When her daughter-in-law, Eve, got pregnant, Madeleine didn’t trust her. She thought the baby didn’t belong to her son, Elliot. Eventually, Elliot fought with Eve and got into an accident driving drunk. Madeleine didn’t speak to Eve again, but a year later, she saw her grave next to her son’s and discovered the unbelievable truth.
Madeleine Brady walked through Glenwood Cemetery, looking for her son’s grave. She knew exactly where it was but had only visited a couple of times since his death. It was still hard to believe that Elliot was gone. She shook her head at those thoughts because they plagued her for a year already. Could I have done things differently? she wondered many times.
But the answer was tricky. Elliot married a woman named Eve, despite Madeleine’s concerns. The young woman didn’t have a family and worked as a waitress. Meanwhile, Madeleine always wanted something better for her son. But he was adamant, and they had their wedding.
Unfortunately, after almost two years of trying for a baby, they discovered that Elliot might never have children. Apparently, his sperm had low mobility. The doctors suggested several treatments, but they didn’t tell Madeleine much about it. It was their private business.
Miraculously, Eve fell pregnant only a few months after their first visit to the fertility doctor, and the young couple was insanely happy. But Madeleine couldn’t believe it. “Elliot, she must have cheated on you! This is not your baby!” the older woman insisted, urging her son to get a paternity test.
“Mother, you don’t know that. The treatments are amazing. It’s my kid,” her son replied, confident in his words at the time.
“I hope you’re a hundred percent sure of that before you end up raising another man’s baby!”
Over the next few months, Madeleine hounded Elliot constantly about this matter. She wouldn’t give up until Elliot got the tests done.
At first, Elliot was sure that his wife had never cheated on him, but his mother’s words resounded in his head constantly. When he asked Eve for a paternity test, his wife was offended. “I can’t believe you! This is our miracle baby!” she told him, holding her stomach protectively.
“If it were my baby, you wouldn’t have a problem taking the test!” he yelled back when the thought of her cheating took over his emotions. They shouted back and forth until Elliot gave up. He went to a friend’s house and got drunk. Sadly, he never made it back home after a severe car accident.
Madeleine was inconsolable, and she stared daggers at Eve during the entire funeral. Later that day, the pregnant woman tried to talk to her, but she told her to leave. Eve tried to reach out and was met with silence that whole week. Eventually, she gave up, and the older woman had not heard anything about her since.
But Madeleine thought about Eve while looking at her son’s grave. She sighed. Maybe I could’ve helped her with that baby, even if it didn’t belong to Elliot, the older woman mused silently, lamenting her lack of grandchildren now. But there was nothing she could do.
She placed a bouquet on the ground and looked around the area, noticing a headstone that was not there the last time she visited. Madeleine’s jaw dropped when she saw the name, “Eve Brady.” It was her. It was her former daughter-in-law!
“What happened? What…?” she breathed, moving closer to the headstone. But it only had Eve’s name. “What about the baby?”
She acted immediately, rushing out of the cemetery and getting into her car. At Eve’s old apartment, she ran into the landlord, who happened to visit the property that day. Sadly, the man gave Madeleine some terrible news.
“Ah yeah. Eve was a nice tenant. Always paid on time. But she died in childbirth. It was horrible. I heard no one was there for her at the hospital, so I paid for her headstone. Everyone should have one to be remembered by you know?” the man revealed and checked his notepad absentmindedly. He was clearly busy and wanted to be done with the conversation.
“Do you know what happened to her baby?” Madeleine asked desperately.
“I think they were sent to BabyLove DC,” the man said. “I’m sorry. I must go. Have a nice day, ma’am”
“Wait!” she called, stopping him in his tracks. “What do you mean ‘they?’”
“Oh, I heard Eve had twins.”
Madeleine was floored. She couldn’t believe it. Two babies. What if I was wrong? They could be Elliot’s kids! she thought hopelessly. The older woman went into action again and got back in her car. She looked for the Babylove DC address on her phone and started driving. The orphanage was not that far away, but Madeleine didn’t know if the babies would still be there.
If Eve died in childbirth, those kids had to be around seven or six months old. They probably got adopted already.
She reached the location, entered the building, and told an employee that she was looking for her missing grandbabies. The young lady called the director, and Madeleine was escorted to the man’s office.
“Mrs. Brady, can you tell me more about your grandbabies?” the director asked her.
The older woman broke down and told him everything that had happened a year earlier. How she didn’t believe Eve was pregnant with her son’s baby, how he died in a car accident, and how she shunned her daughter-in-law. She cried into her hands, and the director offered her his handkerchief.
“And the mother’s name was Eve Brady, correct?” the man checked while typing on his computer.
“Yes, that’s my daughter-in-law.”
“Well, Mrs. Brady. You’re in luck. The babies are still here. There are some families interested in them, though. But if your story is true, and you’re the kids’ biological grandmother, you have priority over anyone,” the director said with a frown.
“Isn’t that good news?” the older woman asked, drying her tears and feeling hope for the first time that day.
“It should be. But Mrs. Brady, twins are a lot of work. Are you sure you want them?” the director asked seriously, folding his hands on top of his desk.
Madeleine thought about it for a few seconds. She could raise those babies, but was it the right choice for them? “I, at least, need to know if they belonged to Elliot. Can we have a DNA test?” the older woman begged.
The director nodded his head and stood. He had no problem with that request and took Madeleine to meet the babies. They were adorable. She fell in love with them immediately, so the orphanage went ahead with DNA testing, and several days later, the results confirmed that they were Madeleine’s grandchildren.
The director asked her once again if she genuinely wanted to take them in. “They could be adopted soon,” the man added with a tilt of his head, urging her to make the right decision.
But Madeleine couldn’t let them go. She didn’t know if they would have good families, and she couldn’t leave their fate to chance. Plus, there was a lot of guilt in her heart. If she hadn’t poisoned her son against his wife, they might be living happily still. This was her way of atoning.
She took the babies home and hired a live-in nanny to help out. The older woman also took precautions in case something happened to her, arranging her will and who would take the kids. No matter what, these babies would be safe.
Luckily, she lived several more decades, and her grandchildren, Eva and Elise, grew up to be beautiful people just like their parents had been.
What can we learn from this story?
Don’t make hasty assumptions. Madeleine didn’t know precisely what fertility treatment Elliot received, so she assumed Eve had cheated. Everyone paid a terrible price in the end.
Atone for your mistakes. Madeleine did everything in her power to make up for her big mistake and assumption. Luckily, she found her grandchildren and was able to raise them.