Three years ago, I walked through my darkest valley. I found myself muddling through the grief of a fresh divorce. My heart was bruised, and my hope marred. Yet deep within me, I had a fire to be strong for my two daughters and instill in them hope of better days to come.
I returned to my parents’ home and set forth to build a life for me and my girls, who were 5 and 2 years old. At the time, I was entering into post-baccalaureate coursework for speech and language pathology. Working late nights at a restaurant to make quick money, complete full-time courses online and nurture two young children took much of my strength.
The tricky thing about grief is that it demands attention. My heart was sick for love, and my mind and body ached for companionship while fearing commitment. After years of an unhealthy marriage, I felt defeated. In my quest for “love” and freedom, I abused both and fell into a more profound crisis.
I found myself pregnant with a child I had no means to provide for with a man I hardly knew. Although it was my passion to raise the next generation, I was keenly aware of what it would take to raise another child, given my circumstances. It was one mighty task to shepherd the mind, heart and physical wellness of another human being.
With my divorce, I had watched my dream of a family rip at the seams. The pregnancy caused me to take a rational, hard look at my life and I had to see it for what it was — fragmented, in need of significant repair.
But the fear was crippling; I made at least four appointments to get an abortion. Two were to get the abortion pill, and the other two were in-clinic abortions. But my financial situation was complicated, and I could not afford to follow through with any of these appointments. In retrospect, this was a blessing in disguise.
Then I considered adoption. I thought of one of my closest relationships, my cousin, who was a part of my life only because she had been adopted. I thought about the couples who ached to have a family: The men who hoped to leave a lasting legacy in a child and the women who yearned to be mothers experiencing tremendous grief because they could not.
Ultimately, however, I opted for adoption for two reasons. As a woman of deep faith, I knew God’s heart on the matter. His Scripture is clear. One of my favorite verses is, “As you do not know what is the way of the wind, or how the bones grow in the womb of her who is with child, so you do not know the works of God who makes everything” (Ecclesiastes 11:5). I trusted His works were more significant than what I knew at the moment.
Two, I wanted my daughters to know that life holds immeasurable value, despite how I feel. I wanted to show them that I could put my pride aside, endure temporary discomfort and do what was good and beautiful. I wanted to set a good example for them with my faith, integrity and wisdom.
Gideon is the name of my birth son. Through Gideon’s life, a family was created, one which extends further than I could imagine. I see him through open adoption and testify to others of God’s grace.
My daughters, who are thriving, are not fully aware of what occurred, and they simply know that two years ago, “Mommy grew a baby for another mommy who couldn’t.” They have seen pictures of Gideon and know who he is. I hope to have them all meet soon and am letting the Lord guide me in this process.
As for me, I recently received my teaching credential. I will be working as an intervention teacher, guiding and assisting children with reading and writing.
I believe women reflect God’s compassion and ability to nourish and nurture. This belief was supported when Gideon was placed in the arms of his adoptive mother the night he was born.
These days, I speak with women facing unwanted pregnancies, sharing with them my story and listening to theirs. I am passionate about educating women holistically and lovingly, equipping them to make a fully informed decision.
With God’s grace, my birth son’s life helped lead me from my darkest valley into a life filled with redemptive light. Soli Deo gloria.
The above comes from a June 20 op-ed in the San Diego Union by Lauren Long of Ramona.
What a mess. Any Christian morals in this “mommy?”– she believes in God and has a religious faith — is she Catholic? Any help from her parish priest? She too easily sleeps around and gets pregnant, while living at her parents’ home, after divorce. What do her mom and dad think?? And the priest, at church? God help us! But it gets even worse! Next, she considers abortion, four times– but it costs too much, so she keeps the baby. Is she Catholic? Where is the priest, to help? Then she makes a crazy mess of “open adoption”– beautiful and fulfilling for her and for the adoptive family… and a confusing nightmare, for all three children involved in this mess! I think a closed adoption would be much better– and not to tell her children the whole thing, about their Mommy’s lover, the pregnancy, or the adoption. Tell her kids the whole thing, when they grow up. And give the adoptive child a “closed adoption,” let him grow up in peace, stability, and love, secure with his adoptive parents and family. BTW– where is her children’s Daddy? Does the Daddy contribute alimony and child support– and does he have visiting rights? Does he know about his former wife’s lover, her pregnancy, and “open adoption?” And did he do the same kind of thing, after his divorce? Big mess. Can’t stand the “Me-Generation!”
Children of divorce suffer lifelong scars. Didn’t this mother understand that? Why was this mommy sleeping with some stranger? Her own children are crying, and desperately suffering– with lifelong scars from her divorce. So sick of the Me-Generation.
Well, if this lady is Catholic– did she get an annulment? Is this a story about a Catholic woman’s troubles? Or what?
