Monday, December 1, 2008

Adoptee Linda Zoblotsky on Texas law reform, her story and play "Luvchild"

I am Linda Zoblotsky.I lived in NYC for 18 years and then I moved to Texas 4 years ago in 2004, where I was born, to help my adoptive brother in Dallas with his computer business. I was born in El Paso, Texas. My adoptive parents were allowed to take me to Oklahoma, where I grew up, when I was only 8 days old.

Birth records are sealed in Oklahoma and in Texas. In 2005, after many years of the lobbying efforts of the triad community in Austin, Gov. Rick Perry signed a bill to open birth records, but only if you know the name of your natural parents, then you can apply for your original birth certificate.On the application, it says if you commit perjury, you can be fined up to $10,000.In a few weeks you get a Xerox of your birth certificate and it costs $10.00.

I had reunion with my natural parents in 2003. When Rick Perry signed this bill, I was just curious, so I sent in my application and $10.00 and now I have a Xerox copy of my original birth certificate.But for people who are still searching, I find this law cruel and inhumane.It is a tease to people in the position that I was once in, when I had no idea of the names of my natural parents.

I was very very lucky in that when I started searching in 1993, it took a while, but ALMA, the Adoptee Liberation Movement Association, matched me with a man and a women who were looking for a girl born in El Paso born on my birth date. By the time the letter with the match from ALMA arrived in 2001, I knew it was my natural parents, just because I figured there wouldn't have been a whole lot of Jewish children surrendered for adoption on my birth-date in 1963.

When ALMA sent me the information, after so many years, after I registered and my natural parents registered in the 1980's, the addresses and phone numbers were old. I had to use a combination of intuition, nerve and determination,like so many adopted people, to begin dialing. One day in 2003, when I turned 40, I encountered a voice that I liked on an answering machine in Berkeley. It took me a while to get the nerve to leave a message and when I did, I found my natural Mother. She contacted my natural Father immediately and it has been a very happy reunion. Both of my parents were thrilled!

While I was in New York City, I performed in 5 national musical theatre Broadway tours. It turns out that my parents met each other while they were students at the Goodman School of Drama in Chicago.My Father is a professional actor, writer and theatre critic in L.A. My Mother sang and acted in Chicago and NYC. My adoptive sister, who lost her 2 children to adoption, and a dear friend of mine who went to the Goodman School predicted that I would find my natural parents 10 days before I turned 40 and that's what happened.It turns out that my good friend from the Goodman was beginning school there, as my natural Mother was finishing, but he didn't know her, however, he came to realize that he knew my Mother's sister. And when I found my natural Father, an actress friend in NYC told me she knew him from when she was making the auditioning rounds in L.A. While I was making phone calls looking for my natural Mother, I was writing a one woman play about searching for my natural parents called Linda Zoblotsky is Luvchild. I'm glad I had to change the ending and I am thankful that my play has a joyous ending.