Thank you Sister Maurice
By Linda Kuba
I became pregnant in 1986 and went to St Joseph's Infant and Maternity Home in Cincinnati, Ohio. I chose that location because I was born there and adopted through them in 1967.
One of the nuns, Sister Maurice, did my intake and said “You look so familiar.”
She asked if I wanted a “home name” (they give those in case people truly wanted to remain anonymous). She said “Ann Marie” would fit me good.
She proceeded to tell me throughout the months that I look like someone she knows. In addition to calling me Ann Marie, she called me Dana, a lot.
My last day there, on the way to the hospital, she informed me I look like my birthmother.
I married a few years later and while my husband was overseas in the first Gulf War, I volunteered at St. Joseph's when it was no longer a maternity home.
Sister Maurice was still there and she still called me Ann Marie.
We stayed connected and before moving to Camp Pendleton, she gave me a scrapbook. In it, unbeknownst to me was a picture of my birthmother.
Years later, when I found out my original name, can you guess what it was? Yep, Ann Marie.
My birthmother's name ... Dana.
There are angels all over willing to help. This gem of a nun knew my birthmother and gave me information that I would use one day in the future. During my search, I uncovered four potential names of children born on my date of birth that had an amended birth certificate. Ann Marie was one of those names and her mother was listed as Dana. My clues from St. Joseph’s Maternity Home and the nuns there steered me in the right direction of my search.
Sister Maurice passed away before I could ever thank her for the gift she gave me.
She loved on me at the infant home, she handed me to my parents, she was there when I was in a similar situation, and was the person who called me by my birth name. I found out later, she named me too.
God bless those who hold true to their vows yet find ingenious ways to help adoptees!