Adoption is a humbling experience no matter where you are on the triad. Whether you’re an adoptive parent, birth parent, or even an adoptee. Adoption as a birth mom was one of the most humbling experiences I’ve had. It’s truly eye opening and forced me to realize that it was time to take life a little bit more seriously.

Before I discovered that I was pregnant, I was the way I think most teenagers are: self-centered. Everything was about me and why wouldn’t it be? The only thing I had to worry about was myself and what I wanted in life. I was living on my own, going to school, and dating. I never tossed and turned or had trouble sleeping at night because my little one was sick or because I was worried about their safety. I never had to plan my day around what my child needed. I didn’t have to worry about how late I stayed up due to my child needing me the next day. I could plan things on a whim and decide to go to a party within hours or even minutes of learning about it because I didn’t have to worry about finding a babysitter. Financially I was doing just fine. Although things were tight because I was a college student living on a minimum income, I could easily function on $25 a week for food, and going to work whenever I didn’t have class wasn’t a problem because I didn’t need to worry about finding a babysitter. Life was simple and I was living a life all about me!

So when I learned that I was pregnant, my world literally changed in an instant. I could no longer only think of myself. Before my child was even born, I had to think about her. I had to eat more healthy to make sure she was receiving the nutrients she needed, I needed to get more sleep to function every day, and most importantly, I needed to think about HER future. My future was no longer the most important. Could I continue to go to nursing school with a newborn? How would I both provide for my child AND go to school to further my education? Not to mention the cost of diapers, formula, food, clothing, and shelter. How was I going to give her everything that she both needed AND deserved?

The day I learned to humble myself for my child was the day I chose adoption. As soon as I began thinking only about what was best for her, and not what was best for me, was the day that I finally felt a peace in my heart.

Although I wasn’t sure how I was going to be able to provide her everything she needed, you better believe I was going to do it. I was ready to take on this huge responsibility and I didn’t care what I had to do to succeed. That is until I began to realize that I was still thinking selfishly. Of course, no mother is selfish and if I had chosen to parent, I wouldn’t have been selfish. However, in my mind I knew that she would be better off with someone who was financially, emotionally, physically, and mentally prepared for her. She would be better off with two parents in her home.

The day I learned to humble myself for my child was the day I chose adoption. As soon as I began thinking only about what was best for her, and not what was best for me, was the day that I finally felt a peace in my heart. Was I devastated? You better believe it. I cried myself to sleep every night for days. Every time I thought about placing my child with someone else to raise and love forever, my heart broke again. I couldn’t stand the idea of not being my child’s mother. But there was a peace inside and a part of me that knew that it was best for her. It was the first time I’ve ever humbled myself to help someone else.

The day I met the adoptive couple, the peace I felt grew tenfold. I began to see that not only was I giving this child what she deserved, but I was blessing this couple’s lives in a way that no one else could. The humility that I felt when I announced that I wanted them to be the parents of my baby was overwhelming. My heart broke for myself, but the amount of happiness and joy that I felt for them was intense.

The day my princess was born, the day I met her for the first time, was the same day my heart broke, but doubled in size.

Being humble is not only just an act, it’s a feeling. Throughout the entire process of the adoption, I experienced both. Whenever I began to think about how much this was hurting me or how much it was breaking my heart, the humility somehow took over and I was able to see things more clearly. I was able to see what it was doing for this family and most of all, I was able to see what kind of parents I was choosing for my little one. It was an incredible experience. To me, humility and love go hand in hand. You cannot experience one without the other.

The day my princess was born, the day I met her for the first time, was the same day my heart broke, but doubled in size. I had to have humility to place my child into the arms of her new parents. I had to experience humility in order to get myself to sign those heartbreaking relinquishment papers. I had to have humility to say good-bye and to leave the hospital empty-handed. Adoption humbled me in ways that I never expected. It opened my eyes to a world I had never experience before. It helped me to see thing in a selfless way, a way I’d never experienced before. It caused me to be less judgmental towards other who make mistakes, and it helped me to experience the ultimate feelings of love and humility. I learned what humility and love were through placing my child for adoption.

In my eyes, being humble is something that is a constant work. I experienced humility throughout my adoption experience, but that most definitely does no make me a humble person. Being humble is a constant battle and is something that I believe we should strive towards throughout our lives. Adoption does not happen without humility and I know that I wouldn’t be who I am if I hadn’t experienced it. Although it was the most difficult thing I’ve ever gone through, I’m grateful that I did because I saw that I do have the ability to be humble and that, more importantly, I can do hard things.