GOD HAS MERCY TOWARDS HIS CHILDREN
The story you are about to read is real. The people, places, and events are real. No part of this record is fabricated or enhanced. Only those names that would invade the privacy of someone else have been changed. This was written by the administrator of Christian Adoption, Deborah S. Hill. This is only part of her story, quest, and deliverance to motherhood. Information and details pertinent to this particular sharing are included. It is the hope of the writer that every reader is encouraged, enlightened, and exhorted to continue to
Trust in God for his or her every need.
November 20, 1999
March 1968/Cleveland, Ohio
I was 15 years old and there was no doubt that I was pregnant. My boyfriend's parents discovered our secret by reading one of my notes I had written and passed to Darren after school. He as well as they, had only one suggestion--abortion. His mother worked for the airlines, so she figured she could get a cheap flight to Jamaica for the procedure. They were willing to share the cost with my parents. Only my parents did not know and I was going to keep the secret as long as possible. I had devised a plan--I wanted to place this Caucasian baby with a Christian family--adoption was my only consideration.
I had terrible bouts with morning sickness, and often had to leave my freshman classes to get to a bathroom. I knew it was only a matter of time before my mother found out. But, I had a plan. I would go live with my father in Chicago for over a year. Have the baby, place the child, attend my sophomore year of high school there and then return to Cleveland. Although my parents had been divorced for 8 years and I loved my father, I was not excited about living with him, but it was a logical choice.
In early May, I attended my older sister's wedding in Dallas. I felt miserable and ashamed. I started to show early and was glad that my empire waistline bridesmaid dress was a good cover up. I had learned how to hide my emotions at an early age, but it was much more challenging at her wedding and with the raging hormones of pregnancy. On the flight home, I spent more time in the bathroom than in my seat. I was sick over and over again and could not stop. My mother began to suspect something. The dreaded moment of telling her was fast approaching. Within a week of our return from Texas, I sat down and with embarrassment and humiliation revealed my almost 3 month old secret. Her response was not what I was expecting.
Abortion, legal or illegal was her reply--there were no options. Adoption was out of the question. Then began a series of trips to psychiatrists to try to prove that I was insane so a legal abortion could be performed. One huge problem with this plan--I wasn't insane, just pregnant. Scared, lonely, sad, guilt-ridden, sick, embarrassed, humiliated, withdrawn, and emotional--but not insane. Every interview brought my mother more distress and seemed to drive her to plan the unthinkable. I was now into my 4th month and she had decided that since legal wouldn't work--illegal would. We faked a college school-hunting trip with all of the family and traveled to Oklahoma to make connections. We had already been advised that I was too far into my pregnancy to consider abortion--but it did not matter--there would be no baby. Sadness filled my heart and soul but like a caged animal I complied.
At dawn on an early, semi-warm June morning, my mother drove me to an outside corner room of a motel in Tulsa. Two men dressed in black suits knocked on the door and entered. My mother handed them an envelope of cash and they took me away. My sense of worth to my mother was in that envelope--at least that is what it symbolized to me. (I would spend the next 25 years of my life wrestling with that one gesture.) A hat was placed on my head, blackened sunglasses so I could not see, and a blindfold was tied around my neck to prevent peripheral vision. I was told to lie down on the floor boards in the backseat. Then we picked up another girl at another location and we were not allowed to speak. It seemed like we drove in circles until we came into a residential neighborhood, pulling into a garage with an automatic opener. (It is amazing what you can decipher when you cannot see--but hear.)
We were drugged immediately and put into separate rooms in this house. I could hear doors opening and closing, feet on carpeted floors, crying, and moaning. I concluded there were 4-6 other girls in different rooms. When they came to get me, I was so doped up I couldn't focus on the person's face. I knew it was a man leading me into a large room. After being strapped down on a white-sheeted table and just before they placed a mask over my face I clearly and distinctly begged them "Please don't kill me." I awoke with uncontrollable chills and pain. More drugs were injected and in a dream-like state I was taken back to my room to get dressed. When I was dropped off at the motel, my mother seemed relieved but she was visibly angry. "Give her some sugar and lots of fluids today. Don't let her lift anything to prevent hemorrhaging." And the 2 black suited men left without a trace. My mother's disdain for my behavior was apparent by day's end. When we returned to my grandmother's house in a small town of Oklahoma, she insisted that I carry loaded boxes from the house to the garage. She ordered me to carry ladders; more loaded boxes, to lift and carry anything and everything she could find for me to haul outside. With intense disapproval she commanded me to lift, carry, and be quiet. I stayed quiet and it remained a hidden secret for the next 25 years. It became obvious that I was going to pay for my sexual ignorance for the rest of her natural life.
