In her first life, Suh Young Sook (name assigned her by an institution) became a Korean foundling.
In her second life, Suki (misinterpreted Korean nick-name) was adopted to America by a troubled and dysfunctional family, which she traded in to become a child bride and mother of two. Later as a single mom, welfare mom, jack of all trades, university graduate, then restless chameleon, she explored the ideas of beauty, meaning, and existence at every reinvention.
In her third life, Leanne (because Koreans prefer her name to sound foreign) has relocated to her native country to measure what she lost, what she gained, and to explore the profound impact adoption has had not only on her, but all other intercountry transracial adoptees and the Korean nation.
At this juncture, Girl #4708 is an investigator uncovering many truths that can only be revealed by the discomfort of culture shock. Always a feminist, she is becoming aware of the need for advocacy for unwed mothers and has learned a great deal about the cycle of adoption and how it is a symptom of larger social pathologies and a global mind-set of colonization between the privileged and the defeated. By living in Korea’s oppressive Confuscian society, she has come to believe the international adoption solution in Korea contributes to arresting development of social services which preserve existing family structures.
Girl #4708 is beginning to understand the society she was sent from, the realities of the adjummas who sent their children away for a better life, the awe inspiring economic development, the many centuries of culture behind it, and the realities of women and mothers here today. None of it is so black and white, and she wants to share that with the rest of the world, that adoption is radical surgery and its efficacy should be questioned and be resorted to only when there are absolutely no other options. She also wants to assist those who have already adopted in understanding how profound the dichotomy between loss and gain can be, and the schizm between the adoptee’s public family life and inner private feelings.
Girl #4708 is seeking the beginning of her story, and to know her real name and birth date. As she uncovers the stories and gets closer to the truth, she is disturbed and lonely, but happier than she’s ever been.