I was a broke 22 year old widow (of only a year) and a single mother when I found out I was pregnant by someone who had broken things off about a week before. The birth-father wasn't interested in raising this baby, or being in our lives. I was trying to find comfort in a relationship that kept me in denial from the grief of losing the father of my daughter, and my husband. Becoming pregnant and subsequently sober, helped me to wake up to the reality of my situation. It hurt my heart to know that I was in no way prepared to give both of these girls what they deserved, I decided to look into adoption, and I found a family that I truly believed in my heart was meant to be my baby’s family. After meeting them, I knew that this without a doubt. They could give her all the things I couldn't; financially, emotionally and she’d have two parents to raise and love her. My daughter was almost 4 and she was part of the whole process, she understood from the start that this baby was not meant to be raised in our family. I knew that I couldn't give my daughter all that she needed and deserved if I was trying to also raise a baby without a second parent. The daughter I parent is almost 17 now and she has been a witness to my emotional, spiritual and physical healing over the years. We have a great relationship and she knows the reality of unplanned pregnancy. When there are issues in her life, she has the necessary tools to work through it rather than give up. We still talk about her birth sister and she understands why I decided to place, and is just excited that she may one day get to meet her. The adoption is closed and we have no information about my birth daughter who will turn 13 this year.I love her and have always loved her. I couldn't provide for her, so I had to look past how much it hurt my heart and how much I wanted to raise her, and find what was the very best thing for her and for my daughter. I still know in my heart that she is where she is meant to be, even if it hurts to miss her so, and not know anything about her. I kept my promise to both girls and cleaned up my life. I've done a lot of healing work and worked hard to become financially stable on my own. My life is finally a happy one. When and if my birth daughter wants to reunite, I want to be someone that she can be proud of, not someone that couldn't get my life together. I’m proud of who I am today. I have learned great compassion and hope through my life and only recently have I begun to share my story in the hopes of helping others to know that there is always hope and a light at the end of any tunnel, no matter how hard that light may be to find.