[I asked for a couple Birth Parents to share their stories; to share their thoughts and feelings on placing. These are real stories, each story is different; each pain is different yet the one thing we have in common is we did this out of love.]
“She could never go back and make some of the details pretty. All she could do was move forward and make the WHOLE beautiful.”
It’s been four years. Four years of sadness, grief, heartache, sleepless nights, pain, happiness, joy, strength, hope, I can go on forever. People think that placing is easy, that it’s a walk in the park. Yet there is so much more to that. It hasn’t just affected me, it’s affected my family and friends. It’s ruined some of my relationships. All this pain and happiness I have throughout the years; it’s been hard and easy all at the same time: yet, I wouldn’t change it for the world. During my pregnancy I was in doubt. I was in denial. I didn’t want to accept that I was pregnant that I was going to fail as a parent. That I would be a single parent at that: I would be struggling to make ends meet. I wasn’t emotionally ready. I didn’t believe in abortion then or now. My life wasn’t at risk or Ava’s. I would have been so selfish to do so. I would be so evil to end someone’s life because of my mistakes. I could have looked at this and told myself I can do this on my own, yet who was I kidding? I knew I couldn’t have given her a fraction of the life she really deserved. Did Ava really deserve a life like mine? A life where she would be homeless for a while, or watch her mom get beat up by her boyfriend? Live in motel to motel. Get taken away from school because your mother was an “unfit” parent? To live from aunt to aunt. Have your grandma be your mom? I’m not saying my whole childhood was bad, yet it was very confusing for a long time. It has taken me 24 years to finally accept my life on how I was raised, who my mother is, that yes I may be emotionally messed up and broken yet It is my choice to move on and accept that I’m a beautiful mess. I have flaws and that’s OKAY!
(((Those who believe in abortion, I clearly don’t mean to offend you in any way, this is my body, this was my choice. I chose to place my birth daughter up for adoption and no it wasn’t a mistake, it was a gift, a gift of life. A blessing at that. ))
It took me a long time to accept that I was going to have a child and that I needed to do the right thing, even though it was going to be extremely hard. I needed to do what was right. I had to open up my heart to people I didn’t know, people that I only have met a few times. People I fell in love with right away. They didn’t want to just help me at my deepest plea, they wanted another child to call their own. One to embrace, one to love, one to teach about the world and its beauty. These adoptive parents became family. My open adoption with Ava, is easy and hard all the same time. The first two years I was very active yet I noticed I was being so selfish at times. I needed time to heal and move on, to accept that this was not just a temporary fix, that this here was real life. I moved away not to escape yet to heal, to find my voice. To find who I was as a person. I thought I was in love yet come on who was I kidding. He didn’t love me for the right reasons, for he would always tell me I was a failure because I choose adoption. Yes I have gotten my fair share of people throwing this in my face, till this day. I met Derrik while I was away from home. He is my prince charming in so many ways. He is the one. He completes me, yes we have our faults and hard times yet there is one thing this man has always done, to continue to remind me that I am strong woman. That I did the right thing. That Ava loves me and will learn to love me. Derrik is right in so many ways.
Placing has its beautiful moments, the moments of getting a picture sent to you in the mail, FaceTime calls, talking on the phone for a few hours, yet the thing that brings my heart to joy and warms my heart is when Ava and her sister Lilly can both tell me they love me. I have not only made a difference in one person’s life but a whole family. I noticed this past year I yet I made a difference in Lilly’s life. She gets to have a bond with Ava that no one else will. A sister bond one that I wish I had. My story isn’t over yet for I am literally taking it one day at a time. I have my ups and downs, my silent cries, sometimes I bust out laughing when no one is around, I talk to myself most days ( Yes I am a tad crazy at times.) Sometimes I have a dark cloud hanging over me, I get sad, I cry, sometimes my heart just feels weak, then I kick myself in the ass and I have Derrik who is here to help remind me that everything is okay. Even when I refuse to take his comforting. I still have some broken bridges yet I have learned that I am okay with that. I am okay with losing some people that I had in my life at one time. I have learned especially after having my son that the people that stay with you through the hardest times and embrace you with love are the people you want to keep around, are the people you want your own child to know. So that one day when my son sees a love one hurting he will know what to do. To offer his love, even when they push him away. To not give up, yet to always be there for them, it’s this act of love I needed the most and I still do till this day when I have my bad days. I did a beautiful and selfless act, I have finally now have accepted this past year. I am a birth mom and it’s taken me four years to say that loud and proud, my story isn’t over yet;
Throughout this journey I have meet some pretty awesome Birth Mothers and yes Birth Fathers! I asked on this group I am apart of anyone wanted to share their story with me; here are their stories:
A couple that placed together and still have managed to stay together. After placing not many couples stay together for a long time, yet this couple here is proving everything and everyone wrong!!
