An Unexpected Connection

An Unexpected Connection
Posted on 06/14/2018

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This is the story of two women who share a bond and a relationship that neither of them expected. 

Unable to conceive a biological child, Melissa and her husband believed with all their hearts that there was something else that was meant for them.  They wanted to help a child in need and at the same time fulfill their dreams of parenthood. 

Tia was struggling emotionally and living an unstable lifestyle. She gave birth to a beautiful and healthy baby boy she named Walter, after her brother who had lost his life too young, but she wasn’t ready to be a mom. The Children’s Aid Society of London & Middlesex intervened and Tia’s baby was placed in a dually approved, foster/adoptive home.  Tia was scared and unhappy. She was going to visit Walter and meet the foster/adoptive parents for the first time.

When Melissa attended the foster/adoption training and heard about openness, her first thought was “I don’t know about this.” The idea wasn’t something they had considered or planned when they thought about parenthood and what their family would look like. 

Tia felt nervous about meeting the people who had been caring for her son.  He was her world, and they were strangers. By the time the first meeting ended, Tia felt confident that Melissa and her husband loved her son and she could see for herself that they were taking good care of him. She felt relieved.

Melissa had worried that Tia was going to angry towards them, after all, they had her son. She pushed her fears aside and despite not knowing what Tia looked like, Melissa immediately spotted her. She was filled with empathy for the pain she knew Tia must be in. She wanted to know as much as she could about Tia, not knowing what the future would hold, and wanting to have information to share with Walter in the future.

The relationship continued to grow each time Melissa brought Walter to visit Tia. Melissa and her husband knew that if they were going to provide openness in their adoption of Walter, that they wanted it to be a relationship, more than the occasional visit. They had come to know that children have the ability to love so many people, that there is lots of room for adoptive and birth family.  “We didn’t want to take away his identity and we felt it was important to keep his birth names, the names given by Tia.” 

Tia is grateful for the relationship she has with her son’s adoptive family. She visits her son regularly and Melissa sends photos and regular updates. Tia has been able to rebuild her life and become a full time parent to a lovely baby girl.  Melissa and her husband have become a support to Tia and her new daughter. Tia has asked them to be her daughters God Parents. Her children will know one another and Walter has so many people in his life who love him.  “I will be able to attend his school plays,” says Tia filled with emotion.

Melissa believes it is important for those considering adopting to make an effort to connect with birth parents. It will look different for everyone, but starting off on the right foot and having an open mind will make all the difference. Openness is a journey that grows and changes.

Tia believes that all adopted children will want answers and to know about themselves. She knows that it is worthwhile to try to build a relationship. For her, it also helped to know about the in-depth screening process that foster & adoptive parents have to go through. 

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