I just finished my Christmas shopping and the last person on my list was our youngest’s birth mother. Usually I have at least four birth mothers I buy for, depending on who is staying with us, but this year just one. I guess that sounds strange to some! To us it has been a way of living for years. We include the birth parents of all of the children in our home however they came to us either through adoption or foster care.
Do you include the birth mothers of your children on your Christmas list? If not, here’s why it’s so important: Everyone needs to be loved!
Even the most difficult mothers need love. They are the ones who need it most. Once I gave a birth mother a gift and she cried. “No one has ever given me a present and not wanted something in return.” she stated as a matter of fact. That statement broke my heart and is a signal of just how sad our world can be. There are so many people in this world who would say the same thing if I gave them a gift. So many of the birth mothers we have had in our lives have had a very difficult life. Some have been in foster care themselves, some have suffered insane amounts of abuse from many sources even family and some have had to cope with poverty their whole life. All birth mothers have one thing in common: PAIN. They have suffered much pain to get to the point of not raising their child. Some have been in pain so long they don’t know how else to cope in life other than to resort to numbing the pain with drugs or alcohol.
We have the opportunity to show love to the women (and Dad’s too) who have given life to a child; a child that for whatever the circumstance they are not raising. They gave us the best gift by allowing us to raise their flesh and blood. We are given a gift every day we see the smile and hear the laugh. Smiles they only see in photos a few times a year. Laughs they only hear through videos. Every day I am so thankful to all the birth mothers who have birthed the children I now call mine. I feel it is important to love on these women throughout the year but especially at Christmas.
The least I can do is try and bless them and show them that they are loved and special. Now I know there are some places where you need to be very careful and in some adoption scenarios there is a no gift rule and in those circumstances you need to get creative. You can DIY lots of meaningful gifts. A Christmas ornament with a photo of the child, a hand print or a quote is a cherished gift.
I try to buy things that are useful or meaningful. Some birth mothers have no home. They can use practical things like a blanket, clothes, a new pillow, a bag with wheels, toiletries, make up, or a gift certificate for new shoes, food or clothes. PJ’s are usually a big hit because they don’t often get them for themselves. I like making up a PJ, slipper, pillow and blanket basket.
Some birth mothers don’t need practical things but would love a night out at the movies, a concert ticket, a ticket for entry into a museum or local attraction or a gift certificate to a restaurant or to pamper herself. Another sentimental gift idea is a necklace or Christmas ornament with the child’s name on it.
There are times when a birth mother disappears for a while maybe even a few years, but you can still make that hand print ornament and if she returns give her the gifts later. She will still treasure a baby hand print at any point in the child’s life.
I try to think about how a birth mother must feel at Christmas. My answer to myself is lonely, empty, grief, loss, and a sense that there is someone missing from the table. If I felt that I would hope others would step in a show some love to me.
To all the birth mothers and fathers this Christmas,
I know this can be a hard time of year when a part of you is missing. I know you miss your little one. I know you miss their snuggles and seeing their face as they open all their gifts. Know that you have given your child the best gift by allowing them to live. You chose life. You gave them a part of your looks and your personality. You have played an important role in your child’s life. I thank you for the wonderful child that lives in our family. I thank you for supporting us as parents. I thank you for respecting us. You are loved and you deserve a happy Christmas.
I would love to hear what things you have given or made for the birth mother in your life. Comment below and share your great ideas!