Thoughts from a Birth Mother

Reflecting on Holiday Gratitude for Birth Mothers

Gratitude can be a very personal attitude if we choose to make it so. There was a long time in my life after I chose adoption for my baby in which gratitude became paramount to my survival. I had suffered such a great loss in choosing adoption that I never thought my grief could fade. However, in the beginning of post-placement life I clung to the gratitude I had for my child, his adoptive parents, and my adoption agency.

Wrapping up the Holiday season and heading into the New Year, gratitude was on my mind once again.


Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary defines “gratitude” as the state of being grateful or thankfulness.

In sobriety recovery, we say that “Gratitude is an attitude.” claims:

“Benedictine monk Br. David Steindl-Rast suggests that two qualities belong in our basic definition of gratitude. The first is appreciation: You recognize that something is valuable to you, without consideration of its monetary worth. The second quality Br. David mentions is that gratitude is a response to something freely given to you — gratis.”

I consider gratitude to be a way of living. Gratitude isn’t just FEELING grateful, it’s ACTING grateful.

For example, I don’t just say “thank you” when someone does something kind for me like holding the door open when I enter a store. I smile, look them in the eyes, and make sure my heart is heard when I say, “thank you.” You see, it’s not just what we say, but how we say it that matters. Also, I like to give others little gifts to show gratitude like handwriting them a card, or I might do something kind and helpful for them to show them my gratitude.


As I reflect on this holiday season, I put together this list of things I am grateful for to help share the blessings that I have in my life today and maybe even help you ponder blessings that you have as well:


Now it’s your turn to write a gratitude list! Whether you share it with others during this chilly season to warm another person’s heart, or you keep it to yourself as a reminder of every blessing you have, take this opportunity to use these prompts to create your very own gratitude list:


Now that you have compiled your gratitude list, take some action and share your thankful heart with another. Whether you share your list with a loved one, make it a post on social media, hold the door open for a stranger, give your time in holiday charity, or help someone else in a way that makes them feel good; Remember that gratitude is a way of living, not just a feeling.


I am also very grateful for every birth mother who joins me in walking a healing journey. It takes the courage of a lioness and the strength of a giant to get through the adoption journey. But in my experience, I wouldn’t trade it for anything else. I have an overflowing of blessings in my life today, especially when it comes to my son and his parents.

If you are considering adoption for your baby, please know that you are not alone. Feel free to reach out for guidance, information and help by calling (800) ADOPTION. Adoption specialists are available 24/7 to assist any woman who may be ready to start inquiring about adoption. I encourage you to empower and educate yourself and know that there is healing for every birth mother who takes this journey!

-Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay Arielle is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption more than a decade ago. Over the years, Lindsay has chronicled her post-placement healing walk via her writing to share her experience, strength and hope with other birth mothers on their own paths of healing. Lindsay’s blogs boldly reflect that, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”

Thoughts from a Birth Mother

Open and Closed Adoption From a Post-Placement Perspective

I am a birth mother who chose open adoption for my baby over 13 years ago. My baby was 6 months old when I chose the option of gifting myself and my child with an open adoption.

I call adoption a gift because of how the choice has played out in my own life and in my son’s life. He is blessed to have incredible, loving, and attentive parents who provide beyond his basic needs and give him so many opportunities educationally and recreationally to not only grow in maturity, but to flourish in life.

Of course, at the time I chose adoption, I felt like my soul was being ripped from my body. I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that if I was to choose adoption, I would have to meet a prospective adoptive couple who would respect and honor my choice to have it be an open adoption.

It has been more than 13 years since I chose adoption for my baby, and every year I find myself repeatedly blessed by the decision to have my adoption be open.

What My Open Adoption is Like

Every 6 months to 1 year, my son’s mom sends me an update of how he is doing. I receive pictures with descriptions of his friends, family, and pets. She even writes me a letter outlining all the activities my son is involved in, how vacations play out and what he is excelling in whether in school or sports.

I cherish these updates. I have a Tupperware bin that I use specifically to store all of the memorabilia I receive from my son and his adoptive parents.

In between annual updates, my son’s parents send me birthday and Christmas presents from my son. Once he became old enough, he started choosing the gifts he wanted to send me. I cherish every single one!

I love opening my memorabilia bin and looking through the photos, letters and gifts as a reminder to myself that I absolutely made the right choice by choosing an open adoption for my baby.

Blessings of Open Adoption in My Life

I’m not the only one in this adoption triad who is blessed by an open adoption. My son knows he was chosen by me and his parents to have a special life. He even has a special name for me as his birth mother.

He knows who he is, where he came from, and that he has extra family and love in his life. This reality never could have been possible for him if his parents hadn’t done such a great job raising him openly as we had agreed upon pre-placement.

