Sunday, November 28, 2010

A Unique Adoption Story... a must read!

This is my friend Carol, she was 24 years old when she placed her little girl with a loving family. Carol's story is unique, for she is a mother of two other little children and she has placed one child. She didn't want an open adoption at first, but the couple she chose insisted on an open adoption. However her adoption has not been as open as she had understood it would be. This is her story... One night, in late January 2007, my boyfriend (we will call him Bob, the father of my child that I placed) beat me truly bad and broke a lot of my possessions (he was an alcoholic). I cried and cried asking God what to do. I finally got the courage to call the police, but it had to be hidden. I waited for him to go in the garage to smoke. When he finally did, I ran to the phone and quickly dialed 911. I let it ring enough for the dispatch to locate where the call was coming from. (My house). I ran to my room and laid down, nervously shaking trying to calm down to not raise suspicion in him when he returned. He came into my room and started to finally pass out after having a case of beer and vodka to himself. Ten to twenty minutes later, I heard a knock at the door. I thought “Thank God” but I pulled a surprise look on my face so he wouldn’t think I called the cops. He asked “who the heck is that? It’s 3am!” I lied and told him I him I had no clue. I got up to answer the door. The cops were here. I have never been so happy to see policemen in my life. I stepped outside and closed the door to speak with them. I told them what happened. They went inside, grabbed and threw him down and put him in handcuffs. Bob looked at me with surprise and confusion. They took him away and I felt relief. The next few weeks I felt confusion and abandonment. I had a no contact order against him. It was best to have it. About a month after he got out of jail, (March) he called me, telling me he would never do this again and we should patch things up. I, being naïve, thought maybe he is getting help and doing better. I started seeing him against the courts. After a few weeks, the abuse started again and by May 10th I got pregnant by him. I found out late June. I was excited, yet nervous. I was excited about having a baby. I love babies and wanted another one, but not in the situation I was in. I started to realize, no way could I be with Bob the way he is with a baby in tow. I was fearful of him doing more harm and that we would be just another broken dysfunctional family. The best I could do is stay away from him and raise this baby on my own along with my two other children. If I was able to do it for 4 years with two kids, I could do it with another child. My two children were already excited to have a new baby sister or brother. The kids and I planned many things for the new baby; what we would name him or her, what he or she would look like. They both wanted a baby brother or sister for a long time and were happy to have one soon. By late July/August, I cut off contact with Bob. This made him extremely upset. I hid my pregnancy from practically everyone but; my mom, Bob, and a close friend. I was ashamed and alone. Bob started to harass my friends and then me. I called the police a few times and they put him in jail for violation of the no-contact order. By October 31st he called again and harassed me and threatened me extremely. I told him to never call me again. I hung up and called the police yet again. I could not handle this anymore. My children needed me, and no man was to ever hurt us again. The police picked him up and I have never heard from him again. A month later I met a man named Josh. We started off just talking and getting to know each other. He was surprisingly well with the idea of me pregnant with another man’s baby. I thought he was crazy for liking me, though I was pregnant. He is a man of Christ and I needed this. We got to know each other and laid everything out on the table. We were being completely honest with each other. This is a new thing for me, but I was ready for anything the Lord had in store for me. After a few weeks of getting to know each other, I decided to introduce him to my kids. My kids fell in love with him the minute they met him and so did I. God had answered my prayers. A few weeks later my son came up to me and said, “I am glad you chose Josh. I really, really like him. He is good to you and good to us!” I started to cry. This made me so happy. I finally have someone amazingly wonderful in my life and my kids love him. I have never been so happy in my life. I was ready for change. We started going to church together and reading the bible together, along with also praying together and still do. This is what I have been needing my whole life. It took some obstacles to get through in order for me to really appreciate something so beautiful like our relationship with each other and with the Lord. How did you decide to place your child and find peace about your decision? By the end of December 2008, I was at the morning services at church and adoption came to my thoughts. This was the Lord coming through to me. "Adoption?" I said in my thoughts, "WHAT? WHY? That would be way too hard!" I started crying and then I prayed for comfort. I thought about adoption all day long. Over and over it went through my head. It was such a strong feeling, I couldn't ignore it. I spoke with Josh about it and he said he would support me with either decision I made. The next day I went to an adoption agency called the C.A.S.I. Foundation. The lady there was wonderful to me. I felt so much better about the decision more and more. She gave me a group of profiles to take home and look through. I started to think about what I wanted for this baby girl inside me. This baby needed both parents in her life. I also wanted her to have a big family. I had the profiles for two weeks. I went through them over and over, yet nothing seems to click with me. They are all wonderful potential parents, but not for me. I started to get overwhelmed, but knew that this was the only decision I was going to make for this baby. I told a friend of mine I was going to place this baby for adoption and she said that she is on my side. She will support either decision I make. I felt good knowing I had support in this. Later on that week she emailed me, telling me that her brother and his wife are looking to adopt. They have a little boy that is 5 and they now can’t have any more kid’s cause of fertility problems. She told me no pressure but to think about it. She then came over the next week with their profile. I took a look through it. I started to like what I was reading. A few thoughts came across; if I choose them, that means there would be a possibility I may run into them later on, cause of them being related to my friend, or, would it be too hard knowing they have my child and knowing I am friends with her (baby) aunt. I prayed so hard for the Lord to give me all the answers. Yet I couldn’t find any. I got a new batch of profiles from C.A.S.I and went through them. One couple I took interest in, but was not 100% sure. I thought about calling them but held back. There, lying amongst the other profiles was my friends brother and wife’s’ profile gleaming at me. I picked it up once more, staring at it for an hour, going through my pros and cons of this family. I still wasn’t sure. This decision was the hardest of them all I remember I was downtown driving during the day for some reason in mid January. I called up my friend and told her, “So, do you think (Jack and Jill) want to be parents again?” (Jack and Jill is not their real names) My friend started to cry, “Are you serious? Really? This is such great news!” I felt so much peace. This is it, this is my answer. I was told to call LDS services and set up an appointment with the family’s caseworker. I did. A week before I had my baby. Exactly a week later, February 6th, 2009, I got ready and left to the hospital that morning to have the cesarean. Then this baby girl was out and placed on the table about 8 feet from me at 1:20pm. She came out a healthy 8lbs and 1 oz and 20 inches long. My eyes began to flood when I saw and heard her cry. The doctor picked her up, wrapped her in a hospital blanket and placed her next to my face. “She is so beautiful,” I gasped. Her beautiful red hair and gleaming blue eyes..
What were your first thoughts and feelings about open adoption?

