tell us your story

Shebrea - posted on 09/02/2009 ( 3 moms have responded )

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i see that no one has posted anything about how or why they belong to this group...so does anyone want to share? the good,bad, or happy ending to something that is so complicated to a lot of people...how do people react when you tell them your child/dren dont live with you because of adoption...or do you even tell people?

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Erica - posted on 11/30/2009

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Almost 11 years ago when I found myself pregnant, unemployed, penniless, practically homeless, and oh so ever alone, adoption seemed the most obvious choice to me. I didn't even allow myself to entertain the possibility of keeping my child. How selfish would that be really, I thought. What could I possible give this child growing inside of me? Love, heritage, genetics, my bad habits? You can't possibly give a child everything it needs on love alone!?! I chose the adoption "route" almost immediately after my initial meeting with my caseworker. So began my quest to find my baby a family.


I have to say the route of adoption is a hard, emotional & tedious one to say the least. Even though I knew what I was doing was for the benefit of my child, rather than myself, my caseworker didn't see it that way. She was constantly asking me to evaluate, & reevaluate my decision. Looking back, I know she was just doing her job, but after a while it really annoyed me. Who are you to second guess me & what (at the time) was an overwhelming obvious "correct" decision to make? I just wanted to look at prospective family profiles, and pick a family & start to "bond". Those who know me best, will probably tell you that I'm an emotional person. I take that as a compliment most of the time. Those same people will also tell you that when it comes to making a significant decision in my life, I am over analytical & waiver more than a ship in choppy water. I become obsessive with making sure that my decision,(whatever it is) is ABSOLUTELY CORRECT. In order for my decision to be "right" I cannot have any doubts to fall back on later; no regrets. I look at both sides of the issue at hand and "research" it to death. This analytical behavior of mine is really a fault. Many of my friends were taken back at the approach I took in finding the "right" answer to my pregnancy dilemma. There were no tears, no incessant babbling, no wavering, no "what if" questions. I simply made a decision & that was that. End of discussion. The comment was made early on by a few of them that this "was not the typical "E" they knew." What was going on? Bring the woman they all loved & knew back! The reality was though, that this is who I needed to be for the present situation. I had no time to sit & wallow in self pity. Where would that get me? What good would crying over "spilled milk" get me? Nowhere. If there were ever a time to take the emotion out of an issue and look at things realistically, it was NOW! There was a another human being at stake here. The clock was ticking and my time to make a decision was limited. So that was that, adoption it was.


As the weeks turned in to months and my abdomen grew, I grew too. I felt more & more at ease with my decision. The time finally came when my caseworker, Connie, felt it was "time" to look at profiles. I gave her my requirements and waited. The day I got the "packet of potential parents' profiles", I found myself disappointed. I only had 3 to choose from. I knew I had a lot requirements, but I didn't think I was THAT picky. I took a big sigh, and jumped in.


The first profile was of an older couple probably in their late 30's to early 40's. They were a doctor & his wife. They had previously adopted before and were looking to adopt again. I read through the rest of their profile and that was that. I had no immediate reaction so I went on to the next couple's profile. The second couple had a lot the qualities I was looking for in potential parents. They were younger, and had previous experience with adoption. They were both adoptees and the wife was a birthmother herself. My heart began to skip a beat looking at them. They were on the fast track at this point. But as I kept reading, I didn't really have a feeling of "yes, this is them!". I continued on to read the last profile in the bunch. This couple, like the previous were young, only 5 years older than me. The wife was going to be a stay at home mom once they were chosen for adoption. The husband owned his own business. Both of them had nieces & nephews in which they had close relationships with. They also enjoyed taking trips to Colorado for outdoor adventures. As I read, I couldn't tell you when it actually hit me that these were the parents for my child, but it did. It kind of came over me like a gentle breeze.(Corny as it sounds.) I just sensed it. Later, is when the doubt & analytical side of me really came out. For the next few days, I vacillated back & forth. Were these REALLY the people for my child? What if there were things I didn't know now, that I would find out later? What if they didn't like me? What if they didn't want MY baby? I shared my concerns with my friends & asked for their input as they read the profiles I had. Without sharing which one I had preliminarily chosen, every single one echoed my choice: # 3. I guess my gut was right after all is all I could think. I returned to my rational way of thinking after my momentary lapse onto the emotional merry-go-round.


