Finding an adoption story that is similar to yours is like looking for a needle in a haystack. All adoptions are different. To Have and Not to Hold is an adoption memoir written from the birth mother perspective. In 1981, Lorri Antosz Benson made an adoption plan for her daughter in the Chicago area. This is a real-life account of the journey through unplanned pregnancy, to adoption and to open adoption. Read my full review here.
It can happen. It does happen.
Dear Expectant Woman,
This has to be the hardest time in your life. The most confusing, lonely, emotionally raw time you’ve ever experienced. I cannot imagine. I hurt for you.
This is what I would like you to know. There are hundreds of women like me ready to parent your child. All of us are hurting too. We are madly in love with a child that we have not met yet. We don’t even know if they are conceived yet. It doesn’t matter. We are preparing. We are telling and educating our families about adoption. We are helping them prepare to welcome this child into their lives forever too. The rooms are ready. The blankets are washed. Teeny tiny gray leather ballet slippers are in the mail for the child you are carrying.
As you are about to send the email that will change my life forever, you may not know that this opportunity to parent this child has been in my thoughts every day for years and years. You may be looking for an option or solution to the situation that you are in. I understand that. I support you. I believe in your right to explore all of the options. Remember that I am also a person in this. From the time I see I have an email to the time I read your first words, my heart stops beating. The second you become real, you start to become a little part of me too. I want to know everything about you. What you like, what you don’t like. How you spend your weekends. What your hopes are. How you want your future to be. I want you to become my family too.
In the weeks or months that our relationship unfolds, my heart hurts for your pain. I will wish you weren’t in this situation. I want what is best for you. I believe in you.
During this time as you are testing the waters, please remember that I also have feelings and a life that I am trying to hold together during all of this. I have been preparing my heart, my home, my son for this child and for you because you asked me to. In an email, remember? I still have it. I was saving it for the child you are carrying so that they can know you. They can learn about themselves and where they came from. How strong and brave you were. How much you love them from the beginning.
If this journey we have been on together is not what you choose, be gentle with me. Treat me with respect. Treat me how you would want to be treated. Please tell me. At the very least, please let me know that you are going to be the mommy to the baby that you are carrying. I will be sad for me. I will be happy for you, over the moon happy for you and your baby. I just want to know because I care about you. This relationship we have been building matters to me. It was real for me. I understand that my role is to be an option for you. I would like some closure. You do not need to explain yourself. I would just like a goodbye.