I was 19 years old when I found out I was pregnant. I was single and living away from home at the time. The birth father and I had been dating for two years, on and off. When I told him I was pregnant, he suggested I get an abortion. I remember his words being “I just want this to all go away.” Those words stung, and I knew I could never consider having an abortion. After I realized our relationship was going nowhere, I moved to AZ to live with my brother and his family. It was in AZ that I had a firm answer to my prayers to place my baby for adoption.
I looked at many family profiles and felt I had found the perfect parents for my little butterfly. I will never forget the day she was born. I couldn’t believe how beautiful she was, but in my heart I knew she was not mine to keep. She belonged to this family, and I was grateful they could give her what I could not at that time. So much joy and pain filled my heart and soul. At times, I could feel every ounce of my body aching to hold her.
My husband and I actually started dating while I was pregnant. He held my hand every step of the way. He was there for me when I needed to cry or scream. He suffered through my outburst of emotions. He supported my decision to place and continues to support me every day.
We are now blessed to have three beautiful children of our own. They all know that they have a sister who mommy placed for adoption. We have many conversations, and there are many questions about my little butterfly and where she is.
Not long after I placed, I started Birth Mother Baskets.
At first it was a small service project to do for Christmas. I wanted to show support to other birth mothers and let them know it’s ok to talk about their placement, to be proud of their decision. I wanted the birth mothers to have something they could take home with them after they placed. I didn’t want them to go home with empty arms. “I will never forget the car ride home after placement with that empty car seat and the overwhelming feeling of loneliness. The pain was unbearable.”
I thought of a gift basket full of items, just for the birth mother, would show her that she is not alone. I took all the resources I had at that time, which wasn’t much, and called around to every local business that I thought might donate. My small goal of filling 20 baskets became 60. I was thrilled with the response that I received. I delivered each basket to a local hospital or adoption agency.
It’s been almost 11 years since I placed, and not a day goes by that I don’t think about my little butterfly and what she might be doing. Yes, there is still pain, but I know I made the right choice. The Birth Mother Baskets didn’t stop after that first Christmas. We have filled almost 400 baskets since I started. Every time I fill another basket, I think about my little butterfly. I pray,she will someday know of the countless hours I spent serving other birth mothers, with her as my strength.