I contacted my caseworker & told her I had chosen family #3. Even though I wasn’t 100% sure of my choice, I didn't want another mother to pick them just in case. I figured if I met with them & didn't like them, I could always go back to the pool. I don't remember how soon after I picked my family, that I met them, but I know it wasn't very long. I can remember how nervous I was; all of my insecurities were in overdrive. I sat & waited for them to show up. I was panic stricken at this point, "What the hell am I doing!" was screaming inside my head. "Get out, GET OUT NOW!" was all I could think. It was at this exact moment that Terry& Kim(not their real names) showed up. They walked in and everything went silent. That breeze was back. I'm a very chatty Kathy when it comes to new situations. I'm quiet up to a point, then it all comes pouring out like a dam that has just broken. Shortly after they sat down, I started talking and never quit. I told these people as much about myself as I possibly could in the short hour time frame I was allotted. I wanted to be as open & honest as I possibly could. I wanted to reassure them that I was not going to change my mind. This was my point of no return.


Most of the events after meeting my adoptive family are hit & miss for me. There are times I really remember and then there are moments I ask myself "Where was I for that?" I think the brain has a secret contract with the heart, and protects us from remembering things that are especially painful. At least that's the only thing I can come up with that explains why I have so many holes in my adoption experience. I can remember talking on the phone with Kim and us discussing the specifics of certain things but I couldn’t' tell you exactly what. I know we went to a few of my Dr. appointments together and even those are blurry to me. I would love to sit here & tell you how her & I "bonded" but I can't. I just don't remember it. For me the next thing I remember is the day I realized I had possibly made a mistake in picking my family.


I don't know if every birthmother goes through the valley of doubt as I did, but I will tell you it is one of the most heart wrenching things to have to experience. The day that specifically comes to mind was after one of my OB/GYN appointments. We were in the car on our way back. Kim asked me how I felt about homeschooling. I'm not a very good poker player as she soon found out. I squirmed a little in my seat before I could manage an "oh I dunno, I never thought of it." Mentally all I could picture was the family I knew from my church as a kid growing up. They were a brood of 12, all redheaded, and they all were the nicest kids. Their entire family wore obvious second hand clothes and had unkempt hair on any given day. I always felt bad since even in church there are cliques and none of them ever "fit in". They were by far the smartest kids, but that never mattered. All of that just kept racing though my mind. I panicked I didn't want that life for my child. I wanted him to be like me; outgoing, social, & fun. I wanted him to have my sense of humor, my love of animals, my rational. How would he get all of that being locked up in a house all day studying by his lonesome? I can't tell you what else Kim talked about in regards to homeschooling and why she wanted to do if given the chance. I knew what she was doing and God bless her little heart for doing so, but I just couldn’t' get over that image of the family I knew, in my head. My palms began to sweat and I felt the car I was riding in become smaller & smaller by the second. Panic & fear were closing in but quick! I was relieved as we pulled into the drive way of my house and I practically jumped out of the car before it came to a complete stop. I uttered some kind of parting salutation and exited the car as quick as humanly possible. I can remember flopping down on the couch thinking "See you were right. There is something wrong with them after all!" I heard the devil on my shoulder's maniacal laugh & it was astoundingly loud. I was sure I wasn’t the only one who could hear him. I buried my face in my hands & cried. What the hell was I going to do now? I was 7 months pregnant! How would I ever find the "right" family for my child now?


The next day I called Connie practically in tears, to tell her of the previous days disaster. Needless to say she too was a little shocked. "Now what?," I said. "Well let's just stick a pin in this whole homeschooling thing for a minute. Are you still wanting to continue your adoption plan?, she asked. "Of Course I said! That's not the point! The point is what am I gonna do now? I'm never going to be able to find another family now!" After a week of talking things out & reassurance that everything will be fine, my caseworker asked me to meet with the adoptive family and discuss with them my feelings. A wave of panic came over me. That was THE last thing I wanted to do. I didn't want to have to tell them that there is nothing wrong with homeschooling, I just didn't want my child to be. Make no mistake, at that point he was MY child. I reluctantly agreed.


As I walked in the room, it was just as I feared: there sat Kim & Terry with a look of angst upon their face. It was all I could do to look at them. It reminded me of when you know you are about to receive bad news, but it isn't real until those ugly words are uttered. Only this time, I was the one who had to utter them. Ugh.. I sat down, head down, barely able to glance at them. Connie explained to them my doubts & fears about homeschooling. When looked up, I saw the tears welling in Kim's eyes. I quickly looked back down at the ground. This was just too much. I felt guilty. I looked up once again & I couldn't help but notice something. Kim's husband, Terry, just sat there. No emotion, no anything. He had his arm around his wife, comforting her. Unfazed, (at least to me,) he turns and looks at my caseworker and says "Well if it is meant to be, then it's meant to be. If not then, ok." I was momentarily taken back by hearing him say this. Before we all got up to leave, Connie said she would be in contact with the adoptive family and let them know what I planned to do.


