TMW Book Reviews

Where Do I Belong?: An Adoption Story by Michelle Ernsthausen

Have you ever wondered what it means to adopt or be adopted? Have you ever felt the need to belong? In Where Do I Belong? An Adoption Story, Michelle Ernsthausen narrates the life of Andrew and his journey of finding a sense of belongingness in a story full of sacrifice, love, and inspiration.

It’s easy to wonder how someone could choose a certain lifestyle over their child. Most people think that it’s not hard for biological parents to give their children up for adoption. When you raise an adopted child, however, you will realize there’s a lot more to a story.

You will understand that what you see from the outside, looking in, is a result of their attempts to cope with and adapt to their shattered state. You will start to understand that their decision to put their child into adoption is made from selfless love and bravery.

You will learn that they made that choice for the good of the child and not theirs. When children are adopted, they lose everything they know while they adjust to their new lives.

The best thing adoptive parents can do is rapidly learn to extend grace to themselves as parents of an adopted child for many reasons, including not having all the answers. When the adopted child doesn’t always adapt to situations the way you thought he should, you should carry him through this difficult transition. Most significantly, you should learn to offer grace to those who came before you in the child’s life. But, is that the case for Andrew? Did he have foster parents who thought of him as a blessing?

In this heartwarming tale, you will learn that when you adopt a child, you must be a nonjudgmental positive influence in that child’s life and demonstrate what it means to love unconditionally. You do this not because you are a wonderful human being, but because you are raising an amazing human being. You want them to witness and understand that love triumphs over judgment, that no matter how hard and sacrificial the beginning is, you can still turn it into something beautiful, something hopeful.

– The Moving Words Review

Official Entry: The Most Moving Book Award, Jan. 3, 2022


Book Trailer

About the Author

With an MS degree in Education from the University of Rochester, Michelle Ernsthausen pursues her passion for writing children’s books. As the mother of an adopted child, Michelle’s first book speaks to that journey. She lives in Spencerport, NY with her husband and two sons.