I also have the blessing of visiting my son, usually annually, so we can spend some time together and he can keep in touch and build a relationship with me as his birth mother. I see the importance of this connection for him. I always want him to feel secure and comforted in knowing he can come to me about anything, including and especially his identity and where he comes from.

I never want him to feel abandoned by me or confused because he has questions about me, or even his birth father.

Challenges of Open Adoption

Navigating an open adoption has not always been an easy road. There have been hurt feelings, insecurity and tension in my relationship with his parents at times.

However, when mature adults decide to come together in unity for the love of a child, peace finds its way back always. I am honored and proud to say that I love my son so much and that I love his parents so much. To me, they are not his “adoptive parents,” they are his parents, and I am his birth mother. All the parental roles in our adoption triad are important and honored within our dynamic.

Thoughts for Women Considering Adoption

I’m so grateful that I chose to have an open adoption. I can’t imagine how much worse my feelings of loss and grief would have been if I had chosen the option of a closed adoption.

There have been periods in my life, though, where either I have needed more space or my son’s parents have needed more space. These times are challenging, but if we respect the requests of each party, we find that our adoptive-family dynamic has evolved into mutual understandings today.

I don’t want to minimize any other birth mother’s decision for a closed adoption, and I want to make it clear that I do believe there are situations in which closed adoption is incredibly beneficial. While I could write out yet another list of the benefits of open adoption compared to the benefits of closed adoption, I prefer to say this:

It is up to each individual prospective birth mother to look within her own heart to determine what type of adoption best suits not only her child’s needs, but her needs as well. This is the beauty of free will: we get to make decisions about what is best for ourselves without anyone else influencing our choices.

I highly encourage any prospective birth mother reading this to ask yourself what option of adoption sits right in your own heart. If you need to talk to someone to learn more about the option of open and closed adoption in depth, please reach out to (800) ADOPTION. An adoption professional is available on that phone number 24/7 in the hopes of helping women considering adoption all across the country to make a decision for themselves about what is best for their own individual situation.

God Bless!

-Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay Arielle is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption more than a decade ago. Over the years, Lindsay has chronicled her post-placement healing walk via her writing to share her experience, strength and hope with other birth mothers on their own paths of healing. Lindsay’s blogs boldly reflect that, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”

Thoughts from a Birth Mother

Evaluating Your Emotions When You “Don’t Want” the Baby

Are you an expectant parent with thoughts like, “I’m 4 months pregnant and don’t want to be,” or “I’m 7 months pregnant and don’t want my baby,” or “I’m expecting a baby and don’t want it?”

If you are, then please don’t feel negatively about these thoughts. Instead, focus on the positive thought that adoption could be a realistic option for you and your baby at any stage of your pregnancy.

Exploring the Challenging Emotions of Adoption

A potential birth mother can have all sorts of negative thoughts about herself and her baby pinballing through her mind.

I know firsthand what this experience can be like as a woman who did choose adoption for her baby. I want to encourage you to explore your thoughts and your emotions if you are considering adoption because you don’t want your baby or because you don’t want to be a parent. It takes courage to sift through negative thinking to get down to core emotions that can cause us to feel poorly about ourselves, or our baby, or our pregnancy situation.

Let’s explore some of the negative emotions that come along with “not wanting my baby,” or “not wanting to parent,” or “not wanting to be pregnant.”

Perhaps I can alleviate some of the negative connotations with these emotions and help you focus on what a powerful and selfless gift adoption really can be for you and your baby.


It is normal to feel overwhelmed when we find out we are pregnant but weren’t planning or expecting it. Feeling overwhelmed can take our focus off solutions and keep us stuck in a problem we are facing.

However, simply acknowledging that we feel overwhelmed by pregnancy news can be enough, sometimes, to lift us from a place of negativity to a solution-focused train of thought.

You can think of it in these steps:

  1. Admit the overwhelmed feelings exist,
  2. Acknowledge the thoughts that hurt you,
  3. Then choose to look at the possible solutions in front of you.


Shame is one of the ickiest feelings I have ever experienced.

I think of shame as an internal degrading in which my thoughts tell me I have screwed up and there is no coming back from such a mistake.

Shame can cause any person to spiral into a whirlwind of self-hatred if left unchecked. If you are feeling shame because of thoughts like, “I don’t want my baby,” or “I don’t want to be a mother,” then I encourage you to recognize it.

Admit that shame is affecting you, and give yourself grace by allowing for those thoughts to be considered as just that: they are thoughts. Thoughts are not facts, but we need to challenge those thoughts, so they don’t feel so real.

