April 25, 2009

Baby Calls

I've had two interesting calls this month regarding baby situations. These are always challenging calls because it's always so hard to tell what to do when you learn about a baby via "telephone". It's so much riskier when you learn of a situation that doesn't come to you through the agency. After waiting for a year, it feels like our turn is almost up and we should just hang in there with the agency. On the other hand, they've been having a really slow couple of months which makes me feel like we might be waiting forever. It's so difficult to know what the right situation is and to have patience and wait for that situation to find you.

The Sign Says It All

A friend and colleague of mine gave me the sweetest gift this week - a plaque about the journey to motherhood. I'm really impressed that she was able to find this plaque and the sentiment it expresses is so true. I think that on our path it will certainly feel like a miracle when motherhood happens and we will really appreciate that miracle.

April 24, 2009

The Benefits of Being Baby-less

The last couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of happy hours, catching up with old friends and other evening engagements. It seems like every Spring I have a flurry of activity when everyone begins to come out of hibernation. Our evenings have been packed and it has been fun to have time with our friends.

This week I’m grateful that we are still footloose and fancy free. Coordinating the logistics for all of the events that we’ve had over the past week would have left me exhausted had we had a baby at home (not to mention broke paying for babysitters). You won’t hear this very often, but, I’m grateful to have a great life outside of our home at the moment.

April 18, 2009

Adoption Blogs

I've spent the better portion of the morning reading through as many adoption blogs as I could find. It's challenging at first to find blogs about domestic infant adoption but once you find a few there are usually links to others.

It's so inspiring and amazing to hear the stories of mothers and fathers holding their baby for the first time. I've sat in tears reading through many of these stories. It helps to give me faith that one day that too will be us.

I've added some links to some of the blogs that I've been reading and have enjoyed. As I discover others I'll be sure to add those as well. I'd also love to hear from anyone who has been blogging about their domestic adoption. It is helping to pass the time during my wait and give me hope that there is a baby at the other end of our journey.

April 17, 2009

Embracing Adoption

I've had the luxury of a half day off of work due to snow today. As a good procrastinator with a messy house and a hamper full of laundry, I've decided to search the blogosphere for other souls blogging about adoption.

I just read a blog about a couple's decision to adopt. I was so excited to read about their epiphany moment and what a great decision they had reached to welcome a child into their lives. Instead, I read that adoption was a "last resort option" for them. Now, I don't want to be a hypocrite. We did reach the end of one road and had to switch paths to another; however, I don't feel like this option is "second best". I feel like it's a little more challenging and takes a lot more work and patience but is not an inferior road to parenthood.

I think adoption opens you up to the possibilities of a life outside of your own and the freedom of raising a child without inherent expectations. I’ve thought a lot about biological parenting and adoptive parenting and I really feel like had we had a biological child we might have projected expectations and talents on that child based on our own experiences and talents. I feel that the adoptive experience allows our child to tell us who s/he is and what their interests and talents might be outside of our expectations. I think this is absolutely true of biological parenting as well but I think that it’s a lot harder to remove yourself, your expectations and your genetics from the equation.

Of course there is always the grieving of infertility of not seeing you husband’s smile or your sister’s eyes reflected in your child’s face. You loose the genetic bond that you have to past generations and to past members of your families. These things are all true. However, I feel like the life and values you provide your child are far more important and provide a far greater connection to your legacy than any DNA could ever provide.

This leads me to my final thought on this snowy day. I very frequently hear from people when I share that we are in the process of adoption that I'm going to get pregnant right after we adopt. Of course, they have a plethora of stories of a friend of a friend to back up this assertion. This statistically happens 10% of the time- a very small and remote number. This also most likely happened exclusively in an era before extensive diagnostics for infertility. I found a very funny term for this on the blog “Tales from the Stirrups” this afternoon: “pregenated”.

I'm not sure what people intend when they “pregenate” me but it’s wearing on me for the exclusive reason that I feel like it devalues our decision to adopt and the relationship that we will have with our child when people make this comment. It reinforces the idea of second best or "last resort". It also perpetuates the idea that we are not happy with this decision and we are settling.

I feel so blessed to have the ability to adopt. To have a mother select myself and my husband and entrust us to help raise her child is the greatest honor and experience I can imagine – definitely not an experience that is second best.

April 11, 2009

Holding Pattern

I think the hardest part about the adoption wait right now is not being able to look ahead and know what will be happening in your immediate future in 3 - 6 months from now. I book events and dates on my calendar at work and always wonder if I will be present at the event or meeting or will I be out on maternity leave. There is certainly no predicting when baby will come so you just move ahead and plan contingencies should you be out.

It is mostly wearing on me at present because I have a serious travel bug and would do anything to leave the country right now. (You aren't able to leave the U.S. until your adoption is finalized which is generally six months post-placement). I'm even reluctant to schedule travel within the U.S. not knowing what the future holds. I do have a trip scheduled in June to Houston. It felt really risky scheduling it months ago but as June swiftly approaches with no call from our agency I think we are certainly in the clear. I figured visiting my sister was the safest bet. Event if we did have baby, if I had the desire to travel with him/her we could always still complete the trip. We'd have a great place to bring baby and lots of help from the new aunt and uncle.

Right now I feel like we are in a holding patter until we know more. We would really like to sell our place and move to a home but we're reluctant to do so until we get baby. I know that our perspective will change once bambino comes into our lives and I'd like to go house hunting when we can look at things through the eyes of a parent. I know that we should be enjoying this time of freedom and fun (says all of our parent friends) but we're ready to get out of the holding patter and forge ahead to this next stage of our lives.

I know once our bambino comes into our lives it will seem like this wait was nothing but right now we are approaching a year and the wait has seemed so long.