“I don’t remember who said this, but there really are places in your heart you never knew even existed until you love a child in so many ways you never knew possible”
-My name is Lauren I’m 23.
I’m Cody and I’m 21.
We placed our son around 6 months ago to an amazing family who we see and hear from all of the time. For me (Lauren) placing Wesley was our only option. I have school to finish, and we’re not financially or emotionally stable enough. I’m an adoptee myself and I grew up with an amazing life and amazing relationship with my birth mom so that also helped. I knew that we could never give him the greatest life, a good life? Sure, but he deserves so much more than that. So it was a no brainer and his adoptive family has made it so much easier.
Placing for me (Cody) was kind of difficult for me. I think Lauren being adopted herself helped it be easier for her, but I had a hard time wrapping my head around placing my son with another family. But during most of Lauren’s pregnancy I was deployed and I knew this would happen again a time or two in our lives, and I don’t want to miss out on my child’s life for months at a time, plus I knew I wasn’t mature enough and we weren’t financially ready. It was difficult being away for all of the big moments and missing the birth of Wesley, but I was as involved as I could have been. Now that I’m home I like getting the updates and going to visit my son and his family and seeing them all together it just makes sense, I love them and they’ve become an extension of our family.
The biggest struggle we really faced was not being able to be together during everything, it was hard not having my go to person there during my birth (Lauren), it was hard not being able to be there for her, through the hospital visits, pain, cravings, during and after the birth (Cody) I felt helpless because she was all alone, it still amazes me she went through everything by herself.
Another thing that was hard was once I placed Wesley in his mother’s arms I just handed her my heart, then I went home with no baby, no son, and I felt empty, but his family is what got me by honestly, they just keep me so in the loop, and they treat me like family.
We’re not ashamed of placing our son, there’s nothing to be ashamed of. We gave a family the greatest blessing you can ever give someone, and we gave our son the gift of an amazing life.
I’m proud to be a birth-mom because I feel so strong, I feel like I’ve been through one of the most difficult things a woman can go through and I survived, I’m a stronger woman because of it.
I’m proud to be a birth-father because I have a special bond that I feel like not a lot of other people can know and understand. It’s a different love.
Carrie; this woman here, her story is so shocking, so raw. I embraced her the moment I finished reading her story, I cried, I smiled because the hope, the pain, the beauty she has is special and strong all the same time.
“I don’t know what this journey will be. I do know that the love I have for you will never fade”
Here is my Thoughts
Broken or Not?
I once thought that only the birthparents were broken. Why do we as birthparents think that Adoptive parents are perfect, and will be a “perfect” family? We all hope and pray that in the short time we get to spend with them that they will never change. I know that I wanted my daughter raised by a married couple, wanted her to have a “perfect” life, dance lessons, music lessons, and well on all the other things that we can dream up in our minds that we feel our children deserve. Well nothing in life is guaranteed. Heck nothing is a guarantee. I want to share my story of what just happened to me.
