Adoption April Series: Why I was Adopted

So after so many great comments about learning more about my adoption and the fact that I think adoption is rad, I wanted to share my story I’ve decided that I will take one day a week in the month of April to talk about my adoption. I’m going to call it Adoption April as I did last year, and if you don’t care about learning more about adoption or hearing my story and how I was adopted then you can just skip right over these posts! It will take place every Friday in April. I really do not mind talking about it at all, and if you have any questions please feel free to ask me. I just hope this raises more awareness to adoption and answers questions that people might otherwise be afraid to talk about. This is what I wanted to talk about:

1. Why I was adopted – this is when I will talk about why I was put up for adoption and how the process worked for my parents at the time.

2. Growing up adopted - this is when I will discuss how I felt growing up adopted and how my parents handled me being adopted and any questions I may have had and may still have regarding my adoption

3. My thoughts on adoption - this is where I will talk about how I think adoption shaped me as a person and how I think many people can benefit from adoption. I will also voice what I think about secrecy and how some people have reacted to me being adopted.

4. All about my Birth Parents - this is when I will talk about the few things I know about my birth parents, including if I want to meet them or not, why I do or don’t and what I feel about them.

5. Q&A on Adoption - this is where any of you can ask any question you want about adoption. I have always been open to discussing anything that anyone wants to know and I would love to raise adoption awareness by allowing anyone to ask anything! Seriously if you guys have any questions feel free to email ([email protected]) me and I will address them on this day, or if you just want me to write you back personally let me know.

Can’t wait to share more of my story with you guys. Now, onto why I was adopted!

I have a 20-year old brother whom I will refer to as “T”. My father and I currently have a very strained relationship, but before my mom passed things were fine. My family used to be the “perfect” nuclear family, according to many standards. My parents were always happy, and we were more than blessed in the community where I grew up. I grew up in a Christian home and went through a Christian K-12 school system. So that’s a little background of my family,  now onto why I was adopted.

First and most obvious, my parents couldn’t have children. I have been told that not having children of her ‘own’ was one of my mom’s biggest ‘regrets’ in her short life. My parents tried a lot of different ways of getting pregnant but my mom’s body wouldn’t allow her to produce a child, and she had to have a complete hysterectomy in her twenties. They began to look into other options.

I think this is why whenever I stumble onto a blog about a woman trying to get pregnant I feel a twinge of pain in my heart. Sometimes I think maybe this is how my own mom felt while struggling with the fact that she could not get pregnant. I couldn’t imagine when everyone else around you is having children, and you want to have one so badly, how much your heart must ache. It would be miserable, and I feel like I can understand the pain some might be dealing with because I remember my mom telling me about the pain it caused her. I can’t imagine wanting something so bad and knowing it won’t happen for you like you planned. My mom told me sometimes she felt like she failed but I knew she hadn’t. I knew that the struggle she endured only made her a stronger person.

When they realized my mom couldn’t get pregnant, my parents then decided to explore adoption. The fees associated with adoption are costly, and I am glad my parents could afford it at the time. One of the first steps in their adoption process was to create books. Prospective parents created these photo books to “show/share” with birth mothers that you are legitimate people. The books also described their hobbies, the church they were involved with and had pictures of them and their dogs. It is a glimpse into the prospective parents lives. I have seen these books and they are fun to look through. I couldn’t imagine being pregnant and looking through the books and wondering “if my baby would fit in” with this family, but it gives you a sense to the family, their beliefs, their story, and their extended family.

My parents were on the waiting list for a baby for quite some time. They prayed about getting a child. They hoped. They waited. They had no idea when and if they would ever get a child to adopt.

My mom was shopping at Costco when my aunt called her. The adoption agency had called my aunt to tell her that they had a baby waiting for my mom at the hospital. That baby was me. My mom was shocked. There was no talk of her and my dad getting a baby anytime soon. They didn’t have any names picked out. They were not prepared for me, but they were still so excited to have me.

After my mom passed away, my grandpa let me listen to the the voicemail she left for him, and it will forever be etched in my memory. Since then somehow it was eaten on the machine, but I will never, ever forget her voice on that message. The love that oozed from her tone, the excitement, the nervousness. It was all there, and it was all about me, being able to go home with her and my dad, and the beginning of a family.

