Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Game On...Again

After that conversation I was finally able to begin the healing process. I started to feel like I could move on with my life and begin to make plans for our family of 3. And then, about two weeks later, life threw another curve ball via text message. It started as my typical Wednesday night check in and ended up something like this:

Me: How is your week?
BMom: Good. How is Katelynn and Brent and everyone?
Me: Great! Katelynn is getting so big! She is crawling all over the place. It is hard to keep up with her!
BMom: Aww! I miss her so much! I don't know....I don't think I can do this.
Me: What do you mean?
BMom: I don't have a job yet. My family won't help me. I don't know how to care for a little baby. I have never even lived by myself. I can't do this.
Me: It will be okay. Take some time to think things over. Maybe you should go talk to your birthparent counselor?
BMom: No. I know I can't do this. This baby needs to be with her sister. She needs to be with a Mom and Dad. She needs you...

"BRENT!" is what I yelled as I ran down to the basement to share the entire conversation. He, of course, had his usual nonchalant, I-Told-You-So response.
The next day I had to get into super-organized-going-to-be-a-mommy-in-one-month-need-to-get-adoption-papers-filed mode. I contacted our social worker. I contacted lawyers. And most importantly I contacted birthmother and her mother. I needed to be sure that they had talked this over and they were at least 95% on board. We needed to start paying for home studies and court fees and I couldn't put that money on odds that were any lower than that.

Most people would be cautious at this point (and many were for us) due to the fact that she had changed her mind once. Not me. I don't know how to do anything less than all the way in. I believed her the moment that she told me, "I am positive this is what I need to do. I can give Katelynn a sister, that is something I never had. Both of these girls deserve to be together with a mom and a dad like you and Brent. I want you to be their parents. I know not everyone is sure that I am going to go through with this, but I know I am sure. I am sorry that I was confused before. I was being selfish and I wanted to keep the baby but I know that isn't what's best for her."

(Such a grown-up and selfless decision for someone so young! I will forever be amazed by this.)

Next up, finding the answer to an important question: How does one take maternity leave two times in one school year????

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Time to Create Some Distance?

Well, the next few weeks were not easy. I received lots of advice from family and friends telling me it was time to create some distance between us and our birthmother. This did not make sense to me. I couldn't understand why, just because she didn't do what I thought was right, I should cut her out of my life. Her decision to parent didn't mean that she needed a friend less (in fact, she needed one more). It also didn't change the fact that she is and always will be Katelynn's birthmother. She gave us the greatest gift a person could give! She gave us a family!

I know our family and friends were just trying to protect us and help us heal from the failed adoption. It just isn't the way that I am and it goes against what I promised when I agreed to an open adoption.

Bit by bit, we began to heal. My husband continued to tell me that he still had a feeling that she would choose adoption for this child. I wasn't so sure. The one thing I knew for sure was that I couldn't go on the adoption roller coaster again. I was sure that after all this, our family was complete.

Still, I was bothered by the fact that our birthmother still didn't have her life where she wanted it to be. I knew it was going to be hard to watch her struggle while raising this baby. I just wanted her to see that she wanted so badly to make her own decision but she was letting herself be influenced again by the other side of her family. I just didn't know if I wanted to jeopardize our relationship by pointing that out to her.

My fabulous third grade team then offered some counseling to me one day at lunch. They reminded me that I had nothing to lose if I spoke freely to her. It wasn't like she could take Katelynn away, and she already decided to parent. I needed to say what I was feeling because I needed closure and I needed to know that I did everything possible to give that baby the opportunities she deserved.

So....I called her. It was like a weight was lifted off my shoulders. I carefully chose my words and explained to her that I felt she was being pressured into a situation that she might not be prepared for. She was very understanding of my need to say what I did.

She opened up and told me that she needed to know that she tried parenting. She wanted to find out if she was an unfit mother. This broke my heart. I truly believe with all my heart and to the depths of my soul that this girl will be an amazing mother -- some day. I told her that if she tries and does not succeed it isn't because she is unfit. It is because her life is not where it should be to raise a baby.

