"In need of an environmental change, I moved to Shreveport. Unknowingly, I was inevitably about to enter a period of time that would change my life forever. In Shreveport, I met Daniel. We were friends at first, then began dating, and eventually falling in love. After a few months, while at home for the holidays, my instinctive feeling of being pregnant was confirmed. When I first found out I was pregnant, I was ecstatic with the news. Due to my family's religious beliefs, my immaturity, and my unwillingness to disappoint them, I withheld from sharing my joyous news with them. I was indeed four weeks pregnant, but abortion was not at option at all, for the existence of a baby boy. At eight months pregnant, through prayer and family support, I hesitantly phoned an attorney that primarily handles adoption cases. I was overwhelmed by the uncertainty of my financial stability, lack of college degree, and the actuality of youth and pregnancy out of wedlock. Although I was not sure how, I had faith everything would be all right. This was a tough decision for me to make, however, my family was supportive of adoption. It was getting to be an emotional pregnancy. I asked myself, was I really willing to do what was best for the baby? Could this be an opportunity to bless a family with a baby boy they had been praying for, yet unable to conceive? So, I agreed to see a portfolio of a potential adoptive family. About a week later, I met them for lunch and fell in love with their family. They were very kind and generous to me, as well as, so grateful that I was simply meeting them for lunch. I eventually decided that adoption was, without a doubt, the best life I could offer baby Patrick. On August 14, 2003, when my water broke, Steven and Laura, the adoptive family, were notified and arrived at the hospital within two hours. My labor was induced, and I had to have an emergency Cesarean section, which entailed a painful recovery. After delivery, my blood pressure was extremely high. Furthermore, I had a long week due to physical recovery as well as emotional turmoil filled with feelings of emptiness, contentment, confidence, and serenity, of placing Patrick into the adoptive family's lives. Steven, Laura, and Emily, their biological daughter, stayed at the hospital with me the entire week with the baby, as I allowed them a separate room in the hospital to take care of Patrick, and so my visitations with him could be limited. We send pictures, gifts, and letters, and even had a visitation last March. In the future, I want to continue to be emotionally strong enough to joyously see pictures. Patrick turned three years old this August. Taking care of myself feels indescribably well. No matter what decisions, obstacles, or growth experience, I humbly remain optimistic for the future, realizing I'm grateful God really does have a reason for everything He does."