Unexpected pregnancies are sometimes stressful situations. For teenager Kaleena Pysher, she didn’t know what to do. She was still in high school. However, she ultimately decided the best option was to place her baby up for adoption. Once she selected the best adoptive parents for her baby, Pysher had one small request: that her baby still drinks her own breast milk.
Making The Decision
Pysher was in high school when she found out she was pregnant. She couldn’t believe the news, but she knew she had to quickly make a decision on what she wanted to do. Her stepmother, Kristen Ballard, commented, “She had to make some very adult decisions.” Right away, Pysher knew she wasn’t capable of raising a child. She was still a child herself, so she decided on the best option for her baby: adoption.
Pysher said, “When I first found out that I was pregnant, I knew I didn’t have the life experience to raise a baby, and I wasn’t going to be selfish…So, I decided for adoption.” She wanted to give her baby the best life possible—with endless possibilities—and Pysher knew that wouldn’t happen with her. It was a heartbreaking decision, but she knew her baby would be happy and loved by a couple who desperately wanted to have a child.
Trusting A Friend
Once Pysher began the adoption process, she found out that a family friend and her husband were looking to adopt a child. Already four months pregnant, Pysher contacted the friend and they finalized the deal. During her pregnancy, Pysher updated the adoptive family on her daily pregnancy journey. She sent them ultrasound photos and told them what was happening, so they felt they were involved in the pregnancy. During her pregnancy, Pysher read plenty of pre-natal information to make sure her baby would be healthy. It was during this research when she learned the benefits of breastfeeding, and that’s when she thought of a simple favor to ask the adoptive parents.
Pysher read that breastfeeding provides the ideal nutrition for a baby. Breast milk also contains antibodies, which help a baby fight off viruses and bacteria. In addition, breastfeeding helps reduce disease risk, promotes a healthy weight, and some studies suggest that breastfeeding may make children smarter. Once Pysher read these reports, she knew she wanted her baby to be breastfed.
She even told the adoptive parents that she wanted to breastfeed her baby, named Raylie, while they were both in the hospital. In addition, once the adoptive parents would take Raylie home with them, Pysher supplied them bottles of her breast milk to feed her daughter. Pysher said, “When a baby is fed breast milk, they are just way ahead of the game. I decided that I wanted my baby to have the best options and to be able to grow – and so, I knew I was going to pump and give her that benefit.”
Luckily, the adoptive parents were understanding of Pysher’s request. They accepted the donated breast milk. They eventually had to tell Pysher to stop sending milk because their freezer was already full. That’s when Pysher decided she could help NICU babies at various hospitals. She contacted a breast milk bank in Colorado and arranged to have her breast milk supply donated there, where they would distribute the milk to babies in need.
‘We Are A Family Now’
Since giving birth to Raylie, Pysher has been in contact with the adoptive family. They regularly FaceTime each other and Pysher receives photographs and videos of her daughter. The family told her, “We are a family now. They say that I [Pysher] will always be her mother and that they are appreciative of the gift of life I have given them.”
Pysher, now studying to become a dental assistant, even visited the family’s house to celebrate Raylie’s first birthday. She was thrilled to see her daughter happy. She reflected, “Placing Raylie with this family was the best decision I ever made – there is never a moment that I regret my choice.”
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