I told my parents in October, 2007 I was 5 months pregnant. I knew in my heart at 18 and a college freshman I was not prepared to raise a child. I chose adoption simply because I was not ready for a child. I needed a college degree before I started a family. Some of my friends have chosen a baby over education. They work long and hard struggling to support themselves and their baby. Several have started to resent their baby. I wanted a better life for my baby so I chose adoption.
In December 2007, I was surfing the internet looking for information about adoption. I came across the American Adoptions website. The website answered most of my questions. I was even able to look at pictures and read a brief biography of families who were interested in adopting my baby.
I talked to my parents about American Adoptions. My mother and I called and were connected to a social worker, Sarah Yeager. Sarah was compassionate, understanding and caring. She was patient when we had to stop in mid-sentence to shed a few tears. Sarah cared about me. Sarah's main concern was making sure I had support from my family and friends. She wanted to make sure I had someone and that I wasn't alone.
During the next couple of months Sarah and I talked almost daily. She was especially eager to hear about my doctor's visits. She also called to just check on me, to make sure I was doing alright emotionally. She gave me her cell phone number and told me I could call her 24/7 for what ever reason. She became a friend.
Sarah sent me family profiles for me to start looking through. I fell in love with "Brad and Diane" instantly. I wanted to talk with them. Our first phone conversation was in mid January 2008. They were kind, compassionate, non-judgmental and understanding. They called me their "Angel". We shared family stories. Our families were so similar. When I hung up the phone, I knew this was the family who were going to raise my baby.
After talking to Brad and Diane several times it was finally time to meet. Brad and Diane drove to Alabama along with their 3 year old daughter, Kaitlin and Brad's parents. On Monday, February 18th my mother, father and I agreed to meet Brad, Diane and Kaitlin at IHOP for breakfast. I was so nervous until they walked in and the butterflies in my stomach went away. I knew they were the family for my little girl.
As we were saying our good-byes, I invited Diane to my doctor's appointment the next morning. I also invited them to bring Kaitlin to the Fun Factory were I work to play. Brad, Diane, Kaitlin and Brad's parents all came to the Fun Factory to play. My parents also came. We had a great time talking and getting to know each other's family. We realized our two families were very similar. We were both practicing Catholics. We both love Disney World and go often. We had even vacationed at the same resort at the same time for Christmas 2005.
My mother picked up Diane at the hotel and met me at my doctor's appointment on Tuesday, February l9th. Diane got to hear her daughter's heart beat for the first time. When Dr. Reed told me to be at the hospital the next morning, I decided Diane needed to be in the delivery room with me.
I went into labor Tuesday night around 9 pm. so I didn't have to be induced. I called Brad and Diane around 7:30 Wednesday morning. Diane worked for her daughter. She was in the delivery room helping and encouraging me. Lauren Marie was born on Wednesday, February 20, 2008 at 9:26 am. I wanted Diane to cut the umbilical cord. It was one of the most magical things in this world and I am glad Diane was there. Most people believe they are losing a part of themselves when they place a baby for adoption. In my case I know I made the right choice. I was unable to give my child everything she would have wanted and needed. I have seen the difficult life a single, teenage mother has, especially one trying to balance a baby and college. A college degree is a must. I wanted my child to have every-thing from the start, including a perfect family with a mom and dad. All I had to give was love and sometimes love is not enough.
I feel and know that I have gained four new family members by adding Lauren Marie to the Brad and Diane's family.
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