June 29, 2011

Birth Story: Adoption

I believe my first thoughts about adoption came from my fourth grade teacher who also attended my church. She and her husband adopted four children (over a space of time) from Korea. At the time, I remember thinking, "wow, now that's the way to do it!" Building a family without childbirth pain has some distinct advantages. Little did I understand the many challenges that lead most families to choose the adoption route. I would guess that very few choose it to get out of giving birth.

In my late teens, my attitude toward adoption deepened. I knew that someday I would adopt. My sister Kristal, who is14 months older than me, felt the same way. Fast forward several years. Kristal and her husband have been married a few years. They want to start a family. Infertility enters the picture. Tests are run. Options are explored. Adoption is the right choice for them. As Kristal's family, for a few years, we spread the word in our various social circles that she wanted to adopt. Meanwhile, Kristal and her husband started adoption agency paperwork and getting their papers together and profiles made.

After heaps of paperwork, background and medical checks, social worker visits, and lots of waiting, Kristal and her husband were chosen by a birth mother in June to adopt her baby due in August 2006. Not more than a week or two later a friend of my parents contacted my dad to let him know that she knew of a birth mother looking for a family to raise her unborn child. She was also due in August. Wow. Two babies at once. That would be like having twins, which Kristal and her husband were open to...the only setback being that the agency they were working with didn't allow multiple adoptions at once unless they were coming from the same family. Huh? Okay. We didn't expect that. And they had already committed to adopting the first baby. 

Babies rarely just fall into a family's hands. In fact, in the last 10+ years that we've spread the word and kept our ear to the ground to help my sister, it only happened that one time. My father, in his wisdom, understood the challenges that adoption present to most families. Bottom line, Kristal couldn't adopt this baby, yet a home was still needed. He asked me if Tymon and I would consider adopting.
Elliott, Tymon and Graeden
In June of 2006, Tymon and I had Graeden and Elliott (aged 2 ½ and 1 ¼). We prayed to know what we should do. We planned on having two boys and two girls. I have had dreams about having a dark curly haired girl. It clicked with me that my boys were blonde, this baby could be a girl, and perhaps this was how our dark haired daughter would come into our family. At the same time, I also had some close friends who were looking to adopt. Tymon and I decided that, yes, we could do this. 

But first, we would talk with our friends. I knew a few who weren't able to expand their families without adoption. Perhaps, we were meant to be the messenger about this opportunity. I called one of my friends who I have known nearly my entire life. The timing wasn't right. They were doing a foster to adopt program. I called another friend (I set her up with my second cousin and they got married) but that didn't work out either. There was one more friend who had two children, and very difficult pregnancies and deliveries, who previously had expressed in a casual conversation that she and her husband had talked about adoption. I called her up. We talked. Their marriage was going through a rough patch. Adding a child into a family with an uncertain future isn't ideal.

Tymon and I, however, were ideal. We were looking to build our family. We had previously giving thought to adoption. Timing would put this child at the same age difference/intervals as our boys. We owned our own home and had a stable income. But most importantly, there was a baby who needed us.

6 Riveting COMMENTS:

  1. I'm loving this! Can't wait for "the rest"... assuming you weren't finished??

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  2. Yes, there is more to come. I was up early this morning and then got tired so I went back to bed...and realized the post was pretty long anyway. So, I just posted it and the next installment will be up maybe tomorrow or the next day.

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  3. Add me to your list of people who would like to one day adopt a child in need :)Loved reading this story.

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  4. This answered most of my previous questions. I am curious- you have mentioned work and then you said something about mustang. Do you run a Drivers Ed school? Also, I really do want to know more about that conference you spoke at. I too wanted 2 boys and 2 girls. Is it crazy to think you think you now have 4 boys and 2 girls!!

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  5. My brothers and I run a driver's education company. I spoke at a fall conference for driver's ed teachers in Olympia.

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