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My Two Dads, part one: a story for the generations from the Story Powerline
2/25/2020 7:00:00 AM by: Janimarie Rowe as told to Becky Cerling Powers

Since I had the same last name as my mom and dad, I was eight years old before I started to wonder why I was the toddler in my parents’ wedding pictures. When I asked Mom about it, she told me that I had two fathers, my biological dad Sam and the man I knew as ‘’Dad,’’ my dad Ron, who had adopted me and was raising me.

Dreams and surfacing memories

That was a shock. Memories of my dad Sam began surfacing, and I began having dreams about him every couple of months, wondering what he was like. Mom always assured me that he had loved me. She said that I had been the ultimate Daddy’s Girl.

But he had never contacted me after Mom and Dad married. I wondered why he hadn’t even sent me a birthday card. I always assumed that one day I’d meet him and find out.

Childhood resentment

Today, as an adult, I realize that much of the resentment I felt toward my dad Ron growing up probably had its roots in that severed bond. My dad Sam had spoiled me. When my parents married, I was 22 months old, and my dad Ron adopted me. He wanted to be a good Christian parent, and he was.

He saw a little girl who was spoiled, and he was now her daddy, and he wanted to change that. That was something I couldn’t understand until I was older.

Black sheep daughter

When my sister Shauna came along a couple years later, her personality meshed better with Dad’s than mine. I wasn’t jealous of Shauna. She and I were good friends. But my dad Ron and I had a lot of conflicts.

In high school it often crossed my mind that he was not my father. I felt like the black sheep in the family.

Anger at one dad, search for the other

When I married Steve at age 18, I began praying that God would take away the anger I had toward my dad Ron. A year later, our baby Josh was born.

About that time, I saw a TV talk show about finding a parent you’d never seen before. When I told my mom about it, she mentioned that Dad had had a dream that my dad Sam had died.

That scared me. I had always assumed my biological dad would show up some day. It had never occurred to me that he might die before I met him. What if he never saw my baby? I determined to find him.

To be continued.

What the Bible says

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice’’ (Ephesians 4:32 NIV).

Today’s prayer

Dear God, I know that my anger is not pleasing to You, but I do not know how to let go of it. Please help me! Amen.

This story is published by permission from My Roots Go Back to Loving and other stories from 1998: Year of the Family, which can be purchased from the Bookstore.


Previous Posts

Music Enriches the Family
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Pre-School at Home During Covid-19: tips from the Parent Powerline
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Grandpa Thure Cerling, Part 1: a Beatitudes Tale from the Story Powerline
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My Two Dads, part three: a story for the generations from the Story Powerline
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My Two Dads, part two: a story for the generations from the Story Powerline
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