Friday, February 25, 2011


I woke up crying.  I am so very sad and my heart is hurting.  I know it is a culmination of many reasons.  Kind of a perfect storm on the emotional front.

Today Brit is 11 months old.  One month away from her first birthday. Hopefully I will get an update today from her parents.  The thought of it makes me happy and sad at the same time.

I wish that sending a monthly update was not chore for them.  I wish they felt comfortable enough to share things with me as they happen so that our relationship was more casual instead of like a requirement of the complex relationship. 

I wish my relationship with them was like it is with my sisters and their families.  I get a quick picture of my nephews when  they do something cute.  Or my sisters will mention in passing how their little guys are now walking with the furniture or getting a new tooth.  It is not obligation.  It is heartfelt sharing.  Maybe someday my relationship with Brit's parents will more resemble that.

But now here is what is really hurting my heart these days.  And only girls will understand this because it is a "my feelings are hurt" thought. 

I need to make a more permanent living arrangement for the boys and me.  We currently live with a very close friend and share expenses with her because she was laid off from her job and she needed a roommate to help her stay in her house.  She and I get along very well, and honestly I would have no problem staying there indefinitely.  But the boys want their own space where we don't share a kitchen or living room with someone else.  I understand that.

So I have been looking at potential places for us to move to.  And just this week I found a townhouse that seems to be absolutely perfect for us.  I think the boys will love it.  That is the good news.

But here is why this is upsetting to me.  My boyfriend C and I have been together almost two years now.  We have had a child together.  We have 4 boys who are all about the same age who get along marvelously.  And yet, the very few times that we have ever had a conversation about our future together, C said that he is scared of commitment and wants us to just keep dating like we have been.  He needs to take things slow because he was hurt by his divorce.  And I can understand that.  But as a girl, what I hear is that he wants me to be the indefinite girlfriend.  He gets the benefits that come with having a long-term girlfriend, without the commitment.   

When I told him that wasn't going to work for me long term, he said that he was going to try to start wrapping his mind around what it would be like to have our families blend a little more, because he does love me.  And then maybe he would think about us moving in after he finished the basement. 

I let him know that just living together is not going to work for me either.  I am not ever going to move the boys and me into a home where I am not married to the man we live with.  It is not a good example, and if I am going to live with a man, I want to know he is legally committed to me and my family.  He just listened and seemed to understand.  He had no response at all.

I have watched as several of my friends have gotten engaged in the past few months.  They are going to marry someone who they have been with a shorter amount of time than C and I have been.  And the girl in me is jealous.  And hurt.  It makes me feel like I am not a good enough "catch" that someone wouldn't want to commit to me.  Especially after all we have been through in the past 2 years.

My kids constantly ask when C and I are going to get married.  They want for all of us to be a family.  It is hard for me to explain to them when I want the same answers myself.  My friends ask why we don't live together. They all wonder what is wrong with C that he would not recognize that he really does have a good deal with me. 

So back to the townhouse situation.  I found the perfect place for us to live.  And I will sign a one-year lease next week.  I told C about it.  He was happy for me and the boys.  He told me that it will be great that we will have our own place.  We agreed that the boys will be happier there.

But neither of us states the obvious.  I am committing to another year of living alone.  And he is happy for that.  I can't help but wonder if he actually breathed a sigh of relief when I told him.  I had just bought him even more time.

I feel rejected and unloved. 

Now here is the icing on the cake... The other day C mentioned to me that he will be in Vegas next month for a trade show with work.  He thought I might like to fly out and join him for a couple of days of it.  So let's guess when those dates are?... Yep, it is over Brit's birthday.  The one year anniversary of the event that changed my entire life.  The most traumatic experience I have ever been through.  And he didn't even acknowledge it as a time of any significance.

Needless to say, I am not going to go.  I do not want to be in Vegas (it would be my first trip there ever) when all I am thinking about is the missing piece of my heart who is celebrating her first birthday.

I am going to stay home, in my new house, alone.  And I plan to cry.  Mourning the loss that has changed my entire life.  And I guess I will reflect about why I am sitting there alone.

Today I want someone to hold me.  To tell me that I am special and that we will get through this time together.

But instead I am writing a blog entry sitting at my desk at work with tears streaming down my face.  Isn't amazing how we can feel so alone, even in a building full of people?


