“My journey begins before I was even born. When I was 4 months old, I was adopted into a wonderful, Christian home where my two parents raised me and my sister. I have always seen them as my Mom and Dad.
I was aware that I was adopted from a very young age as that was talked about openly and honestly in my home growing up. The questions did not really come for me until I was in high school and I was 16 years old at a youth retreat with my church youth group. As I was sitting there praying, I had this longing in my heart to know about my birth-parents. I remember coming home that next day with such anticipation and all the nerves, because I wanted to sit my parents down and ask.
After I told my mom about this longing I had in my heart, she went to the other room. When she came back, she had a massive pile of letters from my birth-mom that she had written me each year around my birthday. My parents were just waiting for the right moment to share it with me. I read each and every letter with tears in my eyes. My parents told me they did not have any information on my birth-father, but that they were okay with me meeting my birth-mom.
Just months later, I met my birth-mom for the very first time. It was full of emotions with everything and nothing that I expected all at the same time. I was grateful I had met her and could be in some kind of contact going forth.
We kept in touch here and there, but then there was a period of about four years where we had not written one another. On a spring day when I was 21 years old, with two babies of my own at home, in a little 2-bedroom apartment, I was in my bedroom with this heaviness on my heart of the desire to know who my birth-father was. I needed to know. I felt that something was still missing, and I knew that to do this, I would have to openly ask my birth-mom.
Any time that I would write my birth-mom, she never mentioned my birth-father, so I really had no idea what that meant. My birth-mom was only 14 years old when she gave birth to me, 13 when she was pregnant. Here is what I learned very quickly as I picked up my phone to call my birth-mom to ask her about him.
‘You were conceived in rape,’ she told me.
I could hear her gasping for air as she wept on the other end of the phone. She had these big sighs of grief with a shaking in her voice as she said, ‘I don’t know who he is. I can only tell you what I remember of how he looked at that time. I remember hearing someone else call his name, I think, a friend of his maybe, but I barely remember that.’ She also told me, ‘I have never told anyone this before.’
My heart sank. To be honest, I didn’t say anything for a few seconds. It may have only been a few seconds, but it felt like hours. She was sobbing heavily over the phone telling me she was so sorry she could not give me that information. I could sense over the phone such sadness in her voice and I knew I had to say something.
‘It is not your fault. It is okay. I am just so thankful that you felt strong enough to tell me. Thank you for loving me enough to choose adoption for me. I love you.’ We both started to cry. That was the last phone call I have had with my birth-Mom. Years have passed since that moment.
It really did not hit me – the significance in her choice to give me to an adoptive family – until recently in my own life. Growing up, I was always against abortion. Maybe a part of that was my own faith. It was not until I was faced with two different situations in my life back in 2015 when I made the choice to end the lives of two babies; one at 8 weeks and another at 14 weeks.
Both were traumatizing, left me in shame, fearful, and I felt no worth as a Mom to my kids at the time, the 4 children I already had prior to those two abortions. I never felt good enough. My choice to have two abortions changed how I viewed myself and it left me feeling chained to lies and shame for another almost four years.
In the Spring of 2019, through a series of events leading up to this, I decided to walk through a post-abortive healing class. This 8-week class changed my life. I experienced healing, forgiveness, and those chains were broken. I went into that class broken and hurting and left that class 8 weeks later with a completely different view on abortion and adoption, and I was now set free and healed! It was a miracle and it was all God.
Through this healing though, I kept coming back to the reality, the truth that I was a product of rape. Me. Erika. Here I am now, it is July of 2019, and I am a Mom to 5 kids (earth-side) and I am a wife, daughter, friend, sister. I would not have been any of those things if my birth-mom did not choose life for me. But she did. She chose to keep me despite her situation. She chose adoption for me.
Maybe it hit me more because I did not choose life for those two babies. I was not strong enough, not at that time in my life. As I walked through that post-abortive healing class, it opened up my eyes to see the need to make sure other women out there know they have choices. That no matter what, no matter what the circumstance is surrounding her pregnancy, she does not have to choose abortion if she doesn’t want to.
There are other options. That life growing inside of that woman, could one day be someone like me. A wife, mother, sister, daughter, friend, someone who hopes to use her story to change the world and change hearts. That is my passion, that is my desire. My prayer is that God would use this as a way to heal, change, and transform the hearts of people and that women who maybe can relate to my story would experience the same freedom and healing that I have.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Erika Lynn Kapustinski of Meriden, Connecticut. You can follow her journey on Instagram. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here, and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.
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