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written by: Birthmother “Robin”

We were so blessed when Robin reached out to us this week to share her story with us.  Robin placed a baby girl for adoption with Haven back on July 1, 2014.  Robin is an amazing woman and we are so grateful to have her in our lives.  Maggie continues to keep in touch regularly and they are meeting for dinner soon.

Here’s her story…

“I have never understood how birth mothers could put their babies up for adoption. Just the phrase “I gave my baby up for adoption” sounded unbearable to me. After giving birth to my first born, my daughter Alice, my “negative” feelings about adoption only grew stronger. The bond and love that developed over the 9 months I carried her, is not only life changing, but also an indescribable feeling that only mothers can truly understand. I can remember watching a show where the baby was adopted and wondering how, and why, the mother felt adoption was the best decision for her baby. At that time I knew for sure adoption was something I could never, and would never do. Looking back, I am ashamed and embarrassed that without being in a situation when I needed options such as adoption as well as not knowing what adoption is, how it works, and the different types, I selfishly passed judgment on others. Thanks to Maggie, Sarah, and Kelly, the amazing women at Haven Adoption, I had the opportunity to learn a new perspective on adoption.

On June 29th 2014, I unexpectedly gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. I never thought I could love another child as much as I loved my daughter Alice. But the moment I looked at her sweet face, I knew I had just as much love for her. Although in absolute shock, I was overjoyed and grateful to have given birth to a healthy baby. I can’t remember how many times I stared at her fingers and toes, eyes and ears, amazed at how perfect she was. After the initial shock of the events that transpired that day had subsided, (though they never really did) reality set in. I was faced with a life altering decision. This decision was not only going to impact my life but the future of this precious little girl.

The first two days after giving birth, although still in disbelief, my parents and I welcomed her as if I had known and prepared for her arrival all along. Already living under their roof with my 18 month old daughter Alice, and receiving their support, both emotionally and financially, we never questioned doing everything in our power to give her the life and unconditional love every child deserves, especially mine. While I was savoring the moments I had alone bonding with Haley, my parents were frantically preparing our home to welcome this miracle. Although In the back of my mind (no one knew) I was also feeling extremely scared, anxious and nervous knowing I would be raising two babies under the age of 2 alone, with no knowledge of the options I had.

The day before being discharged Alice came to the hospital to meet her baby sister. I couldn’t wait to see her reaction to a “real” baby as opposed to her favorite baby dolls at home, which lacked “gentle” handling to say the least. Seeing Alice’s reaction to Haley’s cry and movements, as well as her jealousy for my attention, was challenging. Her short visit with her sister brought fears I never thought I would feel. Those feelings were more than evident for all of us in the hours after as my discharge was around the corner. Although no one came forward with these undeniable thoughts and feelings, it wasn’t until 9:30 pm that night when I had called home to check in on Alice and say goodnight, hearing my mom’s voice confirmed for me that she was nervously awaiting this new addition to our family. It was then that I broke down, scared to even mention the word adoption; I expressed my concerns and fears for Haley and Alice first and foremost, but also the future for all of us.

I have always been grateful for my parent’s unconditional support, especially during hard times like this, and I got the courage to face the truth, which was that I could not fathom the idea of raising these two innocent little girls, being in my current circumstance. Bringing a newborn baby home would not only put even more stress and pressure on me but also on my parents and Alice. Even today it’s hard for me to acknowledge these thoughts of apprehension. My priority has always been Alice and to give her my undivided attention and love. I don’t think it will ever get any easier admitting that I did not feel I was able to provide for a second child the way I did for Alice, as well as give her the attention and love I know she deserved, without a partner by my side. After expressing all these feelings to my parents, we decided to explore our options. It was then that my father made a call to Maggie, who was more than empathetic to our situation and provide all the support we needed. As it now approached 10:30pm the night before I was to be discharged, I made a call that I will forever remember because of the compassionate person on the other end.

Maggie was not only my guiding light but also my future support system and #1 advocate for a decision I never imagined I could make. The morning of my discharge, hours from making my decision to look at profiles of possible adopted families, the girls came to my bedside and presented me with two family profiles with the intention of finding a family that lived up to my expectations of what Haley deserved. After reading the first page of Carol & Dave’s profile I knew without a doubt that they were the perfect match. I instantly felt a weight lifted off my shoulders knowing my precious little girl would be safe, cared for and so loved, by such a perfect deserving couple. Their deep longing for a child and strong will to become parents was only one of many characteristics they exhibited to make them Haley’s new family. I had the privilege and honor of meeting Carol and Dave. This kindhearted couple has made this process easier and made me feel that the decision I made (still to this day), is what was best for everyone.

It has now been three months since Haley was born, and although I have come very far, I am still trying to understand and work through my feelings. Haven has never stopped showing their undeniable support toward me, and knowing they are always in my corner has made this process that much easier. I definitely have my good, bad and ugly days, but what gets me through it all is knowing I was able to choose two incredible parents for Haley, and that this is only the beginning of our future choosing an open adoption.

Maggie, Sarah and Kelly made my requests and wishes achievable in such a short time. They also made the entire process as comfortable as possible for both parties. There are no words that can express how grateful I am to have been guided through this process by them. I know without a doubt that if that night I had called any other agency other then Haven my experience would have been so different.  I had the privilege of going through probably one of the hardest times I will ever endure in my life with three of the most kind, caring, understanding, sympathetic, absolutely wonderful women I will ever meet.  They are forever a part of my heart and life.”

*Names changed for privacy of all parties.