Dear Birth Mama: An Open Letter to the Mother of My Child


Dear Birth Mama,

I have often imagined how I might react if I saw you while we were out running errands. I am sure I would crumple before you while trying to hold onto your neck weeping. I am quite confident that everything I would want to say to you would never come out in very formed or coherent words. The inexpressible joy you have brought to us is just that . . . inexpressible . . . at least without gobs of tears being shed.

The day that I would meet {our} daughter for the first time, I wrote you a letter trying my best to detail to you how grateful we were, how brave you were, and how your heroism was more than we could even fathom. I tried to convey that we were barren and had been praying for the Lord to give us a child for the prior three years. I am sure I didn’t mention that the elders in my church anointed my husband and I over infertility around the time {our} daughter would have been conceived. I only put that together much later. I know the social worker at the time told me that you had been praying for a barren couple to adopt your baby since you found out you were pregnant. God heard your prayers, dear mama. He is faithful. 

I remember the social worker telling me that you asked if I had any reservations about {our} daughter being a different race than my own, and how you cried when she told you my answer.

She is my joy, dear mama. Oh how I wish we actually had some form of contact. I know that was not your wishes. I understand. The pain of giving up your child must have been–and must still be–unbearable. I pray God helps you bear. I pray for you often. I think of you every time {our} daughter learns something new, smiles, laughs, and has a birthday.

I want to tell you some things about her, things maybe you already imagine her to be. She is tenacious. She is full of energy, smiles big with dimples, and is always quick to befriend others and offer kindness. She is brave, no doubt getting that from you. She loves with a fierceness and is so very smart. She just turned four years old and already knows her letters, numbers, colors, phonics, and has one the greatest memories for a child that I’ve encountered (which is not always to my benefit)! Ice cream is her favorite food and pink and purple are her colors of choice. She also loves dressing up as a princess, dancing ballet, and watching Octonauts. As you can imagine, our days are full, our hearts even fuller.

She is well taken care of, dear mama. She is well loved. We talk about adoption often. She understands as much as she is able to at this age. If you are reading this letter, please know it was written in the hopes you would. I want you to know how very grateful, oh so utterly grateful, we are that you chose to give {our} daughter life. One day, she may come looking for you. She will always have our blessing to do so. I pray for that day often. I pray for the conversation that will take place. This reality we are both engrossed in is very bittersweet. The blessing and gift we were given by you came at a great loss for you. That will never be lost on us. We love you dearly, dear mama. Thank you.

Love always, 

{Our} daughter’s other mama


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Shana is an Alabama native who has now lived in Birmingham for 15 years. She practices medicine by trade but recently found she could live out her passion for helping others through partnering with an amazing health and happiness company. She is married to her best friend and is an adoptive mom to two of the most precious children on the planet. Shana is passionate about healing interracial relations, being a defender of the defenseless, as well as fostering. Most days, you'll find her running after her two kids, engaging in homeschooling, or having a lunch date with her best college girlfriend. To put it plainly, she loves people and she loves Jesus :)