Heather’s Post on Termination of Parental Rights

Birth mom

If you haven’t seen Heather’s comment about how she felt the day her rights to Jackson were terminated, I have posted it below. And let me tell you, I didn’t think it was going to be that hard to sit through either.

This is very personal to share, but it’s raw truth.

Terminating my parental rights was extremely emotional. If you’ve been reading through these blogs & comments, you know that I knew Jackson was Jessica & JJ’s all along. PERIOD…. So, “legally” signing over my parental rights over to them wasn’t going to be a huge problem for me, because they were always his parents (in my eyes).

I DIDN’T IMAGINE IT BEING THAT HARD, THOUGH…
I am the type of person who was trained (by life) to always prepare for the worst, no matter what. Because the worst DOES happen, and it hits you like FIRE when you are not prepared! & that FIRE can do immense amount of damage.

I HAD TO PREPARE FOR THE WORST in this situation.
I had to sit down, and prepare myself for the emotions that came with “what if”…
“what if” JJ & Jessica haven’t been genuine this whole entire time?
“what if” they were faking their love just to make sure I signed my rights over?
“what if” once I sign over my rights, they just disappear.
“what if” I never see Jackson again?
“what if” his parents feel it’s best Jackson doesn’t know who I am at all?
That was THE WORST..

Even though, on this day, little baby Jackson showed up to the courtroom with a onesie which read “I my birth mom”….Even though, deep down, I knew that the “what ifs” were nothing to truly worry about because I just knew the worst wouldn’t happen.. No, not this time!

But, I prepared myself for the worst, anyways.. I had to make myself be comfortable with the thought of Jackson and his parents disappearing and just having faith that one day he might find me if he wanted to.
My only hope was that he knew how much I loved him, no matter where he was. That his birth mom, Heather, loved him. SO MUCH, and always will..
So when the judge kept repeatedly bringing up my worst fear over and over and over again, it was like being stabbed a little tiny bit in the heart but I was ready for it. I prepared myself for the “WHAT IFS”….

It’s hard when you put yourself in a position where you are forced under the spotlight. Privacy completely goes out the window, & in order to succeed, you must stay strong.

The feeling of being judged was the worst part of that experience…
Sitting up on that stand, being asked question after question after question after question!
Trying my hardest to hold back my emotions.
Sharing very personal details about a time in my life I was not very proud of.
That lifestyle kept flashing through my mind as I was sitting there on that stand, with all eyes on me.

Every night, drinking until I couldn’t think or feel anymore.
Drinking, drinking, drinking the pain away.
Drinking, because it was fun.
Drinking until all morality went out the window.
Having casual sex with someone I didn’t even know…
Drowning in depression… Just SO lost in this world…
It all led me to that place, to that moment, on that stand…
& all of that was just swarming my brain all at once.

I’ve been judged all my life.
By people who don’t even know me at all. & they didn’t care to, but they always had an opinion.
By family who obviously know who I am but don’t have the slightest idea of anything beneath the surface.
By “friends” who aren’t really my friends, yet people who just like to talk about me..

Mostly, I’ve been judged by people who NEVER took an opportunity to TRY to understand me or get to know me, for who I AM.
All they saw were my shortcomings. Constantly.

On that stand, in that courtroom, I was shaking at the thought of people judging me (again), and when I went home it made me so angry that I allowed the judgment of others to affect me THAT MUCH.
It was an eye opener! A blessing in disguise.

I used to take judgments so personally, but after that day on that stand, I no longer let the judgments of others get to me like how I used to.
Now, the only judgments I allow to truly “get to me” are my OWN or from people who I know truly LOVE me unconditionally.

I do want to say that I am extremely happy that Jessica and JJ were there when I terminated my parental rights. For 1, I got to see them again with baby Jackson. 2, I definitely felt less alone with them being there. 3, the vision of them right in front of me during the proceedings gave me a constant reminder of WHY I was doing what I was doing..

& 4 – Being there altogether meant a lot to me. Ultimately, it’s all about Jackson & it’s all about him having the best life possible.
Sticking together for him through all the hard times, the good times, the sad times, the fun times. It’s all about him, and building that relationship together for Jackson is just amazing because he needs that.

#OpenAdoption #Strength #StickingTogether

Just as a side note, the “what ifs” Heather mentions above, never, ever crossed our minds. We may not know what this open adoption will look like forever, but what we do know is that we will do our very best to do what is best for Jackson and right now, we believe having an open adoption with Heather and her family is what is best for Jackson.

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