I also told her that if she still wants to try and she changes her mind after a few months, my husband and I would still be willing to adopt this baby. She said I gave her a lot to think about and she thanked me for being so honest with her.

I guess I didn't need to create distance. I needed to be right up close!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

A Hard Pill to Swallow

So, I waited patiently (or as patiently as a high-strung person can wait) for our birthmother to try and get her life in order. Each night that she called I tried to be as impartial as possible trying to help her think things through on her own. Each night that I talked to her she didn't seem to make much progress on the goals she set for herself and my hopes got higher and higher.

I then began to wonder, if I were in this situation what would be the best thing for me? I came to the conclusion that we needed to schedule a visit. She needed to realize how much work goes into having a child ...especially on your own. She also needed to remember that choosing adoption doesn't mean that you have to say good-bye; it means you will say see you later. I called her and set up a visit for the middle of March. We were going to meet at my dad's house and she was going to come with birthfather's family.

A week before our scheduled visit, birthfather's aunt called to get directions. She mentioned how they had spent the whole day shopping and looking at baby items. I thought it was kind of strange. An hour later, my husband and I were sitting on the couch and my phone rang. It was our birthmother.

"I have made a decision. I have decided that I want to TRY to parent this baby." Tears filled my eyes but I had to try to keep my voice from cracking. I didn't want her to know that I was heart broken. She needed to feel love and support because she had a long road ahead of her.

My husband comforted me and kept saying, "She will change her mind. I am not worried. Don't stress. This isn't done. I know this baby will end up with us." I am glad he had hope because I certainly didn't.

With the visit scheduled for the following week, I received a lot of advice from family and friends -- most telling me that I should cancel. As much as I didn't want to go, I had to do this for our daughter. She has the right to know her birthfamilies and I made a promise that I would do everything in my power to maintain that connection for her sake. It would have been selfish of me to cancel.

My husband was unable to come for that visit because he had to work. I had to choose a co-pilot that would help me stay calm, reasonable, and keep my mind on my goal for the visit. There was no better person than my sister-in-law, Brent's twin. The visit couldn't have gone better, thanks to her. She helped me stay calm and strong -- even when our birthmother showed us ultrasound photos of the baby that I thought was going to be mine. She also helped me analyze every minute of the conversation on the drive home and provided a laugh or two.

Even though life wasn't going the way I had hoped, I still had so much to be thankful for -- like an amazing, supportive family!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Her Choice, My Heart

One would think now that she had made the decision for adoption that we were in the clear and this is the "happily ever after" of our story. Well things aren't always so cut and dry in my life...especially in the world of adoption.

After our birthmother's mother proposed the idea of a second adoption I contacted our social worker to see how this would work. We decided to take things slowly because our birthmother was barely pregnant. We were still finalizing things for our first daughter.

Our birthmother and I talked to each other once a week through texting or phone calls. She was pretty down on herself for getting pregnant again. I was doing quite a bit of counseling for her because she trusted me and she knew I wouldn't judge her. She was struggling with typical teenage drama: boyfriends, school, "evil" parents :), etc., on top of being that girl that got pregnant again.

We visited her at Christmas in MN and were able to see her little tummy getting bigger with our second child. In January we found out we were expecting another girl! We decided on the name Kennedy Leigh for our baby. We thought Kennedy sounded right with Katelynn (our first daughter) and Leigh was our birthmother's middle name. We continued to prepare our lives and our families for a second child.

February came and all of a sudden the tone in our birthmother's voice changed. She was getting a lot of support from birthfather's family and checking into different resources. One afternoon she called and said, "I have to tell you something." My heart sank because I knew what was coming.

She said she was considering parenting this baby. She was so sorry and didn't want us to hate her or keep Katelynn from having a relationship with her. She just had to try to get her life in order to see if she could do it. She said adoption wasn't off the table but she needed me to know that she wasn't 100% anymore. She was giving herself until the end of March to make a decision. If she couldn't find a job, an apartment, and get a drivers' license by the end of March the it wasn't meant to be.

