Monday, July 13, 2009

I've had quite a few people ask me about how I did on July 11th. And the answer is much better than I expected. I only had three private mini-breakdowns throughout the day along with a few random tears here and there. It was tough, but Saturday was actually a very unique and special day, not just because it was Deanna's 4th birthday, but also because I had the awesome opportunity to share my open adoption story with 40-50 members of "Triangle Right to Life." Triangle Right to Life is the Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill chapter of North Carolina Right to Life. It was formed a few months ago in an effort to build a culture of life in the Triangle community. I attended this meeting originally because I wanted to get involved in a pro-life organization in the community of Raleigh, outside of the campus/college realm. When I spoke with the president of the organization, Dorothy Yeung, a few days before attending the meeting, we had a long talk about my open adoption experience. She asked me if I would be willing to share my story with everyone at the meeting because it is consistent with their mission and what they are trying to accomplish. I was very excited to do it, but I was slightly hesitant because I knew that Saturday would be the most difficult day to talk about Deanna. When I arrived at the meeting, I was overwhelmed by the friendly welcoming I received. Many people already knew who I was, and I felt sort of like a celebrity! I decided to volunteer as the Media Relations Director for the chapter, and I couldn't be more excited about it. This stuff if right up my alley-- interacting with print, radio, and television media outlets, drafting pro-life letters and blogs in the Triangle area, building upon professional working relationships with media, writing press releases, coordinating press conferences, YES. At the very end of the meeting, I stood in front of the most passionate group of pro-life men, women, children and shared my open adoption experience and how I went from being a pregnant 18-year-old to (hopefully) an influential voice in the pro-life movement. I almost teared up at the end when I said that it was my daughter's birthday, but I held it together. It was an honor to be able to share such a personal experience with these amazing people. There are three things that have helped me to heal since July 11, 2005 -- faith in God and His plan for me, time, and helping others by sharing my open adoption story. Next to spending the day with Deanna on her birthday, spending the day sharing my story with Triangle Right to Life was actually the next best thing for me. It took my mind off of the hurt, and it reminded me that helping is healing. The highlight of my day was when a super nice lady at the meeting told me that a young woman at her church had been writing a play about open adoption when she read the News & Observer story. She was so moved by it that she used it as a tool when writing the play, which will be performed at Good Hope Baptist Church in Cary on September 19th. The play is about a young woman who gets pregnant and is trying to decide whether or not to place her daughter in an open adoption. The lady at the meeting asked me if I would be present at the play to say a few words about open adoption, and I gladly agreed. I couldn't be more excited about it! It's hard for me to believe how far I've come in just 4 years. I have been blessed with such incredible opportunities to touch lives and to open hearts to adoption, and I cannot wait to continue spreading the pro-life message in the Triangle.


Chelsa said...


i finished "the girls who went away". it was very moving. even though my child wasn't taken from me like most of those women- i think the shame and guilt are still put on most pregnant teens- especially here in small town usa and especially if you went from being the "good girl" to "pregnant girl". I could def. identify with a lot of their feelings when it come to those subjects. i still feel weird at times when I say brycen's birthday and then say our wedding date... obviously the wedding came 9 months later after his birth, people do give me strange looks about that still. i think we have come a long way, but i also think we still have a long way to go.

Dorothy said...

We are SO honored you are using your gifts to help the pro-life cause and THRILLED to have you as our new media relations director !!!

I truly believe you have only seen the beginning of how God is using your story to build a culture of life. I know it must bring great peace to know how redemptive your open adoption experience is. How amazing that God can take something so unexpected and make something SO beautiful, more beautiful than anything you could have ever planned for.
- Dorothy

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