Lariana's Story

My name is Lariana and I’m the loving mother of a 3-year old boy I recently placed for adoption. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done but I know in my heart that it was the right decision.

When I was pregnant I knew I wasn’t ready to be a good parent – emotionally or financially. At the time, my son’s father wouldn’t agree to adoption and he and my family promised they would help.

The help didn’t last long.

By the time my son was one, his dad had fathered another child with another woman. He was abusive. And he thought providing for our son was calling every three or four months. He was ordered to pay child support but I never received a dime. My family couldn’t help because they didn’t have the time, money, or desire and they had their own lives to lead.

I struggled with the decision for years and I kept trying to make it work. As a single mother with little or no support, it was almost impossible to maintain a job and pay for child care. It was a vicious cycle and we didn’t have a dependable home.

I wanted my son to be with a mom and dad who could make him their number one priority and give him everything he needs and wants.

I took my time researching adoption agencies. Reading through the birth mother stories, one in particularly made me call Graceful Adoptions. Briana’s story was incredible. I was touched by the help Graceful Adoptions’ team provided and I especially appreciated the fact that Briana never felt judged.

It’s hard to describe what it was like working with Graceful Adoptions. I keep wanting to say “comfortable,” but I’m not sure it’s the right word. Although I had not previously met them, it was like talking to an old friend; they understood me and never judged me. I never felt pressured, instead they walked beside me. I was in complete control of the process – it was done on my timeline and I was making all the decisions.

There was one family profile that stood out from the rest. I kept this to myself just in case I was wrong and interviewed two families. After the phone interviews, I knew who was going to be my son’s new parents.

They were everything I wanted for my son. And more.

A week later we met in person. Initially I was really nervous, like it was a first date or something. What do I say? Will they think I’m funny? Was I talking too much? I finally told them that I was really nervous and just telling them erased all the nerves. We really opened up after that and enjoyed our time together.

All of us – my son included – ate several meals together, played in a park, and built sand castles at the beach. One of the most surprising aspects of our visit was the fact that my son liked them immediately.  Normally he is shy at first, it usually takes at least a day for him to warm up to new people. But with this couple, he was drawn to them and after about 20 minutes, he was comfortable and interacting with them.

I think we both knew that they were the right family!

Now my son has two moms and a dad. He calls us his “wolf pack” and he knows we who would do anything to protect him and make him happy. I miss him but seeing how happy he is lets me know I made the right decision. Don’t get me wrong, he was happy before, but I’ve never seen him this over-joyed.

My advice to anyone considering placing their infant or toddler for adoption, just take one step at a time. If you think about it all at once, it can be very overwhelming. Every step of the process ask yourself if you can do it. Go with your instincts as you think about what is best for your son or daughter.

Adoption, specifically a toddler adoption, isn’t a bad thing. And, if you are going to make an adoption plan, work with Graceful Adoptions. You will have complete control, you will never feel pressured, and you will never feel judged!

Chicago, IL