For example, instead of giving into shame, try saying to yourself: “I am not ready to parent, and I am brave to consider a decision for my baby and myself like adoption.” Or, “It takes courage to face shame, and I know I am not alone in considering adoption.”

See how you can reframe shame to be a positive affirmation for yourself?


It is very common for women to struggle with feelings of “less-than” or “unworthiness,” whether facing an unexpected pregnancy or not. As it is, we seem to hold ourselves to higher standards than even Hollywood would bear upon us. However, I encourage you to give yourself grace and receive an affirmation of love:

“Your decision for adoption makes you an amazing mother, not a bad mother!”

Women who chose adoption for their babies are not less-than others. We are not even greater than others.  We are MORE than enough in ourselves and don’t need to compare our decisions to other women’s lives and choices.

All women are beautiful, and choosing adoption is an option we can look at as a gift we are giving to our child instead of a choice that will lead to a demoralizing level of womanhood. We are all human and it takes courage and strength to admit our own shortcomings. Admitting we are not ready to parent, or that we are not in a financial or emotional place to raise a baby, does not make us unworthy of life or future parenthood. It makes us human.

We are brave. Birth mothers typically tap into a level of bravery that many people are never faced with.

Considering Adoption for Your Baby

If you are struggling with thoughts like “I’m expecting and don’t want my baby,” or “I am pregnant and not wanting to parent,” then please allow me to encourage you to consider adoption for your baby.

Choosing adoption may bring emotions that feel negative, but we can always turn it around into a positive if we want to. Feeling overwhelmed, ashamed, and unworthy are normal negative feelings and thoughts that you may experience, but you can always re-form them into a positive and self-loving affirmation.

Remember: If you live in the solution, the problem goes away.

Perhaps a selfless and loving solution for you is to choose the gift of adoption for your baby. If you would like to explore your emotions surrounding not wanting your baby and discuss the option of adoption, please call (800) ADOPTION to speak with an adoption professional. Someone is available 24/7 to talk with you, no strings attached, no pressure involved.

Remember always that you are never alone! God Bless!

-Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay Arielle is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption more than a decade ago. Over the years, Lindsay has chronicled her post-placement healing walk via her writing to share her experience, strength and hope with other birth mothers on their own paths of healing. Lindsay’s blogs boldly reflect that, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”

Thoughts from a Birth Mother

There Are Many Ways to Choose Adoption

Are you considering choosing adoption for your baby, but you’re not sure if your situation justifies the decision? Are you worried that you have no support, or too much support to be able to place your baby for adoption? Do you have concerns regarding your age, level of education or your relationship status affecting an appropriate adoption decision? Do you think you can’t choose adoption because your baby isn’t a newborn infant?

Are your individual circumstances preventing you from calling an adoption professional?

These are all legitimate questions for anyone considering adoption to have. The answer to these questions may seem simple and perhaps surprising:

You can choose to look at the option of adoption for your baby regardless of your circumstances.

Of course, it is best to take the first brave step of speaking with an adoption professional about your adoption inquiry. An adoption professional will not only walk you through the steps of the adoption process but will also be sure to inform you of any special considerations for your situation.

It might take some courage to pick up the phone and call, but you can do it!

My Personal Adoption Situation

I was a single mother. I was a lonely mother. I was a fierce mother.

I was finishing up my undergraduate studies when I found out I was pregnant. I had every intention to raise my baby on my own with a few people who promised to help support me while I worked after graduation. I was going to be a wonderful mother and provide for my baby, no matter what sacrifices it took or what challenges came my way. I was determined to raise this baby.

I remember finishing up my last undergraduate courses in the blistering heat of summer and eight months pregnant. I was mentally exhausted, physically drained, but still had a fierce heart determination to provide my baby the best life I possibly could.

Fast forward six months: I was parenting an infant on my own, breastfeeding and working full-time. It was all too much for me.

Reality Sets In

I was only getting about four hours of sleep per night. Those promises of support faded away into the breeze as the reality of helping take care of an infant came to the surface.

I began working in an entry level full-time position upon completion of my undergraduate degree. I hired a nanny to care for my son while I was at work. The commute from my home to the nanny’s and to work twice a day took hours of my limited time. Breastfeeding required regular pumping and midnight feedings. While my new career position paid well for an entry-level job, I still couldn’t make ends meet with the expenses of a newborn on my own. The birth father hadn’t been in the picture since around his initial contribution.

The circumstances I found myself in quickly took a significant toll on me.

I had pictured this life I would have as a mother, and no matter what, I couldn’t take care of myself well enough to take care of my child. After five months of parenting and a very rough evening with my infant son, it hit me like a lightning bolt: It was time to consider adoption.

