Monday, November 30, 2015

My Quiet Heart

"My heart will be quiet now" is a simple yet beautiful phrase. They are the words written by someone who has loved and lost. But words that also describe the peace they felt when the love they lost was found. These are the words written by Sara's biological mother when she first learned that her daughter was rescued. This was her reply to a letter I wrote letting her know we had adopted Sara and that she is loved.

I had learned in our first meeting at the orphanage that Sara's birth mom had suffered depression after she chose to walk away from the hospital, leaving Sara behind. I cannot even imagine her pain and that is why at that very moment I knew I needed to find her. I knew her heart ached but I felt that I could help ease her pain if I could let her know Sara was safe. I had hoped that this knowledge would give her peace so she could move forward and find happiness again. I wasn't aware of the circumstances other than she chose to not bring her baby home because she was born with Down syndrome. But the details or circumstances didn't matter. What mattered was that this woman needed to know that her daughter was chosen, cherished, and loved.

In December of 2012, just a 2 months after Sara came home, I sent this message to a man who I believed was Sara's biological father. (I had searched for her mother but was unsure if I had found the right person, but was positively sure that this man was her father.)

Hello, I have decided to send you this message in hopes that you will receive it with comfort. Please understand that I only decided to write it because as a mother, I would want the same. We live in America and just recently adopted a baby girl from Kiev, Ukraine. I believe that you are this baby girl’s biological father. She was born on November 28, 2011. She was born with Down syndrome. If this is correct and you are indeed her biological father, I just wanted to let you know that your daughter was chosen to be part of our family. She is very loved and cherished and is doing well. We have four other children who simply love and adore her. I am not sure how this message will be received, but hopefully it will give you peace of mind. Like I said, as a mother, I would like to know that everything turned out the way it was meant to be. I do not expect you to respond but I am happy to answer questions you may have. I hope I have not offended you in any way and if so, I apologize. My intention was not to cause you grief but to let you know that your daughter now has a chance to blossom and bloom! Take care!

For days, then months I'd check to see if he had "seen" or read the message but he never did. So almost a year later I decided to send the woman who I believed was Sara's biological mother a similar message. I didn't want to frighten a complete stranger especially with the news of a child, but if she was the one she had to know. 4 days later I got a reply. She confirmed that she and her husband were indeed the biological parents of "the girl". She thanked me for being understanding and was glad that "she" had a family. She said "I am sure that you will give her what unfortunately here we won't be able to give. The decision to give her up was very hard but in our country we are not able to raise this child." Then she wrote "My heart will be quiet now." What beautiful words to hear especially knowing that this was my purpose in reaching out to her, to quiet her heart.

Finding each other has been a blessing for the both of us. We have kept in touch as we share news, stories, and photos. The first time I asked if she would like to see photos she said "Thank you that you are giving the opportunity to participate in her life. I am happy to see the photos, I have long wanted to ask you but I was afraid that you'd be against it." I am happy to share Sara's milestones and life's happenings as it brings me great joy. Sara is pure joy and her biological mother deserves to see her happy. She often will say "Thank you for the minutes of happiness which you give me."

I still don't have all the details of her birth or the circumstances behind their decision. I will never be angry at their decision because I feel it all happened as it was meant to. It may be hard for many to even comprehend how they could have left her if they loved her, but they did, and they do. Unless we've been there we cannot judge. I am just grateful that Sara's parents gave her life. I am grateful that we have the opportunity to give her a life. I am grateful that she blesses our lives and gives us another reason to live. It's our very own circle of life.

3 years ago I left a piece of my heart in Ukraine. Since then I have realized that I left it so Sara's mom could use it piece hers back together. Although I am sure her heart isn't completely healed, at least she knows that the love she lost has been found. At least I can provide her with "minutes of happiness". She often says"Sara is always in my heart, every minute." And "Part of my heart is always near her." This mother's heart will never be the same but at least it can be quiet for now. Shortly after we met Sara I wrote this which describes my heart. It too will never be the same.
My heart breaks, my heart heals. 
My heart loves, my heart feels. 
With every child it grows a little more because that is what my heart is for.

"I never cease to marvel at you and cannot stop saying thank you for all that you do for Sara and thus for me. For me it is very important."

It is important for me to do what I can for the mother who gave Sara life. And I will ever cease to marvel at His glorious plan. He is no doubt aware of all of His children! He loves each and every one of us and with that knowledge my heart will be quiet now too.