Saturday, May 9, 2015

Dear Birthmother

My children are mine, no doubt about it.  Legally, emotionally, forever and always, through late-night fears and throw-up on the floor, first toddling steps, fingerprints on the walls, bright scrawled drawings on my refrigerator.

They grin at me and yell "Mommy!" when the tooth comes out.
They look to me and whine, "Mommy............" when life is unfair.
They cling to me and whisper, "Mommy" when the doctor comes at them with a needle.

I am Mommy.  But you are too.

There is a part of them that is yours, and always will be.  I look for you sometimes, in their faces, in their movements, in their reactions.  I wonder if you have the same shoulder dimples, if you have the same almond-shaped eyes, if you have that slight frame.

One of you gave your life bearing my child.  Tragedy. Sorrow.  So unnecessary, because if you had given birth in another country, you would never have died.

I think about that day, when my child was taking her first breath, and hours later, you were taking your last.  Did you get to hold her?  Did her fingers curl around yours?  Did you get to comprehend, at least for a few minutes, the beautiful miracle you brought into the world?  Or did fear and pain overwhelm it all?

And the other two, you who held my child for nine months.  You felt her kick against you.  You watched your belly grow large with him.  A miracle, a life, a breathing, feeling, child in the image of God, growing inside you, yet you felt only

What caused your hopelessness?  Was it the lack of love in your life?  Were you afraid of losing your only chance at an education?  Was it rejection by your own mother, your empty purse, a broken heart?

I wish I had known you.  I wish I could have come alongside of you and given you hope, and helped you realize that there could be another way, that this child who was knit inside of you for nine months could have always been yours.

If I met you today, I would collapse at your feet and thank you.  The child you bore made me a Mommy.  The child you bore has overflowed my cup.  The child you bore is beautiful and intelligent and loving and full of hope.

I wish you could see her.  I wish you could see him.  I wish you could see me.  I wish we could help you fill the holes in your heart.  I wish for hope for you.  And Redemption.

Your sorrow meant my joy.  Your loss was my gain.  I am sad that you will never know.

Dear Birthmother, you have given me an indescribable gift.  I am forever indebted to you.

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