I was contacted by the publisher, Wise Ink Creative Publishing, and offered a digital copy in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Rating: 3.5 Stars
This is a story that far too many women of all ages can relate to. For a multitude of reasons that are most often deeply private, there are women who are forced to make a decision that they don't want to make - to give a baby up for adoption. In the author's case she was eighteen at the time, and had just started college when she discovered she was pregnant. I can imagine how scary this would be to someone who is legally an adult, but has only recently struck out on their own for the first time, away from family. I connected to this story because, though I was not 18 at the time (I was 29), finding this out was so overwhelming for me. I too was far from my family and in a new city where I knew no one. I had just started a new job, so there had been many changes going on. My daughter's father and I had broken up the very week I found out I was pregnant with Eleanor. Luckily I was in a better situation - I already had two degrees and a secure job. Still, there were so many emotions that come along with "those three words", it was a rough couple of weeks. I never considered any option besides having and raising my child, but I received a lot of advice from a lot of people. I was simply better equipped to be able to do so, and I think Bauer made a gut-wrenching but correct choice.
The author's journey from considering suicide to making the decision to give her baby up for adoption was incredibly moving. This is a decision that will impact the rest of her life, and really is a testament to a mother's love. Bauer knew she was not capable of caring for a child when she was still a teenager herself. How could she, when she had just started college and had yet to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to obtain employment that would comfortably support herself and a child?
The aspect I was most interested in was when Bauer and her daughter, Katie, made contact later in life. I found this to be a great reinforcement of the decision Bauer made. Katie had been placed in a loving home and had thrived. I found myself worrying a bit that the reunion would not happen, or that Katie might not want to attempt a relationship. I think the fact that Katie's family was supportive of that relationship is another testament to that same parental love.