My Adoption Story

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Told by: Anonymous

I remember that it was Christmas, I remember this because I kept thinking to myself that the lights looked so pretty, even when they are fuzzy white lights are so pretty, they cast a beautiful glow. The thing is that I couldn’t remember why the lights looked fuzzy, why should they, I’m looking right at them. Then I remembered, me and my fuzzy brain, that the reason they looked fuzzy was because I had been beaten up and I was lying on the floor dazed, confused, bloody, broken and waiting…. Waiting for my fiancé, Aaron, to come back with the plastic bag, the bag he planned to put over my head and finish me off with. Before I could even begin to move, the bag was already being slipped over my head and cinched around my throat. I couldn’t breath, but I couldn’t move because I was hurt so badly, I wasn’t strong enough. All of a sudden something snapped in me, I have no clue how, but I mustered enough strength and my Aaron, supposedly the love of my life, shifted his weight just enough so I could slip out from under him, I kicked him and ran. I ran for my life, and the life of my baby, the one I had just told him not 1 hour earlier we were going to have.

I was in shock; I wasn’t supposed to be pregnant at 18 years old. I thought I took all the necessary precautions, I actually didn’t even know I was pregnant for the whole first trimester. Because of that, Aaron didn’t believe me, couldn’t figure out why I would lie to him for so long, to wait so nothing could be done to “fix” it, to trap him (wait weren’t we engaged already and planning a wedding?), to ruin him and his life and take all his money. The next thing I knew I was on the floor, beaten, bloody, broken, and dying. I remember running to fast and hard down the street I wanted to throw up, or pass out, or both. I finally made it to a house where the lights were on and I knew I could stop there and at least ask for help. I called for help, did the right thing and that officer that showed up to take the report, well it was just my luck, that he was really good friends with Aaron. So I wasn’t surprised when I got a phone call the next day from Aaron, groveling, apologizing and begging for me to come back.

It wasn’t going to happen, not ever. The problem at that point was; what was I going to do about my pregnancy, my baby? I knew that I wanted to keep my baby, I wanted children, and I wanted to parent…eventually. I knew that I was going to have to talk with my parents very soon, let them know what was happening; I just didn’t want to tell them everything that had happened. I managed to stay low until I had healed enough so they couldn’t tell I had been beaten. I didn’t want to break their hearts twice in one conversation. I told them I was pregnant and that I wasn’t with Aaron anymore. I told them at that point I was 4 months along and I didn’t know what to do, I was scared, hurt and lost. The amount of support my dad gave me was amazing; my mom on the other hand seemed to take my pregnancy as a personal attack on her. It took her a while to come around and support me. In the end they both supported whatever decision I wanted to choose.

I knew about adoption because some very good friends of our family were going through the adoption process. We got to learn all about the ins and outs of adoption, we watched them go through the highs of finding a birth mother and the lows of having that mother change her mind in the hospital, we saw that happen 3 times. After the 3rd time that happened, when the hoped to be father called us to tell us that they couldn’t take it anymore, they were just not meant to be parents, I knew I had my answer.

I asked to come visit them; you can imagine their shock when they opened their door and there stood a 6 month pregnant, 18 year old girl they had knows since she was 10. I told them that I had been engaged, that I had thought I had done everything to prevent a pregnancy, but I obviously didn’t do enough. I also told them that I wanted a baby, I wanted to parent, I wanted my baby….but not now, not yet, I wasn’t ready and I wasn’t ready to put my daughter in a situation where her life was going to be threatened and affected by her father. Not ever. I asked this couple if they would like a baby girl, because I had one that I wanted to give them.

I knew when I made that choice it was the best choice I could have made. I knew that I couldn’t give my daughter everything she needed, let alone everything she wanted, but ultimately I knew she would be safe. She wouldn’t have to deal with her own father, he wouldn’t be able to harass and hurt her the way he did me. It was the hardest thing I have ever done, even to this day. But I do not regret it.

 

I wish I had known more about pregnancy, birth and even adoption. I think that when I made the decision to give my daughter to this family I mentally shut down. I became attached, but only so much. I knew that if I became too attached and changed my mind I would be putting my daughter’s life in danger. I was lucky that Aaron easy to convince. I convinced him, or maybe the alcohol and drugs convinced him, that it was best if he signed away his parental rights. So he did, when I was 8 months pregnant. He no longer had any legal hold on me or my daughter. Unfortunately it was not the last I would have to deal with him; it took me another 3 years to extract him completely from my life.

 

My pregnancy, labor and delivery were easy, uncomplicated and fast. I wish that I had someone who was at the hospital solely for me, my parents were there but they needed help too, they were dealing with giving up their first grandchild. The doctor was there for me, but only medically and the nurses and techs were there for the baby. Attorneys were there for the adoptive parents, but I was alone. I was lucky enough to have written an adoption birth plan and lucky enough that the nurses respected it, even if they were cold to me. I was able to spend time with my daughter, uninterrupted, I was able to have my delivery with just my parents, even if the intending parents wanted to be in the room, and I was able to room in with my daughter and say the goodbyes I needed to say, even if the nurses looked at me like I was crazy. I got what I needed, because I fought for it.

 

The first few weeks were the worst, no one prepared me for the flood of hormones and emotions, not only it normal postpartum but with an adoption added into it. I was treated like I hadn’t even had a baby, hadn’t given birth at all. I was discharged from the hospital less than 24 hours after I gave birth and sent home, no postpartum instructions, no instructions on how to dry up my milk, no resources for adoptions, nothing…. Oh wait one thing I got was a prescription for birth control. This made me laugh because I was actually on the pill when I got pregnant, funny how they automatically assumed I was irresponsible.

 

I never got any help after my adoption. I have carried guilt around with me every day of my life, I have told myself and others that I was not worthy of having any more children. I told my husband when we got married that God was punishing me for giving my daughter up when I was 18. I finally let myself cry and feel the loss of my baby daughter, for the first time I realized it was a loss that was an epiphany after 12 years. 12 years is a life time to carry all the grief and guilt around, it is a lot of weight to carry on one person’s shoulders. Now that I have acknowledged the loss and mourned properly I have felt lighter than I have in years. I still go through times where I feel bad, but it isn’t soul crushing anymore. You see I almost lost my life because of my pregnancy, but I would have given my life for my daughter, just for her to be safe.

 

I hope is that my story helps someone, helps someone realize that no matter what situation your in, you can change it, you can make something good come out of it. My hope is that no one has to feel the way I felt after my adoption was completed. I don’t want anyone to be as lost or weighed down by grief as I myself was. Birth mothers need resources, they need help, compassion and someone to hold their space.

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