I became pregnant within three months after leaving home at 18. I was
not ready to become a mother. I had just begun life on my own, so I gave
my baby up for adoption.
It was not easy, but at the time, I felt it was the right thing to do.
I went through the adoption procedure with little or no feeling about what
I had done. Because they did not let me see my son in the hospital after
he was born, there was never a real chance for any type of bonding to take
place. I'm sure that made the separation easier at the time.
After I got married a few years later, I had a miscarriage and was
back in the hospital with complications. It was during this stay that the
emotions of my loss finally hit. I cried for my son, wanting him back. I
thought now I had finally worked through my grief.
I continued to think about him over the years - what he looked like,
what kind of family adopted him, what he was doing. Years later, my best
friend at the time he was born told me she had a friend who worked in Vital
Statistics and was able to find out who adopted him. She only told me he
was adopted into a good family, that he was loved and knew he was adopted.
This helped answer some questions, but not all.
I never gave up the idea that someday he may come looking for me. I
wanted so much to give him answers to questions I was sure he may have been
asking while growing up. I found out Alaska is one of only two states, at
that time, that at age 18, allows easy access for adopted persons to get
into their files. As a birth mother I could not see the file, but I could
put things into it. This renewed my hope for the future.
As his 18th birthday neared, I grew more uneasy and anxious. What
would I say to him if he did try to find me? How would I tell him about
his father or why I gave him up? God often gives me the answer to prayers
in mysterious and unsual ways.
I attended an annual conference with friends in Seaside, Oregon, and
usually shared the room with them. However, this particular year, I had a
room to myself. I wondered about this until I realized the next morning
that God had given me the time and space to deal with my loss. I spent the
next few hours writing my son a letter, explaining the circumstances and
what kind of person I was at the time. That part was easier than I
thought. But the next part didn't happen until I asked for his
forgiveness, told him I loved him and shed many more tears. I was then
able to tell him why I gave him up for adoption.
When I returned home, I put the letter on nice stationery and sent it
to the Vital Statistics office, including my current name and address.
When I received the reply that it had been put into his file, I felt the
burden of 18 years lift from my shoulders. At that point I was able to
"let go and let God" take care of the rest.
He may never see that letter. That is his choice. If he does, he may
never come looking for me. That is still his choice. But I was finally
able to work through my grief after 18 years and let go.
Thanks for letting me share my story.