Questions, suggestions, input, advice, concerns, love, care, support?
Twitter: @Wisc07
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22 responses »

  1. Loved it and will follow – am going to look at your charities now. Update purpose Andrea as I think you meant dad’s not day’s – it appeared twice and I got confused, well, does she really mean day’s. Remember I am getting old and need help here. Love to you and love blogging.

  2. i love your blog 🙂 i remember all the times in lax when you tried to get me to go running and i looked at you like you were crazy 🙂 thank you for making me realize that we don’t need to be perfect/elite athletes to do this……i have been down ever since the disney half, i had hurt my knee in september and kept running, now i am awaiting mri results to see what is going on…….reading your blog tonight honestly made me feel so much better 🙂 i don’t know if that was an intended purpose but it had a great effect on me!!!

    i hope you are doing well…..did you lose your milwaukee accent for a canadian one yet???/

    see you in disney!!!!!

    ❤ Kim

  3. Wao Awesome Job it’s amazing how much details you have , I was an ophan here too and was adopted in 1968 I will love to share information and talk about this , thanks


  4. Hello, I was adopted from there in 1955 and Sister James Philip provided a hand written letter as to how to care for me. Well I am 61 now so her instructions were good! Now that my parents are gone i would like to find my birth mother to let her know I have had a good life. She was 21 at the time so she may still be alive.

  5. Andrea, great job. Sister James Philip provided a hand written letter to my parents for my care. Must have been good advice I am 61 now and still healthy. I would like to find my birth mother to let her know I had a good life and she has 4 more grand children and 1 great grand child.

  6. I was born there in 1953 adopted in 1954. Thanks so much for the story. So sad the records are sealed. I think we have the right to know.

  7. Hello, Andrea. I was very interested in your dad’s story because I myself was adopted from La Crèche. I was born on December 16, 1963 and was adopted in February of 1965. My adoptive parents were always very open about my adoption and they encouraged me to know more about my heritage and the history of La Crèche as well as the adoption agency, La Souvegarde de L’Infance. My father in particular was very enthusiastic about this. In 2009 we traveled to Quebec and visited the old buildings comprising of the hospital (de la Misericord), the church and the actual orphanage. At the time it was all abandoned although now it’s apartments and businesses. We visited the museum of the Sisterhood of Good Shepherds, now closed. In the photos on the wall I myself was in one of the photos, the only one from the sixties. Imagine my surprise. It’s the one of the four boys side by side. I’m the second from the left. I was Blessed because three years ago I found my biological mother, as well as a half-brother and sister, nieces, nephew and cousins. They welcomed my son and I into their families and my mother was able to fill in all the details that were missing from my life, except sadly the identity of my biological father. My adopted father passed away in November 2016 but he and my mother were able to meet my biological family. I am happy that my dad was able to see this. Thanks for your story. Oh, I am also a huge Disney fan living here in Orlando.

    • Thank you for your comment. What a great story ! When we went in 2014, we were able to go to the Sisters of Good Shepard museum….is it closed now after that?! We hope to go back to Quebec in the next 3-5 years. Currently in a flux with trying to figure out if there is any way to find biological family. How were you so lucky to come across your biological family?

      I have filed paperwork with the adoption centre for youth in Quebec City. All that does is if my dad’s birth parents try to find him, it directs them to me. It’s a long shot but it’s something.

      • Hi, again. Unfortunately the museum has closed since then. I was interested in your comments about your dad’s name. I too thought that my name at La Creche, Joseph Romain Gaudry, was my family name. I was told by the sisters that it was just a sort of filing system. All boys were named Joseph and all girls were named Marie. (Catholic). The middle name was given out alphabetically and is what became your given name. The last name just meant what section or room of the orphanage you belonged at.
        When I began looking for my birth mother I originally wrote to this address:

        Centre Jeunesse de Quebec
        SErvice adoption & retrouvailles
        2915 avenue Bourg-Royal
        Québec, Qc
        G1C 3S2, Canada

        It started with an message to this email address:

        Then they sent me an application for my medical records. They sent me those (I found out why I had scars on my torso) with all pertinent info blacked out, and then they ask if you want to take it a step further. They will contact the birth mother and father and see if they want a reunion. In my case my mother said yes and the rest is history. I don’t know if it would work the same way for you about your dad but it is a start.