My mind swarmed with what seemed like a million questions, all adding up to the big one: Could I choose adoption for my baby considering my personal circumstances?

It took an intense amount of courage to pick up the phone and call an adoption professional, but I thank God every day the answer to my questions was, “Yes, you can choose adoption for your baby.”

Your Individual Adoption Circumstances

There are many women who can choose adoption for their babies regardless of their circumstances. Some of the demographics of birth mothers include women who:

The list goes on and on. No matter what your situation and demographics are, you have the option of considering adoption.

Speak With an Adoption Professional

It is always best to speak with an adoption professional regarding any questions you may have about adoption being a realistic option for you. Reach out to (800) ADOPTION and an adoption professional can discuss the adoption process with you and answer any questions you might have about your individual needs for adoption.

It is also important to remember that you decide your own adoption journey. If you are uncomfortable with anything you are being asked to do, don’t do it. It is very important to have an adoption professional that you trust.

You are in control of choosing your options, including and most importantly, who will adopt your baby, whether your adoption will be open, semi-open or closed and who your adoption agency will be. These are all some of the choices you get to make when you take your very own adoption journey.

I encourage you to educate yourself on your choice for adoption, and to be empowered in that decision. No one can make the choice for you. There is no such thing as a bad question, only a question that you don’t ask won’t get an answer. Take all your questions to an adoption professional that you trust and be reassured that you won’t be on this journey alone!

– Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay Arielle is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption more than a decade ago. Over the years, Lindsay has chronicled her post-placement healing walk via her writing to share her experience, strength and hope with other birth mothers on their own paths of healing. Lindsay’s blogs boldly reflect that, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”


Supporting Your Child’s Happiness [Wanting the Best for Them]

Because adoption is full of twists and turns, you’re likely experiencing a lot of emotions. Every adoption experience is different, which means you may not experience the same emotions as other birth moms or you may not experience them at the same intensity. And that’s okay. This is your own personal journey.

You may experience emotions from grief and loss to relief and joy. Or even a combination. No matter how you feel about your adoption, every emotion is valid. There is no right or wrong way to feel about adoption. Some birth mothers who experience feelings of happiness or joy for their child worry that it makes them a “bad mom” because they expect negative emotions such as sadness or loss.

We’re here to assure you that feeling excited or happy for your child’s future doesn’t make you a bad parent. If you’re unsure of how to support your child’s happiness, you can reach out to an adoption professional for guidance or continue reading below.

It’s Okay to Be Happy

It’s easy to think of adoption as an emotionally difficult process. And it often is for many birth mothers. However, some birth moms never feel the feelings of grief and loss. Instead, they may feel relief, joy or excitement because they know their child will be going to live with loving family who can give them an amazing life.

Or they may experience these feelings of sadness, but in conjunction with the happy emotions. That’s okay too. You don’t have to feel things in extremes. It’s normal for your emotions to run the full spectrum.

Feeling happy for your child doesn’t mean you don’t care about them. In fact, it means you care so much that your feelings of wanting the best for your child overpower or coexist with any negative feelings about having to separate from your child. Their happiness is your happiness.

Adoption Isn’t Giving Up

Because of how difficult it often is for birth mothers to place their baby with another family, feeling anything resembling happiness can make you feel like you’re giving up on your child. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Adoption is one of the biggest sacrifices you can make for your child.

Nobody considers adoption because they think it’ll be easy. You chose adoption because you wanted to give your child the life that you know they deserve, but cannot currently give them. You’re putting their needs before your own feelings.

How to Support Your Child’s Happiness

If you’re experiencing positive emotions, it’s likely because you’re excited for your child’s future, and you can’t wait to see them happy with their adoptive parents. The best thing you can do with this happiness is share it! Channel that into supporting your child’s happiness. But how do you do this?

Chances are you likely chose to have an open adoption. This means you have a post-contact arrangement with your child and their adoptive family. You can check in on your child through:

This allows you to see how well they’re doing. It’s also an opportunity to let your child know how much you love them. You can also update your child and their adoptive family on your life as well. By this point, they may have come to think of you as part of their extended family. They’ll want to know how you’re doing as well, and you sharing information about yourself will only strengthen the bonds you have.

Navigating Emotions

Even the positive emotions can be a bit difficult to navigate. You may be caught off guard and unsure of why you’re experiencing them. Or may even feel guilty and concerned about what it says about you as a birth mother. We cannot stress enough that being happy for your child doesn’t make you a bad parent. It makes you a compassionate and loving one.

If you’re unsure of how to navigate these emotions, there are adoption counselors available to talk to 24/7. To get the emotional guidance you need, reach out to an adoption professional today.


