Saved Before My First Breathe...
In 1985, in Seoul, South Korea, abortion was culturally acceptable. There were over 500,000 abortions and just over 650,000 actual births. This meant every time a child was conceived, it only had a 57% chance of actually being born. I survived the 43% abortion rate. On November 13, 1984, my birth mother gave birth in a clinic outside of Seoul. She abandoned me onsite, leaving no trace or record of whom she was. This is my story on MERCY, GRACE, and LOVE. A story on how big God truly is and how He has a destiny and purpose for each of His children. I was Saved Before My First Breathe by God, He showered a women who ended up becoming pregnant with MERCY, GRACE, and LOVE for an unborn child. Her MERCY, GRACE, and LOVE allowed her to decide to keep her child and give him up for adoption vs. aborting her pregnancy, in a time when society and culture was telling her that was normal and okay.
My actual hospital paperwork says the location of the Dongin Clinic in Songnae-don, Kangdon-gu, Seoul City in which I was left and abandoned at. It says, "After the natural mother gave birth to the baby at the above-mentioned clinic, she covered her tracks. The clinic tried to get in contact with the natural parents, but in vain." I was abandoned. My birth mother left, she ghosted, vanished, with no trace of who she was. I was placed for adoption.
On February 14, 1985 (Valentine’s Day), I flew from Seoul, South Korea to Chicago, Illinois. This was the day when I met my parents. When I arrived in Chicago, my mother along with four other mothers wearing an identification bracelet went aboard the plane to meet their children. See, at this time, there was no high tech process. The adoption agency, Bethany Christian Services and Holt International, placed the babies on the plane in South Korea with two bracelets, one bracelet being the hospital information and the other being the adoption agency bracelet with the adoptive parents names on it. The babies then flew the almost 13 hour flight to Chicago only to be attended and fed by co-traveling businessmen and flight attendants. The moms, walked onto the plane, found the baby that had the matching identification bracelet with adoptive parents names on it, picked up their baby, and proceeded through customs. The picture above, is of my mom and the other adoptive mothers with their babies going through customs.
My mom always says I’m the greatest Valentine’s Day gift she has ever received. Every year she still writes me a card telling me that and sends me a gift to celebrate “Homecoming Day.” My adoption story is truly an amazing and beautiful story, but there’s more…
Not only is my story one of an amazing adoption, but also it’s a story of how big our God truly is. Our God has a destiny and purpose for each of His children. He protected me when I was conceived and growing in the womb:
“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.” Psalm 139:13-16.
MERCY, GRACE, and LOVE were poured out over my birth mother. The understanding and knowledge of how the conception happened will probably always be unknown. But what will always be known is how God hand His hand upon my life. He spoke to my birth mother to protect my life. She easily could’ve been apart of the 43% of normal society of having an abortion, but she did not. She decided to endure the 9 months of pregnancy, the pain, the lost hours of sleep, emotional attachment, psychological tear, and physical altercations in order to have me. Not only did she do all of that, but the MERCY, GRACE, and LOVE she had for me knowing she would not be able to raise and support me in a life that she more than likely thought was acceptable, she gave me up for adoption. She gave me up for a better life. The sense of humility and grace to know that you are unable to provide for your child, but know the decision in giving them up for adoption would be the best interest of the child, still brings me to tears to this day. Tears of gratitude, thankfulness, humility, appreciation, and love for someone I have never met.
On the other side of the world, in a small suburban town, a highly all-Caucasian community, outside of Chicago called Batavia, Illinois, Jeffrey and Sally Zies found themselves in a realization that natural children were not physically possible. Jeff and Sally, high school sweethearts and married at the age of 18 and 20 found themselves for years trying to have children, but unsuccessful. With faith and hope dwindling and family members advising against adopting another race, they persevered through and decided to adopt. Only after Sally overhearing a co-worker talk about an adoption, did they find Bethany Christian Services in Chicago, Illinois. The agency was not even open for two weeks, but yet they still applied and submitted their adoption paperwork. This was at the same time, on the other side of the world, I was conceived. God knew, I was going to be Jeff and Sally’s child and was aligning the path it would take place. Thirteen months after submitting that adoption application, did we meet on Valentine’s Day 1985, Homecoming Day.
This is my story, my God story. But how does the word “abandoned” that was spoken over him at birth, written on his hospital certificates, become a triumphant destiny calling? How does being a different race in all-Caucasian family affect culture barriers? How does a child of an inter-ethnic family deal with racial persecution? Find out more on the blog section that is coming soon.