What did the couple you chose, tell you about open adoption?
The next three weeks were painful. I cried myself to sleep every night. I missed the feeling of her kicking in my belly. I missed the smell of her new baby smell from when she was born. I missed the feeling of holding her in my arms, while she slept so peacefully. I felt empty. I felt like she was to be here in my bed, in my arms, eating and then falling asleep. Then waking up 4 times in the night, longing for my warmth and attention. None of this was with me. She is with her family and now it is time to adjust. Amazingly, my children did well with knowing that they were not having their baby sister home with us. I explained to them that God have me this baby to give to this family. This is what the Lord wants. Someday, we will have our own little one. But now she is with her chosen family. They grew to understand and love the Lord so much that he can give miracles to people in small packages. I love my two children and wouldn’t trade them for anything else. I am so blessed that the Lord has trusted me to take care of his two little angels that I call Noel and Adrianna. I am so blessed to have my, now fiancé Josh, in our lives. I am so blessed that the Lord has chosen me to go on this journey and have me as a carrier of a miracle for another family. I could not do this without the Lord.
When did your adoption start to feel closed?
The journey has its ups and downs. I have my fair share of ups and downs with it. The family that I chose for this little girl, named her Carlie Jean. I like the name very much so. It has a little bit of remembrance with my name, Carol. She is a year old now and growing so fast. It is hard for me to believe it has already been 1 year. I have had little contact with this precious angel. I saw her once in December, 10 months after her birth. I made a blanket for her for Christmas. As much as I want visits with her, unfortunately I don’t get those as much as I want. I understand that she is with her family and I am not her family anymore.