The following week I sat down & had lunch with Connie to discuss where we were in all of this. I basically told her I was stuck in a holding pattern. I felt guilty for being honest, and hurting these people's feelings. On the other hand, I felt an obligation to start what I had finished with them. I felt I had to continue on. Connie nodded in agreement and didn't say much, if anything at this point. I continued to explain to her how I felt conflicted and I needed to get things figured out soon since time was running out. I don't remember her exact words, but I do remember how it made me realize that nothing had really changed. The issue was whether or not I could "let go" of some of my wants. I didn't quite follow. Connie then said, "When you place a child for adoption, you’re not just letting go of a child. You are letting go of all of those preconceived notions of how you would raise him, how YOU would do things." In a previous counseling session, Connie & I had briefly touched on some of these things but never in great length. It was insulting to me, because logically I already KNEW this. But now, it all came rushing back & was staring me in the face; the reality of it. I went home that night & really thought about what Connie has said. Was I being impossible? Was I being too much of a control freak? Yes, I was I deduced.


The next morning I called Connie and told her to let the adoptive family know I still wanted them to be my child's family. Later on that week, we all got together for lunch to talk about another small issue I had. Originally, I had wanted a family who would be willing to pick out a name together. The reason I wanted to do this was because I wanted to show my child, that even in the beginning we were on this journey together. I didn't want this child to have two separate names. He was one person, not 2. Two separate names to me meant that in order for one existence to begin, another one had to cease. It was more for symbolic purposes than anything else. One moment in time he's my child, but no longer after I place him for adoption? Just because I relinquished him, doesn't mean he's no longer my flesh & blood. Just because someone else is raising him, doesn't mean he no longer exists; that he is no longer a part of me. I didn't want the definition that giving a child 2 separate names does. He's not biological, or adopted. He's both. He just is. To me the thought of 2 separate names draws a line through the sand and marks one's territory. As that child gets older, he's not going to remember, let alone care, that he had a different name. So why have that distinction? All he knows is the name he wears after the adoption is finalized. As we continued to have our lunch I tried, unsuccessfully to explain my reason in wanting to have a part in naming my child. I quickly pulled out a list of 100 boy names & 50 girl names. As the family looked over the list, I distinctly remember seeing the look upon their face change dramatically as they reviewed the names. I had my answer. So once again we had hit a road block, I left that day feeling ever more discouraged. This was turning from bad to worse. I couldn't help but wonder if this was a sign of things to come. I quickly brushed the thought out of my mind. I couldn't go down the "Doubting Thomas" road once again. After another conversation with Connie about sacrifice, compromise and the fact that adoptive parents have expectations too, I relented and gave in, once again. Hey why not? I'm only giving them my child!


By this time I was closing in on my due date. I had become withdrawn, apprehensive and physically uncomfortable. To top things off, my living situation was becoming strained as well. My roommates weren't getting along, bills weren’t' getting paid and everyone was looking to point fingers at one another. Now I had the added task of thinking about what my plans were going to be after giving birth. I was emotional spent and just wanted to be done with it all. I knew the hardest part was to come and at this point, I didn't have the reserve to handle it. What I wouldn't have given for a few extra months. Be careful what you ask for...


