Thursday, May 10, 2012

BirthMother's Day

Saturday is a day that women and families across the U.S. are celebrating. A day that comes with so many more emotions than Sunday's celebrations will have. Today’s celebration is part grief, part joy. Today is a day to recognize the women who knew our children so intimately before we did – they gave life to our child, felt their first kick and comforted our child with their heartbeat. Today is a day to recognize the women who made a choice to save a life and allow that life to be placed in the arms of another family. Saturday, May 12, is Birth Mother’s Day.

First celebrated in 1990, Birth Mother’s Day was created by group of birthmothers who recognized that Mother’s Day is very hard for them and wanted to celebrate the adoption decisions they made on a day separate from that. It is celebrated each year the day before Mother’s Day (on Saturday). There is some controversy in the adoption community about Birth Mother’s Day as some birthmother’s may not want to celebrate - they want to grieve, or in many adoption situations there is no known birth-mother (such as with international and some domestic adoptions) or the adoption came through foster care and parental rights were terminated against their will. Whatever the reason and whether it’s a day for celebrating or grieving, I view it as a day to think and pray for those women who carried a child for 9 months and now have empty arms.

Let me assure you that I think of, pray for and celebrate our Little One’s birthmother every day. Knowing that all our hopes and dreams came true at another woman’s expense is…well, I haven’t really been able to put words on that experience (maybe another blog post for another day?).  I think of the tears she shed as she kissed her sweet child and handed her to me one last time. I think of the sacrifice she made so our Little One could have what she didn’t have and couldn’t offer. I think of her, her smile, her laugh, her face, her heart. But today I offer this simple offering of thanks to a beautiful woman who chose life for her child over abortion and brought joy beyond imagine to our lives. If you know someone who has placed a child for adoption, do something special for them today – give them a hug, take them flowers, take them out to eat or just say a special prayer of thanksgiving, comfort and peace for them.

I wrote this poem just after our Little One was born, as I was flying out to meet her. I wrote this for her birthmother, but maybe it will help you understand the place a birthmother can have in the heart of an adoptive mother.

You gave a gift to our family,
A life that we couldn’t give;
And so forever in our hearts,
A piece of you will live.

You gave her life and breath,
We’ll give her a home and love;
And each day we’ll be thankful,
Giving praise to our God above.

To express the way we feel
Is so impossible…and yet
This sacrifice you are making
Is one we will never ever forget.

The days to come may be trying
But I hope that now you see
We have a connection now,
Beautiful baby, you and me.

Father God, Jehova Rapha our healer, thank You for the woman who gave our Little One life. I ask that You place Your hand of comfort on her, Father. Give her peace and healing. Let her face look upon You and know that she is not alone. Let her know that this child is loved, happy and healthy. And Lord, please bless our efforts in raising this child to know You, love You, and serve You. Thank You Father. Amen.

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