Are you considering adoption? Or are you already beginning the adoption process? I hope our first adoption story will help you wherever you are in your own adoption journey.
My wife and I began thinking about adoption in 2005. Having dealt with infertility for many years we started looking at information on the internet. We were confused and had a lot of unanswered questions.
Where do you start? How does the adoption process work?
Is domestic or international adoption better for us? How much will it cost? How long would we wait to bring a baby home?
We had spent countless days and weeks trying to find good information to help us build our family. During this process, I couldn’t believe how difficult it was to find the answers we were looking for. We decided to start calling agencies and adoption professionals to try to get some answers.
Making the decision that we really wanted to adopt a newborn baby was huge. It meant domestic infant adoption was for us. We quickly learned that we could get help from a local adoption agency, an adoption attorney, or try to independently adopt (find a birthmother on our own) by using an adoption facilitator.
We chose to independently adopt using a facilitator – Lifetime Adoption – who helps you connect with a expectant mother by searching nationwide. This was important to us because we live an area a low population. We knew our wait time would be a lot longer if we limited our search to just our city or state.
In early 2006, we completed our homestudy with the state adoption agency and contracted with Lifetime. We completed our profile (multiple page dear birthmother letter with pictures) and sent 50 copies to Lifetime.
Ironically it took 9 months until our daughter was placed with us. The wait was very discouraging at times and we second guessed everything, from the way we made our profile to if we were using the right people to help us.
The folks at Lifetime were so encouraging during those times. They assured us that our profile was fine – it would just take the right birthmother for us.
In March 2007 we got the call from our adoption coordinator. She said an expectant mother wanted to talk to us – and hopefully match with us. The even bigger news was that she was having a girl and was due in a week. WOW!
The next day, our daughter’s birthmom called us and we spoke for the first time. She was amazing. She loved our printed profile and especially our profile video – watching the DVD we put in our printed profile over and over again.
We talked for over an hour and by the end of the call we were matched! It was a whirlwind week as we made arrangements to go to Nevada for the birth. All of the waiting and suddenly everything was happening really fast.
At the hospital – the emotional extremes
We arrived at the hospital 4 hours after our daughter was born because she came a couple of days earlier than expected. This was the first time we met our daughter’s birthmom. It was a little awkward (OK – a lot awkward), but we hugged her like she was family.
She was holding the little angel and immediately asked if we wanted to hold her. YES – we did! Our daughter’s birthmom is such a strong, wonderful, sweet, and loving woman. All she wanted was for her daughter to have a mom and a dad – she loved her sooooo much and it showed big time.
For example, she wanted us to name her baby girl. So right after the baby was born, she asked if we chose a name. My wife and I hadn’t settled on one yet, but we knew we wanted to get her opinion.
We told her the names we were considering. She really liked one of them, so we told her that was her name. What an awesome story we have to tell our daughter about how she was named!
The day we left the hospital was the most difficult day. We had emotion hitting us from all directions. Finally, after years and years, we were holding a precious baby girl who would be our daughter.
There was incredible joy as we realized our dreams were coming true. Yet, we had unbelievable sadness for her birthmom. She was in pain. We knew it, we felt it, and it hurt.
We were all in tears as we hugged goodbye. We didn’t know if we’d ever see her again. We reassured her that we would take great care of her baby girl. We would send her pictures and letters every month for the first year, and then more after that if she wished.
Our new family
We had to stay for 12 days in Nevada to let the ICPC (Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children) paperwork to be completed since we lived in another state than where our baby was born.
It was amazing to spend so much quality time as a new family. We cuddled her, we took TONS of pictures, and just soaked up every minute we had with her. Since we were so far from home, it was just the three of us. We were learning how to take care of a tiny little baby – not getting much sleep – but loving every minute of it.
As we arrived in the airport back home, some of our family were there to greet us – which was made us so happy. We wanted to celebrate finally coming home with our little girl, starting our new life as a family of three.
Our dream had finally come true.
Now that you’ve read about our first adoption story, click here to read about our second adoption story.
Want to read MORE domestic adoption stories? Click here for more!
Click here for more information about Lifetime Adoption Center (the facilitator we use).
Where are YOU in the adoption process?
WHAT’S YOUR STORY? Leave a comment below.