How could a mother do this to her daughter? I asked myself that question thousands of times. That unacceptable mistake that cost my mother's emotions so dearly--cost me the ability to ever bear children. One person's decision for another, one parent's choice for their child resulted in mental, emotional, and physical devastation. Two weeks later I turned 16 and with that birthday, I turned to drugs, alcohol, and promiscuity. Without my mother's love and approval, I didn't care much about my life anymore. An intense desire to have a baby burned in my soul. I became pregnant again and miscarried a perfectly formed fetus that was well into the 4th month of development. ("Dear God, I don't know who you are, but I know that you exist. Will I ever have a baby to call my own?") This fueled my fire to be even more disobedient. I'd climb out of windows at night and run the streets. I'd push the car out of the driveway and down the street to start it and drive around for hours. I'd hitch hike across the country and attend Peace conferences in Washington D.C. It was the late 60's/early 70's and there were no rules. I would go just about anywhere with Darren, dabbling in drugs along the way, and with a 'who cares what anyone thinks' attitude. I ran away from home and became trapped in a snowstorm on my way to New York. I had no fear of what happened to me because I had no sense of worth. The secret continued to devour me from the inside out and left me as an empty shell. Countless times God spared my life and protected me from terrible evils and death laced dangers. There was no hope, no future, no confidence, and no security. But I knew that one day I wanted a baby--my baby that I could love and cherish for the rest of my life. (Less than a year later, my sister had a healthy baby girl that I knew would have been just months younger than my child. Her birth was a blessing but plagued me. And although she was my niece and adorable, I could never fully embrace her--it just hurt too much.)
Living options? I could live with my younger sister, mother, and stepfather--who spent most of his time around us naked or barely dressed. He was the most despicable man I had ever met. Our house was filthy with encrusted dog feces in the carpets, animal urine everywhere, and countless amounts of cockroaches. (How well I remember coming downstairs late at night for a snack and turning on the kitchen light to find hundreds of crawling cockroaches. I used to keep a hammer on the counter and hit them as they walked by my food.) My mother excelled at 3 tasks and did them faithfully; pay bills when there was money, cook, and sew. However any kind of home maintenance like dishwashing, cleaning, washing, ironing, scrubbing, most of the yard work, car washing was done by one of us 3 girls--or it did not get done. I always felt hungry and would cringe whenever I visited my father in Chicago--leftovers were not acceptable and seeing all that good food, expensive food going down the disposal each night would cause me to shudder. I could have moved into my father's mansion and lived with my step brother, half brother, half sister, and stepmother. But, my father was a womanizer and had other women in the house regularly, without any shame or hesitation. This kept my stepmother drinking dry martinis from sunrise to sunset. I could understand her pain and some of these women were girls really--often younger than I was. He had his mistresses and he had the money to lure and to pay them for services rendered. With every visit there was incest by one of my brothers and the other practiced witchcraft in the basement. (Satanic rituals with levitation and the so called 'white arts', which my Dad found highly entertaining and innocent.) My younger half-sister was the bright spot in my visits and I thank God for the many hours of fun we had together. How good God was to give me such a fun playmate that was almost 11 years younger than I was. I cared for her as a baby as my very own and loved her dearly. (Thanks be to God that through the years I was able to witness God's Word to her and that she became born again. Years later she committed suicide, but I know I will see her again one day.) My life had no rules, no church, no prayer, no standard of truth for right and wrong, no fundamental values, no ethics, no hope, no future, no religion, no Bible teaching, and no security. Ozzie & Harriet were a fictitious TV show and nothing more. What I wanted more than anything in life was a sense of family, a sense of belonging, and order. I became hardened, embittered, hopeless, and daring. I was a cut-up with my sarcastic tongue and cynical wit. My tongue became a weapon for attention.