My due date came & past with no baby. At my last visit to the doctor, he informed me that if the baby "didn't come" by the end of the week he would be inducing me the following Wednesday. This announcement thrust me head long into an all out panic mode. Up until this point, I had been getting my ducks in a row and now a monkey wrench had just been thrown into the mix. I totally freaked out. My mother was in the process of asking for time off to come back for the birth. But since she had no definitive date set, it was possible she wouldn't be able to come. My giving birth had incidentally coincided with spring break. A handful of my mother's co-workers had already "put in" to have the same time off, and were in fact granted it. Mother was at the mercy of her boss at this point. I was still waiting to hear a definite answer one way or another. As soon as I got home, I began dialing numbers frantically. I first called my caseworker & told her that this was absolutely unacceptable! Period, no questions asked. I didn't care if my doctor wanted to hear it or not, I would in no uncertain terms be induced & possibly have a c-section without the presence of my mother being there with me. No way no how! This was not negotiable. Annoyed at my version of "Custer's last stand", Connie reassured me she would "take care of it" and hung up to talk to my doctor. Meanwhile I hit a single digit & speed dialed my mother who lived in a different state at that time. Crazed and babbling out of control, I futility attempted to relay my prior conversation with Connie, to my mother. In tears, and livid beyond words, simply hearing my mother's voice calmed me in a way no else could. I took a deep breath and simply listened. Although she said nothing different than my caseworker had, it was the familiarity of mom's voice that comforted me. I knew she had "my back". My mother reassured me that she too, would make sure nothing happened in a hurried manor. She knew first had,(being a nurse herself)pregnant women & the child they carry, don't bend to a doctor's will, nor should they be required to. It was at this moment that the call waiting alerted me to Connie's incoming call. I put mom on hold & quickly switched over to the other line. The doctor had reluctantly agreed that an induction wasn't imminent & that I could wait up to a whole other week before he felt the need to induce. The only reason he had wanted to induce was in fact due to his being on call and a conflicting vacation he was wanting to take. That was all the more proof & validation of my reaction. I felt a sense of calm come over me knowing that all was settled. I now had a set date.


As the last few days of me being pregnant came & went I was like a kid counting down the days until Christmas. Only difference was there was also a sense of impending doom. I was curious to meet my child: Was it going to be a boy or girl? Would he/she look like me? Would he/she know who I was just by the sound of my voice or the touch of my hand? Did I even want that to happen knowing I had to let go & say goodbye just as soon as I said hello? I didn't have the time to dither or dally. I figured I'd cross that bridge when I got there. I chose to enjoy the time had left with my child.


My mother & sister arrived the day before I was due to give birth. I can remember feeling embarrassed to have to involve them in all of this. It wasn't until they stood on my doorstep, did I really come to understand just how many other people were going to be affected by my choice to place for adoption. It was hard for me to even look at them. They were just another reminder of the impending hurt to come. That night I went to bed & prayed that I would go into labor and not have to be induced. For some reason he word induced did not appeal to me. Maybe that was just my "control freak-ness" rearing its ugly head once again. The morning of March 22, 1999, I awoke to find myself still pregnant. Damn it, I thought disappointed. B-day was finally here. I can remember how quiet & still the house was. It was as if somehow it too knew what was to come. I can remember the smell of fresh brewed coffee being made. I remember thinking how coffee had NEVER like that ever before in my life. I got up & got my things together. I don't remember getting dressed. I was lost in some all consuming fog. The closer it came time to leave, the more my rapidly my heart pounded. The sound was deafening in my ears.


As I opened the front door to leave I found a light snow had falling, replacing the usual glistening dew which our grass dearly needed. As I closed the door I was struck with an overwhelming sense of knowing my life would never be the same. A part of me died right there where I stood. Up until that point I never felt sorry for myself, but in an instant I allowed myself that one guilty pleasure. At this point I felt I had more in common with a sheep being led off to slaughter than anything else: helpless, afraid, alone. I slowly let go of the door knob and took that first step into uncharted territory. I got to the hospital and checked in at 6 a.m. I really can't say as I remember much. I remember bits & pieces here. I remember the first nurse who came in with her stack of paperwork & never ending medical history questions. You want to talk about robotic, I swear she looked & sounded just like the maid from the Jetsons cartoon. No personality whatsoever. Soon I wiggled out of my clothes and into a generic hospital gown. I can remember looking at it and thinking "How ugly. Why can't I wear my pretty one I picked out from the store?" Who want's to give birth in something that only god knows how many others have worn before me? I don't want to bring a life into this world wearing something so used?" Ultimately after much coaxing, I obliged "nurse Rosie". Not a moment too soon as I observed.


Next came the poking & prodding with needles, iv's and catheters. I remember more of the sounds, smells, & texture of everything around me. I remember how cold the floor was even through the 2 pair of slippers I was wearing. I remember the doctor coming in and explain how he was going to induce me. I remember the warm rushing feeling as my "water broke". I remember the contractions and asking for an epidural. I had no desire for being "superwoman" & going without any pain relief. I felt I deserved to go through this delivery as pain free as I wanted. I knew the pain over the years would serve as memory enough to this day. I can remember the cold sensation of the epidural bolus each time they came in and gave me more. I remember the constant checking of "how far along I was" by the nurse. I remember feeling disgusted for having to have someone do that. I remember looking at the ceiling wondering how much longer do I have to lay here. When can I start pushing? Where was the doctor? Where was my family, my friends, my caseworker?


