Maryellen My Adoption Story
I am connected to adoption because I placed my baby into his family’s arms. I am proud to call myself a birthmom.
How My Adoption Journey Began
I remember when I first found out I was pregnant, I was only 18 and I was so scared. I thought about my options and I knew adoption was one of them. A few months before I found out I was pregnant, a lady from my church shared her story of how she adopted a baby boy and it really touched my heart. I knew I wasn't ready to raise a child at this point in my life, but I also knew somebody else out there was ready and waiting to start a family. I knew this was going to be the hardest thing I would ever have to do, but at the same time, I knew it was what I had to do.
I really didn’t know where to start. I told myself if it was meant to be, then everything would work itself out. A few months went by and I began researching adoption. I looked on a few websites and browsed through couples looking for a baby, but I really never took the next big step.
Finding the Right Family
I told my cousin about my plan and we prayed together. A few weeks later, she saw a Facebook status where a friend of hers shared that her sister and husband were looking to adopt. Their names were Pauline and TJ. I reached out to them and we decided to meet up in downtown Chicago, which is about two hours from me. I was so anxious to meet them, but I will never forget the moment we first made eye contact. I felt this wave of positivity. We totally hit it off.
"Pauline and TJ were everything I had hoped for, and I knew they were meant to be his parents."
Planning for the Future
They shared with me they wanted an open adoption, and I knew right then that was exactly what I wanted too. Open adoption has so many benefits to everyone involved. I was going to be able to be in my child’s life and watch him grow up! Pauline, TJ, and I began forming a relationship and established trust. We communicated almost daily for the last few months of my pregnancy. They answered all of my questions and we began working with their adoption agency to sort everything out.
My due date was drawing near and I began to feel this special bond with the baby growing inside of me. All I wanted was the best for him and I knew I wasn’t able to provide that. I knew I could make being a single mom work somehow, but I didn’t just “want to make it work,” I wanted MORE for him because that is what he deserved. I had a rough childhood and I wanted the opposite for him. I wanted him to have a mother and father that could give him their time. If I had chosen to parent him, then he would have been in daycare 24/7 while I would have been working and going to school. I could barely support myself financially and I didn’t even have a real home to bring him to since I was sharing a room with two of my cousins. I just couldn’t imagine raising him in the midst of chaos and without a father figure. Pauline and TJ were everything I had hoped for, and I knew they were meant to be his parents.
"My life is now ten times better now that I brought a child into this world, and let me tell you… he is beyond loved."