I was born close to where I grew up and was incredibly small when I was born so they had to make sure that I was healthy and okay to go home. I will get into why it was a surprise when I talk all about my birth parents in an upcoming post but my parents were surprised but so happy that they finally had a baby.

Adoption allowed them to have the joy of having a child, even if I came to them in a non-traditional way. My parents’ prayers had been answered and they were surprised and shocked all at the same time. Now they had a baby to take care of . In the whirlwind of events that had taken place, their lives had completely changed. Though I was originally named Baby Girl, my parents quickly picked out my name from a list they had compiled for the past years while trying to have a child. I have two birth certificates, and one literally says my first name is Baby and my Middle name is Girl.

My parents took me home from the hospital and I lived with them for a year and a half before being officially adopted on January 23, 1987. In order to make everything official you have to go down to an LA courthouse and sign paperwork and take vows in front of a judge. Obviously I was too little to remember my own adoption, but I do remember my brother’s adoption and traveling to the courthouse.

After the papers were signed I legally was my parents ‘child’. Though my adoption day made it ‘legal’, I consider myself to be my parents child from the day I entered their life and we became a family back on the day I was born at the hospital.

Next Monday I am excited to talk about how I was raised and how adoption was an integral part in my life. What my parents did and how we address my adoption was important to me and I’m excited to share it with you guys. The last adoption post will be about Q&A that anyone has, so if you have any questions, feel free to email me @ [email protected]

You can also read about my Birthparents, My thoughts on Adoption, Growing up Adopted, and a Q&A I did on Adoption.

xoxo

in Uncategorized

55 Responses to Adoption April Series: Why I was Adopted

  1. Kendall says:

    Thanks for this. I have a 1/2 brother who is adopted from Russia, by my dad – with whom I have nearly zero relationship. I recall asking my dad 15 yrs. ago when they adopted him when they would tell him… there was such an air of secrecy in his response. It’s still an elephant in the room.

    Your post has me wondering if my little brother would benefit from reading your blog this month:) we’ll see…

  2. Robyn says:

    Wow, amazing post. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Tracy says:

    What a great series. I gave a baby up for adoption when I was 17, your post made me a little teary remembering the “show/share” books. How I picked out his adoptive parents… man what a great bunch of memories for me now 14 years later. It was the right decision for me. He is very happy and really I couldn’t imagine his life (or mine) any differently than it is now.

    Thanks for sharing your story Danica. I’m happy to hear it from another perspective.

  4. Heather says:

    Love April now. My husband is adopted & we frequently wonder about his birth mother and possible half siblings out there! Can’t wait to hear your story!

  5. Melissa says:

    I’m so excited to hear the rest of your story!

  6. Shannon says:

    I read this series last year and loved it. I still love it! Here lately, I’ve been thinking alot about adoption. We’ve been trying to conceive for about 7 months and have been unsuccessful. I have a doctors appointment in July to do some tests – so I’m a long, long ways from even thinking about adoption! I don’t even know if there’s a problem yet, but still it’s been on my mind a lot lately!

  7. Kevin says:

    Great story! I’m interested in reading the followups. I have a cousin who was adopted (as was her dad – my uncle). They always laugh when strangers try to guess which parent she looks most like.

  8. Julia says:

    You really are a great writer. This post made me tear up a little; esp reading the part about your mother wanting a baby so badly. I am interested to read your upcoming posts.

  9. Regina says:

    How AWESOME!! I can’t wait to read the rest of your stories regarding adoption. Today marks 1 year from when we came back from the Philippines and brought home our adopted baby girl who I will call “C”. I have four biological children (3 boys and 1 girl) and C makes 5. We are so happy we made the choice to adopt. It’s such a wonderful gift for all us!

  10. Lisa says:

    I think adoption is fantastic. It’s something that has always appealed to me for some reason. When I was 25 I started to actively research adopting a baby/toddler. I got pretty far in the process and decided to wait. I was young, single, and wasn’t sure I could afford to do it. It’s something that I hope to do someday though.

  11. J says:

    Even though i read this Adoption April stuff last year I still enjoyed reading about it again! Thanks for posting it Danica! Even though I was not adopted my parents had trouble conceiving me and my mom always calls me a miracle. Its a long story and I still get goosebumps when reading about women who are having trouble getting pregnant. Recently it has really hit home because Brians sisters both were having trouble getting pregnant. Hope you have a good weekend!!

