Motherhood shapes the lives of people who take on the role in profound ways. Remarkable are those who have embraced this challenging yet rewarding journey. Among these incredible mothers are those who have experienced the unique path of adoption firsthand. Their stories hold great significance as they navigate the joys and challenges of raising their own children while reflecting on their personal adoption stories.
In a time when we honor the incredible mothers present in our lives, we want to shine a light on the journeys of incredible moms from Homegrown, our community for adoptees and fostered children at Generations—Home. Rachel Escosar-Arellano, Ina Ferrer, Carissa Moran, and Becky Ramos were adopted and now all have children of their own. Their stories offer a glimpse into the transformative power of motherhood and the impact they are making on generations to come.
The Joys and Challenges of Motherhood
Kids teach you so much too about yourself and the world. They teach you and force you and inspire you, day in and day out to be and do better.
Becoming a mother is an extraordinary experience that brings both immense joy and unforeseen challenges. Rachel, who became a new mother just one month ago, describes motherhood as the most challenging role she has ever taken on. It tests her in ways she never expected, especially during the initial stages after the birth. However, the overwhelming love she feels for her son makes every sacrifice worthwhile.
Rachel: “Becoming a mom is the most challenging role I ever had to take on. It’s really a full time job! It pushes you and tests you (especially those first few weeks like WOW).
But, the love I have for my son is like having your heart live outside your body. Being a mom is hard, but you’d do it all again in a heartbeat for your child.
All you want is the best for your child, that he will always feel loved and safe.”
Rachel with her husband Arwin and their son Mateo
Ina, Carissa, and Becky, echo Rachel's sentiments—they find immeasurable joy despite the challenges, emphasizing the multifaceted nature of being a parent. They acknowledge that their children teach them about aspects of themselves once unknown as much as they teach their children, creating a bond that strengthens day by day.
Ina: “Kids teach you so much too about yourself and the world. They teach you and force you and inspire you, day in and day out to be and do better…Motherhood, parenthood is beautiful, messy, heart-stopping, imperfectly beautiful and it really does take a village to raise a child…”
Carissa: “Seeing their growth physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually brings me such joy and peace, and it reassures me that I’m doing something right as a mother. I love every second of being their mom. They may not know or realize it—I’ve been learning so much more from them about a lot of things.”
Carissa with her sons Mateo and Marco
For Becky, motherhood has also been humbling, revealing her own weaknesses and the need for reliance on her faith.
Becky: “…Motherhood is not a glamorous job. It is humbling. It is a daily dying to self. It reveals heart idols I never knew existed. But it also points me to the Savior knowing that left to myself, I can't do this job. My remaining sin keeps me from perfectly loving my children, yet Christ's perfect sacrifice grants me the grace and forgiveness needed to not wallow in despair but repent and try again with His enablement.”
These diverse experiences unveil that motherhood requires one’s unwavering dedication, perseverance, and most of all love.
A New Perspective on Adoption
My generational cycle was broken. Not only did I have a better shot at life, but now my son will also have a better shot at life.
Motherhood has a profound way of reshaping one's perspective, and for these adoptees-turned-mothers, it has shed new light on their own adoption stories.
Rachel expresses deep appreciation for her biological mother as her own journey through pregnancy and childbirth helped her recognize what it took her birth mother to bring her into this world. Being a parent has also heightened her admiration for her adoptive mother, who nurtured her and loved her as her own, giving Rachel then and her son now a greater chance at life.
Rachel: It made me appreciate my biological mother for bringing me to life. Pregnancy and childbirth are no joke! Both are uncomfortable and very painful, but I’m really thankful that she chose to go through with it to give me a shot at life. It also made me appreciate my [adoptive] mom. She may not have been the one who carried me and gave birth to me, but she was the one who raised me, nurtured me, loved me like her own, and carried me through most of my life…becoming a mother makes me feel even more thankful that somebody said yes to adoption. My generational cycle was broken. Not only did I have a better shot at life, but now my son will also have a better shot at life.
Carissa recognizes the emotional weight of the decision her birth mother made and honors her courageous choice.
