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Meeting birth mom 'best birthday ever' for area teen

'It’s better to know where you come from ... it’s the best feeling,' says 19-year-old who finally met his birth mom and his siblings
2020 17 Andrew Padgett
Andrew Padgett with his birth mother, Miranda (left) and mom Kim Padgett. Supplied photo

His 19th birthday was the best one ever for Andrew Padgett.

That was the day he travelled to Picton with his mom, Newmarket yoga and pilates instructor Kim Padgett, to meet his birth mother and half siblings — two sisters and a brother.

“It was the best weekend in my entire life,” said Andrew, who just graduated from Bradford District High School.

“Seeing where I came from, where I could have been, was mind blowing,” he added.

Andrew had always known he was adopted, but he didn’t have any connection with his birth mother until she wrote to him when he turned 18.

That was when his family grew as he learned for the first time that he had three half-siblings.

He developed an instant bond with Katie, 14.

“I always wanted a little sister,” Andrew said. “When I was five, I remember asking my parents if we could have one.”

They share a lot of the same interests — like graphic design, which Andrew plans to study at college in the fall — and talk daily.

Seeing her son connect with his birth mother, Miranda, and half siblings closes a circle with Kim, who has kept in touch with Andrew’s birth mother throughout the years.

She and her husband had decided to pursue adoption after they were unsuccessful at getting pregnant and discovered an open adoption agency near Belleville.

Open adoption is a form of adoption in which the biological and adoptive families have access to each other's personal information and have the option of contact. 

“Andrew’s biological mother picked us,” Kim said, explaining they wrote a profile for the birth mothers to review and were chosen by her from 40 other couples. “She knew exactly what she wanted for her baby.”

Miranda, a university student, was 19 when Andrew was born, and had no support.

“As soon as we said ‘yes’, she went into labour,” Kim said. “We felt like the stars, the moon and the gods aligned to bring him to us.”

Within 12 hours of his birth, they were able to hold him.

Andrew was born with a cleft lip and palate, so Kim stayed with him for a week at the hospital.

“I was there for him,” she said.

When Miranda was ready to leave the hospital, she told Kim she wanted to place Andrew in her arms.

“‘This is the most unselfish thing you’ll do in your life, I told her,” Kim recalled.

While it took some time for Andrew to answer the letter Miranda sent for his 18th birthday — he says he was busy, but Kim suspects her thoughtful son didn’t want to hurt her feelings — “It has sealed the deal for him,” she said.

It was an emotional meeting for all of them, and Kim said she and her husband are delighted for Andrew, who she thinks has more confidence since the full picture of his family has been drawn.

Kim shared the news on her Facebook page: "19 years ago today Andrew became our baby, we adopted him through an agency that believed in open adoption, it has been the greatest gift for us and today Andrew got to meet his birth mother and siblings for the first time. On the way home he told me this was his best birthday!"

“Go for it,” is Andrew’s advice for adopted individuals who have the opportunity to meet their birth families. “It’s better to know where you come from.”  

“It’s the best feeling,” said Andrew.



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Debora Kelly

About the Author: Debora Kelly

Debora Kelly is the editor for AuroraToday and NewmarketToday. She is an award-winning journalist and communications professional who is passionate about building strong communities through engagement, advocacy and partnership.
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