  12. LawGirl says:

    I’m really glad that you’re doing this. I imagine that there are many people who can relate to this story. Three of my cousins are adopted and while I was too little to remember the first two, I do remember the third and how excited they were when they found out he was “theirs.” I’ve also heard stories from my mother about the heartbreak they went through in trying to conceive. She remembers very vividly my aunt miscarrying on Thanksgiving and the entire family spending Thanksgiving with her in the hospital.

    I was born right before my first cousin was adopted, and I can’t even imagine the heartbreak my aunt when through as my mom had not only me, but my 2 sisters in the years that my aunt was trying hardest to conceive. I know my aunt and uncle are grateful everyday for their three adopted children. My whole family was brought up knowing about adoption and about the wonderful gift my cousins are to our family.

    Again, thanks for sharing, I look forward reading your next posts about your adoption.

  13. R says:

    Ever since finding out that we have several adopted children in my extended family when I was 15 or 16, I’ve known that I would adopt at least one child. So I love learning about other people’s experiences and I’m looking forward to reading the rest of your posts.

  14. Jeff says:

    I love this post. Cant wait for more.

  15. Kristen says:

    This post was amazing! You are so open about your feelings and the details that really make it special! Thanks for sharing. Also, like others I read this series last year, but hearing the story again, it sounded like new! looking forward to learning more.

  16. Beth B. says:

    That’s so great Danica – thank you for sharing your story with your readers. I look forward to reading more next week! Have a great weekend and Happy Easter!

  17. Tara says:

    I am glad you decided to do another round of “Adoption April” :) I think it’s great that you’re open to share your story and hopefully, it raises awareness that adoption is AWESOME and not something that needs to be kept behind closed doors. ♥♥♥

  18. Lauren says:

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful story. It just goes to show that there is more than one way to make a family.

  19. Jenny says:

    Oh stop you are making me cry! :) great story, thanks for sharing!

  20. Nicole says:

    I can’t believe it was a year ago that you did Adoption April! I love sharing your story with others and think its great that you are so open about sharing it too! :)

  21. Rebecca says:

    I didn’t follow your blog last April – but I DO now and I’m so excited about adoption april! your first post is great – but its kinda like that great movie and you get to the end and you want more, more, more!!! thanks for sharing your experience with us. Happy Easter!

  22. Abbie says:

    I love your adoption series! So glad to see you talking about it again this year! XOXO

  23. It’s so amazing you can talk about it. My mother just told me last year that my grandmother had a child before her and gave her up for adoption. I sent in the paperwork to the state for my mom and it came back asking for the money for the records. So, we know my grandmother was telling the truth about giving her baby away. But, my mother hesitated and wouldn’t complete the process. She was afraid what if her sister doesn’t want to have anything to do with her. It’s been so long why hasn’t her sister come to find her….She’s really scared of being rejected I guess. What is your take on this? My fam has medical issues that my mom’s sister could very well have. With you being adopted how do you feel about this????

  24. Lauren says:

    You have an incredible story. Thanks for sharing it and enlightening us about adoption.

  25. Amber says:

    Danica…this is so beautiful. When you talk about the message your mom left, it brought tears to my eyes. I can’t wait to hear more about your story.

    Have a wonderful weekend,
    Amber

  26. Jules says:

    Thanks for sharing your story!! I have only been reading your blog for a couple months, so I didn’t know your history. It’s very interesting and I’m excited to read more!

  27. Brandi says:

    I read this series last year and remember it vividly. My husband and I were trying to get pregnant at the time and even though we were having a difficult time, we honestly hadn’t thought much about adoption. Now after almost 2 years of trying and knowing that this may be the only way we have children, we think about it a lot. We have agreed that we will adopt one day. There are too many children out there that need a good loving family and we would want nothing more than to become parents! Thanks for sharing!!

  28. Page says:

    Really great of you to share this, Danica!

  29. Kate Tate says:

    i love this!!!! i love it!!! thanks for sharing this. i pray it blesses many people in many ways. adoption rocks.

  30. Sydney Hunter says:

    Thanks for sharing this with everyone!! Your mom would be so proud of you! Sometime if I’m having a blah day I can go read your blog and I’m instantly happy again…you have such a good attitude and a bright outlook on life…it’s like you take the best from all your experiences – even though they may not be the greatest. Such an admirable trait. Look forward to reading more in Adoption April!

