of you. Will you have it ready for sale at the SCN Conference? Looking forward to meeting you in person there!

  5. All I can say is, wow!

  6. Wow! Amazing!

  7. I don't believe in coincidence so I see miraculous things at work here. There is definitely a reason all this is coming to light. It is exciting!

  8. What a beautiful story! I often wonder about the nature or nurture question, too, having three adopted children. They are so alike in many ways, and yet such individuals. Like any family, I guess, but it poses some interesting thoughts!

  9. Linda, I am so happy that you have met your birth sister and have had these wonderful opportunites to share. I too have met some of birth siblings, but I was so surprised to realize that NOT only do we Not look alike, we have very few of the same interests.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.