People often ask how I chose a family for my oldest daughter. And I haven’t really shared too much about it. My honest answer would be that I chose quickly. But not without a lot of thought.
You see my doctor assumed that I must be a dumb “kid” that had her dates wrong when he assessed my growing belly and assigned a due date based solely on what he had measured with a tape measure. (With my subsequent children I would learn that my belly would always measure smaller, that I always remembered the dates correctly, and that an ultrasound was a better tool for measuring my growing baby.) So my new due date was off by an entire month. And she was born, full term, the same week I began exploring families for her.
As rushed as that seemed, in hindsight I can see God’s hand in that. He knew I was prone to overthinking, and this was the most important decision I had ever made. He knew I might question my instincts or look at too many families to choose the right one. And she was meant to be with these parents, and we were all meant to be together. One big, spread out, messy, unconventional, unmastered family.
I felt an immediate reaction and connection to her parents as soon as I looked at their profile folder. I looked at all their pictures, so many pictures, even pictures of their pets, backyard, and the flowers on their deck. Every corner of their lives. They shared the deepest part of their hearts in the letters they wrote to me. They were honest. And they were fun. I could see in the candid photos they included along with the posed ones that they had fun together. They were in love, and that a baby, my baby, would complete them.
And it was good. And it was excruciating. And heart breaking and heart warming and about a hundred other emotions all wrapped together. I have no doubt that God put us all together in this lifetime for a reason. Like it was always supposed to be.
I always say that becoming a parent taught me what unconditional love looks like. But placing a child for adoption taught so much more than that. Loving that child enough, and so much, that you can also let her go, is perhaps even a better example of God’s love.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son. . . .” ~John 3:16
Because He so loved us and so loved His Son, He gave Him to us. Gave Him to two new parents. And it had to be heartbreaking. Letting Him go. Even though it was for the best. For our best. How would He choose? Choose the parents of this child He loved more than anything, before He was even born? But He did. Like me He chose the ones who were in love and would love His child well. The ones that would be completed by this Child. So that the world could also be completed by this Child.
I didn’t really see it then. I could only see and feel the brutal pain of letting her go. But as I’ve grown, and watched her grow, a teensy part of my soul understands God and His love that much more. Hard choices, made in love, can always be good. And it is good. Heartbreaking, heart stretching good.