I remained supportive. This is always a risk in adoption and I knew it had to be her choice even though the outcome meant a broken heart for me. I wasn't sure what to pray for: her failure meant my success and vice versa. God was telling me, yet again, that I am not in control. HE is.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Power of Prayers

I didn't hear anything from our birthmother for a couple of weeks. My heart felt like it was being torn in two just thinking about the fact that my daughter could have had a biological sibling. I didn't know how or if I was going to be able to explain that to her some day.

I personally don't agree with abortion but I also think that each person has a right to make her own choice. I have never been in a situation where abortion could have been an option for me, so it is hard to say that I would never have considered it. I do know that it is not my job to tell other women what I feel is right or wrong.

Nevertheless, I continued to pray to God that He give our birthmother the strength to change her mind. I prayed day and night and my family did the same. I couldn't stop thinking about it. After two weeks of hearing nothing, I assumed this was a done deal. I felt defeated but I didn't quit praying although my prayers did change. Instead of praying for our birthmother to change her mind, I prayed for her heart to heal.

Then came the day I will never forget. It was early November and I was distributing the WKCE tests to my students. I heard my phone vibrate indicating that I had a text message. I got my students started on their tests and walked back to my desk. I looked at my phone and read the text message. "I just want you to know that I went to the clinic and I can't have an abortion. I saw the ultrasound and I can't do that to my baby. I will call you later."

I grinned from ear to ear and praised God under my breath. My mind was going a mile a minute as I sat in silence for the next 40 minutes while my students completed their tests. After snack I hurried the kids off to their specials and rushed back to the classroom. I called and celebrated with my husband and then called our birthmother.

Her mother answered the phone. We talked about how proud we were of her daughter for making such a self-less decision. We talked about the feelings that her family was having. Her mother finally confessed to me, "Tanya, she can't raise this baby. She isn't ready to parent yet. You mentioned that you would raise it. Will you still? It will be very difficult because the kids are only 11 months apart. Can you do it?"

My eyes filled with tears as I said yes -- yes to another baby, yes to another twist in our lives.

Friday, June 24, 2011

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Teenage Pregnancy

I have been working on a post that describes my emotional and mental struggle with becoming a mother. I haven't published it yet because the words don't seem to come out right. I have decided to put it on hold until I can express that in the precise way that I would like.

So...I have decided, instead, to publish a post that continues our adoption story...

After our birthmother told me of her second pregnancy, I have to say I knew almost immediately that this child would become part of our family, even if she didn't know it yet. She had her heart set on trying to raise this baby herself. I was sure she could do it but I wasn't sure about how well she would do it.

I have an extreme addiction to MTV's 16 and Pregnant and Teen Mom. I DVR them on Tuesday nights and watch them on the weekends. These shows have received a lot of criticism because society thinks MTV is promoting teenage pregnancy. If you sit down and watch these shows you will see that they actually do quite the opposite. Every time I watch these episodes I think about the babies. They don't choose to get placed into all of that drama. They don't choose to be born to parents that are not together, are young and inexperienced, are unprepared to take care of themselves not to mention a child. I know this chaos isn't the case for all teen pregnancies but it does happen with many of them. I give teen mothers and fathers credit for wanting to try to raise their families but I admire the ones that are strong enough to choose a better life for their babies by creating an adoption plan.

I received the news that our birthmother was pregnant for the second time on a Thursday. By Friday she was in a panic because she didn't want to tell anyone...especially her mother. This led her to contemplate terminating the pregnancy. When she told me, my heart sunk. I knew I needed to be nonjudgmental but I also knew that if she chose abortion, it would haunt her for the rest of her life. I explained to her that I would respect her decision no matter what because I had no idea how she feels (I have never been in that situation so why should I judge?). I also pointed out that if she did not terminate the pregnancy she would have 10 months to either get her life together or create an adoption plan. After conversing back and forth for most of the day on Saturday, she said I had given her a lot to think about. She had plans to talk to her mother on Monday and she would give me a call if she needed me.

