This guest post is by Jessica Lambert-Villa, a birthmother.
I was 19 years old and had no direction in my life besides going up another year in age.
I worked at a local coffee shop that served everyone from wandering vagabonds to pageant queens .
I admired them all. They all seemed to have a purpose or passion that drove them to get out of bed everyday while I contemplated more than enough reasons to stay in bed.
I never made my own footsteps, only followed down the trudged path.
That path lead me to a dark valley that I never thought I could escape from. But I did.
My journey out of that dark valley started on the morning I found out I was pregnant.
I cried. I hyperventilated. I panicked. I was flooded with thoughts and drowned in fears.
“I have to get an abortion,” I told myself. “I can’t do this. How could I do this? Maybe I won’t tell, no one will know. One quick painless procedure right? That’s what I will do, its a perfect plan.”
The only problem was I didn’t want an abortion.
But I also didn’t want to be “just another pregnant teenager”.
So I made an appointment to get an abortion, but at the same time made an appointment with my general doctor.
“Seeing how your cycles are, you’re probably only 2 weeks along,” my general doctor said.
“Two weeks. That’s all. No big deal.” I told myself. “That makes the abortion easier, right?”
My appointment for my abortion was quickly approaching, and my heart grew anxious because I knew what I wanted, and it didn’t involve aborting the pregnancy.
I woke up on the day of my appointment for my procedure to a message from my doctor asking me to come back for an ultrasound. He had a hunch that I may be further along than previously assumed.
“169 beats per minute, about 6 weeks along,” the doctor stated to the nurse after he looked at the results.
Time seemed to stop as I looked at the monitor and saw a beautiful beating heart.
“That’s my baby.” was all I could say.
After that appointment I went home to announce I was going to have a baby. I was full of joy and excitement. I was going to have a baby!
But then reality sank in.
“Can I do this? Raise a baby on minimum wage and a high school diploma? Am I well enough emotionally?”
All these questions flooded my mind, everyday, constantly.
And on top of theses questions, there were others from doctors, nurses and midwifes.
I was handed brochures on why a father is so important, was told by my midwife to abort, and was generally reminded how alone I was.
I went back and forth on whether to make an adoption plan or not.
I was scared. What choice was the right choice?
I soon had dreams upon dreams of God telling me that my baby and I would be stronger than a lion’s pride and have voices as loud as a lion’s roar.
But all I could think was: how?
Every mother wants the absolute best for her child. But I had to face reality that maybe it wouldn’t be with me.
After many sleepless nights and counseling sessions with local pregnancy centers, I decided to make an adoption plan for my baby girl.
I didn’t know anything about adoption. All I knew is one lucky couple could possibly wake up with a baby in a basket on their doorstep.
But I soon realized that’s not how it happens. Despite what you hear in the media, making the decision to have your child adopted is not easy.
It is so emotionally taxing, almost unbearable. But in the end, I did it.
I only met with one potential adoptive family, but from that one meeting I knew they were the ones.
A father, mother, and two older sisters for my baby girl. A family with such a huge heart for children as they also did foster care.
They were on fire to serve God and live for Him. But the amazing thing is they not only opened their heart to my baby, they opened it to my whole family.
Our motto is: “Adoption: adored and loved by both families.”
We decided on an open adoption plan—simply meaning our baby would grow up knowing she has a mom and a birth mom.
As the arrival of our baby girl approached, Amy, the adoptive mother, and I decided to work together to pick a name.
We sat together and looked at many web sites of baby names and articles and finally had our favorites. Mine were Rebecca and Reba, Amy’s were: Isabella, and Aria.
Once I heard how beautiful her names were I forgot about mine, so now it was time to choose.
She said she loved Aria, and that it meant lioness in Hebrew. (Remember I said I had many dreams of lions?)
My heart stopped, and I instantly started to cry.
Throughout the long process of the adoption plan, as I wondered whether or not I was making the right decision and if God was happy with my decision, that moment confirmed for me that God was walking with me by my side the whole time.
Through all the sleepless nights, and the heartache, He was there, knitting our story together in ways neither of us could imagine.
On May 16th 2014 I gave birth to the beautiful Aria Isabella.
My goal is to help educate men and woman about adoption and other options they may have, and that they are not alone.
I want pregnancy centers and hospitals to ask “Are you considering adoption?” first, rather than “Are you considering abortion?”
When someone is in a dark valley and you can be that light that helps them find their “roar,” it can change the world.
Jessica Lambert-Villa is a birthmother.
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