We’re sorry, baby.
Your prospects recently changed dramatically, and not for the better, we fear.
(Although we’d love to be wrong about that.)
We’re not sure our paths will ever cross again, so consider this our note of apology for what we were not able to do to shield you from the rougher roads that may lie ahead in life.
Your parents had gotten out of prison not long before their first visit to our office (and yours.)
They were living at the local homeless shelter, when your pregnant mom and one of the guys that could be your father contacted our adoption agency about making a placement plan.
Some agencies might have seen them as “too sketchy,” but Abrazo gave them the benefit of the doubt because they definitely needed help.
Both of them had lost custody of their other kids. Both have long substance abuse histories and neither was responsive to available treatment options.
None of that is your fault, little one. You didn’t cause their problems, and you certainly can’t fix them. (And neither could we, it seems.)
We did try. We pulled out all our best social service resources. Highly-trained counselors and devoted social workers met with them weekly, while providing them with months of options counseling and housing and medical care and transportation to appointments and encouragement and support.
Ultimately, they chose an open adoption plan for your future, and everyone involved became part of a team they’d chosen to be a part of your future life story.
They chose somebody very special to be on their team, as well. It was a childless couple with infertility, who truly believed in your parents and saw the good in them, and wanted to see them succeed in life.
These were the people whose voices and laughter you may recall in the far recesses of your prenatal memories, for they spent time with your folks throughout the pregnancy. It was they who chose to use their life savings to help your parents out, as allowed by law. They went into this eyes wide open, knowing that their help was nothing more than an act of charity that could not and should not guarantee them a baby, much as they hoped they might get to be your parents.
Your mother has been through adoption before, so she did know the ropes. She’d also reneged on adoption before, so she knew those ropes, as well. The couple who’d hoped to become part of your forever family knew this, but they really liked your folks so they wanted to help them, regardless.
Everyone knows that expectant parents who explore adoption options have every right to change their mind prior to relinquishment, if they believe doing so is in their child’s best interests.
There is, however, a right (and a wrong) way to go about it. And we would all have rejoiced, had this couple taken the necessary steps to turn things around. (If any readers may be in a similar boat and wondering what that list might look like, start here: get a job. Get your GED. Stop drinking. Quit huffing. Go into treatment. Take parenting classes. Make some real changes. Any real changes.)
But they didn’t do that. And in that respect, we feel that we failed them (and you) because we couldn’t inspire them to stabilize their lives as they needed to, for your sake. (Sorry, baby.)
That’s what made the events of your birthday week all the more wrenching.
Because right before you were to be born, your parents flew the coop, without warning. They split town, abandoning their placement plan and forever altering the course of your future in ways that worry and scare us all. Some folks they know told the agency they planned this all along, but we hope not.
We do know they love you, and we all understand completely why they want to keep you with them, despite the risks that you may inevitably end up in Child Protective Services’ care sooner or later.
We just wish they’d gone about this in a different way– that’s all.
And we sure hope you’re going to be okay, no matter what.
We wish you had more security and more stability as your life starts out. We wish you could go home from the hospital to a home of your own, with parents who are truly prepared to put your needs before their own issues. We wish we had been able to better balance our hopes for their potential with the realities of their history. We wanted to believe in them but that didn’t safeguard your future.
Granted, that’s the parents’ job to do– to anticipate your needs and protect you at all costs. And we are not your parents, nor is our hopeful adoptive couple going to be. They’re not giving up, however. A failed adoption match can’t cancel out their longing to become parents. They’ll go on to find whatever child is truly meant to become theirs.
That won’t be you, though. We’ll all still continue to worry about you, regardless. We’ve done what we could for you and your folks, but our dreams for you have fallen far short, and all we can do now is move on and hope for the best.