We all have a purpose

Erin - Golden Valley, Minnesota
Entered on October 1, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: hope

Through adoption, I have come to believe that we all have a purpose.

I was born in Calcutta, India in April of 1991. My birthmother was from a small, impoverished village just outside Calcutta. She was both very young and unmarried. In India, this status is not uncommon. However, she would have found herself near the bottom of the Indian caste system. There is no existing record of who my father was or where he was from.

I was born in what is referred to as a “nursing home,” in Hindi. What this place actually is, is a small medical center where expectant mothers can receive free medical assistance. In no way do the facilities resemble any hospital, meeting the legal safety requirements in the United States. Orphanages would frequently send people to go to these centers and check for children who were abandoned. Within the first 24 hours after my birth, I was found and taken to an orphanage called International Mission of Hope in southern Calcutta near the bank of the Hugli River. This orphanage was very well known in the area and cared for around 40 children from newborns to toddlers. There were also some older children who were never adopted, often due to mental of physical disabilities.

The circumstances and environment in which I was born are some of the worst imaginable. India is one of the poorest third-world countries but also has one of the largest populations with around 1 billion, 94 thousands people. While there is a considerable amount of wealth in the top percentages, around 42% of the population live off of less than $1.25 U.S. currency a day. There is no Indian equivalent of the “American Dream” and overcoming these hugely adverse circumstances is virtually impossible. However, I am one of the lucky few.

In November of the same year, at six months old, I was adopted by a family living in Minnesota. My parents had already adopted one son from the same orphanage roughly a year and half earlier and decided he needed a sibling. I could have gone anywhere, as children from IMH have literally been places in many different countries. But I know, I ended up where I am supposed to be. Obviously I can’t imagine living anywhere else or with anyone else, because this is the only life I can remember and have ever known. Still, I feel an inexplicable deeper connection to my family members. I have attended a good school, been raised by loving parents, and grown up in an environment that is unparalleled anywhere in India.

I truly believe that I was destined to be where I am. I am also determined to find out the intention and the purpose of my future life; there is no doubt in my mind that one exists. The chances of my situation are virtually one in a million and with one slightly different step, I wouldn’t be where I am. I don’t believe for a second that anything happened coincidently.