This guest post is by Tysie Stoyan, an adoptive mother.
Over three years ago I experienced one of the best moments in my life.: I received a message from a woman named Jasmine who was interested in placing her child with us.
After meeting her and her family we all decided to move forward with our plan. It was truly one of the most exciting days of my life–a dream come true!
Jasmine and I messaged back and forth throughout her pregnancy. She was very uncertain about open vs. closed adoption practices.
We thoroughly discussed both types of adoptions. She asked a lot of questions about why I believed in open adoptions and if it would be best to keep our adoption private.
I had done a lot of research on adoption. I questioned so many people and read countless blogs.
Strangely, once I put it out there that I was starting the adoption process my friends and clients began to tell me their stories. “I was adopted,” “I am birth mom,” “I am looking for my birthparents,” “I am an adopted mom.”
I couldn’t believe how many people who had crossed my path had been touched by adoption.
I could not have been more thankful and blessed to listen to their stories—some heart breaking, some peaceful, some devastating, but most of them beautiful and compassionate.
Yet what saddened me the most was that most of the people I spoke to were still looking to meet their families, and always with the same question: “Why did I get put up for adoption?”
The majority of them said they felt like pieces were missing, that they wondered who and where they came from, and why they look this way.
Some were hurt and upset. Others were trying to find the child they had placed that they had not been seen since birth.
Some also stated they felt empty and wished they could meet their child or just get a glimpse into who they’ve become, and who they were today.
Some felt incomplete and experienced a lot of regret closing their adoptions. Most felt their adoption was the best thing for them.
Possibly it was a better place for them to be raised compared to where they could have been if they had not been adopted.
Some people even got to meet their parents and were thankful their adoptive parents gave them a better chance in life that they could have had from their birth family due to their families’ struggles.
I even met a few adoptive parents who hadn’t told their children they were adopted, including one who waited until their child was 18.
I hadn’t met anyone with an open adoption. My heart broke for so many of those people. I wanted to change the path they were on, I wanted a happy ending. I wanted the best of the best for my child coming into my life. Who doesn’t?
I understand in some cases it is safer for the child to have a closed adoption. But I didn’t want the child I was to adopt to not know who they were or where they came from.
I didn’t want to live a life of lies, even though you feel like you want to shield them from the pain.
I did not want my child to have questions. I only wanted facts and love. I wanted my child to know everything and find peace. I wanted him to know that more family means more love and that you can have a relationship and respect for someone who wanted the best life for you.
I believe in being open, honest and real. Start young so the child knows that they are loved by many and won’t have to question their life when they are older.
I don’t believe that adoption should be painful but rather that it is a blessing.
I told Jasmine many of these stories and my theories about open adoption and she agreed to make it open and to set terms and guidelines.
I told her I would let her be in control of the pace of pictures, visits and video chats after the child was born. We created a bond and respect for one another before his birth.
I am very thankful because our bond has become like a sisterhood.
On December 29, 2015, I raced to hospital to meet Jasmine and the beautiful baby boy she gave birth to.
I couldn’t believe the day had finally come. I will never forget that night for the rest of my life. That I was finally got to hold Zane, our son, for the first time.
I tended to Zane as Jasmine slept and rested, and she helped me change his first diaper. I can’t thank her enough or repay her for the chance at motherhood.
She is the most unselfish person I have ever crossed paths with. She has put her baby first, before her, and has shared motherhood with me.
Zane is now almost 4 years old. We visit Jasmine a few times a year and video chat every now and then. She follows us on Facebook and late night texts often to laugh and stress about our wild adventures and life experiences.
I know it’s hasn’t always been easy on her. It makes me feel good to know that she is happy with Zane’s life and how happy he always is and that I am doing a good job.
Lord knows as mothers we sometimes feel like we are failing. I am proud to know Jasmine and her family and wouldn’t want it any other way than to keep an open adoption for Zane.
As he grows and tries to understand his situation I know it may get tough. At least he will never have to question that his mom didn’t love him or wonder whether he has siblings.
Since Day One Zane has been loved by so many; family, friends and his birthfamily. I am so grateful for all people in Zane’s big adventure through life because it really does take a village to raise a child.
I could not do it without so many of our loved ones stepping up to give a hand, advice, support, gudiance, and most of all love. I am so blessed that we all get to enjoy his adventure together.
Tysie Stoyan is a 30-year-old adoptive mother, business owner and cancer survivor.
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