HARKER HEIGHTS, Texas (KWTX) She entered the adoption system as an infant.
Now a local woman is uncovering her past with a store-bought DNA test.
Photo By: Chelsea Edwards
Amber Loubiere’s family was split apart when she was just nine months old.
One of her sister’s fathers took in two of her siblings.
Her oldest sister was adopted by her grandmother.
But Amber spent years passing through California foster homes.
“I didn't have the easiest first four years of my life,” says Loubiere.
“Between nine months old and five years old, I went through several different foster homes until I landed in my forever home.”
But her family was shattered once again when her adoptive mother died of breast cancer when she was 10.
After seeing an episode about adoption on the hit show “Family Matters,” she started asking her adoptive father about her past.
“When I was 12 years old, my dad gave me my adoption file.”
In it were the names of the siblings she never knew.
“Cody, Jessica and Tanya-” she says.
“I had those names in my heart all through middle school and high school, all through college”
As an early Christmas gift, Amber’s husband bought her a 23andMe DNA testing kit.
“I picked it up, looked at it and was immediately like ‘oh my gosh, I can't do this!” she recalls.
It took her a month to work up the nerve to spit in the provided vial and send it off.
Results arrived via email a few weeks later, and she discovered more than the fact that she’s mostly Irish.
“I was so scared to push that button and open that email. I took a deep breath and pulled it up, and it said ‘you have a half-sister," says Loubiere.
The name listed on the site, “Jessica” matched the name that she knew from her adoption file.
That evening, she and Jessica had their first video chat.
“I ugly cried! I waited 26 years for that moment,” she says.
Her sister had been looking for her too.
Jessica connected Amber with their brother Cody, and for spring break she returned to California to visit.
While pouring over picture albums, the siblings found that they share a common thread.
“We started seeing these different events in each others’ photo albums where we had all been at the same events at the same time,” says Loubiere.
As it turns out, Amber had been in the same marine biology class at California Baptist University with her brother who was also her roommate’s crush.
“I said, “how crazy would it be if that's my brother,” but Loubiere says she and her friend never took the thought seriously.
“We just laughed it off,” she adds.
While in California, Amber also met the man who adopted her brother and sister together.
“What I asked him in California is, ‘why not me? Why didn't you take me in too?”
He was told she was already being adopted by another family, but that actually took years to happen.
With Jessica’s help, she also found her biological father who offered some closure.
“I loved you and thought of you over the years,” she relays his message to her.
“I promise you, the life you've had is better than the life we could have provided for you.”
By pooling their records the siblings also found Cody’s father, their older sister, and their mother.
“I feel that there are words on the pages of the book of my life that I have longed for and hoped for and desired,” says Loubiere.
She now chats with Jessica almost every day.
“We think the same, we laugh the same,” she says. “It's so beautiful to look someone in the face and say, ‘I’ve been looking for you my whole life’!”
There are also plans for her newfound family to come to Texas for the holidays so they can continue catching up on lost time after finding their family tree.