Grace and Mercy: Part 2 – Mercy

This article is the second in its series. Please refer to Part 1 – “Grace”, before reading about “Mercy.”

Grace and mercy are typically thought to be interchangeable. We use the words as if they have the same meaning, but just as I broke down what “Grace” is in the first article in this series, I will now break down what “Mercy” is.

While they hold different meanings, grace and mercy coincide with each other to offer us a much more fulfilling and peaceful life. Even if you struggle at first to apply grace and mercy to your life and the lives of others, know that using these virtues will become easier as they become woven into how you live out your life. They will lighten your heart load and help you to share love within yourself and with others.

What is Mercy?

As with grace, there are many different definitions and ways to understand mercy. A few definitions of mercy by Merriam-Webster include:

All over the Bible, we read about spiritual ideas of mercy. Here is one of the scriptures regarding mercy:

“Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it].” – Hebrews 4:16 (AMP)

Not only do we see grace quoted my many people throughout history, but also the ideas behind mercy. Here are a few famous quotations about mercy:

“I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice.” – Abraham Lincoln

“A little bit of mercy makes the world less cold and more just.” – Pope Francis

“Mercy is stronger than your sword.” – P. C. Cast

“The greatest firmness is the greatest mercy.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“Mercy listens — really listens, with interest and concern — then smiles, and reaches out her hand.” – J. M. DeMatteis

“Where mercy is shown, mercy is given.” – Duane Dog Chapman

“The more merciful acts thou dost, the more mercy thou wilt receive.” – William Penn

“Mercy is most empowering, liberating, and transformative when it is directed at the undeserving. The people who haven’t earned it, who haven’t even sought it, are the most meaningful recipients of our compassion.” – Bryan Stevenson

Mercy Responds

Mercy is the forbearance of punishment when no redemption has been enacted. It is forgiveness given without having been asked for it.

Birth mothers know all about mercy as well: We gave it to those who we felt let us down when we made our adoption decision.

As birth mothers, we have probably all felt the sting of loneliness and despair in facing an adoption decision. Chances are, like in my situation, there were loved ones you expected to support you who let you down. Despite our disappointment in them, we had to choose to forgive them, and move on by making our own decision about placing our babies for adoption.

Mercy responds, “I will forgive them so that I may have peace, and there is no need for me to feel condemned as I learn from the struggle of this season of my life.”

The Lessons from Grace and Mercy

Both grace and mercy are an act of love that reflects our own character, regardless of the other person’s character. No matter what faith virtues you hold, we can all grasp the concepts of grace and mercy. We can receive grace and mercy for ourselves, and we can grant them to others as well.

Mercy and grace, as practically applicable principles, will always encourage healing through growth that promotes maturity. Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same. It’s not always easy to practice the principles of grace and mercy in our lives, but growing in our own character is more important than fitting in with the crowd or caring what others think of us.

We can grow and mature in learning through applying the principles of grace and mercy in our own paths of healing post-placement.

This article is the second in its series. Please refer to Part 1 – Grace, before reading about “Mercy.”

-Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay Arielle is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption more than a decade ago. Over the years, Lindsay has chronicled her post-placement healing walk via her writing to share her experience, strength and hope with other birth mothers on their own paths of healing. Lindsay’s blogs boldly reflect that, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”


Grace and Mercy: Part 1 – Grace

This article is the first in its series. Please refer to Part 2 – “Mercy”, to continue reading on after “Grace.”

What comes to your mind when you hear the words: “Grace” and “Mercy?”

Perhaps you think of a specific religious denomination? Or spiritually perfected concepts that are unattainable? Or beautiful words with loving sentiments that you can use to feel lighter on mentally heavy days? Or maybe they are values that always go together but seem difficult to separately define and apply?

I have a question for you today: What if they were words with intense healing power that you could utilize to heal your own heart and gift to others as well?

As a birth mother on a journey of healing post-placement, I could sure use some power-packed grace and mercy in my own life, not only for myself, but for those around me as well.

In this two-part article series, I will break down the difference between grace and mercy. While they are often used interchangeably, they are not the same things. It may be difficult to grasp the difference, but I have faith that you will see how their differences help them to work together to create a wonderfully woven healing way of life.

What is Grace?