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The community rallies

I have been completely out of the blog world for the past week. After the big Extreme Makeover Home Edition announcement last Thursday, my life has been on warp speed. I work during the day at my real job,then head to the build site for my second "job". I spent 14-16 hours per day at the build site on Saturday and Sunday. And as tired as I am, I can't wait to go back every day.

Here is a quick snippet that will tell you about the recipient, Carl Hall, and his family. It was done before his family was chosen as an Extreme Makeover project.

Former Wichita State Baseball Player Carl Hall adjusts to new life

I have spent the last week getting to know his parents, in-laws and especially his siblings (there are 12 kids!!!). Every person should have a family that rallies around them like the Hall family has done for Carl. It amazes me by the ways and numbers of people who are irrationally committed to helping him and his family.

It is unfortunate that often takes personal tragedy to realize how many people care for us. But fortunately, it is in moments of tragedy that we need others the most.

Now back to work for me! I have to get things done before I head back to the build site.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tomorrow we make the big announcement

My blog life doesn't always reflect my real life because I use my blog to talk about my adoption feelings for therapy.  But like my post yesterday, I want to share happy things that are also happening in my life. 

I am excited to be working with the Extreme Makeover Home Edition production team to coordinate a build for a deserving family in the Wichita KS area.  It has taken every minute of my spare time, but it will be so worth it when the family gets their new home.  They deserve it.

So in addition to being a full time working mom, I am also a volunteer with any extra minute I have.  Now it probably makes sense why I am so stressed out all the time.

But back to the happy - tomorrow we surprise the family who will be receiving the new home.  And I can't wait!!!!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Date night

My life is not all grief and regret.  But reading my blog you would never guess it.  So for today, I am proud to post that tonight is date night.

And I can't wait.  I am so glad that I am still in love with this man. 

Date night on a weekday night is one of the only benefits of being divorced.  Occaisionally it works out that we have one night alone together without kids.  JOY!

Monday, February 14, 2011

What not to say...

The boys and I got a Valentine's card for Brit yesterday.  Last night we each took turns writing in the card. 

L was the first and he looked at me and said "I wish I could write, I hope to see you soon."  I told him that isn't something we can write in a card to her, because it might hurt her mommy's feelings.  He understood.

Then D got the card and asked "Can I write, You're the best sister?"  L told him that Brit probably doesn't even know that she has brothers yet.  I told him that it would probably be better if he just wrote "You're the best!"  He thought that would be OK.  He then proceeded to draw a girl superhero portrait on the blank page of the card.  It was adorable.

Someday I hope that we won't have to edit what we say.  But I am so glad that at least we can send cards. 

Hopefully Brit's mom will save them so Brit can read them when she is older and she will understand that we were always thinking about her.

Because we always think about her.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Do the boys ever wonder why I "kept" them and not their sister?