I am not a patient person so this wait was very difficult for me. Especially when the news came on Monday that she didn't want to be pregnant again and she had an appointment made at the clinic.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Phone Call

Texting and phone calls were not an unusual form of communication between our birthmother and me. We had grown quite close and talked almost weekly. I continued to send pictures and updates. We invited her and her family to Katelynn's baptism. They even came a day early so they could spend some uninterrupted time with us. 

One October morning, shortly before I returned to work from maternity leave, I received a text from our birthmother asking if I could talk. It is hard to explain, but I immediately got a feeling in my stomach telling me that this was going to be a life-changing conversation. I texted her back and told her to call whenever she could. The conversation that followed contained a message that was more shocking than I had even anticipated.

She was crying. She was scared. She was looking for a non-judgmental listener. She was pregnant....again. 

She wanted to parent this baby. I spoke calmly to her, telling her that she was going to be okay. After all that she had just been through, I couldn't even come close to comprehending how she was feeling at this moment. Her mind was so scattered. She was scared to tell her family. I was the first person she had told. That made my heart break. This poor girl was in a tough situation and the first person that she thought to call was not her mother, not her best friend, but the adoptive mother of her first child. She had to go back to school and she said she would call me later to let me know how she was doing.

When you struggle with fertility it is difficult to remember just how easy getting pregnant can be for some people. I did have to sit back at that moment and think back to being in high school when a pregnancy seemed to be the end of life as I knew it.  This reflecting helped me to understand her thought process over the next few days as she contemplated the outcome of this pregnancy.

Monday, May 23, 2011


After 10 days of waiting for paperwork to be filed in MN and WI, we were finally given the "go-ahead" to head for home! I was so happy! I was finally going to be able to bring our peanut home to meet the family and I was going to get to be at my house with my husband! Don't get me wrong, it was a wonderful 10 days thanks to my aunt, uncle, and two cousins. They opened up their house and lives to Katelynn and me and made us feel so welcome. But it wasn't home.

I called our birthmother and told her we were able to go home. We wanted to do one last visit before Katelynn and I left. This visit was bittersweet. It is so hard when your happiness and dreams depend on another's sadness and loss. 

For those of you out there that don't know a lot about the adoption and birthfamilies, there is one thing that you need to learn. These birthfamilies choose to create adoption plans for their children because they love them so much! They want them to have a life that they know they cannot provide. Adoption isn't chosen out of selfishness. Birthmothers don't give their children to adoptive families because they don't love them or want them. It is quite the opposite. Our birthmother loves her children so much that she chose to sacrifice her wants in order to give her children the life they deserved. 

We hugged and cried lots and promised that this was just a temporary good-bye. She put her trust in us that we would follow through with the open adoption and we have done our best to keep those lines of communication open and to let this relationship grow. Good thing because it definitely led to more surprises!

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Dance

Katelynn was born in the wee hours of the morning. We had very little sleep but her birthmother did not want the baby to go into the nursery. I promised her I wouldn't do that, so....she stayed with us! It was a crash course in parenting!
We also promised that we would stay in the hospital until both birthmother and baby were released. At first the hospital had a hotel feel about it. After the second day I was ready to leave. It is so difficult to stay at the hospital when you are not sick or hurt. But, we were troopers and we stuck it out for the 3 days of recovery for birthmother. She was giving me a tremendous gift -- the chance to be called a mom -- how could I not keep these small promises?
Each day brought more visitors. My husband and I danced between both rooms showing off the baby when visitors came and learning to care for her during the down time. It was such an amazing experience to get to meet so many members from both birthfamilies.
It is interesting because these introductions to other members of these families made everyone much more secure with the choice of adoption for Katelynn. They were able to meet us and see that we aren't bad people who are trying to steal a baby away. We were able to explain that we just want to give Katelynn a different kind of family -- a "mega-family" of sorts. We want to surround her with love from her birthfamilies and adoptive families. An adoption plan doesn't have to be good-bye forever to the birthfamily. It just means more people to love a child.
This truly is how adoption is meant to be.
As we prepared to leave on that final day (which took especially long because of the nurses' strike), there were many tears from us all. If only we could live in this little utopia forever -- just across the hall from one another, sharing our love for this little girl. But, life has to go on and we all needed to take a step into the next chapter of our lives.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

She's Here!

