Adoption is a Beautiful Thing

When I first found out I was pregnant I was seventeen years old, recently broken up with my baby”s father, and living at home with my parents.  Pretty typical, really.  But I think the rest of my story is rather unique.

Like many pregnant girls my age, I struggled with the temptation to get an abortion, but I stayed strong and said NO when everyone around me was pressuring me into it.  As time went on, my family, friends and classmates all became aware of my pregnancy.  I was making a plan to keep my baby, which meant taking on a lot of responsibility.  I planned to move out of my parents house, save up some money, get on W.I.C.K and figure out every other struggle that was about to come my way once this precious baby was born.

I started visiting adoption agencies just to please my mother, and surprisingly enough, one adoption agency located in Houston grabbed my attention. This agency only provided open adoption services.  Open adoption allows the birth mother to receive pictures and letters of her baby at least monthly.  The other wonderful thing about open adoption is that YOU get to pick the parents you want for your baby, and your child will always know you as the birth mother.

Long story short, I met the most wonderful couple and decided to place my son up for adoption with them.  I spent the summer getting to know this family better, and they met my family as well.  On August 4th my son Kyle was born. I got to spend a full forty-eight hours with him in the hospital, and they were truly the happiest hours of my life.  I absolutely adore my baby boy, and, happily, I also adore the family that I chose to raise him.

I don”t think most teen girls are very well informed about adoption.  I want to share my story with all of them.  I understand the fears that many girls may have about adoption, but I know I have given Kyle a much better life as a result of the decision I made for him.  I just want all pregnant girls out there – especially the scared ones – to know and understand all of their options.  Adoption is a wonderful and beautiful thing!  It allows you to give your baby life! And you can even choose to be a part of your baby’s life after adoption.  Everyone should learn more about adoption and all of the possibilities that come with it!

An Answer to Prayer

I’m writing this to every woman who finds herself pregnant and doesn’t know what to do.  I was there.  I know how scary it can be, especially when the father is…well let’s just say “not appropriate.”

My pregnancy was about as scary as it gets.  I had been raped and was strung out on drugs when I found out.  That night, I went home, locked the door and begged God for help.  Not that God and I had been super close lately, but I knew this was bigger than I could handle.  Through my prayers and tears, I seemed to sense God telling me: “Don’t abort this child, I have great plans her.”  So I complied, even though numerous people, including my own family, told me to get an abortion.  Some people even got mad at me, telling me that it was justifiable to get one due to the drug use, the fact that I was raped and even because the baby would be of mixed race (white/black).  But I didn”t listen to them.  Then, when my drug use almost caused a miscarriage, I knew I had to get out of my situation and make some changes.

I was blessed with an unconventional guardian angel – a truck driver who let me ride with him for a couple of weeks.  I was four months into my pregnancy at this point, so I did what seemed like the most logical thing to do: I found an ad for adoption in the paper and made a call.

I was sent to a social worker in Kansas.  She took me into her house for the rest of my pregnancy while I tried to come to terms with whether I would actually place my little baby girl up for adoption or not.  I kept praying that the family who adopted her would feel right to me; that if I had second thoughts later I would feel too guilty to try and take her from them.  I was also hoping for a strong, healthy relationship with the family so that I could still keep a close relationship with my daughter.  But no one seemed right, and I was about to accept the challenge of raising her alone.

Then, one month before the c-section was scheduled, I met the family that would adopt my first born baby. They had two older children of their own and a beautiful little mixed race, eighteen month old girl they had adopted.  They were ready for another child to raise with Margaret.  I learned that the mother, Liz, had wanted many children, but she had several miscarriages after the first two and could no longer conceive.  They had an understanding of family and love that I hadn’t seen in my own family or in the other families I had spoken with.  They were also the first family that didn’t seem to cringe at my honesty about my drug use.  I was very grateful. When Liz asked to be in the operating room for the birth I was so happy, because I so wanted the adoptive mother to share in that moment with me.

Now, three and a half years later, Liz has become my best friend and role model.  I look at her as if she were my older sister.  Monica (my daughter) and Margaret look like they could be twins.  I’ve even met Margaret”s birth mother and felt a great bond with her.  So what started out as a tragic event has evolved into my biggest life-defining moment, and through this I have gained a true sense of love.  There is nothing more fulfilling in my life than knowing that Monica is in a loving and nurturing family, and that I placed her there with all the love in my heart.

If you are considering adoption, I just want to say this: the right family is out there to match the hopes and dreams you have for the little life inside you.  All it takes is courage and faith in your baby”s future.


I Didn’t Plan for This

I was already a single mom struggling to care for my two-year-old son when I took that pregnancy test, convinced at the time it would be negative. I was wrong.  Three minutes and two lines on a stick later, I was floored to find out that I was yet again pregnant, and I hadn’t spoken to or even seen the father in quite some time.

I immediately knew that keeping the baby was not an option, for a lot of reasons.  One of my best friends told me that she had gone through four abortions and the procedure was not painful and I would feel fine afterward.  I asked her if she ever thought of those babies around what would have been their due dates, and she replied that she didn’t even remember any of the due dates.  This surprised me and also let me know that we were different: I would always think of my baby around the expected due date, which, coincidentally, was only a week away from my own son’s birthday.

I continued to listen to my friend and came up with the five hundred dollars it would cost to have an abortion. I made and kept an appointment with the abortion clinic, alone.  My name was called, and I followed the nurse back to a room where she drew a small amount of blood. Then I was herded into a series of three full waiting rooms of women who were there for the same awful reason.

I felt an overwhelming feeling of death all around in the somber faces of the other women there, including my own. I wrestled with whether or not this was going to be a decision I would be able to live with.  As I sat, alone, I prayed silently and pretended to read a magazine.  I have never, before or since, heard the voice of God so loudly in my head: “Brooke, don”t do this.  I have a plan for this baby.  Don”t do this!”

I remained at that horrible clinic long enough to see the “fetus” on an ultrasound.  I began to cry uncontrollably and inquired how much it would cost if I left without having the procedure done.  One hundred twenty-five dollars saved the life of the “fetus.” 

I was still dead set against keeping the baby.  I couldn’t handle it, financially or otherwise. I began contacting different adoption agencies, and only one agency called me back. I met with the birth parentcounselor when I was about four months pregnant, and I began the process of placing the baby for adoption.  By then I knew the baby was a boy. I did my best not to become attached to the baby growing inside me, but it was hard.

I chose the perfect family from a huge stack of profiles of families wanting to adopt a baby.  The family I chose was willing to have an open adoption, which was my primary condition. I met with them in January of 2004, and kept in touch via email during the last few months of my pregnancy.  I fell in love with them.

I wasn’t due to have the baby until April 7th.  I had hidden my pregnancy from my entire family during the holidays, though, and I didn”t want to be pregnant when I was with them on Easter.  I asked my doctor if I could be induced early.  To my surprise, he said “yes.”  An induction was scheduled for March 29, 2004.

I excitedly emailed the parents I had chosen and let them know that the induction had been scheduled and they would have their baby in less than a week! They were as excited as I was, but for very different reasons. I was excited because after the baby was born, my life would be back to normal. They were excited because they would be getting their new baby sooner than planned!

The day came to deliver the baby.  I wanted the adoptive parents to be in the delivery room with me.  This was going to be their child, and I wanted them to see him take his first breath. The delivery room was filled with love.  Nurses were crying and praising me for the decision I was making. The whole thing was unbelievably beautiful.  Sometimes I want to go back, just to feel the love that was there that day.

They named him Evan, and he will be five years old this March.  Every time I get to see his beautiful face, I am reminded of the devastating decision I almost made in that clinic that day in September of 2003. I suppose I am writing just to let other girls know that there are other options than abortion which could save them from making a mistake that could haunt them for the rest of their lives.

I think about Evan every day, but they are happy thoughts about a very happy little boy who holds a very, very special place in my heart. I adore his mom and dad – they are so hospitable and allow me to visit with Evan any time my schedule allows. I thank God every day that he led me out of that clinic and helped me find the perfect family for my healthy, beautiful baby boy. 

I now work with an agency that counsels young women who are confused about what to do with their unplanned pregnancy. Thank you for giving me an outlet to tell my beautiful story of Evan. I have been visiting this site since I was pregnant. It helped me, and I hope that my story will help other confused and scared girls.  Keep your head up, and know that there is support and strength through these situations with the help of God and good friends and family.