A comment was left on my last post asking (I hope I paraphrase correctly) if my children who I currently parent question why they are still living in a less than ideal family situation that caused me to choose adoption for their sister.  She wondered if they perceive that they have to live in circumstances that their sister was “spared from”.  I love that she asked that question.
Before I answer that directly, here is the background.
When all of my children were born (with the exception of Brit), I was married to their father.  Our family was intact and our home life was stable.  It was only after they were older that I was divorced, living as a single parent.
Brit was being born into a world where her parents were not married, her mother had just moved 3 times in one year, and I didn't feel like I had enough of me to share with a baby who deserves so much more.
Her birthfather and I are close to 40, and we were trying really hard to juggle being a single parent to the combined 5 boys we already had.
Brit was entering into a situation where she would be at a disadvantage from birth.  Not that we couldn't do it.  Financially we are very stable with a great family support network.  We just weren’t prepared for a baby at this juncture in our lives.
We kept coming back to the idea that when we had out other children we were looking forward to bringing home a baby and all of the responsibility that entailed.  We wanted Brit to have the same great start that her brothers had.  We wanted her to have parents who were anxiously awaiting her arrival. (And I will assure you, her parents were so cute those last few weeks – they were certainly anxious!)
Once we met with her parents (and the other couple we also interviewed), her birthfather and I realized that while we were trying to figure out how we could make it work for us to parent a child without being married, there was a family who was waiting, praying and longing for the chance to make their family complete with a perfect baby. (Yes, we believe she is perfect!)
It almost seemed selfish of us to keep her after we realized how much her parents had to offer and how we were nowhere near ready for the undertaking of another child.
With that said, I still think she would have had a perfectly good life with us. We would have (and still do) loved her and she would have been given all kinds of attention from us and her brothers.  
But I do wonder if me keeping and parenting Brit would have caused so much stress on my relationship with her birthfather that it would have driven us apart?  Let’s just say that our relationship was as new as my pregnancy – if you can catch the inference.  We had not even really gotten to know each other well.  We were definitely not in a position to make decisions about blending our families and committing to forever together.  We had been dating 10 weeks when I found out that I was about 8 weeks pregnant.  (I know how bad that sounds – the good news is we are still together over a year and a half later and I have fallen more in love with him as time has gone on!)
With that in mind, had her birthfather and I tried to quickly pull things together without a strong foundation of a relationship I am afraid Brit would have been destined to the same situation as her brothers.  And I don't wish that on any child.
Yes, we could have done it.  Looking back now, do I think we should have made a different decision?  A case could be made for both choices.  I don't believe there is any one single right answer.  No one really knows what the outcome would have been if we would have chosen to parent.  There is no magic crystal ball to show the future, and definitely no way to know how things might have been different.
As for how her brothers feel about Brit living with a different family, they are sad that they don’t get to see her.  They, like me, assumed they would have a limited relationship with her.  But I don’t think they ever think that I loved Brit more than I love them because I chose a different family for her.  They understand completely how complicated our life is right now.  But it is our complicated life and while it is not ideal, it is certainly not bad. 
My boys do not go without. While being children with divorced parents is not ideal, it is generally stable.  So I don’t think they feel slighted.  It is not as if Brit went to live with a filthy rich couple on the coast.  She lives with a stay at home mom and a dad who is a teacher.  They live in a house like ours, 10 minutes from where we live.  I believe the boys feel like she has the same kind of life, just different parents. 
And for any adoptive couple out there wondering – that is exactly why we chose the parents we did.  We wanted Brit to have the same kind of upbringing that our boys are experiencing.  We hope that they have commonality when they are older.  That is why we chose this couple instead of the other wonderful couple we interviewed (is that the right term?  seems harsh.) They live on a huge ranch out in the country.  While we absolutely loved them as a couple, and we knew our child would be well cared for and loved, they have a completely different lifestyle than what we live.
So I think Brit living with a different set of parents has been similar to how their half brothers live with their other families too.  Obviously the difference is they have a relationship with them because we still get to have them in our lives.  Fortunately (or unfortunately) my boys know what it is like to share a sibling with a different set of parents. 
And to be quite honest, I was very concerned how they would handle the adoption.  But because there was no secret to it even from the beginning, they seemed to just deal with it, as strange as it is. 
They met her parents.  They like them.  They know she is happy, healthy and well cared for.  They see pictures and get updates about her.  We keep her picture on our mantle right next to theirs.  She is a topic of conversation. We laugh at the stories about her funny actions, just like we would a story about a cousin who might not live near us.  Because we only focus on the joy, they seem to see her adoption as a good thing.  They know that it has allowed me more time with them. 
But they do ask when they will get to see her.  They are hopeful that it will be soon.  And when they ask, I just tell them that someday we will.  And that seems to satisfy them for now.  It does make me sad when they say, “Is Brit’s mom ready for us to meet her yet?”  I have explained to them that new parents, especially parents who have adopted a child, like to have time to feel like they are a family.  They seem to accept that as a good reason why they haven’t met her yet.  And honestly it rarely comes up.
So, I hope that her birthfather and I stay together forever and she will have the benefit of knowing us as a couple.  And I have no reason to believe that her parents would ever be divorced. But if they ever do divorce, it would not change whether or not I would have chosen them to be her parents.  We all have to live assuming the best.  Nothing is ever certain.  We make decisions based on the knowledge we have at the time, since no one can predict what the future holds.
So as sad and conflicted as I am, it is not because I chose adoption for my daughter.  It is because I haven't been able to have the openness in my adoption that I thought I would be able to enjoy.
But there is still time for that.  And I will continue to pray for all of our hearts to mend and for our relationship to grow.  And I am thankful that my children have the peace and understanding that they do for the sister they do not get to see yet.
Yes, that is a pained smile on J's face.  Sometimes it is hard to smile when your little brothers are driving you crazy.

A happy thought about adoption

I have had a tumultuous week.  Much drama with the ex-husband.  Snow days keeping the boys home from school. A work load that is crushing.

But as I sat on the floor in my office last night, sorting the mounds of paperwork I have let get away from me, I was struck by the thought that Brit has not had to live through any of this.  She has been with her mom and dad enjoying the life of being an only child who has parents whose world revolves around her needs.