At 18, I moved out of my mother's house and started a new life. Clean floors, clean bathroom, and an odor free/orderly bedroom. I had begun to clean houses to make a living and was independently supporting myself within a month of moving out. (I had been working since I was 14--earning money was my ticket out of my mother's house.) I loved my new life and I had found a new life. It was in God and His Word. I was part of the end of the Jesus movement and I dove into it with every fiber of my being. I studied God's Word for hours. I quit going out and stayed in to read, to memorize, and to write scripture over and over again. There was hope, there was a future, and there was security in the arms of my loving heavenly Father, and with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I skipped a lot in those days--from the joy of discovering the one true God.
My family labeled me a 'religious nut', a 'Bible fanatic', and laughed at the scripture I held to with all my heart. But without family support and a good Christian support system, a Christian like me was bound to fail. And fail I did--over and over again. Fast forward through 2 failed abusive marriages, many physical moves, several more miscarriages, and a heart that had continued to yearn for a baby, and we arrive at 1990---some 22 years later. Eddie and I had been married for just over a year, when my mother was simultaneously hit broadside in her car at the same moment that she had a fatal heart attack, which were just moments before the car caught on fire. I felt little sadness at her funeral; it was more like relief. I had been the 'black sheep' that continued and would forever go astray--in her mind. We never did resolve our deep-seated differences. I think our history was too much for her to overcome and now the constant criticisms were finally over. Along with her gruesome death, the details of the illegal abortion procedure were lost. That infamous day in 1968 was NEVER spoken of or referred to in any way. Now the details of what they did to me were important, as Eddie and I were just starting the infertility process. Although I had learned so much about God's love and His promises, there were 2 deeply rooted problems in my life. 1. My lack of worth because my mother would never accept me. (Through the years she made it clear how disappointed she was with my decisions on almost everything.) 2. My arms were still empty with little hope of a baby. From the grave my mother tormented me. At the opening of her bank box there were 3 envelopes with her 3 daughters' names on them. My 2 sisters and I each took our envelope and looked inside. Although there weren't treasures inside of my sister's envelopes--they still contained something. Mine envelope was empty--a flashback to the past--once again my mother's opinion of me was contained in an envelope. These mentally devastating images and impressions we receive from our parents are hard to overcome. But with God--He can heal a heart that experiences such pain.
The deep voids in my life manifested themselves in many ways. Declining health, anger, hostility, jealousy, bitterness, hardness of heart, and a deep despairing sadness. Eddie and I aggressively pursued infertility treatments but without success. Many more miscarriages along with thousands of dollars spent, countless volumes of tears, and the constant questions of 'why' kept our new marriage in a tumult. In early June 1993, we cremated our 4-month-old child in our backyard after I labored through a miscarriage. A few weeks later I turned 40. Concurrent events--the loss of a child in the 4th month of pregnancy 25 years apart brought me to a breaking point. There were only 2 options--remain in despair or seek God with my whole heart once again.
(Often a couple questions God's willingness and ability to deliver while going through infertility. A lot of begging, praying, bargaining, deal making, promising, and wondering shakes the integrity of the spiritual relationship. Without constant vigilance, anger towards God begins to infiltrate the thought processes.)
I sought deliverance once again with a passion. I read books about forgiveness, bitterness, and anger. I underlined, highlighted, and dog-eared corners. I sought help with an earnest desire to learn. God heard my prayers and helped me. I felt like I was breaking free of mental prisons that had enslaved me for years. Two comments helped me to reach this point of seeking help with my whole heart. 1. After sharing with a minister, my tale of woe (my life) he replied with, "Well, that story and a dollar will buy you a cup of coffee." His comment was brutally honest-which is just what I needed to rattle my mental machinery. 2. After sharing with a sister in Christ my despair and deep conflicts, she responded, "Well, how long do you plan to go through life as a victim?" Again candidly accurate and very reproving. I became motivated and determined to finally break free. My biggest challenge was to not only forgive my mother, but myself. How could I have allowed that abortion? Why wasn't I stronger? These questions plagued my heart until I found God's deliverance in His Word. Soon I was on the edge of a major spiritual breakthrough. There was now hope for the future and a song was returning to my heart.
