I just hope my story helps someone else going through what I went through.
When you love someone unconditionally, you do what is best for them, not yourself. It was hardest lesson I ever learned, placing my daughter for adoption. It was also the best thing I have ever done. Early in 2008 a family knelt down for prayer in their home in Provo, Utah. During their prayer they told the Lord that they felt that their family was not yet complete and when he was ready to send them another baby they would be ready. They had no idea that their prayer would be answered so soon. The next night the couple received a phone call about a young woman in his home ward back in Delaware that was pregnant and thinking about adoption.
I found out in the beginning of February 2008 that I was pregnant. The news was more than I could handle. I was 20 years old and nearly done with my college education. I was so nervous to tell my parents. They had raised me in the gospel with strong values and morals inside The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. They were disappointed but loved and cared for me. Adoption was already a big part of my life. I was adopted by my parents as a small baby. I knew the blessings that came from adoption, yet at the same time during my teenage years I found myself upset and angry with my birth mother that I never knew for giving me up and not wanting me. I now know how wrong I had been. I began to weigh all of my options. When I found out that I would be having a girl my heart was full of joy and excitement.
In June I had the most spiritual experience of my life. I met with the young man who lived in Utah with his family. They were friends of my family long before I was born. As I sat with him, he told me about his other two adopted children who I had met before and their stories. He told me how he and his wife would be honored to raise my daughter. It was finally my turn to speak. My chest began to burn and tears filled my eyes as I tried to talk. I was having doubts about adoption after finding out the baby was a girl. At that moment all of my doubts faded and I knew from that instant that he and his wife were meant to raise my baby for this life and eternity. By the end of the meeting we all were crying. Not only were their prayers answered, but mine were as well. I will never forget that tremendous testimony building experience as long as I live.
The last five months of my pregnancy flew by before my eyes and it was October before I knew it. I was writing emails to the family in Utah keeping them updated with my doctor’s appointments and even sent a few pictures of my growing belly. Knowing they were unable to have children of their own my heart went out for them. I wanted to make the experience about them instead of me, since they have never been able to witness their other two children’s births. I decided that I wanted them both in the room when she was born and I wanted the adopted father to cut her umbilical cord. I threw his wife a baby shower just days before the baby arrived. It was all so wonderful. The women in my ward showed me such kindness and service, never judging. They all were in attendance at the baby shower.
Two days later she arrived. All that I asked was that I get to spend those two days in the hospital with her and then she could go with them. Those two nights were a mixture of joy and sadness. I was so happy that she was finally here, yet sad because I knew that she would be leaving me shortly. From the time I found out I would be placing her for adoption to stay focused I kept a journal that I wrote in everyday of my pregnancy up until after she was born telling her how much I loved her, what she meant to me and why I choose adoption. I gave it to her parents who agreed to give it to her when she was older. I thought since I knew I would be placing her for adoption five months before she was born it would be so simple. I was terribly wrong. I held her as much as I could, studied all her little features and tried to memorize them. They stayed a week after she was born and brought her over for my family to see her a lot. I didn’t know it was possible to love something so little so much. When they left our house and drove to the airport if felt like a piece of me was going with them. I did not think it would be so difficult to watch her go. In my heart I knew I was doing the right thing and my family was such a huge support to me.
About a month after she was born my mom and I flew out to Utah to relinquish my rights and to visit. Signing my name at the bottom of that paper was the hardest thing I did. Leaving her that time was harder than the first. But since then I have received many pictures of her and a couple visits from them. How eternally grateful I am that she has two of the greatest parents Heavenly Father could possible have given her.
In June my number one goal for her came true, they will be taking her to a LDS temple in Utah and having her sealed as apart of their family for all time and eternity. What a great blessing it is for me to know that I helped another daughter of God find her eternal family. That gives me such great joy that I cannot express. The song by Michael McLean called “From God's Arms, to my Arms, to Yours” sums up my entire story. I feel so strongly that she came to earth through me, but not to me. I now know that Heavenly Father does not make mistakes. This precious little girl was sent to earth at this time for a reason. She has changed my life forever. She helped me see life in a whole new light and change the way I was living. She saved me along with the great and powerful atonement of Jesus Christ. The road to repentance can be long and not easy but I testify that it is so worth it in the end. I am so grateful for the love that Jesus offers me and I know that he will always be there for me in my time of need. I am indeed grateful for this experience that I went through because it has taught me numerous things.
I was blessed during the week of Mothers Day this year by finding my own birth mom on my own. My closed adoption sealed my records but there was one adoption paper that had her maiden last name. So I went from there. I looked on whitepages.com and called the first number. To make a long story short, that very first number I called was my grandparent’s house. They called my birth mom and my life was changed from that point. Today, we have a growing relationship. One that I thought I would never have. I constantly thank her for not only giving me life, making the hard choice to place me, but also leading me to my family. The blessings keep pouring in… I am now soon to be married to the man of my dreams this November. We are LDS and will be sealed in the DC Temple for time and eternity. I am so grateful for the things I have learned these past two years. It has made me a better, stronger, and wiser woman. I know adoption is not for everyone but it has certainly blessed my life beyond measure.