I just wanted to take a minute and reflect on this year. I am sure you have heard of the milestones or goals that your loved ones have reached. But what about the milestones YOU reached?
I remember when I first found out I was pregnant, it was in a CVS bathroom with my best friend. Classy, I know! I was in serious denial for a long time. So much so that I literally forgot I was pregnant for two months (even though I was taking prenatal vitamins). I just never thought about it. When I finally started showing and feeling the precious kicks and turns, I realized that I was going to be placing this baby for adoption soon. The adoption agency I went to recommended a therapist for me to see who was also a birth mom. I thought, "why not?" I had never been to therapy before and went in not expecting to get much out of it.
Little did I know, this woman was about to change my life. In my first session with her, she mostly listened. I told her I wasn't going to see or hold my baby once he/she was born, I wasn't looking at ultrasounds, and I was going to have a closed adoption. Basically, I had not accepted this baby's existence at all yet and never wanted to. She was very gentle in asking my reasons and quickly identified that I needed some perspective on what was to come in my future if these were the decisions I stuck with. After opening my heart and mind to what she had to say (and after 6 sessions with her), I ended up asking for a legalized open adoption, seeing my baby boy when he was born and doing skin to skin, and still sticking with not looking at the ultrasounds.
It is hard to open yourself up to a stranger in therapy. However, I would recommend it to anyone going through this process, and also to someone who has placed their child already. It doesn't even have to be therapy! It can be a best friend or a sibling. It is very important to have a support system that you can vent to. I can only speak on my behalf, but I know talking to someone who could relate to my situation helped tremendously. Going to therapy helped improve my postpartum depression and continued my grieving process. I was very worried I was going to be in a state of shock for a long time but talking to someone allows me to identify the emotions I am feeling and get those out instead of not feeling at all.
There are many birthmother support groups/sites (such as this one) as well as retreats and in person support groups that are fantastic in the grieving process. I know that this is a roller coaster but we are in this together. You are not alone!
Lots of Love,