since we’ve been home it has been a WHIRLWIND! lots of visitors, trips to see family, lots of snuggles and hugs, and oh-so-many-diapers. listen: SO. MANY. DIAPERS. but we are thrilled to be home with our girl!
so, a lot of people have asked me about our relationship with our birthmom. i thought i would take a few minutes to talk about her before posting about viv’s birth story. i think it will help you better understand her birth story, her birth mom, and our adoption process in general. there are things that i will share with you about her, her son, and our relationship, and there are things i won’t. the biggest lesson we have learned through this process is that her story is not our story to tell. the intimate details of her life are not ours to share, and because we are family with this woman, we will protect her as such. so, please feel free to ask questions, or email me about this process and our relationship, but just know that some things are not our story to share. also, going forward i will refer to her as “M” because typing ‘birthmom’ every time is annoying and hyphenating ‘birthmom’ to ‘BM’ just seems….wrong.. so here are 5 things i want you to know about our M:
1. she is confident: the first time we talked to M was on the phone, about a week after we learned she had chosen us. we were nervous and excited and i think i paced the house the entire morning waiting for the phone to ring. our consultant, courtney, had coached us a bit before hand on what to expect, questions to ask, and what not to ask on this call. this was going to be her opportunity to get to know us better, not our chance to grill her about her life. when we got on the phone and heard her voice, tears filled my eyes. her voice was beautiful. she was so kind, and you could hear the joy and love in her voice. i think i opened by saying something like, “ah! we are so nervous! are you?” ..hoping she would say yes and put me at ease….but instead she said “i’m not nervous! i know you guys will be good parents!” BAM. that knocked the wind out of me! she was so confident in us ALREADY. she was so strong, and brave and loving. it put me at ease 100 times more than if she had been nervous too. that she could be confident not only in her decision, but in OUR decision, showed a level of faith and security i only hope to attain someday.
she is strong: because of various adoption laws, M did not give birth in her home state. instead, at 36 weeks pregnant, with a 4 year old son in tow, she hopped on a plane for the very first time in her life, and flew to a new state where she knew no one. she packed up her life for the next 3 weeks, navigated one of the nations largest airports all by herself, and went to give birth, essentially alone (or at least away from friends and family) for the good of her child. that is more strength than i could ever muster.
she is selfless: for most people in life, coming upon a decision and then realizing “hmmmm…making this choice would be hardest thing i will ever have to do..” is the end of the discussion. at least for me, when my choices are doing the hardest, most selfless thing ever, or NOT, i always seem to choose NOT. but not for M. she faced the hardest, most selfless fork in the road of all time, and she chose the hard way. not for her, but for her baby. this was unspeakably humbling to watch.
she is a loving mother: placing vivian with us was not an easy choice for M. even though we have built a loving, trusting, family bond with her, this was the hardest thing she will ever have to do. i can tell you without hesitation that M loves vivi with her whole heart. it is because of this love that she was able to place her with us, and it is that loving spirit that i know resides deep in vivian too. seeing this love first hand during her pregnancy, and after viv was born, softened our hearts to M even more. we loved her beforehand, for sure, but seeing how well she loved her son and viv melted us. the kisses and hugs she showered both vivi and her son with was beautiful. her selfless choice for adoption displays her clear, deep, and forever love for vivian and us. we are so honored to be loved by her.
but more than anything, what i really want you to know about our M, is that she has shown us how to be parents. not just parents: good parents. she has shown us what unconditional, selfless love looks like. she has shown us what it means to sacrifice for your child. and she has given us the confidence to know that we can do this parenting thing.
before we started the adoption process i was so nervous at the thought of the birthmom being involved in our life. it seemed foreign and scary to have another person’s feelings and life to consider in all of it, and it wasn’t something we were sure we wanted, to be honest. after meeting M though, all that changed. when we realized that this is not just “some woman” that we were meeting, but the MOTHER of our CHILD, it changed everything. M is our forever family. and we are forever grateful.
ps. i realize that not everyone’s adoption story goes as our has. not every birthmom is willing or able to be as open as M is with us. but i would like to encourage you to be open to your birthmom in your hearts, if nothing else. choose to see how confident she is, or selfless, or strong, or loving. love your birthmom for who she is, not just for who she is giving you. it goes such a long way, i promise. and if all you can see is her brokenness, then i encourage you to remember that despite our incredible brokenness we are infinitely loved by our Creator. choose to see her brokenness as an awesome opportunity to love her regardless, and pray for her always.