The reality in adoption is that it is all founded in brokenness. Somewhere in the beginning of an adoptee’s story, crisis, chaos, trauma and uncertainty begin to tell a story. Riddled with unknowns and uncertainties, a child’s story has yet to be told.
In mid-February, our staff visited a new teenage mom in her hospital room. We had had the honor of serving her and garnering a bit of a relationship in the weeks prior to her delivering her beautiful baby boy. As we entered the room we recognized the tenor of those present was notably different than the day prior. Friends were visiting, “It’s a Boy!” balloons floated in the room with congratulations and excitement surrounding this new life. Chaos and uncertainty had seemingly slipped away and been replaced by joy with the arrival of this new life. The young mom looked me in the eye and smiled and said “I’m going to keep him.” Our response to her shift in her plans was to remain in her life by responding “how can we help you?”
Leaving the hospital room, our minds raced and prayers were lifted for this new mom and baby. On that same day, in the moments after exiting this young mom’s room, we brushed shoulders with the hospital social worker. Exchanging a few words as she hustled to serve a client she said, “I’ll call you in a little bit.”
Hours later, we received a call from the social worker, and we headed back to the hospital to serve another mom requesting the help of an adoption agency. A distraught and scared mom had chosen to make an adoption plan for her tiny, newborn four-pound baby girl.
In the days to come, the Choosing Hope staff gathered around the baby and her birth family. We prayed with her birth mom. Our office manager, Abi, spent endless hours at the hospital nursery holding this precious life and praying over her while we came alongside the birth family and helped them navigate the adoption process.
We spent days listening to the hopes and dreams of her birth mom. What she hopes for her own life. What she hopes for her baby’s life. What she hopes for in an adoptive family for her daughter. Her dreams are many. She dreams of the day she is healthy and can go back to school, buy a home and work a job with regular hours. Her dreams for her daughter are heartfelt: a family that will love her unconditionally, who will embrace open adoption, and share pictures and letters of her daughter as she grows up. Maybe together they can celebrate birthdays and milestones like kindergarten graduation.
Mom paged through books of adoptive families, knowing she would choose one of these families to parent her daughter as their own. She looked closely at pictures of the families, their homes, their hobbies, and tried to soak in their reasons for choosing to adopt. She recognized that some of the families weren’t the right fit for her daughter. A few of them she asked to keep to look over and read in private.
The following day we were invited back to mom’s home. She asked a few questions and shared with us that she had chosen a family for her daughter. While heartbreak still brushes the canvas of this story we reminded this brave and selfless mom that while she isn’t parenting her daughter, she will always be her legacy and she is telling a beautiful story for her daughter: a story of hope and redemption.
Later that afternoon we had the honor of calling Nick and Karen to tell them they were chosen to parent this baby girl. Our words were met with a moment of silence and then tears of joy mixed with emotions of heartache — knowing that while everything has been gained through adoption much has been lost.
In a few short hours, we would greet Karen and Nick at the hospital and introduce them to their new daughter. They gazed at this miracle they will now call their daughter. They quickly whisked her into their arms and studied her tiny features.
The moment in the adoption journey when you lay your eyes on your son or daughter is an unbelievable mix. It’s a moment where unthinkable sorrow and overwhelming joy collide. A moment that is somehow one’s greatest loss and another’s gain. It encompasses the child, the birth family and the adoptive parents. The greatest sacrifice has been made for a child out of deep love. It’s a picture of the Gospel.
In that moment it all collides for the love of a child. Sacrifice, heartache, waiting, joy, love and hope.
At Choosing Hope Adoptions we have the honor of coming alongside birth families as they face an untimely pregnancy or crisis parenting situation and help them navigate a parenting plan or an adoption plan. We license and prepare adoptive parents as they step into their adoption journey. Both birth families and adoptive families start their journey with us with a lot of unknowns. Together we pray, love, serve and grow for the sake of children. While adoption starts with brokenness, we have the promise of the cross to guide us to victory for every family and child we serve. We are so humbled and grateful.