November is National Adoption Awareness Month and our Sister Sites and some of their contributors are sharing adoption stories, either their own as adoptive parents or even as birth mothers. Below you will find various adoption journeys, perspectives and outcomes from moms across the country!
November is Adoption Awareness Month. Adoption is an enormously important part of my family’s life. As I thought about writing on the topic this month, I asked many friends and family what they wanted to know about adoption. Most of the questions were about the mechanics: how you go about adopting, and all the choices you have to make.
November begins National Adoption Month and with this comes the reminders of the hurt, brokenness, trauma, beauty and miracle that is adoption. For a variety of reasons, my children could not remain with their first families. And, while most days, we go through life like any other family, there are always those moments where I am starkly reminded that our family was formed differently than the traditional family. Life, for the conspicuous family, can be a bit more complicated.
It’s the clichest of cliches to say, but here goes anyway: If you’d told me 10 months ago that I’d still be waiting to bring home baby #2, I wouldn’t have believed you. After all, we placed with our first daughter at the four month mark–and THAT felt like an eternity. But I am not here to discuss what is an acceptable or even average waiting duration or the differences in waiting to adopt internationally compared to domestic adoption compared to foster-to-adopt. I think if you are waiting one month or 100, this fact remains: Waiting is difficult.
In 2010, I knew very little about what we were embarking on as we entered into the world of adoption. What I DID know is that I was ready and excited to travel a new road. Years of unsuccessful fertility treatments had left me feeling drained emotionally and physically. My heart was broken, my body bruised and sore, and my soul felt like it had endured all it could take. Thank goodness that I know and believe with ALL my heart that things DO NOT happen by accident and that God had led us here. If not for that, I would’ve given up then and there, and sadly would have missed out on the incredible world of adoption and all that it brings.
When you’re 16 there is really no good, or right, way to tell your parents that you think you are pregnant. It’s like ripping off a Band-Aid, they say “do it fast and it will hurt less”, but in reality no matter how fast you do it, it’s always going to sting. That’s how it felt telling my mom that I thought I was pregnant at the age of 16. I was short and to the point, but with my few words there was more emotion than I could ever imagine.
Adoption. A word that I believe we are hearing in a more positive light in our country these days. I’m excited and thankful that this word is becoming more and more familiar to our ears. The reason I get excited about the word adoption is because more babies and older children are finding safe, warm, loving homes. The increase is slight; the statistics are hard to track. The numbers are lower than I wish. Even still, there was a slight increase in the number of children adopted through foster care from 2003 to 2013! According to an article from Adoptive Families Publication, over 18,000 American families successfully adopt babies within the US each year.
My husband and I are adopting a little boy from China. Yep, check out my bio at the bottom and you’ll see that we’re the ones who already have four boys. And maybe four is enough. Especially since our youngest is already in second grade. While many of our friends are looking forward to more time to themselves as their kids get older, we’re looking forward to more years of music programs, soccer games and field trips.
When my husband and I pictured starting a family, we envisioned what every young couple imagines. We thought we would have a positive test eventually; we may experience a few bumps in the road, but—give or take—within 9 months we would have a bouncing bundle of joy. Fast forward through 2 years of negative tests, and it was apparent that what we had pictured wasn’t in the cards for us. We explored all our options. We grieved for what we would never have. Then, we took on our new journey of adoption.