There are many different definitions and understandings of what grace really is. One definition by Merriam-Webster includes:

The Bible has beautiful descriptions of grace and the power behind it. One scripture reading about grace is:

“And God is able to make all grace [every favor and earthly blessing] come in abundance to you, so that you may always [under all circumstances, regardless of the need] have complete sufficiency in everything [being completely self-sufficient in Him], and have an abundance for every good work and act of charity.” – 2 Corinthians 9:8 (AMP)

Many people throughout history have famously quoted about grace. Here are a few of my favorites:

“Grace has to be the loveliest word in the English language. It embodies almost every attractive quality we hope to find in others. Grace is a gift of the humble to the humiliated. Grace acknowledges the ugliness of sin by choosing to see beyond it. Grace accepts a person as someone worthy of kindness despite whatever grime or hard-shell casing keeps him or her separated from the rest of the world. Grace is a gift of tender mercy when it makes the least sense.” – Charles R. Swindoll

“Courage is grace under pressure.” – Ernest Hemingway

“Grace is the very opposite of merit… Grace is not only undeserved favor, but it is favor, shown to the one who has deserved the very opposite.” – Harry Ironside

“Grace is something you can never get but can only be given. There’s no way to earn it or deserve it or bring about any more than you can deserve the taste of raspberries and cream or earn good looks.” – Frederick Buechner

“Showing grace to others is about showing kindness even when they don’t deserve it.”  – Dawn Klinge

“Grace is a gentle thing. Easily destroyed by selfishness, envy, ill will, and fear. Easily invited by kindness, hope, forgiveness, and love.” – Donna Goddard, Touched by Love

“Without grace, our failures cannot become wisdom.” – Casey Tygrett

Grace Speaks

Grace is favor gifted when no action has proved it deserving. It is unearned favor and blessings. Birth mothers know all about grace: we gave it to our babies when we chose adoption for them.

Our babies didn’t have to do anything or prove anything for us to decide to give them better lives by us, as birth mothers, choosing adoption. We choose to give them this grace out of our love for them, not because of their actions. Just the fact that we love them unconditionally is an act of grace on our part.

Grace says, “I will give my baby a better life through different parents, and I can get through this as a mature and loving being, no matter what.”

Grace is also something we can give to others. As a woman who chose adoption, I have dealt with a lot of misunderstanding from others who ask me if I have children or assume that there was something wrong with me for me to place my baby for adoption.

I give others grace when I forgive them. I give grace to myself as well because I’m not perfect and I have had to make hard decisions in my life. However, I made the best decisions that I have been able to throughout my life with the abilities I had at the time. I have no regrets regarding the decision to place my baby for adoption, even over a decade later.

We can learn a lot about who we are by how we practice grace in our lives, giving it to ourselves and others whenever we see an opportunity. My hope is that you take this new understanding of grace and utilize it on your own journey of healing, coupling it with mercy to provide you with a more elevated and mature view on yourself throughout your life.

This article is the first in its series. Please refer to Part 2 – Mercy, to continue reading on after “Grace.”

-Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay Arielle is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption more than a decade ago. Over the years, Lindsay has chronicled her post-placement healing walk via her writing to share her experience, strength and hope with other birth mothers on their own paths of healing. Lindsay’s blogs boldly reflect that, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”

Thoughts from a Birth Mother

Celebrating National Birth Mother’s Day 2023 as a Birth Mother

Birth mothers worldwide are celebrated for National Birth Mother’s Day this Saturday, May 13, 2023, the day before Mother’s Day. This holiday started in the US, but it applies to  birth mothers all over the globe.

As a birth mother myself, I hold National Birth Mother’s Day in gratitude, as I am loved and celebrated, knowing I’m not alone and acknowledging the selfless gift I offered my child when I choose adoption for my baby.

The Origin of Birth Mother’s Day

National Birth Mother’s Day was first celebrated on Saturday, May 12, 1990 by a group of birth mothers from Seattle, Washington. Leading the cause was Mary Jean Wolch-Marsh, a birth mother who spoke up to break the silence of her loneliness.

These forward-thinking birth mothers were determined to come together as a community and embrace each other in their shared choice to choose adoption for their babies. They had faced feeling alone for long enough as birth mothers, and so they turned their despair into joy by creating a holiday that is now not only recognized by the United States, but by the entire world.

Mary Jean Wolch-Marsh desired to share her guidance on ceremonially celebrating her newly established holiday with other birth mothers in her book, “A Birth Mother’s Day Planner.” In it, she writes::

“Birth Mother’s Day and the Birth Mother’s Day Planner grew out of my own journey after losing my infant daughter in a closed adoption in 1978. It grew out of the experience of finding myself alone on a journey through a wilderness of grief.  I was a mother, yet was not seen as a mother by those around me or those who were parenting my daughter.  For many years I grieved in secret and felt myself to be invisible.

Yet even then, through tears, I remembered the great joy I had felt at my daughter’s birth.  It was an experience of triumph, transcendence, and ecstasy that became my personal yardstick of joy.  And so it was, I always observed her birthday as a day of celebration for both of us-of birth and birth-giving-even in the years of all day grief.”

