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I Can Feel Your Heartbeat

I love my daughter. She is mine, wholeheartedly. And even though I was unable to be the one that carried her for the - actually 8 months - that she was formed in another's womb, I loved her for the months before she was even conceived. Because you see, my daughter, Emma, is adopted. It was a great deal of pride for my (now ex) husband... but for me, it was my only way to have the baby that I was supposed to have in my life.

In my life review, I know some things will not be the way that I wanted them. I was holding out for a good marriage. That may never come to pass. I was also supposed to have children. My first boyfriend and I were in love in college and he did get me pregnant, but I miscarried. And then there was the story that I told you in the last chapter of this blog, Breaking Up is Hard to Do. I was not in love with the idea of being pregnant in college, but in my time, I would have kept that child if I could have. And in my own defense, I was not even the least bit unhappy when I found out that I could not have it. That baby is still in Heaven, and will have a chance at another lifetime. So, it goes without saying that I am in a good place and so is he.

But Emma, she is so my daughter. She looks like me, she acts like me, she even takes responsibility like I do. She feels like my long lost soul mate. And she is - in many ways. My mother once took a picture of me as a child on the Jersey Shore. I was on a blanket, holding a bottle of Coppertone tanning lotion, and attempting to pick the sand out of my toes. When I first took Emma to the beach, I was there with her alone. I showed her the ocean, and I placed her on a blanket. She picked up the bottle of Coppertone, and attempted to take the sand off her toes. She is my little mini me. And that is why I can tell you that after being a Medium, a mom and a life history teacher, that I am the perfect choice to be her mother. She and I simple get each other.

Before I noticed that Emma was my little soul mate (but intuitively highly suspected), I was working at getting the paperwork together and the bank account was empty. The costs of adoption in the United States is high. I was trying to make the most of it. But early on, I could see the road was all uphill. I did not know the reason that God would be in my corner, but he placed in my background a lot of hurt that would lead me to a job that ultimately I had to sue for sexual harassment. I tried to make the best of a bad situation and I did do the right thing. It was all for a very good reason. And when the money came in after a settlement agreement, we had the money to make the adoption work. The only problem was that in the midst of all this, my husband at the time had lost his position at work, and we had two houses to pay for while one was being sold. The market had crashed, the house was not selling, and my husband had no one to force him to work at any job, since we had the nest egg in the bank. I had to be so kind about it, and he went through all the money that we had in about 4 months. And then I had to start over.

Remember, I am trying to find a way to pay over $30,000. The mortgages on both homes were about 7,000 per month. It was as if I had the money in a month and within a few more, it was back to square one. Simply put, he took away the money each month that he decided not to get even temporary work. He could have found a job along side my own help pay for expenses in the meantime, but he felt that he got a good two month vacation while my hopes for a child had vanished. Then God interceded again. This time it was through a loan that my mother helped me get. With her credit and my income, we were able to finish the rest of the payment in one lump sum. But this time, I opened another account to make sure that my husband did not get his hands on the money each month.

I was not a happy camper. I had to fight him to keep the bills paid on his new salary - which he was so not happy with - just $62,000 and an annual bonus. In 2006, that was a lot of money. Even now I struggle to make the same amount and this is 16 years later. Once I was only focused on staying in love with my (now) ex-husband. But it all changed the day that we got the news that a baby girl was on her way to us via a birth mother in Florida. She became the joy and overwhelmingly the love of my life. No one could ever replace her.

In my life, I had a problem. I was in a bad relationship with my ex--husband, and at the time we were still together. He trained me not to say a word, to cover up the bruises, and not let anyone know that I had suffered. And at the time, I did what I was told. But he was abusive. He was verbally bashing me, and physically, he was warning me to behave. He did not like to be crossed. And in the middle of my life, he was pursuing other women, and behaving like a caged animal. He challenged me to ignore his behavior and stay married to him, especially if I wanted a child. He would decide what I needed to do, and would threaten to call off the adoption if I did not comply. So, I complied. I turned a blind eye to many of his indecent remarks, and a few blows to the head. It left me with a broken heart and a bruised body. I eventually took years to talk about it. I just accepted the fate that I had no way to get my child without being super sweet and not at all out of love with the abuser. So, I lied and hid the truth. John was an animal. And I had no idea that it could ruin me financially and physically...

In my own way, I was protecting my daughter. I did not want to give her up, and I knew that in my heart that we were meant to become mother and child. And if you feel the need to judge me, be careful. What would you do if you considered that someone was about to take your child away based on your past experiences of being bullied and victimized. I fought to my own credit, to be a mom. And I was able to bring her sweet, adorable and pre-mature, 4 pounds 11 ounces, home. And she was perfect and beautiful just as described by the adoption caregiver. I am her mom. And I was in Heaven.

No matter how horrible I was treated before she came into the world. I set a ground rule with him that day that we got back from her first NICU visit. He would no longer hurt me, physically or mentally again. Or else, I will take our child and leave. I made it perfectly clear. Not that he ever took me seriously. But that day, he did.

Only over time he became worse. He was holding back his anger. He was raging with fear from becoming a father. And in all of it, he was in my face, yelling and screaming, sometimes pushing and shoving, and in the end, he told me that if I did not take her and get out of his sight, he would take me into the back bedroom where she can't witness us and beat the living daylights out of me. Emma was only three years old.

So, I took it seriously. I held Emma's hand and walked into the back bedroom, and locked the door. I hid there with her, falling asleep hungry, until the next morning. Then, at 6 am, after hearing him leave the house for work, I called a friend, and she and her husband came to help us pack up and move everything we could fit into a couple cars and leave the house. Emma was just a little scared, but I was completely frightened. I could get out with a few boxes, some clothes, half her toys and shoes. But a few pieces of furniture took a second trip and he came in the house as we were just leaving. I was so paranoid that he would take her that I gave her to my friend and told her to leave immediately. He and I ended up staring off at each other with the car between us as I maneuvered to the drivers seat. I needed to see that he was not going to challenge me again.

Now, can you see that I would do anything to protect my daughter. That I knew that my ex husband was very dangerous and that he could not be trusted. His anger is what broke this family. Not me. And if anyone tries to tell me differently, then they need to be aware. Emma is my child. Not someone else's. And if they ever think otherwise, see God. God creates families. Not people. I couldn't hold her during the 8 months, but I did carry her so often for the next three years that her tiny feet would rather be around my hip than on the ground. I could feel her heartbeat every day. I was the one that was there caring for her 24-7, without his attention at all, a stay at home mother, and her primary caregiver for years to come.

Until he was able to break me.

And it will never happen again.

My daughter is adopted. But not in a way that is real. The physical world may see her as separate because she did not come from my body physically. But in the Heavenly realm, she is really my daughter, just like yours, just like theirs and just like anyone else's. Because I know that she is part of my soul group. And a part of my Heavenly family.


If you have enjoyed this blog, please send of a prayer of thanks to my co-author, David Cassidy, who has tried very hard to get me to understand that he is here to help me get the words out about my life and the love that I have for him, which is immeasurable. - Anne

Anne St. John is a Mom, a Psychic Medium and an Author. You can book a reading with her at

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