Not too many know my dealings with adoption. There are a select few who do though. You see, I have given birth to six children. Five girls and one boy.
The first child that my husband and I had was put up for adoption. Not by our choice either. Now I know what most of you are thinking. You guys must have done something for the state to step in. The truth is, we had not done anything wrong. I was not even home from the hospital before the Department of Social Services came knocking on my door. Well, my friend’s door since we lived with her at the time. The claim, we weren’t feeding the baby.
Whoever had called didn’t realize that our baby was still in the hospital undergoing testing for an issue that she had. So the day comes that we get to bring the baby home. The next day, the social worker came out and the claim changed to we didn’t have anything for the baby. Of course said social worker was shocked when she saw what all we had. My work had threw me a baby shower about a month before so we were well stocked with bottles, wipes, diapers, baby medications, toys, clothes, formula, pretty much everything a baby needed.
Everytime the social worker came out, it was something new being said or the story would change. When Jennifer was a month old, we were in a car accident. Not our fault by the way. A lady had ran a light when we had the right of way and even though we swerved to avoid her, she swerved into us. I was taken to the hospital but my husband and Jennifer seemed fine. One of the other things that the social worker had a problem with was Jennifer’s weight. Jennifer weighed 7lbs even at birth. When she came home, she weighed 6lbs 14oz. The first pediatrician appointment that we had, Jennifer was back up to 6lbs 15oz. Now keep in mind that Jennifer was born on a Friday. I went home on a Sunday, and Jennifer came home on a Tuesday. Before we take her home, we had to make a doctor’s appointment for her so, her appointment was for the next day.
Now in my opinion, that is a good weight gain for only being home for one day. Which for some strange and odd reason, the pediatrician did not understand. To be honest, I don’t think that the lady was at the top of her class. Especially when she told me that I needed to set my alarm and feed Jennifer 2oz of formula every 2 hours. Jennifer came home eating 4ozs every four hours. Not to mention that she was also on baby Zantac to help with her reflux issue. So she was already on a somewhat strict feeding schedule.
After the car accident however, everything changed. Everytime we would stop at a stop light or stop sign, Jennifer would spit up everything that she had ate. It didn’t matter if it had been two hours after she ate. We brought this concern up with her pediatrician at the next appointment because her weight was starting to drop. (Same office, different doctor). When I went back to work, her weight drop increased. I specifically asked the doctor if it was related to me going back to work. They said that it might be.
Now before anyone says that my husband wasn’t feeding her, we lived with my friend and her husband. So there was always someone there to help with the baby since my husband worked nights on a paper route. Jennifer would cry from the time I got out of the car until I got back in after getting off work. Nothing that my friend, her husband, or my husband could do would stop her from crying. Eventually, the state made us put her in the hospital. With where I worked at (Walmart), I was unable to get approved time off and with my husband’s job, he wasn’t either. So, we took turns. I was barely sleeping with having to get up every two hours to feed her.
Slowly, Jennifer started gaining weight. The social worker wanted me to have a meeting with her and two other people. When the day of the meeting came, it was only her and her supervisor. I was given a list of things to complete. This was on a Saturday, the next day which was Sunday, they told me that they were taking custody of Jennifer. I had not even had a chance to complete the list of tasks that I was supposed to do. In all reality, I think that they had did that on purpose. It was right before Christmas.
I didn’t get to see my baby again until about two weeks later. When I did get to see my baby, she had gained so much weight that she was wheezing, and I didn’t recognize her. In two weeks, Jennifer went from weighing about 9lbs to 16lbs. The foster family that was taking care of her was made to wake her up every two hours and feed her. If she fell asleep, she was woken up to eat until she finished the entire bottle. My poor baby was forced to eat 4oz of formula every 2 hours. So it was no wonder that she gained weight so quickly. She was being force fed.
In all reality, it wasn’t going to matter how many hoops of fire my husband and I jumped through. They were never going to give her back. I still have her baby blanket and her first stuffed animal that we bought her. I will always keep it. We think about her every year on her birthday, every holiday, pretty much every day. No one will ever know how hard it is to feel a baby under their heart for nine months, take care of that baby for three months, before being told they aren’t doing good enough. You never forget that baby.
It almost broke my marriage up. To be honest, they didn’t even offer us counseling afterwards to deal with losing her. Instead, we were forced to just pick up the pieces of our shattered hearts and lives. So this is my story with adoption. I do know who adopted her. It was my former eye doctor and his wife. And I wonder everyday if my other children will ever get to see her or even meet her.Tags: adoption, baby, hearts, lives, love, marriage, shattered