After almost 12 hours of labor(laying in bed waiting to "progress") I was given the green light to start pushing. I remember Connie coming in. I vaguely remember my friend Ann coming in too. I remember asking her to grab her Pachabel tape so I would have something to focus on. Like I said, I don't really remember specifics about giving birth. I just wanted to get it done so I could fulfill my promise to Kim & Terry. The one thing I remember most about the delivery was that I was pushing with all my might but couldn't tell if it was doing any good. After an hour, I got my answer. The doctor had said I wasn't making much progress and if I didn't make some progress soon, I would have to have a C-section. Those two words chilled me to my bone. There was no way I was going to do that. There was no way I was going go through life with a scar on my belly and have nothing to show for it afterward. If I had to have a c-section, I was keeping my baby. I had made this very well known to Connie, & my family. I knew too that if I had a girl, there was no way I could walk away from her. I know that sounds odd, but I knew nothing about raising a boy. I grew up in a family of all girls. My father was never around and when he was he treated me like the boy he always wanted but never had. Once I heard the words C-section there was something deep down inside of me that came out of nowhere & helped bring my child into the world. Normally you take a deep breath in and count to 10 and push at the same time. Then you take a small break & start again. Not me. I pushed for 30 seconds straight, even after they told me to rest in between contractions. I pushed like that for 2 minutes with a small 5 second break in between each set. I pushed just hard enough to where the doctor could get the forceps over my baby's head and help him out. With one final push my son entered the world. I had to wait almost a 2 minutes before it dawned on the doctor that I didn't know if I had had a boy or a girl. Almost as an afterthought, he announced "oh yeah, it's a boy." Just like that too. Hey thanks for ruining the moment, I thought. I was relieved yet disappointed. I remember feeling guilty for not feeling happy at this moment's arrival. Then again, when is anyone fully ready to commit to giving away one's child? I don't think that is a natural instinct.


By this time, I was tired, thirsty, & hungry. I remember feeling uncomfortable with my legs in still in the stirrups as the doctor finished up. I remember looking over at my son in the infant warmer & feeling like all of this hadn’t really happened had it? I can remember seeing my sister looking at my son in lovingly disbelief as well. I can remember my son crying constantly. I can remember holding him and me being of no comfort to him. The nurses decided he was hungry since it had been 18 hours since I had last eaten. They whisked him away to the nursery as I waited for an available room to open up. My sister and I looked over the list of names I picked out. I figured if the adoptive family was going to name him whatever they wanted then I was going to as well. I knew he would probably never know what I named him but for those next few days in the hospital I didn't want him to be a nameless baby. He was still my child at that point. I chose the name Kolton Riley. The name doesn't have any special significance other than that fact that that is what I named him. Shortly after I delivered Kolton, I had my mom call the adoptive family and let them know he was here. They weren't home. I imagine they were just as nervous if not more, than I was at this point. I can't imagine sitting by the phone, pacing & waiting. It was about this time I was wheeled into another room.


I can remember shivering like a leaf uncontrollably. The anesthesia was finally wearing off. As we went past the nursery, I could still hear my son crying. I couldn't help but laugh. Maybe he'll be have my attitude after all, I thought. When I got to my new room, I was greeted by the nurses bringing my son to me. I can remember feeling uncomfortable even holding him. What right did I have attempting to bond with this child when I knew he would be leaving me soon? How fair was that to him? I didn't want him to get too close to me physically since I had read babies know the sound of their mother's voice as well as smell when they are born. The nurses had said he wouldn't take a bottle for them, and that I should give it a try. I quickly went into panic mode once again. I had hoped they weren't asking me to what I thought they were asking me to do. They were. Even after all of the preparations I had made with my doctor and his staff, he still had failed to make it known my plans for adoption. I quickly grabbed the bottle out of the nurse's hand and said "Let's try this first & see what happens". I took him into my arms and began to feed him the bottle. It took him a while but he got the hang of it. What a relief. Crisis averted.


