A few months ago we made the announcement on Facebook that Matt and I have been approved for adoption by the state of Arizona. It was a process that started January 1st, 2013 and continues until we finalize a placement that has chosen us by a very brave and trusting birthmother. We are so happy to have this opportunity to grow our family and to all the friends and family who have supported our decision and our journey. The best thing we can do now is keep spreading the word to as many people as possible. The phrase that keeps coming up in conversation is “You just never know.” Meaning, you never know who knows someone, who knows someone, who knows someone, who might be considering adoption. If the word of us gets to them, we hope that they will consider us as the adoptive parents.
In this journey, and as this blog has documented since the beginning of our decisions, we have had many things to consider. I would like to discuss briefly my personal choice to be an adoptive mother rather than researching and considering IVF or surrogacy. I have posted my theories and thoughts and fears regarding healthcare and the idea of seeking medical attention any further than I already have is expensive and emotionally stressful. My hormones already give me enough trouble without adding the progesterone injections and what-not that fertility treatments would give me. The only difference is NOW I’m paying for it out of pocket. Whe? No. Then, what happens if we take further steps and financial investment only to be disappointed when or if it doesn’t work? I would be emotionally and financially devastated every time. And all this just to have a baby that is blood related to Matt and/or myself?
When my husband and I discussed it at great length, it didn’t feel worth it to either of us. We didn’t come to that decision easily or even at the same time. We both struggled with coming to grips with my infertility at different times and in different ways. I was on board with the idea to adopt as soon as we decided that it would be a good time to start a family. I was also grieving the loss of the idea of being pregnant and having a child naturally, but it wouldn’t stop me from taking the next step and getting the adoption wheels turning. Matt would comment to me when I was in the very lows of feeling down, “Why does it upset you so much? You know we can always adopt!”
It was August 2012 that we went to the first intake meeting for the adoption agency that we chose through our church. This is when you sit in a room with a caseworker and about 4 other couples considering adoption and they hand you a folder and walk you through the process from beginning to end. It is the first step toward adoption, and when you decided if it is a road you are willing to go down. I listened intently and felt very sure that this sounded exactly the road I wanted to be on. I was certain Matt felt the same. It wasn’t until we got home and really talked about our feelings that we were both surprised to find out we were not on the same page. Looking back on it now, I could have handled the situation with more sympathy and understanding. Instead, I flipped out. The meeting scared him and he suddenly wasn’t sure this is what he wanted. I was angry and felt abandoned because we had previously decided this is what we both wanted. I felt strongly that if we didn’t go through with adoption, we would not have any children at all and this was not acceptable to me.
It took a few more months of agonizing insecurity, long conversations ending in tears, and emotional soul searching for us to both realize that Matt was actually just beginning his grief over my infertility. He admitted that a large part of his “freak out” was just the realization that he wouldn’t have the child from his own DNA that he had always pictured. I tell you this because if there is any other couples out there going through what we have, or are going through, you might be saved a little grief. Once I realized he needed the compassion I had needed all those years, it was much easier to be sympathetic and we could get past our insecurities about adoption.
This is why it took 5 months after our initial Intake meeting to actually begin the process. From January 1st to August 2013 (1 year after our first meeting) we were busy filling out forms, getting references, filling out profiles, taking online training courses on open adoption, and preparing our house for our home-visit. It was a great relief when we received our letter and certificate of approval for adoption! Even though it took a little while for Matt to come around, no one could be more excited and supportive. He is the model of an adoptive dad. I am excited to see the fruits of our efforts and hope that a baby finds it way to us soon. If you know anyone who is considering adoption, or have any means to post this link, let them check us out on our new “family style” blog and it will direct them to contacting our caseworker and our profile at the agency: