- Family and Parenting
Adoption-hard decision to make
So when I hear about adoption, I wonder what people think. I had my eldest son when I was fifteen and after months of contemplation, I decided on adoption. With no real family support and miles from home, I decided that this decision would be the best for my son. Only a couple week before I gave birth, I sat back looking at the situation and knowing what I must do. My heart wanted to keep him and find a way, but my head told me my heart was being selfish.
I had gotten a job on the road that had promised great pay and some stability that I was in dire need of. In the end, the company owed all of their employees money and I was stuck in Nashville, Tennesee with no family in sight. I was renting an apartment there with 4 other employees of the company and I was lost. I did not know what to do. I knew at that young age that it would be an uphill battle with a son at my age. Being born to poverty and family issues, I did not want that for my son. I wanted him to have the life I did not. The father was almost 20 years older than me and in retrospect, not the epitomy of fatherhood. He had denied the baby almost immediately, so leaving him and my past behind was not hard.
As my child had grown I thought I had more time, things would be fine, everything would turn out. Well they didn't and a week or so after Christmas, I made the call.
Call and Meeting
To maybe explain how this call was felt to be necessary, I must tell you of another call I had made about a week before. I had called my mother up north and told her that I was pregnant. Now I would imagine that would be the last call you would want to get from your fifteen year old daughter, but her response is not the best. In no uncertain terms, she told me that not to bring it home and think she was going to take care of it. At the time I was crushed, and for maybe 8 years after. But it is what it is now, so no sense in past pain.
So after that conversation, my mind went to adoption. Abortion had never been a thought in my mind, but adoption felt as final. But knowing in my mind that he was with a good home and out there growing and being loved helped me get through it. So I made the call to a christian adoption agency, my young mind thinking that God was sending me there, and maybe he was.
I met with representative, Meg Grandstaff, lovely small, quiet woman. I was taken to the doctor to have my second check up, as I had had no pre natal care before hand. Thinking I was due in March from the original doctor's visit, I was alarmed to find out I was actually already eight and a half months pregnant.
The next week was a whirl wind, I met Meg at the adoption agency and filled out a bunch of paperwork, to this day I still don't know what all I signed. Next, I was given a large photo book that was filled with families who were wanting to adopt. Each had a story and tons of pictures. I flipped through it writing down a few names and then I came across the face of pain. It was of a woman named Mesha and her husband Frank. Not really looking at him, I could not take my yes off of her, she just exuded need. So maybe, God did send me to her, because I stopped looking and wrote down that couple's name. I chose not pick anyone else, although it was recommended I pick a few.
A couple days later, I had asked to meet with the family. I knew that I must meet them if I could ever give them my precious son. The meeting was ackward, they had been waiting for over 5 years and the pressure was thick in the room. They asked a lot of question on the why and I told them as simply as I could, my heart wanted to keep him, but my head knew better. I knew I had made the right choice then and it was settled.
A week later I went in to labor and Carter was born a couple hours later. He was so perfect in my arms and I will never forget his little face. Eyes so blue and perfect, face so tiny. I started to cry when the realization that he was not mine to keep. Doubts about my decision ran through my head, but Mesha's face kept popping in. They came to visit at the hospital, but ackward was the name of the game again.
So after court date was finished and the ten days of revocation was over, it was final. I had made an agreement with the parents for pictures quarterly for the first year and yearly after that. They held to their part of the bargain for the first year. I recieved pictures once after that when I drove the 600 miles to Nashville to go directly to the Adoption Agency as their last names were never given. Every letter since has been sent back unopened and the last letter from Mesha still haunts me.
On the last set of pics I recieved, inside was a note saying that this would be the last pictures I would ever recieve as she feels unsure of it. Beyond flooring me, this makes me wonder if I made the right decision. Good moral standing comes with following your word, honoring it. I had given them my own son and I had and still do feel betrayed. The last response was seven years ago and the years between had been filled of wonder and worry.
I have talked to many people on adoption and it always amazes me how strongly people are against it. And they seem to have no qualms to be the one to say that they could never do it. But I ask you, when I gave up my son, the statistics were 1 in 4 children in the U.S. had their lives ended by choice. How would that be an easier decision?
With the birth of my second son, now 2, I realize all I have lost. I see now the things I have missed and the precious life of my son that I was not there for. For years afterwards, I could not even see a baby without crying and to this day, thoughts of my first son are still so very fresh. I wonder if I will ever see my son again and would I reconize him. We all believe we would know our own son, but from pictures when he was a toddler?
I pray that he has my curious nature and one day will want to meet me. Meet the mother that gave him away and maybe some relationship can be obtained. Any relationship. Adoption can be a great thing for all involved, but beware it is a very hard decision to make.