Dear our youngest son, 

We remember the day I found out you were inside me. As you grew, I felt you kick, hiccup and glide in my stomach. You were such an active boy in the womb.

We knew from the beginning that we needed to make the right choice for you. We looked over five different families for you and only met with one. They caught our attention because of the distance, and we knew they could provide something we couldn’t. When you were about five months in, we were able to meet with them for lunch and get to know who we were sending you home with when the day came.

There wasn’t a day I didn’t dream about when you made your appearance in the world and me changing my mind on the whole adoption. As the months kept getting closer and closer, we got to know the adoptive parents more, and we knew that we were going to do this for you. We knew all of us could love you unconditionally, but we wanted to give them the gift of love. We were going to give a piece of our heart that we would never get back — but also be filling a piece in their heart they could never get.

The day came. As soon as I knew you were coming, we made the call so they could come down. We were all so happy and scared at the same time. You were born a healthy, beautiful baby boy. We named you after your dad; they had a named picked for you when you would leave us. I sat there holding you for hours, taking pictures, feeding you, changing your diapers and burping you. Your dad had a really hard time, and we talked it through together, even though the nurses were really against what was going on and happening at the time. But, we weren’t going to let anybody but ourselves make this choice for you.

The day came where it was time to go. We went with you down to the car to say our goodbyes from the hospital so you could go home with your other parents.

Choosing open adoption helped me cope better with my decision. I got to see pictures of you right away after we detached from the hospital. I will forever remember the few days after we signed our paperwork over; it happened to be the day of my birthday. Now, I celebrate my birthday as the day I became a birth mom.

It’s been almost six years, and your mom has sent me endless pictures and love. I love seeing your smiles, projects, sports and school photos. She does an amazing job, and I couldn’t thank her enough. I cannot wait until the day you get to meet your siblings! I’m glad you guys know of each other and know one day you’ll unite for a picture. Adoption is a choice — the choice to give life.

We have never shared our story with anyone. It’s not the fear of being judged; it’s just something we always kept to ourselves. But, now, we want to encourage others that adoption is a way.

Thank you American Adoptions for all you have done for us.

Love your birth parents ❤️

– Heather and Alex from Illinois