        Have a great day and God Bless and good luck!

        Cordially, Tony

      • Tony
        They explained to us at the museum that the names were just given from a list of names. That it was almost random. Seems to align with what you said-maybe they cycled through names

        When did you contact Centre Jeunesse de Quebec about your information? I believe that is who I contacted in 2014 to get my dad’s name on file for if family wanted to contact him. Who did you address in the email? I may email and ask about medical records and go from there!

  8. Hi, Andrea,

    I know exactly when I contacted them because I keep all my emails pertaining to that. I sent them the first email on January 2nd of 2013. I got a return email on the 17th. So I sent in the paperwork requesting my medical records. After that I received my medical records in about a month and I immediately sent out the request for communication with my mother.
    I addressed the first email to Ginnette Gauvin. Later I was appointed a case worker who took over from there. She was the one who eventually spoke to my mother.

    Then the process slowed down considerably because they have to be very careful in contacting the mother, in case her family knows nothing about your birth, (in my case only my mother’s husband and sister knew about me) so it can’t be by letter, and it wasn’t until March of 2014 that my mother was reached and acceded to the request to meet me and we began communicating by email. The problem was that she spoke no English and my French was rusty. It’s better now.

    In May of 2014 she told my brother and sister who were at first doubtful then jubilant. In October they came to Orlando (my mother, brother and sister, to make sure I wasn’t looking for revenge or something 🙂 ) which is when they met my mom and dad, and in March of 2015 my son and I traveled to Lotbiniere, Quebec and met the rest of the family. Since then we have been there three more times and I was even able to go to my half-sister’s wedding. \

    Any other info I can give you, please don’t hesitate to ask. Also in my Facebook page are all the photos of the reunions. (I have always wanted to write a blog but I don’t know how. Maybe you can help me with info about that.) Cordially, Tony

    • Tony

      Thank you for the information! I am most definitely going to email this week. As far as French goes, mine is non-existent but my husband did French immersion in school (but rusty). I am excited to show my husband this information, as he is very in to the idea of us finding family history information!

      I found WordPress really easy to use and manipulate. I have no website or coding experience, and the templates make it pretty fool proof if you have some sense of technology. I pay about $25 a year so I can have my domain address but you can have a free page if it includes the .wordpress in the address. You just need to create an account with them and can start making a page!

      Thanks so much for contacting!

  9. You’re welcome and good luck. Thanks for the information on the blog. I would love if you keep me posted on the progress of your search. I am very interested in the outcome. I am still trying to find my biological father but I’m doing it through the DNA route since my mother remembers (if she ever knew anything) nothing about him. Bye.

    • We have begun DNA stuff but only as far as 23 and me. I have done mine and my mom is going to do hers this week. Then we can do a comparison of our ancestry results side by side to see what is from her. And in turn, will know what’s from my dad. Also plan on doing ancestry DNA too to have another source of info, and my husband found info on a third….and then combining all that will narrow a lot down about background.

  10. Wow! That is very cool. I did it through My There exists a DNA test that isolates the DNA from the father’s side and I will be doing that but it is $180.00+ so I have to wait a little bit to do it. The surprise was that even though I am half French, as expected from my French Canadian mother, it turns out I am half English/Irish. So unless my mother’s family which I have traced back to Normandy, is British, which is possible since Normandy was originally English, then it would mean that my dad might have been Anglo Canadian, not French Canadian as she thought. But I will know for sure when I do the paternal DNA test, or I talk my biological mother to do one too. We will see. By the way, my DNA results are soooo boring. 98.9% European. I was hoping for a little more diversity. My wife did her DNA and it was gloriously all over the place. My wife is from Puerto Rico so it is understandable. Anyways, all of this is so cool and so new to me. Just two years ago my family tree was barren..
    I remember when I was in primary school, the teacher asked us to do our family tree. I enthusiastically embraced the project and dove into family history with fervor. I put down my father and mother and their parents. I spoke to my grandmothers. I had info going back five generations. Then it suddenly hit me. Other than my parents and grandparents and the love I had for them, this meant nothing to me. These people were not my ancestors. I remember feeling so sad and alone, even at that young age. Years later my adoptive mom told me that she had told the teachers my circumstances and asked not to dwell on family history too much but this was a new teacher. She didn’t know. I didn’t make a big deal of it but internally, it hurt.
    I also remember my favorite uncle asking my dad at a party, in a whisper, whether they knew who my real parents were. It hurt that my uncle thought of me that way. It hurt that my dad didn’t rebuke him saying “we are his real parents.” He just said they didn’t know. I now understand that parents are not perfect, because I understand that I’m not either.
    Sorry for ranting. I could write for hours about this. You see, this is why I need a blog. It’s either that or therapy. I often thought of writing a book. Not just about me but other people who were adopted, or their families.

