It is hard to believe that little over a year ago I was introducing myself to a beautiful baby girl named Allison. Her adoption embodied the action, definition, and power of love. I had never experienced a deeper love for anyone like the love I have for Allison.
Around four months into my pregnancy, I realized that I am not quite ready to be a mother. I was barely able to pay bills, keep a roof over my head, and food in my stomach. When I came to this sad realization, I had begun to explore the idea of adoption. The word adoption put an image into my head of a baby being taken away from the mother, never to be seen by her again. It was hard to decipher concrete facts from the stereotypes. The process was completely alien to me and bursting of horrible fiction.
I needed help and more information, so I decided to go to Catholic Charities. Their expertise in adoption services helped educate me and prepare me for my adoption. Catholic Charities held my hand, as I encountered the many obstacles with my pregnancy. When I broke the news to my family, friends, and co-workers, to my surprise they supported me and applauded my decision.
One of the hardest parts of the adoption was selecting a family to adopt Allison. Every book that I had flipped through, every smiling photo, and every story that I read made it tough to narrow the field. How can I choose one family? Dan and Julia were different because of the “open relationship” with their first daughter’s (Lauren), birth mother, (Susan). In their life book, they included several photos of Susan at events like Lauren’s baptism, and visits. Open adoption would allow me to remain connected to Allison. I was then introduced to Susan, who became my mentor and informed me about Dan & Julia.
I was excited and nervous upon meeting Dan and Julia. Due to my anxiety, it was suggested that I write down questions for the couple. For example some of my questions included: Would you be okay with an open adoption? When would you tell her that she is adopted? How would you tell her that she is adopted? Catholic Charities arranged our meeting and all seemed to go well. The couple warmed my heart immediately and I had felt that this is the family for Allison.
The hospital experience was quite memorable. Dan and Julia honored my request in the hospital to spend as much time with her as I pleased. In the morning before my discharge, I put my headphones on and walked to the nursery. I peered through the glass and watched her discover the room around her. Wonder what she is thinking about? Does she know what is going to happen to her? As I was asking all of these questions in my head, she looked at me and smiled. Her smile seemed comforting in the midst of my emotional chaos at the hospital. I picked up one last time, kissed, and hugged her good-bye.
A couple months later Catholic Charities had extended an invite to the birth mother mass. I was told that the service is an honor for birth mothers, individuals, and families impacted by adoption. The service was open to anyone touched by adoption regardless of age, sex, or religion. This service was an opportunity to meet several courageous women that have made the similar journey and several families with children, touched by adoption.
Some people have asked me how I could do that to my little girl. I simply reply that I love her. I would have struggled and possibly drowned trying to take care of the two of us. She is with a family that can effortlessly provide for her and give her anything that she needs. In my eyes, Dan and Julia’s family seems complete with two little girls and loving grandparents ready to spoil them rotten.
In reflection, I truly believe in love at first sight. It was when Allison looked at me that I knew my decision was the best for her. I was able to push myself out of the picture and consider her future. It is one thing to say you love somebody but it is another to prove it.
Call us at 918-949-HOPE (4673) ext. 116 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.