Life Is Not an Accident

I am adopted.

I had a wonderful childhood and I have great parents that I love deeply, but I can't deny that some tough moments came as a direct result of my being adopted. I remember being at the doctor's office once and hearing my mother explain to the doctor that they didn't have any medical history for me because I was adopted. I felt weird and detached. It was almost like I was hatched instead of born. Doesn't everyone have medical information? If I didn't have a medical history what did that make me?

When I entered junior high and then high school, I had to process a lot of emotions about my adoption. At first I was angry at my birth mother and father. As a baby I had been abandoned by these people. What kind of people would have a healthy baby and then just give it away? That led me to feeling worthless. I told myself I was a big mistake, that I was a loser.

But as I mulled over all of my emotions, I started to realize I was grateful for my life.

I could very easily have been aborted. I would never have known what it meant to build a sandcastle or smell a flower or listen to great music or have a good friend. I'd never have fallen in love. I started to rethink what my birth mother had done. She could have aborted me. "Out of sight, out of mind," they say. But she didn't do that. She loved me enough to give me a chance to live. I began to develop a great admiration for her, whoever she was. She didn't take the easy way out.

But as I mulled over all of my emotions, I started to realize I was grateful for my life.

Still, knowing that I was adopted turned me into an overachiever. I thought giving my best meant being the best. But I was wrong. I tried to stay in everyone's good graces. I was trying to prove my worth to everyone, trying to earn my keep. My parents didn't expect a perfect daughter. Why was I putting such pressure on myself?

Later in life, after having married, I decided to search for my birth mother. I wanted to tell her how much I appreciated her going through what was undoubtedly a very difficult time for her to give me the chance to live. I wanted to say "thank you" to her. I wanted to encourage her and show her she had made a wise choice in giving me to my family.

Through the years, my birth mother had become my heroine.

I no longer thought of her as a loser or as an irresponsible person. To me she had become an incredibly courageous young woman, a person of great strength and integrity. She had given me all the things that I never would have had if she had kept me or aborted me. I wanted to hug her and show her that I had turned out all right. Every single goal I've ever accomplished has been a direct result of her decision to give me life and to give me to my family. She put my needs before her own. It was not easy, but it was right. She loved me that much.

Searching for and finding my birth mother was an incredible experience. It caused me to deal with feelings of self-doubt, fear and insecurity all over again, but in the end I have gained a new person in my life. I don't call her mother, but Alyson — a courageous woman that I love very much. I got the chance to say "thank you." I got to introduce her to my children. She is part of my life now and gets to see all the things that happened because of the decision she made all those years ago.

If you are pregnant and are wondering what you are going to do, let me tell you that you have the potential to be a heroine to your child.

You have the chance to choose life for your baby. You can put your baby's needs before your own and choose adoption. Let me assure you that you would not be just "giving your baby away." You would be creating a family in a very special and unique way. You would be giving two people a child that they desperately want and you would also be giving your baby the advantages you may not be able to provide at this stage in your life.

If you are pregnant, you may be scared to death right now, but rather than making a snap decision, take the time to explore the many resources available to you. There are many agencies that would gladly come alongside you and give you all the help you need and assist you in making the right choice for you and your baby. You have so many options available to you.

If you are adopted, know that we are here to join you in your journey.

Please don’t hesitate to write in to our mentoring team, whatever your situation might be. We are here for you.

Photo Credit Casey Murphy on Unsplash

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