National Birth Mother’s Day origins are credited to Mary Jean Wolch-Marsh and that band of birth mothers who celebrated each other in their own way in 1990. The world now has the privilege of recognizing Birth Mother’s Day every year on the Saturday before Mother’s Day.

My Self-Reflection on Birth Mother’s Day

As a birth mother, I commemorate National Birth Mother’s Day in gratitude. For me, it is a day to reflect on how strong, courageous, brave, and bold my decision to place my baby for adoption really was. I sacrificed much to give my baby a better life through different parents.

Some of the losses I’ve endured include being abandoned and disowned by friends and family who didn’t approve of my decision, giving up the future with my child as a legal and custodial mother raising my baby, and the acknowledgement that I could not provide the life for my child that I knew he deserved.

I still experience the wounds of my sacrifice every day, but it was made from pure, unconditional love. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t think about my son, but I have no regrets knowing that he is safe, loved, and secure by the amazing parents I chose for him. His parents are truly a blessing to both of us.

National Birth Mother’s Day, to me, is a day to celebrate that selfless and loving adoption sacrifice I made way back then, and continue to remember daily.

Celebrating YOUR Special Day

There is no right or wrong way to acknowledge National Birth Mother’s Day. This holiday can be a different experience for every individual birth mother. Some ideas for you to celebrate include:

Happy National Birth Mother’s Day to all my fellow birth mothers! I know I am not alone, and neither are you. While being a birth mother has not been an easy journey, we can all choose to make the trek with gratitude in our hearts, smiles on our lips after the tears pass, and a song of hope for the future for ourselves and our child.

May your Saturday, May 13, 2023, be filled with self-care, self-love and encouragement that you are a brave woman for the decision you made to place your baby for adoption!

-Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay Arielle is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption more than a decade ago. Over the years, Lindsay has chronicled her post-placement healing walk via her writing to share her experience, strength and hope with other birth mothers on their own paths of healing. Lindsay’s blogs boldly reflect that, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”

Thoughts from a Birth Mother

An Invitation to Walk a Path of Healing Again

To My Dearest Fellow Birth Mothers,

I haven’t written to you since the end of 2019. I tried to push myself to keep writing, but life became what seemed like all too much for me.

By the end of that year, I had been through a cancer diagnosis and treatment resulting in a loss that has prevented me from bringing life into the world again, and the end of a marriage in a difficult divorce. After these experiences, I couldn’t access the hope in my heart in the same way I had been able to previously when I would bear my soul for you. So, I made what was a very humbling decision for me: I decided to take a break from writing.

Stepping away from writing, for me, meant much more than not writing articles about hope for healing for birth mothers who have chosen adoption like me. It meant closing my heart off for a while to process a lot of anger, disappointment, pain, trauma, and basically for me to fall completely apart as a human being.

Looking back now, it was the best choice I could have made for myself and my own journey of healing. Sometimes, you need time to process the broken pieces before you begin to put it all back together. If you are a birth mother, too, then you may know what I mean.

It is so very important to me that when I write, I share my heart with others and not just fill pages with words that I can’t even relate to because I’m too shut down to reach the love that swells within my soul. It is from my depths of experience that I have written; then and now I speak to you again from my heart. I have missed writing but, often, self-care means knowing our limitations and honoring those weaknesses that are what makes us delicate, yet lovely, human beings.

Having weaknesses and flaws is what makes us human, and there is no greater self-care technique than honoring the frail yet resilient beings that we are. We also all have strengths in our own unique ways that make us human as well. This is why it is so vital that we come to a place of truly knowing ourselves and not focus on comparing who we are to others.

Only you can be the special you that the world needs. I have had to come to this place over the past few years. But, it was not an easy journey.

The hardships I had ensured seemed like too much, and I started stuffing all the bad feelings deep down into the depths of my soul in unhealthy habits. Where I had once found hope, I stored up pain and could no longer see or touch that hope beyond my own anguish.

It wasn’t until the end of 2021 that I realized I had crawled deep into a rabbit hole of darkness and self-loathing. Through a personal faith journey, I realized that only God Himself could pull me out of. When I finally surrendered to the end of myself; He did.

I have spent over a year on a new level of the journey of healing that my life has been called to. I have met and married my soulmate. I have sought faith in God to a wondrous depth that I can barely begin to convey. I completely removed myself from toxic relationships that I had held on to for dear life before.

I deleted all my social media profiles and have yet to return to that landscape. I have been learning to sit in peace and quiet to deal with myself. I have begun to allow myself to feel and talk about the pain that I had stored and protected so tightly deep inside of me to begin to make room for the hope within me to be found once again. I have been brought to a whole new space of appreciating the life I have today.