We did have another visit with our birthmother the month after we originally met her. I wanted to know as much about her as possible before our baby came. I didn't want to make things awkward. Unfortunately she went on bed rest the month before the baby was due so we didn't get to visit at all in the month of May.

Our beautiful Katelynn was due June 6th, 2010 -- just in time for me to finish off the school year. Our birthmother's mother called us on the evening of June 6th to tell us that they were going to the hospital to induce labor. YAY! I flew around the house and grabbed everything I thought I might need for the next 10-14 days. (I had to stay in Minnesota until the birthmother signed off her rights and all the paperwork was processed.) Of course, I am a planner and my bag had been packed for a week and a half. My husband suggested we spend the night at home and leave first thing in the morning, but I wasn't about to miss the birth of our daughter!

My enthusiasm waned at hour 2 of driving. Luckily, we were by my dad's house so we spent the night there and woke up at 6 am to do the rest of the drive. In short we had about 4 hours of interrupted sleep. This was the beginning of my sleepless nights!

As we arrived in Minnesota, Katelynn was still not ready to be born. We spent the day pacing at my aunt and uncle's house dodging phone calls from anxious family members and pouncing on phone calls that would give us updates. At 11 pm we received a phone call to tell us that they scheduled a c-section for midnight and they wanted us to be waiting at the hospital! Again, I launched out of bed, grabbed our bags, and headed for the car with my husband and step-dad.

We were able to stay at the hospital in a room for the duration of the time that the baby would be there. We checked in like it was a hotel. They brought us to a room and we waited. Suddenly the intercom clicked on and the nurse said, "Are you ready to meet your baby?"

We hurried down the hall to the operating room. A few minutes later the doors opened and my life changed forever! Our beautiful baby girl was placed in my arms. My step-dad captured a classic photograph of this moment. It shows our fear, excitement, and exhausted feelings all at the same time.

Friday, May 6, 2011

I'd Choose Us!

Thus began the very long wait that most adoptive families experience. Everyone tells you not to think about it, but it is all that is on your mind. With every ring of the phone or increased number in your inbox on your email, all you can think about is, "Am I going to get a baby?"

Copies of our portfolio (scrapbook) are sent to the nearby adoption offices. We also create an online profile for birthparents to look at. Once a birthparent decides to create an adoption plan she fills out a medical history and then describes the type of parents she is looking to give to her child. The social workers give the birthmothers about 5 family portfolios that match her description and that match the waiting families' openness agreement. After the birthmother views these portfolios she chooses 2 or 3 families that she would like to interview.

I would page through our extra portfolio at home and each time I would think, "I would choose us in a heartbeat! Look at all we have to offer!" As we waited to hear that a birthfamily was interested in us I kept trying to figure out how to change us or our portfolio to get more interest from birthmothers. As with all things, God took his time. He was waiting for just the right birthmother to come along to bring us our little angels. His plan makes sense now but at the time, I certainly wanted things to go much faster!

They say most adoptive families meet with one birthmother before actually meeting THE birthmother. We met with two before meeting our amazing birthmother. The first birthmother we met couldn't decide between parenting and adoption. The baby was actually already born and waiting in foster care before the birthmother chose to parent. It was a difficult thing to process but would have been much harder if we had met the baby. The second birthmother was trying to choose between us and another couple. She chose the other couple but in the same week that we met her we also interviewed with THE birthmother of our children. She chose us right away.