Where is the compassion in these comments? Sometimes in pain and despair, we can lose our way. This person is sharing her path that brought her perilously close to abortion, and her gratitude that circumstances led her down a different, life giving path, surely in hopes others may see their way too. Have compassion. There but for the grace of God……
Where is decency, morality, respect, and compassion– for the poor, suffering children of the divorce, Sheila? When you grow up, you have to stop being babyish– and expecting babyish compassion for yourself, for your immature behaviors– that hurt many others, especially, your suffering children– already hurt, with lifelong scars, from your divorce. No more of this Me-Generation lifestyle.
Thank you God for never refusing to love the broken and those who have made mistakes.
Thank you God for coming to save the sinner, not the self-righteous.
Thank you God for bringing me to repentance for my sins.
Thank you God for your salvation.
Thank you God. I love You.
My poor baby brother, illegitimate, half-brother only– *what does that mean?)– given away strangely, to “some other momny.” GIVEN AWAY!! Two mommies, my mommy and “some other mommy,” and a strange ‘daddy,” share my new baby half-brother. WHY?? Who is his real mommy and daddy? And who is my real mommy and daddy? This is totally wacko!
Children have the right to know who their real parents are. This seems like a situation where the rights of the child are being protected. Lots of people are adopted. It isn’t like it used to be.
The Catholic Church has adoption agencies and before abortion was legal, there were Catholic orphanages.
It is not a sin to give a child up for adoption.adoption
I’ll tell you whacked… got up my roommate was passed out from doing drugs and drinking. Called his gay lover and asked what happened at the gay bar last night. He said I don’t remember. The dudes phone was ringing off the hook but he was to passed out to answer. I’m thinking should I call the police or 911 but he’s breathing, just passed out. So I wait. eventually he comes to and says whoa man you won’t believe the night that I had. It was like something out of one of those Las Vegas hangover movies. dude was into some creepy and dangerous stuff that nobody should do with their lives.
In my comment of July 7, at 8:22pm, there was an error in the first sentence– this phrase should be in parentheses:
“(what does that mean?)”
Of course, it is very good that this woman chose Life for her unborn child, after finding out that abortions were too expensive. And it’s good that this young woman became dedicated to Pro Life. Sleazy story, though — but some hard lessons were learned. Hopefully, this young woman will be able to help others with the same plight.
I’m not impressed with this woman’s “plight”, or that she thinks she’s noble. She had two children and then slept with a man she hardly knew. She should keep that to herself.
Sad story. And all too common.
We need Paul Harvey for the rest of the story…
God bless this woman and the adoptive parents. I love open adoption. This is love.
And how about those poor, confused, hurt children– already scarred for life, by divorce? And the third child, a half- brother, illegitimate, “given away” to some “other mommy?” No love for them?? “Love,” to the “Me-Generation,” is not real Love. It is only about “me” and “my good-time feelings of comfort,” irrespobsibly and selfishly “satisfying myself,” with no regard for others.
Did you want her to kill him? That would be immoral..
The baby is not illegitimate. Are you from a culture where you have honor killings or something?
The baby lived and he will be fine. And the other kids will have an even bigger family, more people to love them.
Obviously, the lady in the story was not selfish and had more regard for others than you do.
Maybe you are envious or were you a person who got returned?
I cannot understand why someone would be so mean about this unless they had some trauma in their life.
Do not be ridiculous. To becone a good and decent, mature grown-up, is not “mean.” It requires self-sacrifice. Yes, the mother was immature and immoral, and the baby was illegitimate. Then, he was “given away” in a weird circumstance of “open adoption.” The two children in the divorce already had a serious plight, and will typically have scars for life. It’s wonderful that the mother decided not to abort her baby. But I hope she never tells his half-sisters and him, that she almost aborted him– too cruel! The little boy will grow up all confused as to who his real mommy and daddy are, and why he was “given away.” Why can’t he go home with his real mommy and half-sisters? Where is his real daddy– does he look like his real daddy? Does he look like his real mommy? Does he look like his real half-sisters? Do they all go to the same school or church? Does the real daddy provide any child support, or make visits to his child, in “open adoption?” And what does that mean, “open adoption,” and are the mommy and daddy and possible siblings he was “given away” to, and lives with– “real?” All of that is too unfair and too confusing for the poor child. A child needs much, much more, than “how you feel,” and your youth-generation, “teenage lovey feelings!” He needs love, responsible parenting, good decisions and self-sacrifice for his needs, security, stability, and a good, solid Christian upbringing, within a well-established Christian moral and religious framework. And no “baloney.”
This is no longer the day when Catholics moved because there was a stigma to adoption. And kids were never told they were adopted.
You are right that it could be an issue for one or more of the kids. Sometimes the problems come from not knowing who you are,
It may not be a problem.