If she was with me, things would have been very different.  We would have been living in the car, traveling between basketball practices, daycare, school meetings and shuttling between her birthfather's house and my house. 

I would probably have been short tempered because of all the stress that I have been dealing with.  And all of us who have parented a baby know, the baby is the first one to recognize your stress and add to it by being even more needy. :)

But Brit has been protected from all of that.  Her mom and dad make sure her world is a happy place.  They have time to play on the floor.  Her mom is right there when she wakes up from her nap.

It is weeks like this that I remember why I chose a different life for sweet little Brit.  She deserves all the attention she is getting. 

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Mothers love fiercely. And the grief truck hits hard.

I've had an interesting ride on the adoption roller coaster this week.  In retrospect, it has been a good ride even if not a single thing has actually changed.  As usual, I have just been forced to grow in understanding and compassion.

So, early this week I posted on a Kansas Adoption Group page and asked advice about what I might be able to do to help Brit's mom feel more comfortable opening up our adoption to the level that it used to be before baby girl was born.  Visits, phone calls, and above all else, sharing a friendship.  The online group consists of adoptive parents from Kansas and as far as I know, I am the only birthmother.

So the responses came from many different parents.  It even crossed state lines because the site moderator asked advice from other families from across the country who also have open adoptions.

Most people who responded were gracious and encouraging to me.  They wished me well and for the most part, many thought time might be the only way for this situation to remedy itself. Several gave me resources to support me until things change.  Thank you to all who did give me advice and encouragement.

But one person had a different perspective from everyone else.  Her advice to me was to stop public blogging and tell the parents that they don't need to send monthly email updates anymore until they feel like they want to.  She told me to set them free and protect their parenting privacy.

And I will admit to being taken aback by her comments.  Now, they were presented very kindly, so please don't think ill of her.  She was being honest and speaking from an adoptive mother's perspective.  Above all else, I respect honesty even when it is uncomfortable.  So instead of being angry, it made me reflective.

She mentioned that it could be very upsetting to Brit's mom if she ever read my blog.  I do not disagree with this.  She thought it might make mom feel like she was made out to be the "bad guy" in this relationship.  I hope this is never the case. 

I love Brit's mom.  She is to Brit what I wish I could be.  She snuggles precious Brit, consoles her when she cries, cares for her every need, and without a doubt, loves her dearly.  I know she loves Brit and she is a wonderful mother.  I also love who she is as a person.  I got to know her while I was pregnant and we became good friends.  I almost felt like I had gained another sister.

But I am sure that Brit's mom is depressed. I am depressed.  She grieves that she could not give birth to Brit. I grieve that I chose not to parent a daughter I gave birth to.  We both feel like we have lost something.

Isn't it ironic that the one thing that should bring us the greatest joy is also the one thing that has caused us the greatest pain?  I found parents for my daughter who will be able to give her all that I wanted for her.  They got the child they longed and prayed for.  And yet all four of us in this adoption situation have a broken heart.  We embody the bitter sweet of adoption.  Thankfully, our dear Brit only gets the sweet.  The love we all four have for her overflows.

So if mom reads my blog and it upsets her, I only hope it is because she hurts for me and my pain the same way my heart hurts for her and the grief she also lives with.  She cannot change her grief and/or depression any more than I can change mine.  Grief is what it is.  I own mine and she owns hers.

But the way that each of us is processing this grief puts us at completely opposing places.  If I had to guess about her feelings (since I don't know first hand), it seems she wants to draw in and protect the only thing she does posses, and that is her daughter.  And at the opposite side of the spectrum, I desperately want to share in the life of the one thing I also don't have, the daughter I gave birth to.

Neither one of us is wrong to feel the way that we do.  We are reacting out of love.  A deep, primitive love that mothers are born with.  It is the love that makes us good mothers to our children.

When I was pregnant with Brit, I had no idea how hard adoption would be.  And I am certain that Brit's mom had no idea that adoption would be anything but full of joy.  One of the things we both share right now is that we were unexpectedly hit by the grief truck.  And from the sounds of it, we both got hit hard.

I have no reason to believe that Brit's mom will ever see this blog.  And since all of the names have been changed (including Brit's) and no photos of them ever appear here, I think I am protecting their family privacy. 

This blog is about me as the birthmother.  The pictures are of a child that I gave birth to.  A child who will look like me as she gets older.  While I will never be her mother, I will always be her birthmother. 