If you are reading this today and wondering if healing is possible, know this: Although the road is long, there can be a brighter future ahead for you.

My tagline from the start of writing about spiritual healing for birth mothers has been, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”

Sometimes, we move backwards before we can begin to move forward again. And I took quite a few steps in the wrong direction before I was able to get back on my own healing path. However, I truly see now the value in admitting that we are only human. Our lives are not meant to be fortresses that we build out of fear or pride. We are not meant to fortify towers of pain within ourselves, only to mortar walls that end up keeping others out and trapping any hope of love in a place that not even we can find.

Knowing our limitations and honoring them is the beginning of wisdom. Whether I would have been lost for so long if I had honored that or not is irrelevant. It is what it is. The truth for me is that once I allowed the pain of difficulties to overcome my good heart, I couldn’t share the hope of healing with you anymore because, for a while, I couldn’t find it for myself.

My life can be a testimony if I choose to live it as such, and so can yours.

My name is Lindsay Arielle. I am a birth mother. There is more to my story than pain. I hold hope that no matter what challenges we may face in this lifetime, there can always be healing in the journey. Will you walk with me again?

-Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay Arielle is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption more than a decade ago. Over the years, Lindsay has chronicled her post-placement healing walk via her writing to share her experience, strength and hope with other birth mothers on their own paths of healing. Lindsay’s blogs boldly reflect that, “Healing is a journey, not a destination.”

Adoptees Birth Parent General

Top 5 Reasons Why Pregnant Women Are Considering Adoption

Women faced with an unplanned pregnancy often don’t know what to do next. They may be at a place where the options seem overwhelming, but no matter what, there will always be support available.

The decision to choose adoption is a brave and selfless act that many women make for various reasons. But the decision will always be up to you. And we will always be here to help guide you toward making the best decision for yourself and your baby.

You can always contact us online to get more free adoption information now.

Top 5 Reasons Why Pregnant Women Are Considering Adoption

1. They want a loving and stable home for their baby

One of the most common reasons pregnant women consider adoption is because they want their child to grow up in a stable and loving home. Some may not be ready to parent, while others might not have the financial resources to provide for a child.

By placing your child for adoption, you can give your child the opportunity to grow up in a home with loving parents who are ready and able to provide for them. An adoption agency is committed to helping you make the best decision for yourself and your baby by providing necessary resources such as:

2. They want to give their baby the best life possible

Many birth parents considering adoption for their babies want to give them the best life. This could mean that they want their baby to have access to resources and opportunities they may not be able to provide themselves. By choosing adoption, you can find comfort in knowing that an adoptive family can provide your child with a secure future filled with endless opportunities.

National adoption agencies are the best to work with because they work across the country to help you find the right family for your baby. These agencies have a wide variety of families to choose from, allowing you to be as specific as you want about the type of family you’re looking for.

You can narrow down families based off of:

Check out some waiting adoptive family profiles here.

3. They want to maintain a connection with their baby

Many birth mothers aren’t aware that most modern adoptions involve some form of contact with the adoptive family and child. When considering adoption, you can choose the level of openness in the process, from receiving letters and photos of your child to having a direct personal relationship with the adoptive parents.

Birth mother Cori grew to love the adoptive family she chose for her baby. She knew her baby was in good hands by getting to know them.

“They were so open and kind, and from the first exchanges we had, I knew that I picked out a wonderful family,” Cori said. “I know how wonderful his life is and will be. He will have a loving, secure home to rest his head in for the rest of his life. Every day, when I wake up, I know that he will be okay and he will spend his day in the arms of his loving parents.”

4. They want to regain control of their life

An unexpected pregnancy can make prospective birth mothers feel out of control. The adoption process allows you to take control of your situation in ways your other unplanned pregnancy options may not. When considering adoption for your baby, you’re in charge all the way through.

From choosing a family to deciding what you want your hospital stay to look like. When you work with an adoption agency, they’ll connect you with a birth parent specialist to help you create a personalized adoption plan. You’ll call all the shots while your adoption agency handles all the other aspects of your adoption. Every decision in the adoption process begins with you.

5. They want a better future for themselves and their baby

Many birth mothers consider adoption to create a brighter future for themselves and their children. Some have plans to further their education, advance their careers, and even get married. Raising a child would financially and practically delay many of these future plans.

Adoption lets you focus on pursuing your dreams while knowing your baby is in a loving and supportive household. Your child will have access to limitless opportunities with adoptive parents who have been preparing to welcome your baby into their home.

Although there are many common reasons birth mothers choose adoption, every situation is unique, and if you find yourself relating to any of these reasons, adoption could be the right choice for you. Are you ready to begin your adoption journey? Contact an adoption agency now to get more free adoption information.

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