There is nothing wrong with telling your child (at a certain age) that you thought about aborting him and chose to give him life and a better life with a better family.
And you are right that sin affects more than just the sinner.
But you are catastrophizing. What usually causes problems is being lied to by your parents.
I don’t think it is fair, for the mom to tell everyone that she almost aborted her son four times! I think she should tell no one, just keep that to herself. Not fair! Pretty soon, the little boy and his two half-sisters will be old enough to know, the exact truth, that their mother almost aborted her son– four times! It has been broadcasted by their mother, all over the place! Hundreds of people know! Not fair! And I bet the kids will all break down and cry, especially her son, when they finally realize this horrible truth! Her poor son will have psychological scars to deal with. And who is his father? Where is the daddy? Did his daddy want him to be aborted, too? Not fair.
This was an article to encourage adoption instead of abortion in the aftermath of the overturning of Roe v Wade.
We don’t have all the gossip.
Maybe she will write a book and give all the answers you want.
Many families with children of both biological parents are absolute nightmares of abuse and cruelty.
The woman felt she could not take care of the baby. She does not make enough money or have enough time. She did not feel that she could be responsible so she found people that she thought would be better.
Yes, another woman could have worked that out. Other women make other decisions. Probably better but you don’t know.
Selfishness and selflessness can be the same action depending on the intention of the person.
She felt the child was better off without her as his mother. You don’t know her. You don’t know her ex-husband or why they divorced. You have idealistic thoughts but they may not match reality.
I would like to commend you for seeing the children and caring about them and their emotional and psychological health. I also want to agree with you that following the path of the Lord is the best path. Once you leave His path, anything can happen.
I grew up with some close family friends, in which the mom and dad couldn’t have children, and adopted several wonderful children, as newborn babies. Adoptions were closed, in those days. From about the age of six, we all were sat down, and told about the adoption situation. We were told that adopted children were the same as naturally-born children, and all were loved equally, exactly the same– no difference. Our family friends who were adopted, were all exactly like us, no difference. So, none of us ever saw any difference, after that, between naturally-born and adopted children. We imagined that “all mommies just went to the store, and got some babies.” That’s all. The family with the adopted children was very solid and close, with a very solid, happy upbringing, and close sibling ties, too. None of the adopted kids ever had any interest in finding their birth mothers. Life was good. They all grew up, got educated, got good jobs, had good marriages, and now have grown grandchildren.
Thank you for sharing this beautiful story. Thank you Jesus for all the love. I know of an unwed mother who was engaged. It wasn’t her fiancé’s child and he married her anyway. Saint Joseph, Thank you for your witness of love and taking care of Jesus. I can’t speak for those people with their judgmental comments. I’m just Glad I have a God of Love. Thanks for your courage to give life. You have my prayers and my admiration.
In Lord of the Rings, the trolls become stones. In here, they throw them.
Some things ought to be kept– to yourself. I know of an adopted daughter of a Head Nurse at a local hospital, an evangelical Christian, who finally gave her daughter all the details of her adoption. Her daughter’s real parents were unmarried dope addicts, living on the Calif. streets! Their whereabouts were not known, or if they had even died. The girl was age 18, and went berserk with pain! She couldn’t handle this information! She exclaimed, “I came from a pair of worthless, crummy, unmarried, lowdown, awful, homeless dope addicts? Me? Born in a garbage dump, in a “hippie dope camp,” somewhere out on the streets? Am I like them in any way? That’s the worst thing ever! That is just horrible!” She burst into tears, and cried for days and days! She went into a deep depression, and was suicidal! Her adoptive mom tried to console her, saying “your dad and sisters and brothers and I all love you very much! Forgive your parents! Jesus forgives! And Jesus loves them, and He loves you very much! Please try to forgive them!” But the poor girl just had a nervous breakdown over it! She could not handle this information at all! So, her mom and dad took her for psychiatric treatment. A sad case!
Many young people today, have been brainwashed by liberal-leftists, to accept the glamorization of Evil, and the false superiority of the juvenile delinquent and criminal– all with no intentions of reform. Many 20th century writers previously adopted this idea falsely, as a fad, and replaced good and noble, authentic heroes in their novels, with outcasts and criminals, who triumph in their corruption and sin — instead of having remorse for sin, and finding redemption, by turning their lives around. Movie-makers and rock music promoters of the late 1960s adopted this wrongful concept of glamorizing Evil, making Evil hip, appealing to mankind’s disordered appetites, as in the ancient Roman circuses. They continue to make millions, with this evil concept, which comes straight from Satan. Good, noble people and virtuous heroes, are scorned. Our great gift of America, formed by our Judeo-Christian, God and Bible-believing forefathers, which they sacrificed for and gave their lives for– is laughed at. This evil era of the Culture of Death must end.