Carissa: My adoption story may have been easy for me because I was only 2 months old when I was placed in my family. But I’m sure it was not as easy for my birth mother. Now that I am a mother, having to even think of giving up my baby already brings so many emotions…I don’t think I could ever do it. So I realize it really is such a brave thing for a mother to do.
Ina and Becky share similar sentiments, acknowledging the profound impact their adoptive families had on their lives and expressing gratitude for the opportunities they have been given.
Ina: Most definitely! My husband Pete, son Manolo and I always talk about what if mom/Oma (lola) did not say yes to adoption, where would we be now? Or what kind of life would I have? For sure, mom (and pops) didn’t realize at the time they decided to take me in that they have made a cataclysmic change not only in my life but in my son’s life and future generations. For that, I am so grateful. Thank you, mom (and pops)! Haha!
Ina with her husband Pete, son Manolo, brother Miko, mom Stela, and dad Boni
Becky: If you're planning on becoming a mother (whether through birth or adoption) for how it will make you feel (aka a good person), then you're in it for the wrong reasons. My firstborn is my twin in boy form.
He is high energy. He challenges everything.
My mom just laughs when she hears the stuff he does because she went through the same thing with me. Knowing I'm adopted makes me feel on a much deeper level how amazing my parents' love is for me. I was not born from them and I presented all sorts of challenges to them in terms of my behavior, and yet they loved me through it and now stand to support and offer biblical counsel as we parent a child much like myself.
Becky with her husband Jeremy, son Sammy, daughter Katy, brother Andy, dad Steve, and mom Carol
These perspectives highlight what these mothers have gained through their own experiences of motherhood, shedding light on the complexities of their adoption stories and the unique bond between a mother and child.
Empowering Future Generations
So whatever stage of motherhood you are in—whether it's the trenches of toddlerhood, the challenges in the teen years, or an empty-nester with grown children, what you do now as a mom will impact a generation.
Motherhood is about more than just the here and now; it's also about the enduring influence moms have on subsequent generations. For Rachel, the affection and lessons mothers impart to their children now are the vital things that will stay with them as they journey through life.
Rachel: Regardless if you gave birth or adopted your child/children, or even had to stand as a mother figure for someone—you have the opportunity to directly help shape the next generation.
Rachel emphasizes that being a mother already holds great importance and she hopes that her fellow moms continue to inspire their children to become passionate advocates for causes aligned with God’s heart.
Rachel: “You’re doing great, momma…Continue to reflect God’s sacrificial, nurturing, and unconditional love to the next generation.”
Ina draws inspiration from African griots, who pass down wisdom and stories to their descendants. She urges all mothers to continue imparting wisdom to future generations about motherhood, adoption, and foster care.
Ina: “Together, like the griots, let’s continue to cheer for each other, share our life lessons on motherhood to the next generation and continue to value, hold dear, the wisdom of moms who have navigated parenthood before us. Let’s also continue to share the message and advocate for adoption and foster care because if we don’t then who will?”
Carissa emphasizes the significance of setting an example for our children, as they will carry on the values and principles they learn from us.
Carissa: “Whether you’re a birth mom, or adoptive mom, or even stepmom—I believe getting up, showing up, giving your full attention, and having your child/ren’s best interests at heart, will make the biggest impacts in their lives. And because children follow by example—this will set them up to be the same…to do the same as well for their future children, the future generation.”
Becky's perspective, influenced by her adoptive mother's unconditional love and support, emphasizes the ripple effect of a mother's actions and how it can have an enduring influence on future generations.
Becky: "So whatever stage of motherhood you are in—whether it's the trenches of toddlerhood, the challenges in the teen years, or an empty-nester with grown children, what you do now as a mom will impact a generation.”
The inspiring stories of Rachel, Ina, Carissa, and Becky highlight how they have embraced motherhood while gaining a deep sense of appreciation for their own adoptive mothers and the profound impact they have on future generations. The role of being a mom is no easy feat, but the enduring impact of nurturing children truly leaves a lasting legacy of unconditional love across generations.
________________________________________________________________ This article was written by a wonderful and talented volunteer. Happy Mother’s Day to all! Motherhood can find you in different ways. No matter how it happens, your identity as a mom is as true as the light you bring into your child’s life. To all the moms out there, we see you. We give thanks. We honor you.