Brit's story is still intertwined with mine.  Even if our adoption was closed.  We have a connection that legal paperwork cannot eliminate. 

I treasure every email and picture they share with me.  I cannot even imagine what it would be like not to have a monthly email to look forward to.  So until they tell me it is too painful, I will anticipate and covet every correspondence I do get from her parents.

I will never pretend like Brit does not exist.  I love her as much as if she were living with me.  A mother's love is fierce and absence does not make it fade.

So I will continue to blog.  And if you read this blog and cannot feel my love for Brit's mother, then let me say it clearly.  Just because mom isn't ready for me to have a relationship with Brit, does not mean I do not love her. 

I wish things were different.  And I am hurt.  I wanted things to be different.  But I understand.  We are women and with that comes complicated emotions.  We never know how we will react until the situation presents itself.  We think we know what we can handle.  But sometimes you just get hit by the grief truck.  And from the distance it looked like the answer to your prayers...

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A letter to me (what a birthmother should know)

Knowing what I know now, here are things I would have said to myself before I finalized the adoption of my daughter.


I know things are very hard for you right now.  Being pregnant with all of the emotions and physical toll it takes on a body is tough.  As if being a single parent isn't hard enough, being exhausted just makes everything seem so much harder.  Add the stress of a newly finalized divorce, a new relationship with a man who is still wounded from his own divorce, working full time, an ex husband who seemingly gets pleasure from making your life miserable, trying to keep yourself afloat financially, then top it off by being a middle aged woman facing an unplanned pregnancy in the community's lime light.  Any one of these would be tough, but all added together it seems insurmountable.

But remember to take one thing at a time.  Just because the father of this baby is not ready to commit to you doesn't mean that you can't do this.  And a baby right now is not ideal.  It would be complicating and difficult.  Everyone would have to sacrifice.  Financially it would be draining. Physically exhausting.  Emotionally trying.  You know all too well how much commitment raising a child entails.

But consider this.  The situation you are in now is temporary.  Sure it seems overwhelming, but each of those circumstances that keep you up at night are remedied with time.  And while it would be very hard, you really could get all the help you need from your family.  The boys are more responsible than you think.  And even if they don't say it, they would really like to have a little sister.  And they would help out.

If the stress of having a newborn causes a rift between you and C, then it wasn't meant to be.  Sure, neither of you planned on being at this point in your lives, but neither of you thought you would be divorced either.  Life is funny like that.  Sometimes blessings come in disguised packages.

And you are right, Brit deserves more than you can offer right now.  All of your kids deserve more.  Every child should grow up living with both of their parents married and parenting in the same house.  But the truth is that is the exception, not the norm anymore.  As sad as that is, it is reality.

But you are the kind of person who considers others.  Which is a great personality trait.  And a curse at the same time.  And your desire for something better for Brit is important.  You know that God intended for a father and mother to raise children together.  And whether that will be the case for Brit, only God will know.

So since you want more for her, and you think adoption is the best option for her and the children you are trying to raise on your own, then let me share some thoughts with you that you will not believe, but are reality.

As OK as you think you are with adoption, it will not be as easy as you think. I know you are a tough cookie.  And that you disguise your emotions very well.  But the truth be told, your heart is tender.  And you love easily.  And after that little girl is born, you will love her more than you can imagine.  Especially since you will have to love her from a distance.

You don't rely on your family enough.  They want to help you.  You do not have to do this alone.  You don't have to do ANYTHING alone.  Your sisters will help you.  They want to. Just ask them.  It doesn't come naturally to you, but try it.  You always help others, let someone help you.

While you think that you are going to be able to watch from a distance, it will be harder than you know.  It's not that you will want to take over and be the parent, but you will want to be involved.  Make sure that you choose a family who will include you and your boys.

Infertility is as life altering as an unplanned pregnancy.  Every girl thinks she knows how her future family will be formed.  She will fall in love, get married, get pregnant and have a little person who looks like her or her husband.  Some dream of big families and some dream of a boy and a girl.  But very rarely does a little girl dream about adopting a child/children to create a family.  That takes a maturity that few possess.  So infertile couples deal with the grief of not having children of their own, and they also struggle with the financial burden of adoption. Much the same way you are considering the impact a baby would change things for your right now.

