Our Adoption Story

My husband and I were married on August 8, 2009 and decided to have a baby in March 2010.  Soon after we found out there were a multitude of problems that would probably make it difficult for us to conceive.  What's funny now is that we weren't telling anyone we were trying to conceive in the beginning.  I would even give misleading answers if someone asked, hoping no one would really know and our pregnancy could be a surprise!  Now here I am blogging about our story... International adoption had been in the back of my mind for a while and I would bring it up to my husband in a light-hearted manner.  I would pick countries at random, but more often than not, I was thinking of India.

We begin to navigate the road of infertility - I had it all: Clomid, Letrozole, Prometrium, Estrogen, Ovidrel, an HSG, a laparoscopy and hysteroscopy to remove endometriosis, and four IUIs.  I even completed a cycle with Follistem, forcing my husband, who despises needles, to give me injections every night.

During this, we also begin seriously discussing adoption.  Once we started actually looking at the programs, it became clear that God was leading us to Ethiopia.  My husband has always had a love and passion for Africa and this was easily the right place for us.  We had to make the decision to choose adoption over IVF, since financially we could not do both.  I remember the night I knew in my heart adoption was right for us, and IVF was no longer an option.  I was scared to speak to my husband. I was asking him to potentially give up the best chance we had at conceiving a child, but within seconds of my prepared speech, he agreed.  It was a moment I won't forget and one of the reasons I am blessed to have such an amazing husband.  We never realized many years ago that we would be put through this test together, to grow together and to realize our calling in life.

Finally it was time to begin the adoption process.  The amount of change and growth that has occurred in our lives since our marriage begun is astounding.  Even since beginning the adoption process, so much has changed.  

At first we were only open to adopting a baby, which soon changed to young siblings.  Shortly after, we realized we would love to parent an older child as well and siblings would be ideal, especially if one were a baby and one were older.

After having most of our paperwork done for the Ethiopian adoption, my husband and I began to discuss our future family.  My husband started talking about this big family we would have, with children of all different races, backgrounds, cultures and ages.  He speaks of this happily and says how lucky he feels to have been called to this life.  

With the risk of offending anyone here, he jokingly says, "Why would we want to get pregnant?  How boring!"  Now of course we would be so happy if we happened to get pregnant as well, and we would love that child just as much as any parent, but I share this humorous statement of his to explain his GROWTH! He has always been open and supportive of this process, but he has had moments of hesitation and trepidation along the way, as have I.  

There has been fear and there has been grief. We have feared that we won't be able to bond with a child, that the child will have needs we don't understand, that the relationship between us will never be the same as with a child by birth.  We have also had grief, over the loss of a child that would look like us, sound like us, share our genes.  BUT those fears and that grief have not only been overcome but been replaced by excitement and appreciation, and those feelings are just as real.

I sometimes get the feeling people don't believe me when I say I am blessed by infertility.  I know we were brought together by God to be adoptive parents.  This is our calling and our blessing.  I also know that we are stronger people, have a stronger faith and have a stronger marriage because of this.  

Because of all of our talk of our future family, we began discussing domestic adoption.  We are very open when it comes to adoption.  Our domestic home study will be open to two children: both genders, all races, ages 0-14.

After attending the required training for public adoption, we realized we had been previously misinformed on many aspects of domestic adoption and broadened our request even more. We decided to submit a profile book to our agency, which will be shared with birth mothers for private infant adoption.  We also discussed the possibility of legal-risk foster care, meaning the parental rights have not yet been terminated but most likely will be, so the state would prefer to place the child(ren) in a home that would like to adopt them.  This is a possibility for us since we are a certified foster home.

If you would have told me all of this 2 years ago, I probably would not have believed you.  I may have believed that I'd complete an international adoption, but I never would have believed I'd be thankful for our infertility.

The biggest blessing of all has been the strengthening of my relationship with God.  Although I grew up in a Catholic church, I never had a strong relationship with God or spent any time reading the bible.  I even went through times when I questioned my faith entirely.  Meeting my husband was the first part of my journey to find God in a way I never had. About six months into our relationship, we attended BCF (now our church) for the first time and my relationship with God just kept getting stronger.

When our battle with infertility first began, I felt sad and angry.  I questioned God's intentions and couldn't see any reason why He would "do this to me."

Finally, God spoke to my heart and helped me to step away from myself and my problems.  He helped me to see the reason for our struggles and refocused my energy so I no longer sat around and thought "poor me" but instead "these poor children."  Do I still pray for our future family?  Of course. But I also pray for these children, all over the world, that are abandoned, alone and hurting.  I also pray for these birth mothers who have had to endure the ultimate sacrifice.  My world is no longer centered around me because God has opened my eyes... I am so thankful to be on this journey, and I know this is just the beginning.

***UPDATES***
On May 9, 2012 the adoption of our daughter Haben was finalized.  We completed a domestic adoption for this 15 year beauty, who had been residing in the states for two years, though originally from Ethiopia.

On October 30, 3012, our beautiful baby girl was born.

We are now focused on our second adoption- a baby boy or girl from Ethiopia.

2 comments:

  1. Your story is very touching and we are excited to be following your journey.

    Christin Lites
    DTE 8/12/11
    www.litesfamily.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Christin, I just saw this post. I see we are not too far behind you on our journey. I have visited your blog as well and excited to see you moving up on that list!

    ReplyDelete