    • Hi, Andrea. A quick update on my biological mother. I’ve gone up to see her and the rest of the family a few times, including when my son and I spent our first New Year’s Eve with them this last December/January Unfortunately my mother was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s Disease and her condition had deteriorated. Even though my brother had told me to be ready for the shock of seeing her, it was still hard. Literally a week after returning to Orlando, my brother called to say she had decided to end her life assisted by a doctor. I immediately booked another flight and on January 12, 2018 we said goodbye to a courageous woman, at 72 way too young, surrounded by friends and family. She said two things to me before she went to sleep. She said she was proud of me and my son and happy that I had found her. She also told me to always remember my beautiful family in Lotbiniere. It was a very bonding experience and I’m so glad I was there for her. I am thankful for the four years I had with her. Although I have to admit that it felt like she was abandoning me again, by no fault of her own. First time as a frightened teenage girl and second as a woman with an incurable disease. I actually got my first tattoo ever, at 54, in the shape of a fleur de lis, in her honor, and it helps me feel closer to her. I think it brought us closer. In fact, my 14 year old cousin said that even though my maman was gone, she hoped it didn’t mean I would forget her (my cousin). That made me cry. Also a friend of my brother’s, whom I had never met, wrote me a beautiful letter telling me how my maman’s face would light up anytime she spoke about me. I plan to go back in the summer. Anyway, just venting a little. Hope you’re doing well and you’ve seen some progress in your search. I see your beautiful baby is growing so fast. Cherish those moments. Cordially, Tony

      • Tony. Wow, thanks for the update. I’m glad you were able to go out during the holidays and make it work one last time in January to say a proper goodbye. Your story is really amazing, as you were able to reconnect with all these family members all while having the support of your adoptive family. I’m glad you are still in contact and have relationships with the other family members out in Quebec. That’s really quite amazing!
        I haven’t found out much new…I also haven’t found much time to be on 23 and Me & Ancestry (that cute baby of ours may be partly to blame!). However, I have made contact with a few people who are relatives, presumably on my dad’s side, but our closest connection is 3rd cousin (share a great great grandparent unless it’s a cousin 1st removed situation, etc). What I need is to have a 2nd cousin connection, where we’d share around 12% of DNA and it’d be much easier to trace and possibly find family. Just will have to keep checking and see what comes up!!!!

  11. I was also borne at La Creche, in June of 1957, and was adopted in December of that year. I went to Quebec in about 1980, and at that time it was a retirement home for the sisters. I met a very nice sister who explained that occasionally, information was misreported that would obfuscate parentage information.

    I tried to work through the Centre Jeunesse de Quebec, Service adoption & retrouvailles, but they found differing ages for my bio-mom and other inconsistencies. I believe that since they can’t identify my mother, they have held up any continued effort for completing a reunion. Apparently, I have an aunt and cousins looking for me. I have searched on 23 and Me, and am getting ready to enter Ancestry DNA. It was recommended that I use both, for a wider search, and a more complete profile.

    Any suggestions would be great.

    • Hi there,
      I wish I had more suggestions and insight but the DNA route will be your best bet. I have done 23 and me and ancestry DNA, and also had my mom do 23 and me (so we could eliminate her information to see what genetic background I got from my dad). It’s harder for me to find close relatives since the key component would be if my dad were still alive and able to be tested. On ancestry I have messaged a woman who is believed with high confidence to be a 3rd cousin, which is cool…but that just says we share possibly a great great grandparent…and which one is a guess. Having a 2nd or 1st cousin be matched would be most helpful for me.

      Good luck with your search! I just hope that someday the adoption files for Quebec become public.

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