P2. Devastated mom wants to adopt, spots girl at adoption agency strikingly similar to her late daughter

 

The dimly lit living room that was once filled with a child’s laughter reminded Eleanor over and over again of her profound loss and her inability to move forward. She and her husband, Joseph, lost their daughter Ava to cancer and nothing has been the same ever since. The grief and the pain that settled into Eleanor’s hard was extremely hard to even try to overcome. Eventually, the loss affected her realtionship with Joseph and the two split.

All Eleanor could wish for was to be a mother again.

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Five years after Ava’s passing, she decided to adopt a child. Spending hours and hours on adoption sites, Eleanor’s attention was caught by the image of a young girl named Charlotte. This girl’s resemblance to Ava was incredible. They not only had the same hair color, but it seemed to Eleanor that they also shared facial features.

Without hesitating even a bit, Eleanor called Grace Adoption Services.

“Hello, this is Grace Adoption Services. I’m Samantha. How can I assist you today?” a warm voice came on the other end.

“My name is Eleanor. I’m hoping to adopt, and a little girl on your website has caught my attention,” she said, scratching her head.

“We’ll set up an appointment for you to come in and meet us. It’s always best if we do this in person.”

Eleanor was quick to agree. “I’m ready to take that step,” she said. “I want to make a difference in a child’s life.”

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On the day of the meeting, Eleanor waited nervously at Samantha’s office.

“It’s wonderful to meet you in person,” Samantha greeted her. “I’ve read your application and can already tell you’d be an amazing parent.”

Eleanor was asked of the reasons she wanted to adopt and plenty of other questions about her background. She was also asked about her partner, with Samantha telling her that two-parent household had greater chances of adopting a child.

Eleanor explained that her relationship with her ex crumbled after the loss of their daughter, but the two were still in contact and trying to mend things between them.

Eleanor then left the agency with high hopes of being able to adopt Charlotte. She was so certain that her wish of becoming a mother again would come true that she even set a child’s room and bought everything Charlotte would need if she becomes her daughter.

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What followed was a meeting at the park between Eleanor and Charlotte. Once she laid eyes on her in person, Eleanor was once again struck by the child’s resemblance with late Ava. She bought some coloring books and markers which Charlotte accepted with a quiet “Thank you” as a response.

The day was filled with fun and laughter, and Charlotte even told Eleanor that she would love her to be her mom because she didn’t want to be in the foster care any longer.

In the following weeks, Eleanor and Charlotte developed a stronger bond as Charlotte visited Eleanor’s home, explored her new bedroom, and shared meals with her.

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Finally, Eleanor called Joseph. “Ellie,” he greeted warmly. “I’ve been thinking about you.”

“I have some big news to share. Can we meet tomorrow?” she told him.

The following day, Eleanor explained to Joseph that she wanted to adopt. “I can see this means a lot to you. It’s good to see you so alive again,” he responded. “I can’t let grief consume me,” she said. “We can’t let grief consume us.”

In the days to come, Joseph joined Eleanor and Charlotte to dinners and visited them in the house.

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Charlotte was happy in what she hoped would be her forever home. “I’ve never had a mom like you. I don’t want to go back to foster care,” she told Eleanor. “I will be, sweetheart. I’ll be your mom forever.”

 

 

Finally, the adoption day arrived and Eleanor invited her closest family and friends to witness the beautiful moment. Joseph was also there.

At the hearing, Eleanor and Charlotte stood hand in hand before the judge as he finalized the adoption. Eleanor’s eyes filled with joyful tears as she looked at Charlotte, realizing they were beginning a new chapter together.

In her new environment, Charlotte flourished, serving as a reminder of the love Eleanor and Joseph once lost and the abundant love they still had to offer.

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Being part of their lives, Charlotte brought Eleanor and Joseph closer together, and they rekindled their relationship.

One day, out of the blue, Eleanor received a call from Samantha. Her voice sounded strange and Eleanor heart skipped a beat because she could sense something was wrong.

“Eleanor, Charlotte’s biological mother has contacted me,” the adoption agency owner revealed. “She claimed that Joseph could be Charlotte’s biological father.”

“What? Charlotte could be Ava’s half-sister?” Eleanor whispered.

“We need to confront Joseph about this,” Samantha advised. “If he denies it, a paternity test may be necessary.”

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“Why does it matter if she gave the kid up?”

“She said that the affair was quick, but if the biological dad suddenly wants to be in the picture, she may want to challenge the adoption,” Samantha explained. “I just want to be sure nothing can mess with Charlotte’s happiness.”

Eleanor hung up the phone and approached Joseph who was gardening outside. She told him what Samantha told her and asked him if he had had an affair with someone. Joseph confessed that he had a one-night thing with a woman whom he met in a support group for grieving parents he had joined after Ava’s death and their separation.

“It was a terrible mistake,” he confessed.

“You mean to say that you might be Charlotte’s father then if this woman gave her up for adoption?” Eleanor asked in horror.

“I left the group soon after she told me she was pregnant. But she might have given the child up for adoption,” Joseph nodded.

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Eleanor, overwhelmed, asked about a paternity test which Joseph agreed without hesitation, “I will. I’ll own up to this all the way.”

While they waited for the results, Eleanor spoke to Samantha constantly. “In most jurisdictions, once an adoption is complete, it is generally irreversible,” her now-friend explained softly. When the results finally came Eleanor had a hard time breathing as they were opening the envelope that could change their lives yet again. She read it slowly, “Joseph is…not Charlotte’s father! Thank God!”

Upon hearing this news, Eleanor saw Charlotte’s resemblance to Ava as a miraculous coincidence and a second chance for her family. Through Charlotte, Ava could forever remain a part of them.

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