The hardest choice I’ve made in my life was when…
…at the age of 19 I chose to follow the promptings of the spirit and place my baby for adoption.
A sweet baby boy, just two days old, lay on the hospital bed between me and his birthfather. I held his tiny hand as I took pen to paper and acknowledged, then signed away my right as his birth mother. The room was thick with the spirit as angels sustained and comforted me in a way that no mortal could.
After months of hoping and praying that my boyfriend and I would get married, he mentioned the one word during a late night phone call that spanned two time zones and crushed my hopes: adoption. This path he suggested seemed too trying for my feeble heart. Later that night as I humbled myself in prayer, I plead with my Father in Heaven to know His will for this child. The experience that followed will forever be imprinted on my soul. It was exactly as described in Doctrine & Covenants section 8 verse 4: “Yea, behold, I will tell you in your mind and in your heart, by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart.” I physically felt my heart and mind open to the choice of adoption as never before. From that night on, the peace that accompanied my answer carried me forward. It is with me to this day.
While most of my friends from high school were attending sorority formals and cramming for exams, I was shopping for maternity clothes and taking birthing classes with my mom. A few offered a listening ear, but they had no frame of reference for the pain, worry and guilt I carried alongside a growing belly.
The last place I wanted to seek help was LDS Social Services. I am an independent soul and I was afraid of being judged or worse, being told what to do with my life. Instead with the help of a loving counselor I discovered a positive environment in which to confront my hopes and fears for not only my baby’s future, but my own as well.
Each of us has a mission in life. Part of my son’s purpose, before he was even born, was to change the course of my life. Once the adoption was final he would be sealed to his eternal family in the temple. I had to believe that the sealing power was real. I began to develop faith in that power, and came to know that I wanted it for myself and my future family.
After a year of healing and immersing myself in work it was time to open a new chapter in my life. I began attending a singles ward where I eventually met my husband who is the father to our four children. The day we were sealed in the temple my social worker was the last guest to greet us as a married couple. Tears streamed down my face as we embraced. We both knew what it had taken to get me to the altar of the temple. And I will ever be grateful.
Yearly updates inform me of this young man’s talent for memorizing, his penchant for history and sports. These small time capsules are treasured and tucked away in a space he will always have in my heart.
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