Fall 1996/Norman, Oklahoma
We had finally exited the infertility ride after many years and decided to pursue adoption. It was a new ride and although it was different--it was harder. We had been through so much already and now adoption was more challenging than we could have ever imagined. We had lost 5 babies within the 10 days before Christmas of 1996 and I knew I was at another breaking point in my life. We started Christian Adoption out of desperation & survival. If I didn't help someone with the knowledge and life experience I had gained, I would go 'nutty.' We went online with a two-fold purpose. 1. To adopt. 2. To help at least one other couple through the adoption processes. For me, some good needed to come out of so much bad for so many years. My focus changed from just what we wanted, to how could we help others through the nightmares of adoption. Just 25 days after we went online and by God's grace and mercy we received the call about an Asian toddler. I told the person, "We're not interested in an Asian toddler. We are trying to adopt a Hispanic or a multi-racial Hispanic newborn." And I hung up. Then the birthmother called me and asked, "How soon can you get here?" God granted me a second opportunity and we were in Los Angeles within 24 hours. As we de-boarded the plane a little disheveled Asian doll was waiting for us at the end of the ramp. Within 15 seconds we became parents. Although this little 16-month old toddler was dirty, dehydrated, starved, sick, and lethargic--she was mine. I quietly sat down in an airport chair and tears began to stream down my cheeks. The birthmother was ready to sign papers and go on to her planned party activity, but I was immobile. I quietly rocked and hugged, kissed and caressed this frail little life and the tears dripped off my chin. Inside my heart waterfalls of tears were flooding my soul. A mother at last--after 27 years of waiting, hoping, and praying. This precious child was not a newborn but God sent her to us and within 24 hours I was fully bonded to her. I became like an animal--like a mother bear with her cub--I guarded and took care of our Danielle. This little one would grow up knowing every day of her life that she was loved, accepted, and appreciated. This small life would grow up knowing that her mother was proud of her, no matter what she did or did not do--she was always a success in her Mama's heart.
God honored our efforts to help others in the adoption process and blessed Christian Adoption. With each successful placement I rejoiced and I ached for a baby to call my own. I was happy for each and every couple, but sad that I would never know that joy of a new baby. I don't know why it was/is so important. I cannot explain it. I just know that as fulfilled as I was with Danny girl, there was still a deep yearning for a newborn. Eddie has asked me through these last 3 years, "When are we getting rid of all this baby stuff? The crib, the newborn toys, the clothes, and all the 'baby' stuff?" My response was simple, "When I'm ready to let it all go, and I'm not ready yet." With each successful adoption with Christian Adoption, I decided to send baby gifts and many of these clothing gifts came from the baby clothes I had bought for our baby. I was slowing letting go and I was changing my perspective about adopting again. I was resolved and settled about not adopting a newborn. We now decided to pursue the adoption of an Asian toddler as a sibling for Danielle. We were sure we wanted another girl and I began to sell some of our 'baby' furniture. Many asked me, "Hey, when are you going to adopt again? What are you doing about adopting again?" My confession lined up with my conviction--God would have to drop a child into our laps--I could not and would not compete in any way with the couples on our web site--our brothers and sisters in Christ. Another child for us would have to come straight from God--like Danielle.