  31. Matt says:

    Thank you for telling your story…my wife and I are considering adopting after trying to have a child for many years…I appreciate your willingness to share your experience.

  32. Sarah says:

    Love hearing your story. I especially loved hearing about your mom’s voicemail. My nephews are both adopted so I’m interested to hear what else you have to say about it all.

  33. Stephanie says:

    Great post. Even if I can have my own children I want to adopt. My dream is to adopt and older child around 6,7,8 yrs to add to my family. If i can have a baby of my own I wouldn’t take a baby for there are so many others who can’t have any. Fingers crossed I’ll be starting my family in a year and adopting within the decade.

  34. Heather says:

    Thanks so much for sharing with us!

  35. nd says:

    what a great story – love reading this!

  36. Elisabeth says:

    Great story and I can’t wait to hear the rest. Adoption is something that I strongly feel will be apart of my future when I am ready for that stage of my life. I would love to hear more about how/when your parents explained your adoption to you and how that dynamic played out. Thank you so much for sharing!

  37. I loved reading this last year and I am loving it again this time around. I just love learning about your life and knowing that everything you share is a part of what makes you the awesome person that you are. :) Thank you for being so open about your story.

  38. joerunfordom says:

    Danica – thank you so much for all that you do. I feel very honored that you would share this story with your readers and friends. You are the greatest.

    As you know Dawn and I are having our first little one in September and I can’t think of a greater honor in the world than being a Dad.

    Thanks again Danica – looking forward to catching up soon.

    Best from Austin, J

  39. I think it is AWESOME that you’re posting about adoption.

    While I have no experience with it – I think reading about your experience at least gives me an idea of what it must be like (and even makes me consider it more if I get to the point of wanting children). I often read blogs of women that are pregnant or trying to get pregnant – but never about adoption.

    thank you!

  40. Kelly says:

    I wasn’t a reader last April so I’m excited for adoption April. I think it is awesome you are posting about your experience.

  41. RunningBlonde says:

    Thanks for sharing with us!

  42. Jacklyn says:

    I’m so excited you are writing about this. Thanks for opening up this part of your life with your readers :)

  43. I’m really looking forward to reading your story, Danica! Thanks so much for sharing it with us.

  44. Love hearing this and I’m looking forward to more!

  45. I love this series because you answer those questions everyone has but is afraid to ask!!

  46. Your adoption story never gets old, D! I’m glad you’re revisiting it and reposting it for those who’s never heard it or may have forgotten!

  47. Jamie says:

    Thank you for sharing such a personal story. I have a close friend who is struggling to get pregnant and has been putting her body through lots of invasive fertility treatments and hormone injections…she’s so desperate to have a child. I know I am in no place to judge her choices, but I wish she would be open to adopting because all the money she’s spending on the medical visits and treatments could be going towards welcoming an adopted child into her life and starting her family in that way….

    Anyhow, thank you for sharing this story!! I’m looking forward to the next chapters in your story!

  48. Pingback: Adoption April Series: Growing Up Adopted | Chic Runner

  49. This post made me want to cry! For one, what an amazing story…and then, just the perspective it gives me. I can’t say enough how glad I am that you did this.

    The part where you said that you had the twinge in your heart about reading about a woman struggling to have children…I actually expected you to say that you felt the twinge because you didn’t understand why they wouldn’t just consider adoption. I felt convicted already, but then when I read the part about you saying “I couldn’t imagine when everyone else around you is having children, and you want to have one so badly, how much your heart must ache” I realized that even though you were adopted and could think women (like me) are selfish. I’m embarrassed that I’ve had such a hard time considering giving such a wonderful, life changing gift of adoption to someone precious (like you)!

    Thank you, sweet friend, for making me think, for giving me perspective, for showing me that I should consider it an honor to be an adoptive parent, not an after thought kind of thing. Please forgive me if you’ve ever read any of my posts and thought how selfish I must sound. Sometimes it’s hard to see the forest for the trees, but I’m working on it and asking God to get me ready and to change my heart!

  50. Wow, if that comment I just left wasn’t just a complete grammatical nightmare, I don’t know what is! HA!

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