Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Today, Benjamin is 11 months old... it's just crazy to me that time is going by so quickly. He's pulling himself up, talking more and more, and looking more like a toddler every day. It won't be long before he's walking, then running, and leaving his baby days behind. I love him more today than I did the day he was born, and I am so blessed that I am able to watch him grow. Today I saw a post someone made on Facebook about what adoption has done for them. And I got to thinking about it. I mean, what HAS adoption done for me, in reality? For some, it robbed them of the chance to raise their child, for some it destroyed them. It became this gaping, festering, irreparable wound that eventually became the only thing they could focus on. Until the pain consumed them and their entire lives. For others, it helped them. It gave them a chance as well as their child.

Thankfully, I'm in the latter category. I look around me tonight and just take it all in. The two bedroom apartment with my name on the lease, my sweet boy freshly bathed and watching his favorite movie before bed. My kitten lazily dozing on the back of my couch, only moving to find a more comfortable position every now and then. Then I look to the side of my computer, where a picture of B and his parents sits proudly on my desk, given to me for Christmas. The angel they gave me for my birthday beside it. And I can't help but think about where I was 7 months ago. Living in a hotel room that LDSFS was paying for, what little I had shoved into the corner. I had almost nothing, material wise. I had to get a voucher for DI just to clothe my boys. But it went so far beyond that. So far beyond having no home or belongings. 

I sat here tonight laughing at something a friend said, chatting and catching up, and again my mind wandered to pre-placement. I was still LDS, I have been for years. But I was lost, fading, and to be honest, ill. I didn't have friends, I pushed everyone away, kept up walls so high nobody could get through. I just lacked the capacity to love another, or to believe I was worthy of love, or that anyone COULD love me. I was so absorbed in my misery that I could scarcely get up to make my oldest something to eat. I certainly couldn't be bothered to play. I would give B the obligatory diaper change, stick a bottle, propped on a blanket, into his mouth as he lay in his rocker. I provided all I could at that time. But it was not nearly what should have been given. I was on a path that was dangerously close to costing me everything. Even my life. And in the moment I looked at that sweet baby and opened my heart to God to ask for help... that was the moment He saved me from myself. That was the moment that changed me forever. 

My B's parents never fail to thank me for my gift to them, for making them parents, giving them their dream of raising a child. They do all they can to make sure I never forget what my gift meant to them. And it's amazing of them to do so. But then I think of what they have done for me. Of the fact that they saved me and Jack from such a dark place. I don't know where I would be if I had kept B and went about my life the way I was living it. I don't know if I would even be alive today, but I doubt it. They, through adoption, love, compassion... they gave me hope. They, and a few others, showed me that I could make it. That I was worthy of happiness and success. That despite what I'd believed most of my life, I was WORTH saving, I deserved to live a good life. They had faith in me when I had none in myself. 

Adoption is a so complex, and so varied, that it means something different to everyone. Some say that one day I will grow to hate "what adoption did to me". But I say they are wrong. I will go to bed each night thanking God for the courage to make the choice I made. Thanking Him for the couple He brought into my life. Because without those things, my boys and I would still be lost. I wouldn't be working and attending school, raising my oldest son the right way, and living in my own apartment. 

Truly, I will ALWAYS love adoption. Because the absolute truth of the matter is.... adoption saved my life. 

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Monkey (we'll use this to protect privacy),

Your adoption was final two days ago. A judge signed off on it, and you are officially rocking your parents' last name. You are forever a part of their family and their life, and you fit like a glove. It's like you were always there, always meant to be there. I look at your beautiful little face, and I see your daddy. I see how your eyes light up when your mommy talks to you, how happy you are just to be with her. I saw today how you reached for your auntie, and then for your daddy, because they are the only family you know. You know them, and you love them, even when you can't say the words yet. 

Today you were sealed to your mommy and daddy. You are theirs for eternity, the way it's supposed to be. I wish I could show you just how much I love you. How badly I wanted to be what was best for you, and how much you will ALWAYS have my heart. I'm not your mommy anymore, but my love for you hasn't gone anywhere. I hope that as you grow into the amazing little boy and man I know you will be, that you see that. I hope you see that I chose the absolute best people in the entire world to raise you. You deserve the world, all that life has to offer. You deserve to have a chance. And with them, you do. You are so loved and cherished and doted on... you have the life I always dreamed of for you. 

Someday, when you're old enough to understand, I know you'll probably have questions. I know that you may want to know why, or if I really do love you. You may have to ask those questions a million times before you understand the answers. But you're a brilliant kid, I think you'll understand early. You are one blessed kid, little boy. You have two mothers who love you more than anything in this world, and a daddy who would do anything for you. Not many kids have that blessing. And not everyone has a mommy who loves them as much as yours does. I can see it clear as day whenever I see you two together, and it just makes my heart so happy.

I won't say that it's not hard, that wouldn't be true. It is hard. I do miss you, I think about you all of the time. I wish often that I could hold and kiss you whenever I want. Luckily I get to see you regularly, and get some good cuddles in. Sometimes I cry when I think of your sweet little face. Luckily there as well, your mommy doesn't hesitate to send me pictures of you, and videos of all of the sweet and adorable things you do. Overall, I'm happy for you. So happy. And it's okay to cry, and hurt sometimes, pain and sorrow are a part of life, just like joy is. But the joy outweighs the sadness. And for that I am grateful. So please, just know, I love you so much. And I'm so blessed to be your birth mother.

There will be moments I miss. The first time you tie your shoes, or skin your knee. The first day of school and your first broken heart. But I will still share the moment in pictures, and hear all about it from your mommy. And I will be just as proud of you, because I already am. Even though I'm not your mommy, I will ALWAYS be here. And you will always be one of the most special people in the word to me.