First Name: Nancy
Location: Moses Lake, Washington 98837
Your Adoption Journey: Well I was 16 and engaged to be married. My fiance was 2 years ahead of me in high school and he went away to basic training in the Army. I was almost a candidate for the 'I didn't know I was pregnant' book; in fact I am so happy to hear about others that can have such heavy denial as I had. Anyway I did find out I was pregnant about 7 months into my pregnancy. I did not know what to do; my mother and father had me when they were 17 years old in 1958; now they were divorced and had 6 children. My mom worked a lot and I found myself raising my brothers at a young age. I was considering adoption or keeping the child (a girl as it turns out). I told her father that 1) I was pregnant and 2) I wanted to break off our relationship. At first he could not leave fast enough and was relieved, but then he wanted to create our own family and felt he could support us on his military salary. I saw my mother's life pass before my eyes...6 children by the time she was 26 years old. Yes I had bought and paid for my 'ticket' but now I wanted OFF the train! So I told him that no I could not marry him and that I was going to adopt our child to someone who wanted her and could care for her.
I did not want to burden my mother and stepfather and brothers with doctor bills, so I elected to live with my father who lived near Madigan Army Medical Hospital, where I received free medical care during the rest of my pregnancy and birth of my daughter. Thank God my grandma lived in the same trailer park as I did, as my father was gone a lot. I went to an alternative high school and did graduate on time and everything. I missed my family terribly. My former fiance sometimes took me to the doctor and was very kind to me and he still wanted to be a family so he was very sad. I was very strong as I knew that life was not for me.
I gave birth to my daughter on December 23rd or 24th in the early morning hours at Madigan in 1975. I don't remember as they felt sorry for my being alone giving birth to a child I was giving up for adoption at Christmas time so I was drugged to the gills. The Catholic Child Services agency that I went through for the adoption told me that I should not hug my daughter so when I saw her (she looked just like her father with no teeth) and I felt like crying, I said I was tired and needed to go back to my room.
Because I was confused about the difference between grief and regret, I did not grieve for my daughter until I was 36 years old, when in early December my memory was triggered and luckily I had a friend who would counsel me every week for months. As I grieved for my first daughter I was able to be closer to my second daughter who was now 3 years old. She does know she has a half sister somewhere in the world. I have never regretted my decision to adopt my first daughter to someone who was ready and capable of caring for her. I have a brother who was not able to have children of his own and I have met many adoptees and parents of adoptees and a few birth mothers. I feel that adoption is over-looked in the fight about abortion.
Thank you for letting me tell you my story. I am glad that both Darryl and Sarah are successful adoptees.