Tears of joy poured down our faces when our social worker told us we were matched. We were finally going to be parents... in three months!!!!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Adoption Brought Us Closer

Well, after all of these big decisions, we were officially a "waiting family." With the help of loving friends and family, we created a portfolio (scrapbook) for birthfamilies to look through. This was an interesting experience because there was a page in our portfolio where I had to describe my husband and he had to describe me. Seems like an easy task, right?

Well, I thought it was when I whipped out a couple of paragraphs highlighting his compassion, gentleness, and never-ending patience, (not to mention his good looks). But then, I was brokenhearted when it seemed like my husband was avoiding the task of writing about me. He would sit down at the computer and then "find" other things to occupy his time; meanwhile, his paragraph about me and why I would make a great mother was never getting completed.

I finally broke down and asked why he didn't love me and didn't think I would be a great mom. He was shocked at my random outburst. (For those of you that really know me, you understand that I am not an extremely emotional person. I am pretty matter-of-fact and practical.) He explained to me that it was hard for him to narrow down all he wanted to say about me. The section I gave him wasn't big enough to include everything so he wanted to take his time and make sure he picked only the most important qualities -- the qualities a birthmother would look at and appreciate in an adoptive mother for her child.

How silly of me to doubt him! What a guy I married! His response did make me take a second glance at my paragraphs.

In good time, my husband finished his paragraphs about me and they were very eloquently written. This was a great experience and I highly recommend trying it with your spouse even if you are not in the adoption process. It is a great reminder to yourself and your other half about how/why you are perfect for one another.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Open Adoption: A Life Choice

When we originally thought about adoption we, like most people, had an "old-school" vision of it. I am a Lifetime Movie Network fanatic and I have seen "Losing Isaiah" and other traumatic movies where adoption is not portrayed in a positive manner.

My initial impulse was to choose a closed adoption. I didn't want a birthmother coming back and stealing my happiness right out from underneath me! I thought if she didn't know us or have a relationship with us, she would "forget" about us and leave us be. (Wow! Now that I read that, I see how selfish it truly is!)

Once we were educated on open adoption, we quickly changed our minds. We went from one extreme to the other. We no longer wanted a closed adoption...we wanted a VERY open adoption. We chose open adoption because of the benefits that each person of the adoption triad would gain. The birthparents would be able to see that they made the best choice for their children, to watch them grow up, and to continue to be a part of their children's lives. We would have access to medical histories and a lifetime connection to our children's birthfamilies. Open adoption is mostly about the child. Our children would grow up to know their family history, where they came from, and why their parents chose adoption. They would have someone to identify with, someone who looks like them, and most importantly, another family who loves them just as much as we do.

I knew if I could just get over the awkwardness of this new and unusual relationship, that I would be doing something amazing for my children.

Open adoption, for us, is a life choice. It is a choice we are making for our children. We see it as adding an entire family to ours to make a "mega-family". It isn't an easy relationship and it does take some work, but it is the most amazing thing to see how much love surrounds one little girl -- that makes it worth every bit of effort!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Big Discussions

Now that we decided we were going to grow our family through adoption we had to start the process. We chose Bethany Christian Services because that is who a friend of mine recommended. We met our social worker and I immediately liked her -- honest, to the point, and non-judgemental -- my kind of gal!

I could lay out the whole process of meetings, paperwork, and home studies but the part that sticks out in my mind the most is the "openness" discussion. To me, these were some of the most difficult questions I had to answer.

For those of you whom have never gone through the adoption process, the "openness" discussion is when you talk with your social worker about the type of child you are open to accept into your family. This covers everything from age and race, to family medical history, addictions, willingness to travel, extra expenses willing to be paid, special needs, and type of adoption -- open, closed, semi-open.

At this point in the game, I just wanted a baby... any baby. My husband was a little more cautious and practical about what we could handle financially and emotionally at this time. We filled out the forms together with the idea that we just wanted a healthy baby for whom we could afford to provide the kind of life he/she deserves.

