When I found out I was pregnant, I had a 2 year old son, no job and a court hearing in two days for a first time possession charge. The father of both children and I were still together and parenting our son the best we could, but we knew that it would be hard to take care of another child. Although it was a first offense, we were told to prepare for a negative outcome. I had already transferred custody of my son to my mother.
I considered all my options, including my mother helping with my unborn daughter. While adoption was not something that I thought I would consider, after talking to my mom we knew that adoption was the best option. I wanted the best for my daughter.
My mom researched a bunch of different adoption agencies online and talked to several of them. After talking to Graceful Adoptions, the next call she made was to me. This was the only adoption agency she recommended. She knew they were the right agency for me.
By the time my mom made the call to Graceful Adoptions I had started to serve my sentence for the possession charge. I was now in Prison. My confidence was shaken.
Through it all, Graceful Adoptions’ staff was nothing but respectful – even nice! They insisted it was just a mistake and everyone makes them. Once during a conversation with Karen, Graceful Adoptions’ owner, she gave me a long list of the mistakes she has made. She was right. I would make better decisions when I got out and that is all I could do at this point.
Graceful Adoptions became my advocate. Not just in the adoption but for me as a person. They ensured I could talk to my mom who they knew I really needed at this time. They provided access to support that I may not have otherwise received. They worked with the Social Worker and the Assistant Warden at the prison to allow for special visits. They contacted the courts on my behalf. All of this was more than I expected, but exactly what I needed.
And it wasn’t any different when it came to finding parents for my daughter. I told Graceful Adoptions’ staff what I wanted and they showed me profiles of families that were exactly what I asked for. I felt an instant connection with John and Amanda on paper and after they traveled more than 7 hours and 400 miles to meet me at the prison before the baby was born, I knew our connection was real. I liked everything about them! They were young and cheerful. I knew they would take great care of my baby.
A few months later John and Amanda sent a basket to my hospital room full of things for me to enjoy for the 24 hours I was there. I spent an hour with them as they met Penny, my daughter, before she would become theirs. Both the 24 hour stay at the hospital and the one hour visit with the adoptive parents was all the prison would allow. Through my Graceful Adoption contacts I knew John and Amanda were still asking about me, and once I returned to prison I received updates and pictures from them. They genuinely cared about me.
My advice to others who are considering adoption is to stay strong. Placing a child for adoption is not easy – under any circumstances. And, I truly believe that every mother who wants an advocate to represent what she wants in her adoption should choose Graceful Adoptions. I never expected or knew that an adoption could be so good.