The next few days were an absolute blur. I got pretty much no sleep between waking up to feed my son, as well as the fact I had no urine output. During my delivery, I had pushed so hard & so fast that I was swollen up like a balloon. I also had hemorrhoids the size of cherry tomatoes. Not to mention the fact I had cracked my tailbone from pushing so hard too. I was a mess physically. I was bound & determined I wouldn't be emotionally. I didn't want my son to sense my emotional pain. Over the course of four days I lost count of how may phone calls, visitors and people in general, who passed through my room. I passed Kolton off to whomever wanted to see him as I knew I needed to put some distance between he & I. It became harder & harder as each day passed to not look at him and want to keep him forever. Who doesn't want to keep their child, I thought. What the hell is wrong with me? So what if I don't have it all together? Who really does? Who's standards am I using here, mine or society's? I can get it together. I'm just going through a rough patch right now. All of that was just my heart talking. My heart had been momentarily released from the contract it had with my head. It was my heart's turn to plead it's case. It was hard to listen, but I had to do it; to know I was making the right decision. You can't have one side of an issue without having the other. Otherwise the delicate balance of life is slanted and no longer becomes a choice we make. Even my head could see the rationality behind all of this, even if it was in vain. I listened intently but distantly as reality set in, & the feelings of my heart were drowned out by the words of wisdom my head held onto tightly the last 9 months. I was committed and there was no going back. My body decided it was it's turn to weigh in on my situation.


As I was making plans for my entrustment ceremony(when I was to hand my son over to the adoptive family) my doctor informed me I could not leave the hospital just yet. My body was still not passing urine properly. Until I did, I couldn't leave as I would be a liability to the hospital. Here I had painstakingly planned out my ceremony, where it was to take place, who was going to be there, basically everything, and now I was being told no? It was as if there was a conspiracy plotting against me! The person who was to "officiate" over my ceremony was actually the head of the adoption agency I was using. It was just on a whim that he happened to be in town at the time. I felt like that was a sign. Urine or no urine, I was pressing forward. I point blank told my doctor (who wasn't supportive at all of my adoption plans) I was going to go through with this ceremony. I had a small window of opportunity and I was taking it. With that being said, I prepared for the ceremony and promptly signed myself out a.m.a. On the way to the chapel (the hospital I was in didn't have adequate space) I couldn't help but stare at my son. He had been sleeping and was basically unfazed by the days progression. I found myself wondering if he would ever truly know the depth of my love for him. How even though I was letting go, I was also giving him more. Even though I couldn't physically give him all a parent does, I was giving it to him in the best way I knew how.


Once we reached the hospital, I was greeted by another "fire" I needed to put out. I was late getting there(thanks to a nurse who felt the need to put her two sense in as I was strapping Kolton into his car seat. When that didn't work, she tried to pull some "I'm not sure I can let you leave with your child in a car seat that I've not inspected totally" scheme.) and all I could think about was Terry & Kim. I didn't want them thinking I was changing my mind. As I came running through the door it was like a swarm of paparazzi surrounding me. I was greeted by Connie my case worker, who had been detained by picking my father & grandmother up. Then there was my father & grandmother, as well as my friends Becky & Ann. It was all just too much. They all started talking at once and I just did what I could. I put my hand up and said "not now" and made a sharp right towards the bathroom. That's when I lost it. Every thought, every emotion culminated in that moment. I broke down. The only thing that had sustained me throughout my pregnancy was the knowledge that for once in my life I was doing the right thing. Not because someone else said it was right but because I knew it to be right, for me. It was a whole other ball game seeing all of those facing coming at me at once. Faces of loved ones who were going to be losing just as much as I was in a few moments. The guilt was indescribable. After throwing some water on my face, a few breathing techniques, along with some encouraging words I stepped out of the bathroom.


As I emerged, I was greeted by my father's face. He muttered some ridiculously childish greeting in attempt to lighten the mood. I handed my son off to my mother who headed into the chapel in an attempt to give me some privacy. "Can I talk to you a minute?" he asked. I begrudgingly agreed. I knew what was about to transpire. Don't ask me how I knew, I just did. Maybe it's that I know my father better than he knows himself, or maybe it was the tone of voice along with the look in his eyes, but I already knew the words he would utter before he even did. "Listen, I want to ask you something. Are you sure this is what you want to do?" You have other options...was all I heard before I stopped him in his tracks. "How dare you!", I almost screamed. "How dare you put this guilty trip on me moments before I walk through those doors and do probably the hardest thing I will ever have to do in my life? You have had 9 months to "step up" and show me that you are going to be around to help me raise this child. You've had even longer to show me that you want to be the dad the Navy denied you of being when I was a child growing up! How dare you to decide to have this conversation now after I have attempted to have it with you more than once, but you didn't want to hear it! How dare you make this about you, just like you do with everything in my life! How dare you! I'm not doing this now, not ever. The decision has been made." Angrily I stomped off to the bathroom once again to regain my composure. Connie met me in the bathroom and began to apologize profusely. "I knew something was going to happen driving down here. Your Grandma & dad looked like caged rats when I picked them up. They were grilling me as to what was going to happen now and where they fit in the grand scheme of things. It's my fault, I should have called you and given you a heads up, but you had already left". That's why I tried to pull you aside before you went into the bathroom." Needless to say it was too late for that. My father had once again, ruined another family event by having to make it about himself. (it's plain to see why my mom & he divorced years ago) and with that I headed out the door. "Let's get this show on the road", I said.


