My family has been blessed with its newest member–a beautiful baby boy born to my niece, who is but a child herself. At only 14, she has made the decision to become a mother.
I have tried my best to a supportive aunt, and as an adoptive mom, I felt it my responsibility to make sure she knew adoption was an option for her and her baby. I told her that she did not have to be a teen mom and encouraged her to consider making an adoption plan. I also reminded her that she would have one less cousin if adoption were not the loving gift of family it is.
Ultimately, it was her decision to make, and she chose the path she believed to be the best for both of them. I respect her decision and offer her prayers of guidance as she embarks on this new phase of her young life.
With the birth of her baby, however, I can’t help but think about another young woman half a world away who found herself in a similar position five years ago. She made a very different decision and, in the process, changed the course of many lives.
I know very little about her. I know her name, and I know that unlike my niece, she was not a teenager facing this decision.
I don’t know her hair color or eye color or if she is tall or short.
I don’t know if she loved the father of the baby she carried for nine months. I don’t know if she agonized about her decision, consulted loved ones, or knew immediately that she would not keep the baby.
I don’t know if she viewed her decision to be altruistic or if she berated herself for being selfish.
I don’t know if she had family or close friends who supported her decision or if they criticized it.
I don’t know how she first learned about adoption. Maybe she had an aunt who pointed her in that direction.
There are so many things I do not know about the woman who gave birth to my daughter. But there are some things I do know. The most significant one is that the day she made the decision to choose adoption, she set in motion an unbelievable miracle that has changed an entire family forever.
With one plan of action, she gave another woman a child she could never have on her own. She gave a man the opportunity to be wrapped around a little girl’s finger and a boy the chance to be called “brother”.
She let two sets of grandparents witness their own children’s greatest dream come true, and she inspired others who have witnessed this blessing to consider adoption as a way to grow their own families.
Most important, she gave a beautiful baby girl the greatest gift she could possibly bestow–a FAMILY who loves her and showers her with all the love and affection they possibly can.
So, I would like to tell her, “Thank you!”
Thank you for your courage and the wisdom that led you to your decision. Thank you for making an adoption plan.
Thank you for my daughter.