It was amazing how much our thoughts changed again after talking through different scenarios with our social worker. It was during this time that we decided we were willing to choose an open adoption...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Sometimes It Takes a Fairy Godmother!

Shortly after the struggle to have children began, we jumped on the Invitro-Train. My husband and I were both poked and prodded to find out the "source" of our troubles. No one had any really satisfying answers. In fact, when I asked my doctor why this was happening to my body, he said, "Do you smoke? No? Well then it must be heredity." Are you kidding me, doctor? My family is about as fertile as they come!

It was the week of our final check-up at the infertility clinic. A huge snowstorm (as is usually the case in Wisconsin) was supposed to be arriving the very day we were to travel to Chicago. We were getting pretty burnt out on appointments. We had just found out at our last appointment that we had a less than 20% chance of being successful with invitro. $17,000 for a 20% chance. I am not a gambling woman by nature so I started to look at other options.

I signed us up for an information meeting at Bethany Christian Services. As we both left the meeting, we agreed that we felt compelled to explore adoption further. We canceled our appointment at the fertility clinic and have been on the Adoption Rollercoaster ever since.

And everyone was happy with their decision and we lived happily ever! I don't think so! You see, I am a very stubborn person. I still was struggling with why God would not let me have things my way. I just wanted to be pregnant and have a baby like He intended. I was very angry, especially when I saw all of these young, unwed mothers carrying babies on their hips. The awful and unwanted advice from others didn't help either -- "Maybe God doesn't want you to be a mother." "You are so lucky you don't have to be pregnant." "It will all work out according to His plan." If you are a friend of an infertile person, THESE ARE NOT COMFORTING! DON'T SAY THEM!

It took my beautiful, God-loving Godmother to help me see the light. (I am very close with my Aunties and they often advise me when I need it). My Godmother helped me realize that God was trying to use my strengths. She told me, "God knows you have the ability to love ALL children. That is why he has chosen adoption for you. He knows not all people are able to do that." Thank you, Auntie Joanie!

I still think of that advice on days that I am struggling with my life's path.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Don't Drink the Water!

When you finally make that decision to start trying to have children, you are all excited by the possibilities and the unknowns. When you realize you are going to struggle having children naturally, those possibilities and unknowns can become your biggest enemies.

While trying to start our family, all I could see around me were glowing pregnant women with their round little basketball-bellies and adorable infants with rosy pink cheeks. I became so obsessed with getting pregnant that it consumed my daily thoughts.

I work in a school and at the same time we started trying to have children several women at our school were blessed with pregnancy. They were so beautiful and happy when they shared the news that they were expecting. People would laugh and joke that, "There must be something in the water! Stay away from the water!" (Chuckle, Chuckle) All I could think about was, "GIVE ME THAT WATER! I will bathe in it if I have to!" 

Eventually my husband and I realized that something wasn't quite right and becoming parents the old-fashioned way wasn't really in our list of options. (This is where the story really starts...)

I would love to say that adoption was always on my heart as something that I had planned on doing, but it wasn't. I just knew I was going to be a mom. I didn't think about how I would become one!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

New to Blogging

I don't really know how I am supposed to start this thing. I guess the proper thing to do is to explain why I have decided to give blogging a try.

I have always enjoyed writing but don't really take the time to sit down and do it for myself very often. Most of my writing is creatively drafted at school for my students. As you can probably imagine, the content of those stories is far different than what I plan to share here.

My life over the last two years has been a series of ups and downs through infertility and adoption processes. I have heard many people say that I should write a book to share my experiences with others. I don't think I am quite "publisher" ready yet but a blog might just be the first step toward that.

As I wait for the birth of our second daughter, on May 24th, I want to look back and remember all of the twists and turns in life that brought me to right where I am today.

In sharing all of this I hope to give you a little sneak peak into our life. Maybe you are a waiting family and I can bring you comfort in knowing that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, maybe you are a family member who just wants to read about our adoption story, maybe you are just being nosy and want to poke around on my blog --- whatever the case, I hope you find what you are looking for!