Adoption is not for the weak at heart.  Adoption is best done by those who love Christ and believe that we are all children of God, adopted into His family by His grace.  Adoption doesn't work well with those who are possessive and want a child to be their own.  It is also hard for those who are not of "strong stock" as your friend Susie says.  You are of strong stock.  You are resilient.  Find another mother like you.  Someone who is willing to do what it takes even when it is hard.  Because adoption is hard.  For birthparents and adoptive parents.  Sharing doesn't come naturally to our human nature.  And being possessive is a natural instinct for parents.  Maturity and faith are what make adoption the beautiful thing it can be.  But without both, it will be a struggle.

Choose a family who believes children cannot be loved by too many people.  Children want to know where they come from and you need to find a family who will honor that natural desire.  And instead of waiting for the child to ask, they will create an environment where the child knows she is loved by lots of people.  Her parents, grandparents, friends and birthfamily. 

Be deliberate and don't just wait to see what happens.  Talk about things that may seem uncomfortable at the time.  Don't think things will just work themselves out over time.  Adoption is beautiful but also uncomfortable.  No one wants to share their child with someone else.  So sometimes the adults in the relationship will have to do things that they never thought they would.  Like letting a birthmother visit her child even when she is hurting from her adoption loss.  We don't like to see others in pain, but sometimes we all have to do things that push our comfort level way outside our desired boundaries.  Only faith can help us do that.  Choose a family who is willing to be uncomfortable for the sake of their child.  Choose a family who cherishes your role in the life of the child. You may not be the mother, but you will forever be the birthmother.  No legal document will change that.  Find a family who is willing to respect that and embrace it.

Make sure the parents you choose have accepted that their family will be created through adoption.  Be sure that they have surrendered to God their preconceived notions of what their family will look like  A beautiful example of this is a couple from church who have a child adopted from China, another adopted from India and a heart for a child from Ethiopia.  The mom said "If we were hung up on having children who looked like us, we would have spent our time and money on fertility treatments.  But instead, we realized that God wanted our family to be different.  We love the fact that our children don't look alike.  We want a family of kids who are uniquely their own."  How mature.  They trusted God to create their family.  And He did.  Yet their children are just like them.  They are fun, easy going and uniquely individual.  And whether they have their mother's eyes is not the most important thing to them.  They are a family.  Brown and yellow, black and white. Literally.

If you choose adoption, you are relinquishing your "rights".  You will not see her first steps, hear her first word, feed her first food, kiss her scraped knee.  Those are treasures for a mother.  By choosing adoption for your child, you are giving all those experiences to her mother.  It will hurt.  You will mourn the loss.  Even when celebrating with her family, a piece of your heart will hurt.  Pictures will be painful.  You will see your face in the pictures of your child hugging and kissing her mom.  Yet, you wanted that kind of love and relationship for her. The reason you are choosing adoption is because you want the very best for your child.  Remember that when the pain seems unbearable.

Adoption can be beautiful.  It is an unselfish choice.  It puts your child's needs above your own.  Yes, you could parent.  But just because you can, doesn't mean you should.  Being able to get pregnant is a gift and sometimes it is not intended to be YOUR gift. 

There is no right answer.  But if you still choose adoption for your daughter, know there will be pain.  Know that you will forever hurt.  It will define you.  But it is not about you.  It is about that little girl.  Is it better for her to have two parents who love her to the moon and back, or is it more important that she be with her biological family?  Family is who you choose to love.  There is no perfect answer.  We are imperfect people who make decisions outside of God's will.  And there are consequences to those decisions.

Ask questions.  Don't worry so much about hurting feelings that it keeps you from talking about the important things.  This is an irrevocable decision.  Be sure.  Trust God.  PRAY. And after you make the decision, trust that God will provide during the times of excruciating pain.  Because only God can comfort the kind of pain you will feel.

And if you choose the right parents for your child, your family will grow.  Your love will expand and you will not lose a child, but gain more family.  Be picky, because you are choosing a relationship for the rest of your life. 

There is no perfect answer.  God wanted something different for you, but you made choices outside His will.  And despite that, He can make something beautiful from your poor choices.  Trust that He can orchestrate better than you could ever hope to control. 

Whatever you choose, know that God loves you and wanted only the best for you.  And even if you didn't follow His will for your life, He can make something beautiful from your circumstances.

This is by far the hardest thing you will ever do and trusting that God will provide is the only way that it will be bearable.  And by God's grace your daughter will appreciate that you made the decision to provide the best for her.

Be strong and trust God to provide even in times of grief.