Dear Annie: My heart went out to the couple in today's paper — the letter from the woman in her late 20s who is having problems with infertility. Back in the '70s, a time when infertility was not talked about like now, my partner and I also had an infertility problem. The options were minimal. We continued to do all the testing.
Many of our friends and family members would be announcing their pregnancies. The pain at times was unbearable. Many prayers were said, and many tears were shed. We finally decided on adoption.
In time, we received a letter of acceptance. We were blessed to adopt a baby boy and then, two years later, a baby girl. It was love at first sight in both cases. We now have six beautiful grandchildren. As much as it hurts "Bitter," she needs to make amends with her family. Life is short, and you are only given one chance. Wishing them well. — A Very Happy Grandmother
Dear Happy Grandmother: I can feel the gratitude pouring out of your letter. Adoption is a wonderful thing, and I am so happy for you and your family. Enjoy those precious grandchildren, and thank you for your heartfelt letter.
Dear Annie: Many years ago, I went through all the tests and procedures for infertility. This is not the only way to become a parent. We went through a private adoption agency. The process cost us about $25,000. That is about what people pay for a new car. It was the most well-spent money.
I became the mother of a beautiful, perfect baby girl. She has grown into an intelligent and loving young lady. She was the light in my life. She couldn't have been more ours if we had conceived her. Something to consider. — Light in My Life
Dear Light in Your Life: Similar to the previous letter, yours beams with gratitude. You are a wonderful mother, and what a lovely tribute to the joys of adoption. Thank you.
Dear Annie: "Bitter" says she wants to be a mother. This is different from having a baby.
There are still many options for being a mother available to her, but only after she heals enough to look for them. Adoption, foster parenting, volunteering, and loving nieces and nephews all come to mind.
I feel her pain. I was in her shoes 40 years ago. I called United Way and asked for some kind of volunteer work with babies and toddlers. They directed me to a temporary care facility that cared for little ones during family emergencies. I helped put toddlers to bed, read stories, and cuddled and rocked them. It did MY soul a world of good.
There are many ways to mother. "Bitter" needs to start looking. — Being a Mother
Dear Being a Mother: Yours is a beautiful suggestion for anyone who is a mother or wants to be a mother. Hats off to you for caring for vulnerable babies and children during emergency situations. The world needs more people like you.
"Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie" is out now! Annie Lane's debut book - featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette - is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to [email protected]