I don't remember exactly how things got started once I arrived in the chapel. Again, I think my body went into "safe mode"(like a computer does) I remember bits and pieces. I remember the director of the adoption agency getting up and speaking. I remember bits & pieces of it..something about how he had met Mother Teresa once and him relaying the story of it and that's about it. I remember the song I asked to be played being piped in over the overhead, and I remember the sound of everyone sniffling. I remember my mom getting up and reading a poem she had picked out:

To let go does not mean to stop caring,
it means I can't do it for someone else.


To let go is not to cut myself off,
it's the realization I can't control another.


To let go is not to enable,
but allow learning from natural consequences.


To let go is to admit powerlessness, which means
the outcome is not in my hands.


To let go is not to try to change or blame another,
it's to make the most of myself.


To let go is not to care for,
but to care about.


To let go is not to fix,
but to be supportive.


To let go is not to judge,
but to allow another to be a human being.


To let go is not to be in the middle arranging all the outcomes,
but to allow others to affect their destinies.


To let go is not to be protective,
it's to permit another to face reality.


To let go is not to deny,
but to accept.


To let go is not to nag, scold or argue,
but instead to search out my own shortcomings and correct them.


To let go is not to adjust everything to my desires,
but to take each day as it comes and cherish myself in it.


To let go is not to criticize or regulate anybody,
but to try to become what I dream I can be.


To let go is not to regret the past,
but to grow and live for the future.

To let go is to fear less and love more
------ author unknown

After the entrustment ceremony, I went back to the hospital. I felt many things but none that words an really convey. I left the hospital the next day. I moved out of state 3 weeks later. The adoption was semi-open for the last 10 years but has recently been closed by me.

3 Comments

View replies by

Jenaia - posted on 03/04/2010

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Well, in an attempt to make a long loooong story short, here's my story. =)



I was in an abusive relationship, i found my way out of it a few times before and stayed with family (but didn't tell them what was going on). the guy would start to threaten me and tell me he'd start going after my family unless i came back. Unfortunately it got to the point i was rapped and i got pregnant. One night he decided he'd put his hands on me again and i knew there was absolutely no way is he going to continue to do this to me or my baby. I literally fought my way out that night, changed my hair, got glasses and hid behind my 4 older brothers (i finally told them the whole story...minus the being rapped and pregnant thing..)



I don't know why i kept my pregnancy from everyone exept my best friend...regret, embarrasment, i was ashamed of myself. i haven't quite figured that one out yet. However, my belly was so small nobody could tell from looking at me...even a new boyfriend. I didn't tell him because, honetly, i wasn't expecting much of anything out of that relationship in the begining...but we fell in love and ended up moving in together. i thought for sure he would have figured it out, but i guess my daughter decided to show him i was pregnant before i could tell him! I had to be i labor for at least a couple days, but i had no idea, heck i didn't know what to expect! haha



But at 3 am, i'm awake and by myself...realizing i'm fooling myself if i think i'm not in labor. I write a note ("hey babe, don't worry, i'm fine, but i had to go to the hospital last night, i tried to wake you. I'm sorry") and drove MYSELF to the hospital...that...was insane. Just as quiet as her pregnancy was, so was the birth of my daughter Lily. The only person i knew that held/saw her was my best friend. My boyfriend?...he, worried as expected, came to the hospital...i've always wondered what he thought when he found out my room was in the birthing center..i told him everything and he left..not really saying much. I was fully expecting to go home to an empty apartment. He came back the next day with flowers and a stuffed elephant..=) saying he supports me in any decision i make. which he followed through on..his whole family was my biggest support system!



See, the thing is, through out this whole thing i really hadn't planned out her adoption..i put it off and put it off. It was after i had lily did i tell someone about my decision. A nurse gave me a list of agencies, and i choose from there. A representative came out and gave me many many family options all whom put together scapbooks describing themselves. after a looong while i found her adoptive parents. They were notified and made the 3 hour drive that day to pick her up. I was able to go home, shower, then go back to the hospital to say goodbye to my daughter. To this day, it was the most bittersweet moment of my life...



