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I have 2 dads

Updated: Feb 6, 2023

This will honestly be the hardest thing that I probably ever's not what most will think by the title, but it is my truth, my story and after hiding this secret for almost 15yrs it's time I finally stand in my truth.

I was born Jessie Lee London, February 15, 1987.

My parents divorced when I was 10yrs old and that was such a devastating time in my life. I felt the need to "choose" or was constantly conflicted and torn. I loved both of my parents and I didn't feel like it was fair to be caught in the middle. It was finally ordered that my mom had full custody and I visited my dad every other weekend. I hated a split household but I had to learn to adjust to my new "normal".

Around the age of 12-13yrs old I was sleeping over at a cousin's house when we uncovered pictures that revealed that my mom was married to a man named James before my dad and a few years before I was born. My aunt wouldn't tell me anything and insisted that it be a conversation that I have with my mom. Upon returning home and questioning my mom (very accusatory and sassy), I asked if there were any other children that I needed to know about. My mom reassured me that I was the only one and that the marriage just had not lasted. I'll say that I was rather pissed when I found out about Santa Claus, Easter Bunny, and tooth fairy because of the fact they had been lying to me my whole 8yrs of life so you can imagine how pissed I was not knowing about something as important as another marriage!

Life went on. At 18 I became pregnant with my first child, meanwhile my mom was going through a divorce with her husband at the time. The back and forth with belongings through this divorce caused a blackmail of information that my mom finally decided to clear the air. The bomb that was dropped on me was that my dad who raised me was not my biological father. Devastated, hurt, and confused by this information I held a bitterness and resentment towards my mom but also an appreciation for my dad. To know that this man raised me as his own and never wanted me to know any different, in my eyes, was admirable. The only problem was, how do I even process this information? How do I even start to have that conversation that would hurt him by me knowing? Did my biological family just not want me? Did I actually have siblings? Honestly, I felt like my life had been a lie and at that point, I only had 1 side of the story.

The backstory is my mom left for SC to live with family due to marital issues when she was 3 months pregnant with me. They had tried for a while to get pregnant unsuccessfully and when she left she didn't know that she was, during this time frame she met my dad. Meanwhile, James got another woman pregnant who later became his wife. I have a half sister that is just at 3 months younger than me and they later had a son. She couldn't come to terms with the fact that he had another child so he was essentially forced with the decision to choose and eventually signed over rights which allowed my dad to legally adopt me and my name became Jessie Lee Hamby, I believe around the time I was about 4/5.

Fast forward a few years, I was around 26 or 27 and my biological father contacted my mom and wanted to ultimately try to make contact with me. His wife had recently passed and he wanted to at least make an effort to know me. I was very blunt about the fact that I had a dad, a damn good one, but that I also longed to know the other sides of the story. We talked and even met but still at this time it just reopened the wound and I wasn't quite ready to face the tough conversation that I needed to have with my dad so I slowly became distant with contact.

In this past year I have met with 3 separate spiritual life coach kind of people who have all given me the same narrative without even knowing my story... That to advance to the next level of my life I must face and stand in my truth and that until then it will continue to be a mental, often subconscious roadblock. This year I've had some of the most amazing people come into my life and have been given some pretty amazing opportunities, but I have felt like I still needed to confront this 1 thing that is a secret that literally has taunted me for the past 15yrs.

In the struggle to get my passport in December I was faced with the challenge of my truth. I was on a deadline to get the passport, my mom could not find my birth certificate, we were working on limited operating schedules due to holidays and I was having to drive what felt like all over the world to try to obtain my documents. To fill you in, when you are legally adopted the original birth certificate gets sealed and a copy of the new amended certificate gets sent to the state capital in the state you were born, for me that was Raleigh, NC. All I could think about during this time was if I miss this amazing opportunity because of decisions that were made 30yrs+ ago I'm not gonna be happy, but the reality is I knew that yet again it was staring me in the face and it was time to talk about the hard stuff and stand in my truth once and for all.

On January 31st I had promised my stepmom that I would come help her finish up and move some things in the house her and my dad are literally building themselves! This was the same day it snowed out of nowhere and I swear for over an hour it snowed the biggest flakes you'd ever seen, it was magical. My dad took the day off too and I was helping him work on cabinets. We stopped to take a break and my dad wanted to talk to us. His health this past year has been up and down and he had just recently spent a few days in the hospital so he wanted to talk about the hypothetical situation of him passing and what his will includes. My dad is not always an emotional person and doesn't really like expressing those emotions but that's a tough subject to touch on. After he was finished, I knew that this was the time. I prefaced with those are always tough conversations and not always the easiest to have, but they're necessary and told them both that I also had something to talk to them about.

It was emotional but so relieving for all of us. I felt like a weight was lifted off my shoulders and a peace bestowed upon my heart. As for my dad, I'm pretty sure he felt the same way. Afterall, its never changed our relationship. He's still my dad.

I've had 15yrs to process emotions yet I still don't necessarily know how to navigate the emotions going forward. I want to know my other side of family. At one time, I could've cared less but to deny a part of me just somehow doesn't feel right. There's no one on earth that can replace my dad that raised me, but this is my truth and I have 2 dads!

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