It leaves me in confusion that I went through all this and it was quite hard for me to make the decision, too little contact. I am blessed that I do get emails time from time and pictures. But the first year is hard, very hard. I know that she is in the best place I could give her. I thank the Lord for giving me this opportunity to give her a better life. I pray for her often. I know that when the time comes, we will meet again.

What do you want hopeful adoptive couples to know?

UPDATE*** Carol has married a wonderful man, and had another beautiful baby girl. ****

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

I just wanted to say Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. I am so thankful to all of you who have shared your stories with us on my blog :) I can't thank you enough! I know each story that is on my blog, touchs so many people!
I am thankful for open adoption and the ability of combining people, even strangers and making them Family!
I wish you all a Very Happy Thanksgiving.
To all my Birth Mom friends, I LOVE YOU! and to all the hopeful adoptive friends I love you too! :)
I am truly blessed because of you all!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Our Precious Olivia

My name is Kelsey I am newly married to my husband Cameron we have been married for over six months and dated for two years on our wedding day.

I met Cameron at Auto Zone because my friend’s car broke down and he was the one helping us at the store I knew it was love at first sight! He was so nervous around me and knocking stuff off the shelf all over the place he asked for my number and from then we dated and the rest is history. We met in June and that November I started acutane( a drug for severe acne and if you become pregnant can be deadly to your unborn child). The dermatologist I had put me on antibiotics to get me ready for the acutane right little did in know or was told that antibiotics weaken your birth control and before you go onto acutane they make you take a blood drawn pregnancy test which came out negative, a month later I was not having my period and thought it would be best to take a pregnancy test just to make sure. That’s when me and my boyfriend Cameron (now husband) found out I was pregnant we were so scared but still told my mom, who took me into my dermatologist to talk about what to do now that I was pregnant. He told me right off the bat that there was a 98% chance that she would have serious retardation or mutation or die before I gave birth to her and that my only choice was abortion. This really upset me because I am so against abortion, so my mom and I went into the abortion clinic to talk to them about abortion and my options. We ended up bawling coming out of the clinic and knew we had to get more opinions. That’s when we went to my family doctor who then told us that the chance of her having problems was much lower around 20% and that we should get an ultrasound to see if she was developing

OK. When me, my husband and parents saw her on the monitor with her little legs kicking and heart beating we knew abortion was not an option. That is when my mom took me and Cameron to LDS Family Services where I met Lani my social worker and one of the most kind and generous people I will ever know. She did not pressure me into making any decisions I did not want to. That is when Cameron and I choose adoption for our daughter. How we found our adoptive parents was really crazy. Me and my husband went through profiles and kept coming back to this couple that just looked so cute but we didn't want to make any decisions on them and they were definitely our favorite. Later that week my mom (who works for the foster care foundation as the area representative) met with a couple that she seemed to recognized that wanted to become possible foster parents she then found out that they were the ones that me and Cameron had decided we liked the best, but she could not say anything because the fact that we had not made up our minds yet. That night my mom called me all exited and told me what happened that is when we knew we needed to stop looking because heavenly father guided us to the most amazing couple we could have ever dreamed of Brady and Deborah.

We met once before we went out to dinner at good wood and had our caseworker Lani come in with a basket of baby girl stuff that my mom and I had gone out to get for her and told them that we choose them to adopt our child it was so amazing seeing them so shocked and so happy it was an amazing moment. For the remaining months of my pregnancy we always invited them to ultrasounds to see how she was looking and for possible signs of brain problems she may have. We became best friends and I feel like Deborah is like a sister and Brady is the cool brother I never had and is a great influence on Cameron. Last June 12th Cameron purposed to me while I was 7 months pregnant it was such an amazing moment. I remember going to meet with different doctors to talk about how my daughter looked and them telling me how horrible I was for even having intercourse while on acutane and how it just made me so mad at myself as well as them for not getting the whole story.

