Monday, March 31, 2008


This weekend while searching on the internet I found a website of the home that my birthmother stayed in while she was pregnant with me. There have been a lot of images that I made up to try to visualize the place that I was before my parents adopted me. I also read an article from a birthmother that stayed in that same home when she was pregnant, it gave me a glimpse into what my birthmother might have gone through on a day to day basis while living there. The following is part of story written by Linda Pendergast from the Prostestant Home for Babies web site. The picture is the home for unwed mothers that my birthmother lived in.

A Birthmother’s Story

Life at the home was very much like living in a girl’s dormitory, except we didn’t go to school. We spent our days doing chores, talking, playing cards…...over and over and over. We played so much Canasta, that I have never played it since. I don’t recall a television, but there was most likely one there. I think we all felt so disconnected from the world in general and so isolated, that we had no interest in watching TV. Maybe we really didn’t even have one...maybe it was intentional to keep us isolated. We listened to the radio a lot, though….House of the Rising Sun, Hey Jude, and of course, Love Child. All of those songs elicit strong feelings of nostalgia when I hear them now. We all had chores to do, assigned on a weekly basis. Examples of the chores were sweeping, dusting, dishes, setting the table, cleaning the stairs and banisters, cleaning the bathrooms. We all kept our own rooms clean. How many girls were assigned to each of the upstairs bedrooms depended on the size of the room. You were assigned upstairs until you were closer to the end of your pregnancy and then you moved downstairs to the large room which accommodated about six twin size beds. It was a privilege to move to that room because it was air conditioned and had a larger bathroom with a tub, rather than a shower. It was quite hot upstairs in July, August and September. The “living areas” downstairs were also air-conditioned. I think they were called parlors and were two rooms adjacent to one another. One had a dining room sized table where we played all those card games. The table wasn’t big enough to seat us all for a meal. Meals were served in a room adjacent to the kitchen. We also had a little sun porch, where we hung out a lot.

There were usually no more than 12 - 16 girls in residence at any one time. There was a cook who prepared the noon day “big” dinner for the agency staff and the residents. I wish I could remember the cook’s name...the noon meals were delicious… lots of good ‘ole southern and soul food cooking. We never went hungry, that’s for sure. There was a house manager, but I don’t recall her name. She lived at the top of the stairs on the second floor and we were all a bit frightened of her. She kept the pantries under lock and key so that we wouldn’t “raid the kitchen” at night. Evening meals were usually leftovers from the noon meal or something cold and light. The house manager trusted Nancy and I, so she usually sent us for the daily produce from a store on Magazine St. We enjoyed getting out an walking the several blocks to Magazine. We were never allowed to go anywhere unless we went in two’s. And we really weren’t allowed to go anywhere unless it was to “clinic” or unless we were sent to the store or to the mailbox. “Clinic” was the outpatient maternity clinic at Southern Baptist. Whoever had to go to clinic that week all went on the same day. We would walk down Eighth St. to St. Charles and take the streetcar to Napoleon. From there we either walked or took the bus to Southern Baptist. We sometimes had lunch somewhere around the hospital before going back to the home. And we always went inside K&B at the corner of St. Charles and Napoleon before catching the streetcar back to Eighth. Clinic took up most of the day! I only remember two major outing when we all went together somewhere. Once we went to see Gone with the Wind at the movie theater and another time we went to a restaurant with a private dining room for dinner.

I had some really good friends at the home and enjoyed their company. We really only had each other. We could only make one phone call a week that I recall and couldn’t receive phone calls. The staff really didn’t have much to do with us, unless there was a problem. They were in the one-story building next to the main house. We didn’t receive any counseling or preparation for childbirth. When we went into labor, Ms. Davis took us to the hospital. When we returned, it was usually for about a week and then we left. The babies were kept in the agency building, but we didn't have any contact with them. Usually, just before we left, we were taken downtown to the “lawyer’s office” to sign the relinquishment documents. By that time, we were so numb and exhausted, there was no fight left in us. The end was all very depressing. There was no joy after delivery, only sadness and extreme grief. No excitement to go home. Just an empty hollowness of soul and spirit.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


This is a story that I read a few years ago, it is one of my favorite. It was written by John Fischer, it was an article on the Purpose Driven Life web site.

How do you know when you are working for God? You get tired, you burn out, or the opposite, you become very successful and start taking pride in your success. You begin repeating what works over and over again because you found a formula that will work regardless. This is what the Bible calls "Walking in the flesh" and, in spite of how good it looks, it will burn up in the end like a big pile of dry wood.

So, how do you know if you are dealing with the success of God's power. You are at risk, you are Johnny on the spot, you are in way over your head, you are not completely sure what you are doing and you are acutely aware of your own weaknesses; you have ventured into a place where if God dosen't show up, you are a dead duck. Believe it or not, this is what the Bible calls, "Walking in the Spirit." (Don't you love it?)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

My Adoption Story

A 12 year old girl went to the movies and an older boy took advantage of her against her will. a few months later her parents took her to a home for unwed mothers. She was skipping around and playing as little girls do unaware of why her parents were dropping her off there. She eventually realized why she was there. She must have felt very alone and scared.

Months later on her 13th birthday she gave birth to a baby girl. After she went home she put the whole ordeal behind her. She didn't realize the sacrifice that she made for the baby girl, and the gift she gave to the adoptive parents.

Some people would ask if God allowed the birthmother to be raped to accomplish his purpose. In Rick Warren's book The Purpose Driven Life he says, "God's purpose took into account human error, and even sin."

This baby girl was adopted by loving parents. They told her that they chose her. She was so blessed to belong to parents that chose her. The Lord put them together and made them a family. Just as it says in Psalms 139:16, "All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." He ordained for this baby to be born by this young girl, and he had another family chosen for her to be apart of.

Rick Warren also goes on to say that, "Many children are unplanned by their parents, but they are not unplanned by God." "God never does anything accidentally, and he never makes mistakes. He has a reason for everything he creates."

Adoption is a special sacrifice.