Monday, July 25, 2011

Her Choice, My Heart

One would think now that she had made the decision for adoption that we were in the clear and this is the "happily ever after" of our story. Well things aren't always so cut and dry in my life...especially in the world of adoption.

After our birthmother's mother proposed the idea of a second adoption I contacted our social worker to see how this would work. We decided to take things slowly because our birthmother was barely pregnant. We were still finalizing things for our first daughter.

Our birthmother and I talked to each other once a week through texting or phone calls. She was pretty down on herself for getting pregnant again. I was doing quite a bit of counseling for her because she trusted me and she knew I wouldn't judge her. She was struggling with typical teenage drama: boyfriends, school, "evil" parents :), etc., on top of being that girl that got pregnant again.

We visited her at Christmas in MN and were able to see her little tummy getting bigger with our second child. In January we found out we were expecting another girl! We decided on the name Kennedy Leigh for our baby. We thought Kennedy sounded right with Katelynn (our first daughter) and Leigh was our birthmother's middle name. We continued to prepare our lives and our families for a second child.

February came and all of a sudden the tone in our birthmother's voice changed. She was getting a lot of support from birthfather's family and checking into different resources. One afternoon she called and said, "I have to tell you something." My heart sank because I knew what was coming.

She said she was considering parenting this baby. She was so sorry and didn't want us to hate her or keep Katelynn from having a relationship with her. She just had to try to get her life in order to see if she could do it. She said adoption wasn't off the table but she needed me to know that she wasn't 100% anymore. She was giving herself until the end of March to make a decision. If she couldn't find a job, an apartment, and get a drivers' license by the end of March the it wasn't meant to be.

I remained supportive. This is always a risk in adoption and I knew it had to be her choice even though the outcome meant a broken heart for me. I wasn't sure what to pray for: her failure meant my success and vice versa. God was telling me, yet again, that I am not in control. HE is.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Power of Prayers

I didn't hear anything from our birthmother for a couple of weeks. My heart felt like it was being torn in two just thinking about the fact that my daughter could have had a biological sibling. I didn't know how or if I was going to be able to explain that to her some day.

I personally don't agree with abortion but I also think that each person has a right to make her own choice. I have never been in a situation where abortion could have been an option for me, so it is hard to say that I would never have considered it. I do know that it is not my job to tell other women what I feel is right or wrong.

Nevertheless, I continued to pray to God that He give our birthmother the strength to change her mind. I prayed day and night and my family did the same. I couldn't stop thinking about it. After two weeks of hearing nothing, I assumed this was a done deal. I felt defeated but I didn't quit praying although my prayers did change. Instead of praying for our birthmother to change her mind, I prayed for her heart to heal.

Then came the day I will never forget. It was early November and I was distributing the WKCE tests to my students. I heard my phone vibrate indicating that I had a text message. I got my students started on their tests and walked back to my desk. I looked at my phone and read the text message. "I just want you to know that I went to the clinic and I can't have an abortion. I saw the ultrasound and I can't do that to my baby. I will call you later."

I grinned from ear to ear and praised God under my breath. My mind was going a mile a minute as I sat in silence for the next 40 minutes while my students completed their tests. After snack I hurried the kids off to their specials and rushed back to the classroom. I called and celebrated with my husband and then called our birthmother.

Her mother answered the phone. We talked about how proud we were of her daughter for making such a self-less decision. We talked about the feelings that her family was having. Her mother finally confessed to me, "Tanya, she can't raise this baby. She isn't ready to parent yet. You mentioned that you would raise it. Will you still? It will be very difficult because the kids are only 11 months apart. Can you do it?"

My eyes filled with tears as I said yes -- yes to another baby, yes to another twist in our lives.