Mother’s Day & Adoption: Celebrating All Moms This Mother’s Day

There is a famous quote that goes, “Mothers hold their children’s hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.” No matter how a woman became a mother, and no matter when she did, there is something to be said about her love for her children. A mother’s love is unconditional, understanding, and unending— wherever she or her children might be.

birth mothers day

This Mother’s Day, we would like to celebrate all the women who carry a mother’s love. All the women who we carry within our hearts. We would like to honor the strength, the courage, and the selflessness that goes into being a mother, whether by birth or by adoption.

The second Sunday in May marks Mother’s Day. On May 13, 2018, many of us will take time to recognize our mothers and the mother-like figures in our lives. This year, Adoptions With Love would like to remind you that every mother has a different story. There is not one single thing that defines a mother, and there are many types of mothers out there. We would like to celebrate them all. This Mother’s Day, we will be honoring:

  • The women who became mothers through adoption
  • The women who became mothers through birth
  • The women who selflessly made an adoption plan, to give their children the best possible lives
  • The women who are praying and waiting to become mothers for the first time
  • The women who have experienced the loss of a child
  • The women who are guardians, teachers, and mentors for children
  • The women who lovingly helped raise children in foster care
  • The women who parented their grandchildren or other family members
  • The women who have financially sponsored children

This holiday, we would like to especially acknowledge those women who made motherhood possible for adoptive families all over the country; the women who made careful, thought-out, and loving adoption plans in the best interests of their children; the women who we often refer to as “birth mothers.”

 “They are not kidding when they say that mothers are strong women. We need to be strong in more ways than our children will ever know.” — M.B. ANTEVASIN

Adoption is the most difficult sacrifices a mother can make for her baby. It requires great strength and consideration. It is often one of the best choices she can make for her child’s future. If you are considering adoption or have recently placed your baby for adoption, know that you are not alone.

One birth mother who placed through Adoptions With Love shares, “Whoever is thinking about making an adoption plan, it will no doubt be the hardest decision in your life, you’ll have your good days along with your bad, but when it comes down to it, it’s the greatest thing I have ever done in my life. Knowing I helped complete someone’s family and also gained a family of my own is the best feeling.”

This time of year can be bittersweet for many birth moms, whether they have recently made an adoption plan or placed twenty-so years ago. Along with love, Mother’s Day can stir feelings of loss. If you made the choice of adoption and are experiencing difficult emotions, here is advice from some birth mothers who have walked in similar shoes:

“I think the most helpful thing I ever heard or said on the subject was that no matter what choice you make – whether you raise your child yourself or choose adoption – you still gave birth to them, and that makes you a mother. Being a birth mother doesn’t make you less of a mother than a woman who raises her own child, or less of a mother than a woman who adopts. You are all mothers, and being different kinds of mothers is okay.” – Chloe

“The best advice I think I could give to other birth mothers is try to think of the positives on this day. I know for some it can be very emotional, but just think to yourself how you and the child will always share a special bond and be a part of each other. The day shouldn’t be about grieving your decision, but knowing you did what was right for your child and that, even though you aren’t their mother figure, you are a special person to them in more ways than one.” – Brittney

“My advice to you dealing with all the emotions during this time is to just remember most importantly, it’s okay to have these feelings. And for me, this year is my second Mother’s Day and I don’t have all of the sad ‘what if’ feelings anymore. It takes time and every person deals with things in their own way. When I was feeling down around this time last year, I asked for pictures of my daughter and just had a conversation with my adoptive mom asking if anything new has happened, how their weekend was… little things to put a smile on my face!” – Kaelyn

Recognizing Birth Mothers This Mother’s Day, and Everyday

Women who chose adoption for their babies are often called “birth mothers.” Some women feel this is the most accurate term, while others do not feel the title is as intimate as their role. This is a deeply personal opinion. Many birth mothers choose to take on special names as their adoption plans evolve. For example, one woman who made an open adoption plan at Adoptions With Love gained a very special title after the birth of her son: Mère, which means “mother” in French. In the hospital, she was struggling with the question of who she would become to her baby. What would he call her as he grows up? It was soon after her mom received a text message from his adoptive mom:

“We were talking about names for Erica, so she has a title to Aiden too. We thought of “Mom” in a foreign language, like French, since it is part of their heritage. We thought he could say “Mère” or something similar. It’s just an idea, and we are open to anything, but we wanted to make sure that there is a title special just for Erica.”

