Burdick Newsletters

January, 2000


Help Find a Burdick Birth Mother

by Howard Burdick and Sey Jones

I have to admit that I'm not often moved by the emails I receive, but this one from Sey Jones did just that. I realize that adoption is a delicate matter, and the last thing I want to do is appear to be forcing an issue one way or another. That's why I'll just relay Sey's email and ask that if you wish to contact her, please do so directly without me in the middle. If all this ends happily, I'll report it immediately.

So without further delay, Here's Sey's request:

"After I reviewed all the wonderful information your Burdick site contains, I thought it appropriate to send this along as you probably act as a clearing house and storage facility for the Burdick name. I will definitely want a copy of the Burdick book written by Nellie Johnson if my adopted daughter, Ann, turns out to be a Burdick and we can trace her roots. It will make such a great surprise present for her. I've not been able to trace a single person of the name given by the birth mom, so she may have used the father's name. (We have not hired a professional researcher.) My husband and I met the birth mom in the hospital as a condition required by her before she'd sign the infant release form. She said she wanted to extract three promises from us re the baby girl. They were:

1. We'd always raise the baby knowing that she was adopted. That was what we'd planned so it was easy to promise. (We always talked about our chosen baby, the one that grew in our heart not beneath our heart. For many years, she thought all children were adopted! We really chuckled when we realized this! When my second husband adopted both my natural son born in the first marriage and my daughter, on the way home from court, my son clapped his little hands. I asked him why he was so excited and he said, "Oh, mommy, now we're (meaning his sister, his mom and himself) are ALL adopted!"

2. That we would raise her in a Christian home. Again, an easy promise.

3. That we would tell her that her mommy didn't give her to us because she didn't want her but because she had no way to provide for her and wanted a really good life for her. That was EXACTLY what we'd planned to do.

The mom wouldn't sign the necessary papers until her grandmother had seen the baby. That really touched my heart. The mom asked, when the adoption was complete, we send her 6 pictures of the baby. We were happy to comply. Foolishly, I didn't ask the mom for her picture . Hind sight and age provide lots of wisdom! I've always regretted that I didn't have her picture.

When the baby was born, I was teaching in secondary school. The principal announced over the loud speaker that, "Congratulations, Mrs. Robinson just had a baby girl!" My students looked at me, couldn't figure out just how I'd accomplished that and thought maybe they should repeat their sex education class! Her birth was printed in the school newspaper, too. The teacher and long time family friend we'd chosen to be her Godmother heard the announcement and hollered across campus to me "Don't you dare leave for the hospital without me." At the hospital, we were ushered into an anti-room of the nursery and I got to hold that sweet bundle for the first time. My husband and I returned to the hospital that night so he could see our new daughter. There was never a doubt in mind but that was truly my baby. No one had to point her out to me! We brought her to our home on Parliment Ave. in Westminster, CA, two days later. We told our son to sit on the sofa so he could hold his new baby sister. When he got her in his little arms, he looked up at me and said, "Oh, mommy, she's just what I always wanted." Pretty special, huh? My mother latched onto the baby like she was the only baby there'd ever been and they remained extremely close until mother graduated (expired) in 1990. My grandfather loved to rock her and sing to her as he had to his children and grandchildren.

I told my family that since this was a private adoption, the mother had until the final adoption (held in Santa Ana, CA) to change her mind and reclaim the baby. My brother,17 at the time, said, "My grandpa's got a double barrel shotgun in the closet that says ain't nobody gonna take this baby no place!" He meant it, too. He has always had a special bond with her. One day he was baby sitting for a couple of hours while I did something. When I came home, he'd changed her diaper and in the process powdered her bottom. He'd done it on the dining room table and the outline of her body was still to be seen on the table. He'd used a little too much powder! Even today, he continues to feel close to her. He even boards her horse on his ranchette. My daughter has just married this April 1, 1999. An odd date for a marriage but she dreamed that it was the correct one. She is very intuitive, almost psychic. She also dreamed that she will have two children, Amanda and Max. (We used to have a dog named Max that she tried to teach to read.) She married a man who is also adopted. His father was a professor at UC Berkeley. Our son also married an adopted woman. We'll never know who our grandchildren favor!

I'm thrilled that there is such good ancestry information if, indeed, my daughter turns out to be a Burdick. I hope it is all right that I've shared this with you. I thought that someday someone might try to find Baby Girl Burdick. You seem to me to be the natural place for this information to reside. This child has always been treasured, treasured, treasured. The birth mom gave us a gift so large we could never repay her. We are so grateful. I've always really wanted to find the birth mom and hope she'd want a relationship with us. I feel it would be an enrichment to our family and, hopefully, to hers. My daughter and her birth mom have a special relationship that cannot be duplicated; however, my daughter and I also have a special bond that cannot be broken.

If you'd like the names of the cast of characters in this drama, I'll be glad to send them to you. I just didn't want to send information that would be too identifying to anyone who might recognize the name but not know the specifics. I don't want to hurt or shock the birth mom and family nor force us on her.

Baby Girl Burdick was born at the Westminster Hospital, Westminster, CA on 3-15-67. Name could be the father's or bogus. Birth mom stated her age as 20, and was of Irish & German descent. The baby has beautiful blue eyes and had blonde hair which has now turned to a reddish blonde. Birth mom may have been in Alaska prior to the birth, perhaps at the university. I requested her IQ, but the university wrote back and said they couldn't give private information about students. However, on a slip of paper stuck in the letter, was a 3 digit number! We have no information regarding the father's idenity nor anything about him. The social worker told us that the baby had a difficult birth and was deprived of oxygen for an undetermined amount of time. She told me that quite likely the baby would be brain damaged and said I didn't have to accept her. We took her just as eagerly as if she'd been a normal child because it was our belief that special needs children deserve a family, too. I told them that had I given birth and something had gone wrong I wouldn't refuse to take my child home and love it so why was this any different! God smiled on us because my daughter is very, very bright!

Baby Girl Burdick, as reported by a social worker, has an older brother probably born 1965/66 and adopted by a family in Garden Grove, CA. She told us the name because she thought we ought to know as our two towns bordered each other. It was totally possible that they might meet and date! When the family who had adopted the baby boy found out that there was a baby girl, they begged the birth mom to let them have her since she was full blood sister to their son. The birth mom refused because she'd already given her word that the child would be ours. All of this was reported by a social worker.

Ann has recently become very, very overweight and the doctors can't seem to find a reason. She is still undergoing tests. (She always was large boned, but never obese before.) I'm trying NOT to worry, but being a mom, I do anyway! You know how those things go. She and her husband want to have a family, but can't get pregnant so that concerns me, too.

If you think it is inappropriate for this information to be linked with the Burdick name, please feel free to destroy it. Thank you for being such a wonderful connection and all the work you have done in posting information on the internet. Anyone seeking contact with me is welcome to write to me at my e-mail address: Stangsey@aol.com.

Highest regards,
Sey Jones"


Burdick News... Up-To-The-Minute!


Dakin Burdick (burdickd@indiana.edu) recieved his Ph.D. in American History and American Studies from Indiana University. His dissertation was "The American Way of Fighting: Unarmed Defense in the U.S., 1845-1945." Congratulations, Dr. Burdick! (Dakin will be featured in next month's Burdick Newsletter.)

Gary Arnold (gary_arnold@vtc.net) wants to be sure everyone has his new email address: gary_arnold@vtc.net.


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howard@burdickfamily.org