Fall 1999/Coffeyville, Kansas
A birthmother's mother called Christian Adoption on our toll free number one day. She did not have access to a computer, but had received our phone number from her minister in New Mexico. Susie described to me what the situation was with her daughter and her approximate due date. We agreed to talk again when they had more information for me. About a week later, she and her daughter called with more details and the racial combination of the baby--100% Hispanic. I described several couples that would fulfill their criteria and agreed to send them hard copies of their profile letters. Just before hanging up, Susie said, "What about you? Would you adopt this baby? We really like you." I stammered back, "WHAT? Are you kidding me? Well, we want to adopt again, but we are looking for another Asian toddler girl. We once tried to adopt a Hispanic baby from Mexico and we had checked into Guatemala without any success. I was advertising in the Hispanic papers and community in Oklahoma City, but nothing ever happened. I really don't know. No one has ever asked me that question since we started Christian Adoption. I'm really surprised and don't know what else to say." Susie replied, "Well, my daughter and I have already talked about you and we like you and it's going to be a boy." "Oh, well, okay. Well, I'm stunned. But, to be fair to the couples I represent I must present to you every couple that would be interested in this situation that fit your criteria. If then you pick us out from among the others, we will be blessed to adopt this baby."
In a daze I walked outside and asked Eddie, "How would you like to adopt a baby boy in December that is full Hispanic?" "Okay, sure. I'm up for it!" I sauntered back to the house and starting printing profiles of the 3 other couples, and now I needed to update our letter and let the possibility sink in. I sent the standard Christian Adoption information packet along with the profiles to them in New Mexico. I spent a lot of time on my knees in prayer those two weeks. I prayed to know God's still clear voice in this situation. I prayed that birthmom Precious would make the right--the best decision for her baby. I prayed for patience and strength for the other couples and for us. I prayed for God's grace and mercy in our lives and the lives of our CA couples and families. I prayed that IF this baby were dropping into our laps that I would know I had not coerced or squeezed the situation in any way. I prayed for clear direction and guidance. Everyday, Eddie asked me, "Have you heard from them? Did they pick us?" He was clearly excited and more mentally ready than I was.
Susie called late one afternoon and said that they had made their decision. They had a friend come over and read all the profile letters with them to get some objectivity. All three women Susie, Precious, and their friend cried when they read one profile letter. They each got chills up and down their backs while reading about this one couple, and they all had independently picked the same couple. IT WAS US! "This is a joke, right? You're kidding, right?" As Susie relayed all the details to me, the tears started streaming down my face--once again. I was speechless and I knew that God was answering my prayer. 30 long years had passed, and now God in His grace and mercy was answering my prayer. In the spring of my youth I began to pray and now 30 years later in the fall of the year I was receiving my answer. I don't remember a lot of what I said to Susie. I was in shock and said I would send them another package, as soon as I got some paperwork in order. I walked into the living room, picked up Danielle and sat on the couch holding her with my whole heart. Eddie walked in the door and I said, "Honey, please sit down over here." He already knew what I was about to say and he said, "They picked us didn't they? We're going to adopt a baby right?" I shook my head up and down and the tears continued--and they haven't stopped. I've had a good cry everyday since we found out and I have spent a lot more time on my knees in prayer. I'm not a spring chicken anymore, but I know that our good God would not give us anything that we could not handle. I have not neglected to spend additional time in prayer for the other couples that we presented to her. (It was difficult to give them the news.) I am humbled beyond words and you can find me kneeling in church with a renewed commitment to pray for others, for our birthmother Precious, and for this baby that is coming to us with heavenly blessings. (We'd better take a baby pool to the hospital, I will probably fill it with tears of joy!) We chose Danielle's middle name to honor her Vietnamese family, Danielle Nguyen. This wonderful child will have the names that we selected many years ago. Either Samuel Eduardo (Spanish for Edward) or Anna-Maria (Spanish for Mary.) Our baby boy (or girl) is due December 7. We thank God with our whole hearts and will be forever grateful for God's grace and mercy, and for our birthmother, Precious.
What was taken away in the spring of my youth was now being restored in the fall of my life-- in hundred fold blessings.
God has mercy towards His children.
On Tuesday November 30, 1999 at 6:30 a.m., Samuel Eduardo was born. On December 1, 1999 at 8:30 a.m. all adoption papers were signed and Samuel Eduardo became our son! We came home from the hospital as a family of four at 10:00 p.m. the night of December 1, 1999.
(Another successful adoption associated with Christian Adoption.)
All praise, glory, and honor to God our Father.
God has mercy towards His children.
For more information please read Choices and Woman. We encourage you to prayerfully consider registering with our service, and/or writing to us.
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