It’s been almost a year since we brought our beautiful, little, Jimmy home. As we are excitedly planning his first birthday party (with a Dr. Seuss theme), I find myself reflecting on our journey to become parents.
My husband and I met later in life (I was in my late thirties). We were fortunate to start our married life together with my husband’s wonderful son from his first marriage! Although I love him dearly, we wanted to add to our family.
I was frankly shocked and very depressed when it became apparent that having biological children was going to be very difficult. Thus started the infamous cycle of infertility. I had known many friends who had been successful with this process so I assumed that although it might take awhile, eventually it would work. I thought, “Surely after having had to wait so long to get married, God will bless me right away with a child!”
I was wrong. Infertility brought much heartache and more despair. I don’t know how to describe it but I just knew when it was time to stop. Those of you who are going through or have been through infertility treatments might know what I mean. Although it was a difficult decision to make, it was also a relief to know that we were getting off of this particular roller coaster!
We turned our hearts toward fostering. We took the PRIDE classes and were almost ready to finalize when I panicked. I felt like I would be a much more effective foster parent if I had a child that I knew that I could call my own. So we decided to delay fostering.
At that point, we decided on infant adoption. The cost was daunting but we moved forward hoping that God would help us to find a way. Through a series of events, I called Dean at Adoption Makes Family inquiring about a homestudy. He called me back immediately; and on a Sunday! When I mentioned that he had the most reasonable price that I had seen, he said that it was the same price that he had paid for his own homestudy several years ago. An adoption social worker who had also adopted! Bonus!
When I saw the amount of forms on the homestudy I was originally disheartened. “Who thought up all of these forms? Are you kidding me? How many background checks do I need? And how many copies?” are frequent thoughts that went through my mind.
I just decided to take it one form at a time. I think that I emailed Dean and Carin (his fabulous, knowledgeable, and very calm assistant) about 100 times with questions about this form or that before I actually sent in the packet. I also made MANY trips to the notary – just when you think that everything is notarized…
Eventually we had completed our homestudy. At the close of the final interview at our home, Dean let us know we were approved to adopt a child. Dean then dropped a bomb and said that he had a baby for us. I don’t think I remember much after that announcement as we were in complete shock! The baby was in Cradle Care with a little over a week to go before the 30-day waiting period was finished. We were ecstatic and eagerly awaited the next few days.
A few days later, Dean called with the news that the mother had changed her mind and decided to parent her child. I couldn’t blame her. I wish her well and hope that she and her little one are happy together. But, I was very depressed. It just seemed that my goal to become a mother just continued to evade me.
Dean suggested that we make a video to be published on the Adoption Makes Family website. We took his advice and invited his talented and sensitive videographers into our home. About a week later we got a call from Dean. He was two weeks old, still in the hospital but should be out soon, were we interested?
I was flabbergasted and extremely exciited!! When Dean asked if I wanted to visit him, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go; believe it or not! I was scared of becoming attached and having another disappointment. But on the advice of Dean and a lovely adoptive mother who went through a revocation herself, I went. I took one look at him, went home that night and made some substitute plans for my class, and almost never left him while he was in the hospital.
Jimmy has been our joy and our miracle. He is almost always smiling. He laughs at everything and is the most fun I have ever had! I hardly remember life without him! I would encourage anyone who is considering adoption to please take the plunge! It’s a different roller coaster than infertility. In my opinion, if you decide to go with Adoption Makes Family, it’s a ride that will end with happiness and miracles; just like our fabulous little boy.
We are hoping to adopt again and I know that if it’s God’s will, we will have a little brother or sister for our smiling boy.