So, you want to have a baby. You try and for whatever million reasons it doesn’t work. But, you aren’t done yet … you still want a baby. You think to yourself – what’s next? What are my options? Surrogacy? Adoption? It’s all too much to think about with the complicated maze to do either. This is where I found myself about 4 years ago.
One thing to mention at this point is that I am an adopted child myself. I was adopted at 3 days old and it’s something I openly discuss. Adoption was never something to keep quiet about or to keep within the family. Quite the opposite. I told everyone. I was proud of being adopted and was told it made me extra special. So, why would I even hesitate when it came to decide what to do next? The maze. The complicated maze of paper work, home visits and interviews that I envisioned. And, let’s not forget about the wait. The years of waiting we all hear about when it comes to adoption. I am with you. I thought all the same things until I changed my mindset. This was my time to create my family. And, it wasn’t as bad as I expected.
With the agency, I had the help and guidance of a loving group of people who simply want to create families. It no longer felt so daunting. Yes, there is a lot of work, but that was what I had to do – and it was exciting. To know that this would lead me to a baby – my baby – was the only incentive I needed. Once the work was done, it was time to sit back and wait. Not only was waiting difficult, but I found it hard to make plans. Any kind of plans. Is it a bad time to look for a new job when I don’t know what my schedule will be? Is it okay to plan a trip when we could get a call? Do I buy anything for the baby and have it potentially sit for years? All the what ifs were difficult, but then I realized that this was no different than if I were carrying my own child. Just do what feels right. Everything will fall into place.
Finally, the call! What an amazingly exciting, scary, make you want to vomit (in a good way) kind of call! After only about 6 months, I received a call from the adoption agency that a birth mother and father wanted to meet us, and, oh, by the way, the baby is due in one week! I think for a good minute I couldn’t even speak. And let’s not forget calling my husband at work and giving him the same news! The young couple had seen our photo book and liked us. That book! If you aren’t familiar with what a photo book is it’s basically a chronicle of your life. I spent countless hours on this … it included a letter to the birth mother, all our background information and photos. Photos of us, of our home, of what we like to do, of our pets … you name it. Everything to give the birth parents a true sense of who you are and what kind of life their child may have.
If it weren’t for the adoption program coordinator guiding us all through the awkwardness of the meeting, I don’t know how we would have managed. Don’t get me wrong … it was wonderful and humbling and happy and sad and all the things that make the adoption process so amazing … but it is like no other meeting you will ever have. The result? We were going to be parents! I cannot even remember that week in between meeting the birth parents and when our baby was born, but I am sure I was tackling my spreadsheet (yes, this is how I survive … spreadsheets!) of to do lists and items to buy. Our baby boy was born on a Monday and it would be a week – standard protocol – before he could come home with us.
When we went to the agency for placement day, I don’t think you could find two happier people on the planet. Of course, we were filled with nerves, but the joy was overwhelming. The birth parents were there to place him in our arms and words cannot begin to describe that moment. I felt a happiness and a love that I had never felt before. But I also felt sadness for what the birth parents were going through. It is something so beautiful to be a part of such an extreme act of selflessness, courage, and love. That is what adoption is and it still humbles me.
We will soon celebrate our son’s 3rd birthday and, just like every parent, I wonder where the time has gone. As we begin explaining what it means to be adopted, he will learn just how amazing and special he is because of the love that brought him to us. Adoption is not always easy, and it most definitely has its difficulties, but it is worth everything you will go through to get to the end. Don’t get discouraged! Your baby is waiting for you!
Sylvia is the proud mother of an energetic and joyful 3 year old boy named Heath. She works full time and will tell you that she still struggles to figure out how this work-life-mommy balance thing is supposed to work. Her husband, John, is from England and loves to teach their son the Queen’s English or “correct” pronunciation. Sylvia loves a good cup of coffee, cuddles with her son and going to movies with her husband. She hopes to keep writing blog posts (this is her first!) and maybe one day a children’s book.