Wednesday, July 21, 2010

guest blogger: adoption wasn't an option for me

This is not your every day 'i gave birth and placed 2 days later with a family i chose months ago' adoption story. britney, one of our recent giveaway winners, has lovingly shared her story with us. What a beautiful gesture of selfless moher love and sacrifice each and every adoption is.
Thank you britney for reminding us of that!

I met him at a local college dance. We'll call him D (we don't need him finding this blog) :). I had just returned home from China where I taught English. I was 19, na├»ve, and believed everything anyone told me. D told me he was investigating the church (meaning he was being taught lessons by missionaries in my church- the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints)- and he was very interested in becoming a member. I ate that all up. I won't go into details, but not too much later, I found out I was pregnant. I was in complete shock. I was a good kid- a bit rebellious at times, but I never thought something like this could happen to me. I told D I was pregnant, and he told me I needed to get an abortion. I never really felt much for D, one way or the other, but at that moment- I was made very aware that something was wrong, this wasn't the type of person I should be seeing.

Abortion was never an option to me. My parents had me when they were young, they got married and were now so happily in love- I felt like parenting was the only option for me. I decided to try to work things out with D to see if we could get married (in my church they usually suggest getting married first, if possible, and if not- adoption). Adoption wasn't an option for me, in my mind. Fast forward a few weeks (this all happened in a span of less than a month), D spent Christmas with my family- and ended up stealing money from my parents. Come to find out, D was a major felon. He'd lied about his age, where he was from, and EVERYTHING about his past. He was in and out of jail, on and off of drugs, overall a very scary person. As soon as this was found out, I had to break the news of my pregnancy to my parents (they couldn't figure out why I was even dating D, they had a feeling he was bad news from the start). They took it very well. It hurt everyone involved, but my parents were so supportive, I can't even explain the love I felt from them. They immediately came to my apartment and helped me move home (as soon as we found out about D's past). We all decided it was best if I never spoke to him again; luckily he didn't give us too many problems.

Everyone backed me up in my decision to single parent. My mom went on a rampage of buying adorable things and sewing quilts (we found out I was having a baby girl). They were all so excited. Now that I look back, I was kind of in a daze my entire pregnancy. I wasn't the girl who ever really “showed” while pregnant, so I think I just kind of pretended it wasn't happening. My parents and bishop (church leader) convinced me to go to LDS Family Services for counseling. I went in telling everyone that I wasn't interested in hearing about adoption- and that was that. I had a wonderful counselor who helped me with every up and down throughout my pregnancy. I knew she was always there to listen.

For some reason, I always thought of adoption as “giving up”. It's TERRIBLE for me to say that now, because that is the thing people have said to me that hurts the most.

me and K in her white dress on her blessing day

I had my daughter *K three weeks early, the result of a scary situation ending in an emergency c section. I don't remember much of the hospital stay, my mom says I was kind of like a zombie. I brought little K home and our lives began. I was dealing with some major emotional issues (like most moms do), but mine were amplified because of my situation, and maybe a little postpartum depression.

Five weeks later, I woke up one morning and just lost it emotionally. I didn't understand why I couldn't be happy. I had a BEAUTIFUL little girl, but I wasn't me. I couldn't get it together. I fell to my knees and prayed my little heart out. I asked God to help me, I didn't know what was wrong and I wanted everyone to be happy. Immediately an answer hit me, like a brick wall. “You're being selfish. This little girl wasn't meant for you. She has a mom and dad who have been waiting so long for her.” (not in those exact words, but you get the gist). I had never even THOUGHT of adoption, and it seemed so clear to me in that moment it was crazy! I went into my mom's room crying- and as soon as I opened my mouth she said, “I know” and started crying. She had known most of my pregnancy that this was what was supposed to happen, but none of us wanted to face that- because we all loved little K so much that we didn't want to let her go.

I started looking through profiles online, but no one stood out to me. I went into LDS family services and looked some more. I searched for what felt like FOREVER. As soon as I saw their profile, I knew the P* family was the family I was looking for. To make a long story short, I met them and we all felt an instant connection. They were going to be a part of my life forever.
My husband, me , and K almost 2

I placed my little girl into their arms a week later on September 11th, 2006, six weeks after my daughter was born. I felt an immediate peace once it was all said and done.

I have cried and cried, and thought about her everyday since, but I KNOW what I did was right. I have seen her and her family countless times since then, and I couldn't be happier with the family I chose for her. Adoption is kind of a funny thing- sometimes I hurt so much inside that I just have to cry, but at the same time, I feel so blessed and happy that I don't know what to do with myself. Not one moment have I regretted anything that I've experienced through this process.

I was married in the Mt. Timpanogos temple on June 21st, 2008 to my sweetheart. As we start to think about starting our own forever family, K comes into my mind often. I'm scared for the future, but I am so happy to know that she will know why I did what I did, and will love me for it.

Christmas 2009 K is three!

I wish I knew back then how happy I could end up. I am living my dream life- I have a husband who adores me, we fall more in love with each other everyday. When I was younger I didn't think I deserved much- I was a teenager who ended up pregnant, so I looked for the wrong guys. I should have known that I was a good person, that if I waited, I would find the perfect person for me- and luckily I did. I wish I would have known that everyone has their own opinion about adoption- and that I should listen to all of them, but if I didn't agree, just let those opinions go in one ear and right out the other. I was told by a very close family friend in the beginning of my pregnancy that everyone makes mistakes, everyone sins, but my mistake was going to show- everyone was going to know about it. She told me if her mistakes were shown on her belly, she'd be much larger than I was going to end up. As silly as it sounds, this helped carry me throughout my entire pregnancy. EVERYONE makes mistakes, its what you do to learn and grow from them that will decide the kind of person you are.


debs life said...

Wow, it's uncanny the similarities in our stories. I felt the same way about adoption. My thought was, 'I was stupid enough to get pregnant, I should take charge of this responsibility and keep her'. I also felt like it was giving up or giving her away selfishly, I was so naive and ignorant to think that. It's amazing how I went from absolutely wanting to keep her to within a span of 12 hours, wanting to place her. It's interesting how things like that work into our lives so suddenly. I am glad you get to see K now, that you have an open relationship. I wished I had that. I am okay that I don't, but it would have been nice. I am so happy for you, and most of all, happy that I can add you to the list of my very special birthmom friends. Thanks for sharing.

Britney O'Connor said...

Thank you for your comment Deb- this wonderful world of birth mothers is such a beautiful thing- we have bonds no one can break! :)

Danya said...

Wow! What a beautiful perspective. Thank you SO MUCH for sharing! :)

Jennifer said...

What a brave and beautiful woman, inside and out! As an adoptive mom who is eternally thankful for our son's birthmother, thank you so much for sharing this sweet and heartwarming story.

Danielle said...

I love you Brit! You are such an strong person. I'm so lucky to have you as a friend <333

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