This guest post is by Deanna Kahler, an adoptive mother and author.
Do you believe in fate or destiny? Have you ever felt led to a certain path? Many adoptive parents will tell you they believe their child was meant to be with them, that they were guided to adoption — often years before they realized it.
I’m convinced this was the case with me. Here’s why.
My family and I are planning to move, so naturally I’ve been cleaning out drawers and closets. The other day, I found a story I had written when I was in 8th grade, titled “The Power of Love.” Curious, I decided to read it.
In the story, I described a sad, lonely girl whose parents had abandoned her. She lived on her own in the woods, feeling unloved and unwanted.
She found purpose in caring for an injured bird, but the sadness again returned when the bird was healthy and she had to set it free. Imagine my surprise when a family who later found the girl decided to adopt her. I had written an adoption story at age 13!
Let me first say that I have never been abandoned or adopted. Yet I felt compelled to write a story about it. Somehow, I knew — even at a young age — that adoption could transform lives and that the love of a forever family could give a child a safe and secure home.
What I didn’t know was that 23 years later, my husband and I would adopt our precious daughter. This short story was the beginning of my journey towards adoption.
And there’s more. For years, I had received subtle signs that adoption was in my future. I just didn’t know it at the time. For example:
As a teen, I became good friends with an adoptee, which allowed me to see firsthand the love and strong relationships she had with her adoptive family. Her parents also had a biological child.
The siblings were treated the same, and my friend said she always felt like she belonged in this family. This was my first bit of proof that you can love a child not born to you as your own.
One of my best childhood friends told me her biological father was abusive and an alcoholic. Her mother remarried and her stepfather ended up adopting her. I was given another example of how adoption can change lives and create strong, healthy, loving families.
In high school, a girl who was new to the school started sitting with me on the bus. She seemed troubled and when I asked what was wrong, she confided that she had given birth to a baby boy and placed him for adoption.
For many weeks, I offered her my listening ear and a shoulder to cry on. In the process of helping her, I learned all about the complex emotions birthmothers experience as well their lifelong grief and overwhelming love for their children.
By the time I was a junior in high school, I had written my first article on adoption to help educate others.
The interesting part is: I never set out to learn about adoption. However, the people who were placed in my life shared their experiences and helped me develop a better understanding and appreciation for it.
By the time I miscarried twice in my 30s, my path was clear: I was meant to be a mother through adoption. God had a plan all along.
Deanna Kahler is a proud mom and freelance writer with more than 20 years of professional experience. She has written for several adoption websites and is the author of the award-winning book, From Pain to Parenthood: A Journey Through Miscarriage to Adoption. When she’s not busy educating and inspiring others, Deanna enjoys hanging out in parks and spending time with her family. Check out her webpage at www.deannakahler.com.
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