Sunday, January 10, 2010

guest blogger: Brooke ~ overcoming my challenge

I’m not going to pretend I have all this life experience or that I have conquered some great huge challenge that was impossible to overcome. I’m only twenty-one. I have made many mistakes in my life and I still have yet to do many of the things I need to do in my life to obtain my goals. I have my limitations and insecurities like any other person. But from my experience no matter how big or small the challenge may be it can take significant commitment just because of the emotions that come with it, the prejudice of others, or even the well intended advice and help of those around you. It takes some sort of vision and commitment to get through any hardship. This particular one isn’t about getting through school, or curing a disease, or climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. All those things are valid and admirable challenges that people have overcome. But I don’t have too much experience with those kinds of things. Mine is about dealing with the consequences of one of the decisions I have made and over coming that.On my 17th birthday I found out something. I found out I was 11 weeks pregnant. That is when my challenge began. I started thinking about my life, my relationship, and the lives of those around me. I remember people congratulating me. I knew that a baby is indeed a blessing and I still believe that. However, it struck me as strange that people would congratulate me when a baby is not just a blessing, and it was not planned, a baby is much more complicated than that.Many people just assumed that we would get married and do what everyone thought we would do. Naturally so because he was older and more stable he felt more ready for things that I wasn’t. When we were together he would go on about things like getting married, having children, buying a house. All these things he would tell me he wanted to share with me. Of course when we talked about this I would always imagine it in the far future some years and years after I graduate and have gone to college. After some time though, I realized that he is more ready than I am and may want these things before I’m ready. I was still so young and even though I loved him very much I wasn’t even sure if I wanted to have all those things with him ever. So before it happened I decided I was going to leave him and try just being me. But that is when it happened. That’s when I found out I was pregnant. I remembered that my mother went through a similar thing when she was my age. I remembered the look in her eyes when she talks about the marriage she rushed into after she had me, or when she talks about how she couldn’t believe it took her 17 years before she went back to school, or how sorry she was that she couldn’t save up college money for me or give me the treatment I needed for my A.D.D., or put me in the programs I wanted or needed to be apart of. I realized then now that I had my baby in my belly the need for a mother to do everything she can for her baby. I realized that the look in my mother’s eyes was the struggle between a mother’s love and life’s circumstances. My childhood really wasn’t all that bad from what I remembered, I knew I was loved, but I knew of my moms sacrifices and of how much better off a person I could be if I have had the opportunities I needed. That is when the thought of adoption came into my mind.When I shared this thought I was shocked at the onslaught of accusations and opinions those around me had about what to do with my life and my baby. My own father cried and told me I wasn’t allowed to give up our blood our love, my boyfriend was of course outraged that I didn’t want to just be with him and have our baby, those I thought were my friends would tell me how selfish I was and that I just wanted to abandon my responsibilities and it’s my fault so I have to keep her because that’s what being a mother is, one girl even said mothers like me were sick and deserved to go to hell. How dare I want to abandon my child!! How dare I be so selfish!! But I didn’t feel like I was any of the things they said. In fact, what I wanted more than anything was to just have her for myself and hold her forever in my arms. But in my heart I felt that was even more selfish. How was doing exactly the opposite of what I wanted and trying to do the best thing mean I was being selfish? How was thinking about putting her in a better home with a better family meaning I was abandoning her?! How was I less of a mother just because I wouldn’t be raising her even though I felt just as much love as any other mother? I knew that I couldn’t provide for her the life that I so longed for her. I had support from many others as well so I it helped me a great deal. I’m grateful for that. But, with the constant contradictions, advice and opinions, and the conflict between my heart and mind, staying committed to the decision that I felt was the best took a significant amount of strength that I had to find within me from somewhere. I found the strength within me and did what I felt was the best for all of us.Now, my beautiful baby girl is as happy as can be. She has a big brother who adores her and watches over her in her family, she has two loving stable parents that have been together for years and years filled with love for each other and gratefulness for the chance to complete the family they longed to have with each other. She lives in a wonderful home, with a great family, with all the opportunity love and support a child could need. Her father and I have our own lives but we have gotten over our differences and get along with our common love. Our daughter. She only gets even more love and support from both our families as well. So really because of my commitment and support that now surrounds us my little girl is one of the most blessed children in the world. I wouldn’t have it any other way.


debs life said...

Beautiful story! VERY well written! It's not about making big accomplishments, I'd have to say that placing a baby for adoption is on one of the greatest accomplishments you could ever do! I am sorry you had to withstand so much criticism, I didn't have any of that, I admire you for still making the right decision in spite of what was going on around you.

I think it's great that you were able to look at adoption with a deeper perspective of what it meant to be raised my parents who may have not been "ready" to parent when you were born. Although I am a birthmom myself, I admire you for your strength to persevere, I am not sure I would have been as strong if I had to deal with so much negative reaction, good for you! I am glad that you and the BF were able to work through your differences, I wished I could have had that.

Karine said...

I admire you for standing strong when others seemed to "KNOW" what was right for you. That must of been hard but what a beautiful outcome and one that your at peace with! (Which is the most important)
Thank you for sharing that! Your a light and example to so many others!

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