Nevertheless, She Persisted
The words “nevertheless, she persisted” recently uttered by a lawmaker in Washington, D.C. were intended as a rebuke of a congressional colleague, yet instead, have become a rallying cry for females all across America.
Upon seeing and hearing this quote, however, we cannot help but think not of warring Senate colleagues arguing over presidential appointments, but of other women we know: women who may never draw the attention (nor ire) of wealthy white male lawmakers, yet from whom they could almost certainly learn a thing or two.
Because here at Abrazo, we know countless women and girls who have faced enormous hardship and untold challenges, yet found the courage to conquer them with resilience, foresight and grace.
Nevertheless, she resisted.
We think of the adoptive mothers we have been blessed to know, who were discouraged by years of failed infertility treatments, and doctors who charged them much, yet helped them little. They surely had every reason to give up on their dreams of motherhood and “just focus on your career instead,” as others suggested they should do.
(Nevertheless, she resisted. And the children they are now parenting by adoption are surely better for it.)
We think of the panicked expectant mothers who have called us, bowled over by the news of an unwanted pregnancy at the worst possible time. They told us they’d been told by their baby’s fathers (and others) to terminate their pregnancies and get “rid of the problem.”
(Nevertheless, she resisted. And the children to whom they gave birth were given the gift of life, as a result.)
We think of mothers doing their best in the midst of what seem to be the worst of circumstances, who were unwilling to see their children warehoused in state foster care nor drag their children through shelters, and thus made the ultimate sacrifice instead, by choosing adoption. “Don’t give your kids up,” their friends may have urged them, warning that they’d regret it all their lives and never recover from the grief.
(Nevertheless, she resisted. And through open adoption, she and her children are all in a truly better place now, as a result.)
We think of the women who have come here and done the kind of child-centered adoptions that put the needs of children first, despite the lucrative offers of baby brokers and greedy adoption lawyers that told them they could get money under the table for giving their baby to the highest bidder, if they would just “fudge a little” on the ethics of the arrangements.
(Nevertheless, she resisted, and the child she placed can be proud of the ethical adoption that was done here, instead of ashamed over having a victim of child trafficking.)
Nevertheless, she insisted.
We’re reminded, likewise, of the adoptive moms we know who were “warned” about open adoption and who had even well-intentioned social workers or others cautioning them about not getting “too close” to the birthparents, for fear of getting hurt or disappointed. They knew the risks of an adoption planning falling through, and they knew their own apprehensions about feeling like anything less than a real mom.
(Nevertheless, she insisted, and by honoring her child’s birthfamily’s place in their lives, she has given her child both roots and wings.)
We’re reminded of the women we know who had high hopes for their child’s open adoption, yet whose hopes were crushed when the other party was unable or unwilling to keep in contact as planned. “Move on with your life, don’t keep trying if they don’t respond,” some might have told them.
(Nevertheless, she insisted, and eventually, her efforts to leave the door open did result in long-awaited communication which has proven invaluable to not just the adults involved, but the children, too.)
We’re reminded of the adoptees we know, who continue to be denied access to their original birth certificates here in Texas, simply because more than 21 years ago, they were placed for adoption, thus they are denied their civil rights to access the unaltered legal documentation of their birth. “Just be grateful for your adoption and don’t look back,” women have been routinely advised by threatened adopters and archaic senators protecting their own interests.
(Nevertheless, she insisted, and it is only because of her commitment to the truth that she and other adoptees may eventually succeed in convincing Texas Legislature to implement laws for much-needed adoption reform here in the Lone Star State.)
We’re reminded of the birthmothers we love, who have had to think and rethink the painful adoption choices they once made on behalf of their children. Sometimes, understandably, they are their own worst enemies, when they cannot forgive themselves for having been unable or unready to parent. And sometimes, they’re bombarded by the short-sighted criticism and hind-sighted perspective from those around them, who seek to control them through guilt and shame. Occasionally, too, they find their decisions questioned by the adoptees, themselves, for whom ‘the other grass’ (on the biological side) may sometimes seem greener.
(Nevertheless, she insisted that she’d done her best by her child in making the decision she did, and we embrace the power of her convictions.)
May we all learn from them, and may it be said of every woman reading this, someday, that despite all the hardships she has faced in the past– and will in the future– “nevertheless, she persisted!”