Friday, October 28, 2011

I've known Abby for a long time actually. We went to the same elementary school, Jr. High, and High school. We didn't get to really know each other 'til high school and then my life took a different turn and took me to a completely different school. Thanks to social media (FB) we've been able to reconnect and share our love of crafting, being a mother, music and adoption.

Adoption touched my life at a young age when my aunt and uncle adopted a beautiful baby girl. However at the time I had NO idea how much a part of my life the adoption world would become. The summer after I graduated from high school in 2006 I was dealing with a nasty break up and wasn't as strong in the gospel as I had been raised to be. I met a guy named Branden on myspace. He messaged me and asked if I had been the girl in the white mustang he'd helped the other day along the side of the road. I let him know that I didn't drive a mustang so it coudn't have been me. We kept talking though and met up for dinner about a week later. We hit it off. He was sweet, caring, generous, and very kind to me. We dated about a month before he deployed to Iraq. Watching him leave was the second... no third hardest thing I've ever done. The second came 4 short weeks later when I had to tell my mom and dad I was pregnant. And the first came 8 long months later when I placed my daughter into her mother's arms.

 When I found out I was pregnant I was scared and alone. Branden (the birth father) had left the morning after I got pregnant and other than emails and a few brief phone calls wouldn't be the support I needed. I was determined to make things work and raise my baby even if it meant doing it alone. That was until Branden told me he wanted nothing to do with a child. My mom and I had a talk and she let me know she thought it was best that I talk to LDS family services.  At first I had NO desire. I didn't understand why she would want me to. However I was that the point in my life where I knew I needed to listen to my mother.  I went to see a case worker after much thought.  Then things started to change for what I thought was the best.  Branden emailed me and was willing to step up. I was going to do what my heart was wanting me to do all along.  HOWEVER my head had other plans.  After meeting with my case worker again I knew I needed to come up with a "list of demands" for potentional adoptive parents.  I decided that if my case worker could find a couple that matched everything on my list I would have no other option but to place my baby with them.  I felt like I had set my case worker up for failure and would be free and clear to parent like my heart was screaming at me to do.  I soon found out that all my demands could be met... in Lori and Barton.

 The moment I saw their picture my heart and head combined and I realized that the child I was carrying was meant to be part of their family.  I told Lori and Barton that I would be placing my baby with them the day before thanksgiving.  Meeting Lori and Barton only further convinced my how right adoption was for me and my situation.  Through out my pregnancy having Lori and Barton there was SO amazing.  Bonding with them and their family made the tough times in my pregnancy a little bit easier.

No matter how much I knew the child I was carrying was meant to be there I couldn't deny that I was hurting.  My pain was only compounded when Branden (and his family) would say and do hurtful things.  I never imagined that I'd be in the situation I was in but being in it all alone was even harder.  Branden was adamant that "our baby" was not going to be "given away".  I found out after I had told Lori and Barton I would be placing with them that he actually had a ton of control over the placement.  After a meeting with Branden he signed the papers and I was able to feel complete relief that I would be placing my daughter for adoption.

Ally was born on May 10, 2007 with her mother and father watching in joyous awe.

I had planned to stay in the hospital for 2 days with her and spend as much time as possible cuddling her.  My plans didn't work out because Ally was sick when she was born and was rushed to the NICU.

I had moments of doubt while in the hospital but knew that I was doing the right thing.  My very first mother's day and first birth mother's day were spent in the hospital with my daughter.

Placement was the hardest day of my life.  I was surrounded by family and friends.

Over the following years there would be some moments harder than others.  Her 3rd birthday was very hard for me.  My heart was healed when I adopted my oldest son Cayden.

I never dreamed I would be a birth mother and an adoptive mother.  Through the years Branden has come around and has realized that the hard decision I made almost 5 year ago (this thanksgiving will be 5 years since I told Lori and Barton I'd be placing with them) was the right one.

I share my adoption experiences and those of friends on a blog called My Angels From God

This is a video that was made for me and LDSFS to help birth mothers and adoptive couples get a better understanding of what adoption is really like.

My family now

Thank you so much Abby for letting me share my story with your readers.  I hope that the things I've lived through can open people's minds to the miracle that is adoption.

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