May 24, 2017-Seoul, South Korea
I wake up, eat, and get dressed. Omma (mother) packed a big red suitcase filled with my clothes, bottles, hanbok, toys, and my blanket. I board the bus with my family to my adoption agency. I know this route well because I take this bus once a month.
Eastern Social Welfare Society- Seoul, South Korea
When I arrive at the agency omma begins to cry. My foster brothers try to comfort her, but she continues to cry. I ride my favorite orange bike in the lobby. I play with the toys. Everything is familiar. I know what to expect. A strange woman and man enter the room. They speak in funny words that I can’t understand. They nod and smile at me while they speak. The strange woman starts to cry. She reaches out and holds omma’s hand.
There is a white van waiting for me in the parking lot. Omma places me in the arms of the strangers. I don’t cry. I don’t struggle. The van stops at a stoplight. I reach down for the door handle, but I can’t open it. I start to panic. I am frightened. The strange woman speaks to me, but her words are of no comfort.
Somewhere in Seoul, South Korea
I arrive in a room. I look around. Nothing is familiar. I don’t recognize the smells. This isn’t my house. I am confused. I run to the door. I say, “Omma?” I say it again, but this time louder. She doesn’t answer. I am silent.