I woke up Wednesday to find a message from my Amom saying” I am going to swallow my pride now and am going to ask you for help now.” I went to look at her facebook page because that is how we stay in contact and found that she needed bail money. I was in shock. I have been dealing with this fear for a while, but now my nightmare has come true. These parents are the ones I trusted. I had always wanted her raised by a married couple, but that is not always a guarantee in life. Heck nothing is guaranteed in life. While I was talking to her on the phone to find out what was going on she told me we needed to talk face to face. I agreed. I was also told that my daughter that I placed wanted to meet me and with everything going on she needed, and wanted it. I was scared to death. All my fears so far were happening, now what if she hates me, what if this and what if that’s were all I could think of. Once I was out of my van she hugged me and I told her I loved her and missed her. I was so worried that she would not want to hug me or talk to me, she is a shy young lady, so I was not expecting much conversation either. After we hugged, we sat there and laughed and giggled and it felt so right. I feel whole now. I was able to put that necklace on her that was my strength when i needed it. So now Amom and I are having our discussions about what was going on. I found out that well, they are divorced, and now they were both battling their own drug addictions. I was sad that my daughter had to watch both her parents put her on the back burner. So meeting her was a blessing for her. So you may be wondering if I am questioning my Placement. NO I am not. I made the choice to place her for a reason, now I am sure this reason has been made clear to me. My daughter’s amom was there for me when I was in need of help, so it is only right that I be there for both my Amom and my daughter. My Amom is going to be checking into a 45 day inpatient rehab to help her with her addictions. Yes, I am hurt that this happened, but it does not change my thought about her as a mom. I have agreed to be there for her so that she will have a clean person to cheer her on in her sobriety. I am so glad that she was this honest with me and told me.
I could have looked at this and allowed it to put me in a very dark spot .It is all in how you look at life. They were there for me when I needed them most. Yes I am angry and hurt and I feel betrayed, but that is a negative way to look at life. They are human and make mistakes just like me. I have to turn my anger to god and let him guide me and be my strength when I need it. This was a blessing for all involved. Amom did not have to be honest with me. It shows that she trusts me and wants me to be a part of her recovery, and I will stand by her side just like she was by my side when I had our daughter and had to deal with the fact that I was rapped and was having a baby. This by no means was this easy. I had to really put my boundaries in place. I had to take a chance and not over step my role and respect the Amom. She never had to tell me. As long as she needs me I will be there for her. Anybody that knew me those 3 short years ago know that I would have bailed out Amom, gave her my car and made sure that k bug was taken care of, but I placed her for adoption because this was not something I could do at that moment in my life. They adopted her because they were able to provide for her. We as birthparents feel broken but we are not alone, adoptive parents are human just like us. They make choices and they are not are not perfect. It is our job as birthparents to not be bitter and not show judgmental love, but we need to show unconditional love no matter what the situation is. Now that I have shared this experience with everyone, I hope that you take what I have learned and apply to your own life whether it is adoption related or not, because only you can OWN your story.
I have had the pleasure of meeting Nicole through a support group on Facebook. We have formed a friendship of one that I know I can talk to about relationships, self-love and best of all adoption.
“No one else will even know the strength of my love for you.”
8 years ago I found myself pregnant at 19. I was scared, ashamed, and unprepared. After a long while of considering my options, I decided open adoption was the best choice for both of us. I wanted to be 19, as selfish as that may be. And I wanted her to have both parents, love and stability. Everything she deserved and I couldn’t provide. Although it was the hardest choice I have ever made in my life, I stand by saying it was the best. Every day I struggle with a piece of my heart missing. They say when you have a child, it’s like a piece of your heart walking around outside your body. That couldn’t be truer. But, the lovely thing about open adoption is, that piece of my heart is never far from me. I know her, I see her, and I got to hug her so tight recently. My heart is so full because of open adoption. I have an extended family who has seen me through some of my hardest days, and I get the comfort of knowing that little girl is right where she was intended. For all of those reasons I am proud to be a birth mom. Proud to be part of this community made of the smartest, strongest men and women I know. I am stronger, braver and unstoppable. I had to be for my birth daughter. I had to be for myself. My truth matters because I am proud to be strong, brave and a birth mom.
We all have different truths, different stories. Yet our pain is still the same. We all have felt hurt, sadness, and happiness throughout our journeys. It’s when we can form a community and surround ourselves with people that just get it, or better yet want to be there even if they don’t.