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Adoption is an Option

I don't know how to start this except to say that Haley saved my life. The months before I found out that I was pregnant I was on a court order....I could not starve myself, I had to take medication as prescribed, couldn't lose weight. And since I had an eating disorder, that was next to impossible. I had to follow all these orders until October 20th, 1999 and that the day that I was determined that I was going to go back to starving myself. But then October 20th was the day I found out that I was pregnant. I had originally gone to Planned Parenthood to get back on birth control pills. They had to do a pregnancy test. When the counselor came into the exam room without my packet of pills I knew something was wrong. And then she said it..."You are pregnant" I felt like I had been stabbed. I couldn't breathe. Then I was told because of my "economic status and lack of physical and emotional health" I wouldn't be able to carry a healthy baby to term and that I should have an abortion. I didn't even have to pay for it. I was thinking about it. I think a lot of women in a crisis pregnancy situation think about it regardless of religious beliefs. I said I wanted an ultrasound first. She told me that they didn't have the equipment to do an ultrasound (kinda of odd for a place called Planned Parenthood) but she could schedule me for an abortion. Since I had free services at the clinic they were willing to pay for a $400 procedure but did not have the equipment for a $75 ultrasound?! (or so I was told those were the prices) I told her I had to think about it and I left.

I got home and had a lot of thinking to do. I remembered a place called Mercy Ministries of America. It is a home for pregnant unwed girls and girls with other issues like eating disorders, drug abuse, sexuality issues and other life controlling problems. I called there and I was connected to the staff member that was in charge of the eating disorder girls at the time. She encouraged me to apply to the program. I was scared, but I applied and was accepted.

When a girl who is pregnant goes to Mercy, they don't force any decision on them. I was able to choose if I wanted to parent or place...and when I decided that I wanted to place I could pick the level of adoption I wanted (closed, semi-open, or open) and I could pick the family myself. They also have their own adoption agency so I didn't have to learn to trust a whole different group of people.

I never really felt like I was ready or able to be a mom. I didn't know there was a such thing as open adoption until I got to Mercy. But once I learned about it I knew that I needed to have an open adoption because I could not have a part of me in this world and not know what happened to her. I found several families who met most of my criteria but none of them worked out. The counselor told me I should look under semi-open. I was quite upset. I did not want semi-open. But I did find one family who met all my critera. Then I saw it..they were willing to consider open adoption. Just when I had almost given up on finding a family, there they were. The adoption worker called them. Then on June 5th, 2000 we had our meeting. They met ALL my criteria and we hit it off perfectly. They would allow visits once a year. I feel total peace about this. I have been blessed by being able to carry a baby to term when I was so unsure I would be able to because of my eating disorder. And I have been able to bless a family. I pray that Haley will be able to understand why I decided to place her. It is only because of the love I feel towards her and God's strength that I have been able to do this.

Yes some days are hard. But after 13 years the hard days are a lot fewer then the good days. The saddest times for me are when I think about not seeing her learn and grow...but I know that because of my decision..she is still capable of doing that. It wouldn't have been possible for her to learn and grow if I had listened to Planned Parenthood. I can't see the expression on her face when she is in the middle of learning or discovering something new. I can't see her hitting important milestones in life. But then I think that I could have robbed someone else from having that joy and I am glad I made the choice I did.

This is a poem I wrote for Haley

My precious child
Gift from above
An angel on earth
Created in love
You deserve the best
More than I can give
I'm not ready to be a mom
But you deserve to live
There is a special person
Who longs to hold you near
So I place you in her arms
As I wipe away my tears
It hurts so much to let you go
Nine months in me and now apart
She will hold you in her arms
While I hold you in my heart

If you are considering abortion, or if you deal with other life controlling problems like eating disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, depression, or if you are interested in adoption please contact
Mercy Ministries of America