Gina Crotts, 38, said she spent her whole life yearning to meet her “little butterfly” whom she placed up for adoption 17 years ago, until one day, their lives collided again.

Call it coincidence or fate, but in one moment, a chance encounter brought them together after nearly two decades apart.

Gina, now married with three other children with husband Brandon, 46, shared her story on Love What Matters. The mother and writer from Saratoga Springs, Utah, said she was 19 years old and single when she became pregnant with a baby girl.

Unable to raise the child, she reluctantly placed Kalyn in the arms of her adoptive family after “four priceless days with her.”

Over the years, the Crotts grew to cherish their half-sister through photos and notes as Kalyn’s adopted family shared her milestones with the family as she grew older. Gina always wanted to find the daughter she had given up but never knew if she would want to connect with her

But that all changed when a high school girl with long blonde hair peered through the window of Gina’s 13-year-old’s dance class in October 2017.

Gina recalls her daughter saying:

‘Mom, that girl standing in the hallway, wearing a Brigham Young University (BYU) sweatshirt, looks just like your little butterfly.’

She continued:

As I turned to see this mysterious look-alike, I paused and thought about her being in a BYU sweatshirt. I was aware of her desire to attend law school, possibly at BYU, and for the first time, as I turned to look, I thought to myself— could it be her, after all of this time?

Kalyn was with her adoptive father staring at her biological mother through a dance studio window only six feet away. Gina, who is transparent about her experiences in a memoir, said

I was shocked at first, then a second later full of sheer excitement, then hesitation in case she didn’t want to see me.

I stopped at the door, I didn’t want to walk out and see her walking away because she wasn’t ready.

Her adoptive dad gave her a choice, I didn’t want to confuse her and needed to be sure it was what she wanted.

When I opened the door, she was standing in front of me.

Since then, the two have managed to stay connected and spent time together just three months ago, before Thanksgiving.

Kalyn said meeting her biological family for the first time was like “opening a door” to a whole other part of her life that she hadn’t previously experienced.

Kalyn, now, 18, recalls:

When I first met everyone, walking into the door I felt wrapped in so much love.

Here were all these people who had been loving me for 18 years, and I was just meeting them.

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Be still my motherly heart – a heart that was still a child myself • May this moment be the core of which you build your life upon • Be still this hole in my heart – for it will seem to never heal • May I accept the absence of those tiny hands • Be still my grieving heart – for darkness brings glory to the light • May I always appreciate that which is for it brought such purpose to who I am • Be still my family around me – we all seek the love from the wings of a butterfly • May our hearts be filled with gratitude . . { I am who I am because I am a birth mother } I love deeper, appreciate more, advocate, and show more gratitude because of that experience I am a birth mother. . . . . #author #nationalawareness #adoption #placed #writers #adopting #birthmother #wearenotallthesame #noassumptions #letgoofjudgement #beopen #listen #adopt #ginacrottswriter #speaker #adoptioneducation #november #adoptiveparents #iamme #noapologies

A post shared by ✨ G I N A ✨ (@ginacrottswriter) on

Gina, who has dedicated her life to helping families navigate the adoption journey, said:

We are very fortunate it played out in this way, I’m very aware most birth moms don’t get this experience and I’m very fortunate for how my story ended up.

Kalyn is happy she connected and looks forward to building stronger bonds with her biological family in the future.

For more on the emotional reunion follow Gina Crotts on Instagram and visit her website.

Watch Gina share her “million to one encounter” in the clip below:

About the author

Tiffani is a writer for Dearly. She is from New York City. Prior to working for Dearly she covered fashion news and managed social media for various digital media outlets.

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3 Replies to “Mom Dreamed of Seeing Baby She Placed for Adoption — 17 Years Later, Her Other Child Pointed Her out in the Crowd”

  • PBM 1 year ago

    Nice story. I’m glad Gina did not go for an abortion. Look how beautiful that girl is. Blessings to you all.

  • Anonymous 1 year ago


  • Debbie 1 year ago

    Where’s the Mom who raised her?

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