Family Nature

One Decision. An eighteen year old adoption still fresh in my mind.

I started my very first part time job when I was fourteen.  I worked there throughout most of my teens and early twenties; there was a group of us who did.  In many ways I feel like we grew up together.

There was a girl that worked with us, V.  V was about the same age as me and when she was around 17, I’m not sure of her age exactly, she found herself pregnant.  I don’t remember many of the details but what I do remember is this; she put her baby up for adoption.  I don’t remember the pregnancy being very scandalous as one might think.  V was quite open from the beginning about her plans to put the baby up for adoption.  It was common knowledge and referred to rather matter-of-factly; V was a teenager, was pregnant, and was putting her baby up for adoption.  That was that.

When the baby was born we all heard the news.  It was a boy and his name was…what was his name?  For the life of me I cannot remember his name.  This bothers me; I don’t really know why.  I know that I will never think of it in a million years but I wish that I could.

Just as she’d planned V put the baby up for adoption.  She used to carry around a picture of him with her; in fact it was two pictures if I recall correctly; one of him as a new baby and one of him at about one year old.  He was really cute.  I remember his red hair.

Every Mother’s Day where we worked the managers would hand out a single flower, a rose I think, to all the mothers.  Every year they gave V a flower and every year I remember her crying on Mother’s Day.  I don’t think that she cried openly at other times of the year, or even when you asked her about the baby but everyone always knew that on Mother’s Day V would cry and she’d be sad all day.

It has been many, many years since I have seen V.  She has since married and had three children.  When I connected with her recently, I was so happy to hear that she’d had kids. 

I have thought of V so many times over the years.  Only since having my own kids do I understand, in a small way, what that decision must have been like for her.  I also realize what an unbelievable gift she gave someone.  I am amazed when I think about such a young person having the courage to go through the pregnancy and courage to go through with the adoption.  I think of the boy’s family; parents, grandparents, aunt, uncles, cousins; how lucky these people are.  It also makes me think about people I know who have struggled with infertility, people I know who have adopted. 

Why has this stayed with me?  Why do I feel so emotional about V and her baby?  I’m not sure.  Partly I think its guilt.  I wish I’d been more sympathetic.  I wish I had *told* V how brave I thought she was; that I thought what she’d done was remarkable.   I wish more than anything that I had given her a hug on Mother’s Day.

I have four great kids; I had four healthy pregnancies and four difficult deliveries and as a result I can’t have any more kids.  We are very content with our family; we have a great, happy life.  But sometimes my heart aches, just a little, for another.  V eased the heart ache for one family.

I think about V every single Mother’s Day and I wonder if she still cries; thinking about it always brings a tear to my eye.

Eighteen years ago, one decision affected many lives, probably more than she will ever know.

After writing this I sent it to V to ask her permission to post it.  She was honoured.  Of her decision she says she wouldn’t change a thing.  V named her baby B.  She doesn’t cry on Mother’s Day anymore.

Tagged on:

5 thoughts on “One Decision. An eighteen year old adoption still fresh in my mind.

  1. Emily Jones

    Thank you for this post. I gave a baby up for adoption over 10 years ago. I’m now married with two little children, and I am sad every year on my son’s birthday. I did what was best for him, and I don’t regret doing so. He has had a happy life with a whole family, and was given everything I could not provide for him in those days. I wish more young women would consider adoption instead of abortion. There are thousands upon thousands of families who would be more than happy to provide a loving home for a baby, and then everybody wins.

  2. Beevers!

    It’s funny but I think about the same thing. Only as an adult did I realize what a completely selfless and generous act that was.

    I was adopted by my maternal aunt. I was born just about the time that she had her second ectopic pregnancy and feared she would never have children. I was also really, really , really cute so who could resist me?! It was a special gift that my birth mother gave her sister. They are still really close.

  3. Pingback: Happy Belated Bloggiversary « Family Nature

  4. Pingback: Happy Belated Bloggiversary | Family Nature