Our maternity home is a joyful and busy place and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
“Before coming into the maternity home I was in a toxic relationship with the father of the baby. When I chose open adoption for my baby it was to make the best decision for the baby. I remember reading an article in the paper about the Lamb of God maternity home months before I was pregnant. I made an appointment at Birth Choice in Oceanside, that’s where I got more information on the home and was able to contact Sarah right away. Sarah offered me a bed in the home right after meeting with her. They have provided the support that I will never get from the father. They have helped me break away from the unhealthy relationship and it has brought such a freedom to my life.
Being here gives me the strength to be okay though this process, through all the love and stories of everyone in this home. The staff, including the house parents always makes sure we are fed and a family dinner is made for us every night. What a blessing it is to always have food in the fridge and to be able to sit down and eat a home cooked meal every night! Since I have been living here I have had car problems. The staff here have gone out of their way to help me get though it. They introduced me to a reliable mechanic who comes right to the house, have used their personal AAA to get my car towed, and have given rides when needed. We are treated like family here. They have shown me what love is. I am so blessed to be living here in this home during this life changing decision. I know this is a decision I will never regret. I believe if it weren’t for the Lamb of God home I would not have had the strength to carry out this decision. And because of this ministry I was able to choose life.”
After only two and a half years, the home runs like a well-oiled machine. We have an incredible staff where each member feels called to the work and honored to be a part of the team. It truly is our privilege to serve women who are so brave, selfless and inspiring.
I want to share the story of one of our birth moms. By the time Marisa was eight, she was largely caring for herself and by her early teens she was on her own. By maintaining a 4.6 GPA in high school, Marisa’s teachers saw how talented she was and guided her towards college. She was able to attend UC Davis but struggled with the demons of her past and was a victim of sexual assault. This led Marisa back to the streets where she ended up pregnant. Marisa’s immediate reaction was to “get rid of the problem.” She went to a Pregnancy Care Center where she learned that the life inside of her was in fact precious and was not willing to follow through with an abortion.
During this same time, a local pastor was serving “street kids” dinner every Friday at the home he shared with his wife. Marisa would laugh and jokingly think that this guy would “make her into a Christian,” but really she just went for the free food. Notwithstanding this, Marisa formed a bond with the pastor and sought his guidance. She shared her fears of the pregnancy with him and was desperate for a glimmer of hope. When hope seemed lost, Marisa hit rock bottom. She simply wanted to die. In search of a solution, she went to the pastor because she knew it was time to become a Christian. Suddenly it hit her, “They are looking to adopt! Maybe they would like to adopt my baby!” Marisa recalled, “It took me two weeks to ask them and it took them two seconds to eagerly agree!”
Then we got a call from Marisa. She very simply stated “Hi, I’m placing my baby for adoption, I’ve already picked a couple, and I need a place to live.” Marisa and the adoptive mom came to the maternity home the very next day for an interview. What I remember most about this meeting is the way Marisa’s adoptive mom stared adoringly at her the ENTIRE time, as though she was in awe of every word that came out of her mouth. She moved into the maternity home that week, our journey began and we all fell in love with her.
Marisa shared unthinkable things about her life, while struggling to acclimate to a life off the streets. The thought of a job and responsibilities was foreign to her but she persevered. The Lamb of God staff would watch in amazement as Marisa hopped on her bike and rode in the hot Escondido sun to find herself a job. We arranged driving lessons for her and she earned her driver’s license. She beautifully went through her pregnancy and the placement of her sweet baby boy.
By the time she gave birth, Marisa had already secured a full-time job and transportation for herself. She stayed in the home for a number of months after she placed her baby. Marisa’s adoptive family became a staple at all of our Lamb of God celebrations. Another favorite event they share as a family is watching Chicago Bears’ football on Sunday afternoons. Through their influence, Marisa has become a fan and now enjoys a good game!
Marisa still joins us once a week for dinner and will forever be a part of the Lamb of God family. Marisa shared a list of 100 things she learned at Lamb of God. Each one is astounding but here’s a list of some of our favorites:
- DNA doesn’t make a family…LOVE does!
- A baby’s sneeze is the most adorable thing ever.
- Unplanned pregnancy can happen to any woman, from any walk of life, and what women do with it can turn the most unexpected friends into the most beautiful friendships.
- You don’t understand how strong you are until it’s your only option.
- If pregnancy doesn’t give you fuzzy, child birth will.
- Pregnancy is more worth it than I thought.
- True love is signing away your parental rights when you’re crying so hard you can’t read the paperwork.