I was due on September 3 but went into labor on the 18th of august when my water broke I can remember crying so hard because I felt that I gotten my precious time taken away from me because after she was born she would be with another family and not with me 24/7 like she had for the past 8 and 1/2 months. My labor lasted 12 hours from 10 pm to 10 am and what was funny was when I was born on august 13th my mom was watching the price is right at 10 am right before I started pushing I was watching the price is right as well. Even though that has nothing to do with what I’m talking about. While I was in labor I had the adoptive parents in the room as well as my mom and Cameron. I was really scared because the doctors told me she was going to have many problems as well as the doctors and nurses they told me as soon as she was born they would be taking her to get evaluated and have an MRI to check her brain for brain damage. It ended up that she was a beautiful 6 lb. 8 oz. 27 in. baby girl named Olivia Kelsey (chosen by the adoptive parents) who had no problems but they wanted to keep her in the NICU to watch her just in case

It was amazing to see Brady and Deborah
hold her and feed her they were so exited but scared to be parents. I remember not sleeping the whole time I was at the hospital because I did not want to miss any alone time I could get with Olivia.

My favorite time though was at night when everyone was asleep and I laid in bed holding her shocked at just how beautiful she was.

I believe on the 23rd we were ready to be released and that was the time that we needed to sign the parental relinquishment papers. This was the hardest part of the whole adoption the way those papers were worded made me feel like I was a horrible mother and that I could not provide for my child so I was giving her up for adoption. We had Olivia in the room with us and we were bawling we knew this was the end of being her parents and now being her birth parents. Brady and Deborah’s families were so kind and told us how much they loved us for being so selfless to give them a baby and how grateful they were. When we got home it really hit us like a ton of bricks she was gone and was no longer our baby who we cared for nine months. We laid in bed and just cried did not talk just cried, then we fell asleep for a whole 24 hours. The first month I did not even come out of my house I was so devisted besides going to see how she was which was about every two weeks sometimes more. It was nothing Brady and Deborah did they were amazing and were always making sure we were happy and taken care of. I was so numbed and blamed myself when I found out that Olivia was having eye problems because of the acutane. One of her eyes is lazy and she can’t focus or see very well. Another thing they noticed was the shape of her head which was not due to the acutane but due to the fact that she would lie in one spot in my belly became flat in some spots and made her head odd shaped. One thing that helped me so much were the post placement groups and therapy. It took a whole year to feel somewhat normal again but still to this day I am getting over the whole situation. But continue to grow.

This June me and Cameron got married and Brady was Cameron’s Groomsmen and Deborah was my Matron of Honor and of course Olivia was my flower girl it was truly the best day of my life
Because of the adoption I choose to go into working as a social worker in adoption to help girls like me through these tough but amazing situations, and Cameron know owns his own rock chip company and is doing very well. We still see Brady, Deborah, and Olivia every month or so and we talk often, she is now 15 months old still having some developmental problems but her eye is better and she is rolling and starting to try and crawl. Without adoption Olivia would not have the early intervention therapist come in and help her with her development, she would not be sealed in the temple, she would not have parents who could provide all her needs. This adoption I would not change for a thing it has brought me closer to heavenly father, my husband, and provided me with a whole new side of our family, of course a beautiful little girl who I cannot live without, and I would not be in college. Adoption is truly about love!

Monday, November 15, 2010

We've been given an award :)

Check this great blog out! :) http://notjustabirthmom.blogspot.com/
she gave my blog an award. I feel very honored and it really helped me smile!
Thank you!
Another amazing Birth Mom out there and her blog is worth the read :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Just to let you know...

there has been a death in my family and so I am very busy right now with that, please forgive me for not updating this blog, please just look thru the old ones :) So many great stories. Thank you all :)