On the way home to shower before i met and gave her away, i called my dad...here's how the conversation went.

"hey dad...i've got to tell you something....i was pregnant and.."

"you were pregnant?...you did abortion by choice?"

"...um, no..adoption..by choice"

i don't remember much after i said that but i do remember these words of his, clear as day..

"it feels like somebody died"



I understand that i hurt members of my family and that keeping it from them was absolutely not the wisest choice. i'm sorry for that every day.



The main reason why i chose to do what i did was the guy, in the begining of this story..as i was running from him he still found ways to threaten me..all of which wouldn't have phased me until he said he was going to..(in nicer terms) abort the kid for me or kidnap it. She didn't deserve to live in a world where someone would be after her.



I'm in contact with her adoptive parents and get updates and pictures. I miss her every day and wish things would have been different..but she's happy, healthy and growing in an environment i would be struggling to even partially create. As her mom, that's all i could ever ask for.



I'll forever have the memory of when she was in her crib, next to me in the hospital, she started to fuss...i was physically unable to get up to hold her and comfort her...but i started talking to her...she instantly calmed down. She may not know who i am now, but for that moment i knew she knew me..she was at home and comfortable when she heard my voice.

Shebrea - posted on 09/02/2009

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some people dont know my whole story and i would like to keep it that way but i dont mind sharing every detail with the mothers of this group so you can always write me {or ayebii@myspace.com} a specific question. Before i even turned 21 i was pregnant for the 3rd time. I have 2 and 3 yr old girls that are barely 10 months apart. Honestly i thought about abortion but i could never ever! I was at the health dept. getting my documents to start my med. case and i read an "want ad" for a couple looking for a pregnant woman to adopt her baby, pay med. bills, get her an apartment, provide clothes, and food. I thought about it and began to cry because i just kept thinking my child would HATE me and wonder why i kept his sisters but not him. So i never thought i could do that either...but as time went on i became more and more aggravated.. i was going crazy!! i hated and regreted being a mom and it could of been the hormones but every little thing pissed me off...i never cried i just got super angry! I looked into a couple of agencies but i never finished the first steps to start looking into adoption completely but i finally told my mom and she was supportive but she always said i could do it or just give the baby to her. I googled "completely open adoptions" and came across IAC (independent adoption center) the website lets you look at the profiles and you can even contact the couple (or person) without the agency's approval or permission. On the first page i seen a single caucasian woman and i automatically felt she was going to be my baby moma lol:).. I sent her an email and she emailed me right back, we talked on the phone the next day and before i knew it i was flying to California to live with her before the baby was to be born. I knew it was what was best for everybody but i never really thought i would go through with it. We developed a good friendship and signed contracts so that it really truly is an open adoption and i will get to see my child and everything. We still talk and email eachother to this day and i will be seeing my son soon on or around his bday Nov.6th. While i was pregnant sometimes i would cry and hate myself for putting my whole entire family in this position and i cry sometimes when i think of what im missing out on now...but the whole entire time i was in Cali the only reason i cried was because i was homesick - not because of my situation. I knew 100% for many,many months that i wanted the adoption to be final. No regrets! Labor was hard and SUPER PAINFUL!! I didnt see him at first because i couldnt even move but as soon as i could i went to the nursery and he was soo tiny and beautiful. I have 2 beautiful little girls but this little boy looked like a true live angel. He had a head full of jet black hair and he was pale, white. the nurses thought he was bi-racial, maybe part hispanic but my baby boy is fully african-american and his dad is darker than i am so it was amazing to see him so light skinned. I cried when i held him and shook from head to toe but not one ounce of me felt like he needed to be with me. When i seen his mother hold him for the first time i could see the love pouring out of her eyes, she touched him with love and i knew from the first time i seen her on the website that it was meant to be. As soon as i left the hospital i was on an airplane later that night to get back to kentucky and i picked my life right back up where it was before i even got pregnant...not as if to block him out of my mind or pretend like he doesnt exist but to make my decision worth while. So he'll know that i didnt do this because i didnt want him or i only wanted girls...no! I did it because his life will be waayy better than any life i would of tried to give him and he wont face the struggles that his sisters and i do now...AND now i can at least try to give his sisters a better life ....now that i have my head on straight. All my children...no ALL CHILDREN period deserve a good life and i intend on mine to do so whether they are raised by me or not.

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