By Mary Ann Hernandez Mullen
I was born in Manila, Philippines in the late 1950s. I always believed I was the natural child of my Canadian parents, (Joseph Francis) Frank and Lydia (Leda) Mullen. It was not until I was 49 years old that I found documents which led me to the truth: I was an adoptee.
Everyone in my adoptive family knew, but I was the last to find out.
In the 1960s and early 1970s I attended International School (American School) in Manila. During those years, several people would repeatedly ask me if I had an identical "sister," but I would deny it vehemently. I was brought up as an only child and believed that I did not have any siblings. I had asked my adoptive mother several times if I was adopted, but was always told that I wasn't.
My father, Frank Mullen, worked as a manager for Mobil Oil and my mother, Lydia Mullen, was a Russian emigre, a housewife, who played mahjong with the other ladies in her neighbourhood. We lived first in Pasay City and then later in Forbes Park and Belair.
At the very least, I would like to find out what happened to my natural mother, Constancia T. Hernandez. I understand she - and other family members - may have emigrated to the United States or another country. Or they may have remained in the Philippines. Some of you may remember me from school or may even know my true story and my relatives.