As soon as Erica heard this title, she knew who she was and who she would be in her son’s life. You can read her full story, “Becoming Mère,” here. Here are what some other birth moms at AWL said of their identity and role as a “birth mom”:

 “[Birth mother] is the easiest explanation, the simplest term. I think of my daughter as my daughter, but I hardly ever think of myself as her mother. The parents I chose for her are her mother and father. When my daughter cries for Mom, it isn’t me she’s asking for. And that’s okay. ‘Birth mother’ is an easy way to separate that; that she’s my daughter, but she is also someone else’s daughter.” – Chloe

“I do identify with the term ‘birth mother.’ One thing I don’t want, though, is for my daughter to go by that when recognizing me – meaning she calls her dad “dad,” nana “nana,” her mom “momma.” I don’t want to be called “birth mom” or by my first name. It’s important to me to be something special to identify me.” – Kaelyn

Some birth moms and adoptive families will even celebrate “Birth Mother’s Day,” which falls on the Saturday before Mother’s Day. Others prefer to celebrate as mothers together on Sunday. This varies depending on the adoption arrangement – open or closed – and personal feelings. Here are what some birth moms had to say about the idea of “Birth Mother’s Day”:

“I do think that birth mothers are mothers, and that we need to educate people and help them understand that we’re mothers, even though we aren’t raising our children.” – Chloe

I think that although my child isn’t living with me and I’m not actually raising her, it doesn’t make me less of a mother to be recognized on a separate day than others.” – Brittney

“I think [Birth Mother’s Day] is a great way to recognize us and the decision we made. I like that it is separate from Mother’s Day because the way I look at it is, we are separate from the role our mother’s play and from the role the adoptive mother of our child plays.” – Bianca

“I believe it’s very important for all moms to celebrate, regardless of being a birth mom, adoptive mom, etc. We are all mothers and, depending on each individual’s situation, some birth mothers with closed adoptions don’t get the opportunity to receive a phone call from their adoptive family saying, “Happy Mother’s Day.” Many people don’t recognize the sacrifice we make as birth mothers, so I definitely believe we deserve a day for us.” – Kaelyn

On the subject of Mother’s Day, they also revealed:

“It’s still hard for me to relate to Mother’s Day since I don’t do all the normal motherly duties. With that being said, I feel like I almost take it as any other day but, celebrating my mom of course and thinking of my son a little extra. The day itself does not make me sad; it reminds of the place I hold in my son’s life and how we will always be a part of each other.” – Bianca

“I would like to be recognized just by a simple “happy Mother’s Day.” I don’t need gifts or anything fancy because I couldn’t ask for anything else. I do hope that when my daughter is older she’ll send a handmade card just like I did when I was younger for my mother!” – Kaelyn

A Mother’s Love

Famous actress Sophia Loren once said, “When you are a mother, you are never really alone in your thoughts. A mother always has to think twice, once for herself and once for her child.” This statement could not be truer. No matter what kind of mother you are, no matter where you are in relation to your child, he or she is a piece of you. You never truly stop thinking about your child, and that makes you a mom. As one birth mother told Adoptions With Love:

I think that as mothers, we think about our babies all the time. My daughter crosses my mind every single day. Sometimes as a quick passing reference, sometimes in deep thought. But she’s there somewhere every day. So I really wish that adoption and being a birth mother weren’t such taboo subjects, because it’s so much healthier and easier when we can talk about all the conflicting emotions that come with being birth moms!”

Adoption is a sacrifice that requires a mother’s strength, bravery, and most of all, love. Adoption creates families. Whether you are a birth mom who needs someone to talk to, are considering adoption for your baby, or would like to adopt, please contact Adoptions With Love at 1-800-722-7731.

*For the purpose of anonymity, all names have been changed

 

 


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