Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Our path to adoption - part 1

Adoption has played such a big role in forming our family and it is a subject that is very dear to me.  I decided to write about how we came to adopt our children with the hope that it would be an encouragement to others who might be on a similar path.  This is written from our perspective as adoptive parents and doesn't at all take into account the feelings the birthparents are going through- I might write about that another time.

When Andy and I were dating we talked about adopting one day, maybe having 2 or 3 children and then adopting after that.  So when I was unable to get pregnant after our first son was born it was fairly easy for us to make the switch in our minds to adopting.  Saying you want to adopt and actually doing it are two different things though.  Adoption can be very daunting.  There are so many options and it's all so complicated with so much paperwork.  The different types of adoption all have their pros and cons so how do you decide which one is the right path for you?  First we looked into adopting through foster care but decided there were too many regulations for us at that time, then we looked into international but it all seemed so expensive.  Andy was just getting ready to graduate from college so we were by no means wealthy. 

Then through friends we heard of some people who were starting to do adoptions from Romania and it wouldn't be too expensive.  So we contacted them and they matched us up with a baby that would be born soon.  We were very excited!  But then the laws in Romania changed and the whole thing fell through.  It was a very hard time for me, a time of questioning God and his goodness.  Why was he making me go through all this sadness and hardship?  I wrote in my journal, "I know in my head that God has our best interest in mind, but it's hard to believe it with my heart."  The day that I wrote that our second son's birthmother was 2 months pregnant with him.  God does have our best interests in mind, he gets it right every time!  It's so good to be able to look back now and see how God has worked in each of our adoptions.

After the Romania adoption fell through we didn't know what to do.  We still wanted another child so badly but weren't sure where to start.  I was talking with another adoptive mom and she told me who they had used for their homestudy so we decided to call him to see if he had any recommendations for us.  He invited us to come to his office for a visit so we went and he asked us if we had ever considered adopting a biracial or black child.  This was over ten years ago and adopting children of other races was not as common as it is now.  We had not thought of it before but it didn't take us long to realize that a different skin color would not be a problem, we just wanted children! 

So we began our new adoption path, that of private domestic adoption with attorneys.  We had our homestudy done, made up profiles of our family, and sent them out to adoption attorneys and private adoption facilitators all over the country in hopes of finding our child somewhere.  We had several situations where we were the second or third choice of the birthmother but never the first choice.  I was on the phone a lot those days.  After our homestudy was done we only waited two months before getting the call we had been waiting for!

One afternoon I had just put our oldest son down for his nap when the phone rang.  It was our homestudy provider.  He said, "Are you sitting down?"  A baby boy had been born in the city 45 minutes from us the day before and were we interested?  Of course we were!!  So I quickly called Andy and he rushed home from work and we drove to the hospital and met our son.  He was so cute!  It was such a happy day- we were all so very excited!  We had to wait till he was 24 hours old, then we left the hospital with him and were home with him that evening.  So in eight hours we went from not knowing anything about him, to having him home as our son.  Amazing!
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.  Isaiah 55:8-9

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