I have always wanted a big family; seven at the least and twelve at the most. When I placed Little Bear for adoption I wasn’t afraid he wouldn’t be sufficiently loved, but I did fear (it seems petty now) that he’d be raised as an only child since he was their first. Being an only child isn’t a bad thing, but I loved the relationships I had with my siblings growing up and I wanted Little Bear to have that himself.
Ten months after placement I received a phone call from my caseworker. She informed me that an expectant girl in a similar situation to my own wanted to place with Little Bear’s parents and asked if I would approve of the *Justice Family adopting another baby. Honestly, I was a little confused at first. I found it pretty ludicrous that they would call me for my permission, but since it hadn’t been a full year they were legally obligated to ask for my consent (or something along those lines)…
Needless to say, after the initial bewilderment had passed, I was ecstatic! I called my mom in tears to tell her the good news, e-mailed the Justice Family, and announced it on FaceBook right away. I couldn’t have been happier or more excited for Little Bear or his Parents. Oh, life was good and adoption was sweet. The Lord was working miracles and I felt my family was on the receiving end.
That happened in August of 2010, and in October of 2010 I was privileged enough to get to meet *Miss America at Little Bear’s first birthday. I was thrilled to finally be meeting this beautiful girl that was bringing such happiness into the family, but once I saw her everything became so terribly bitter.
I go into detail about how I felt here so I won’t repeat all of it, but the moment I saw Miss America I immediately remembered where I was when I was in her shoes—the pain, the guilt, the sorrow, the happiness, the anxiety, the fear. I hadn’t even thought of what she was going through up till this point and I felt awful because of it. Out of every single person there, I should have been the most sensitive to what she was experiencing, but I hadn’t been. That was truly the worst part about Little Bear becoming a big brother.
Now, the biggest problem I face is jealously. I love Miss America with all my heart, but she’s a lot better at taking advantage (and I don’t mean that in a bad way) of the amazing open adoptions we’ve been provided with. Since Little Bear has been born I’ve seen then maybe five times total. I know I can see them more, but I’m timid and I don’t want them to feel like I’m crampin’ their style. Ya dig? Well, Miss America goes over there a lot which is great, don’t get me wrong, but I’m afraid Little Bear is going to know Miss America more than me, or think she’s his birthmom, or worse… think I don’t love him as much as Miss America loves the baby she placed. Ahhh! My heart would explode.
On to a happier and less dramatic subject; since placement I’ve gotten married. I have now been married for fifteen whole months! Man, time sure does fly.
I met my husband when I was sixteen. We were friends, but didn’t have much contact until I was eighteen and three months pregnant. Throughout me pregnancy he was my best friend and gave me the most support. We hung out constantly and he helped me through a lot of my neurotic pre-placement episodes. Neither of us was looking for a romantic relationship (ahem, I was pregnant with a child that wasn’t his… just a tad bit awkward), but by the end of my pregnancy we were dating. Oh, how we tried to deny it (lol); anyway, three months after the placement he proposed (I said yes, duh) and four months later we were married.
In the beginning, the placement was hard (beyond hard, it was practically unbearable), but I have learned so much from the experience. I wouldn’t be finishing my education, married to a wonderful man, healthy, happy, and have an incredible extended family. I wouldn’t be as close to God and I know Little Bear wouldn’t have a life as good as the one as he has now or all the extra love. I know it’s cliché to say, but if I had the chance I wouldn’t go back and change what happened even though there were times when I wanted to die. I am stronger than I’ve ever been in my life and I am finally living life in a meaningful way.
My pregnancy, Little Bear, the adoption, the Justice Family—it all changed my life for the better and I will be eternally grateful for that.