When we adopted Declan, this was our process:
- Finished fertility treatments in 2011 (we began these in 2010 with 3 IUI procedures and 1 IVF) and felt the leading in March that God wanted us to adopt
- Researched our different options and chose the agency
- Began fundraising with T-shirts, garage sales, and an online auction - looked into grants but discovered we needed a match already before we could apply
- Created our profile for the agency
- June completed our Home Study and other paperwork (this included physicals for both of us, classes on how to care for a newborn and CPR certification, fingerprinting, background checks, interviews with our social worker (3 in all at an hour each - one with Gary alone, one with myself alone, one together and a home visit) as well as several forms and biography from both of us
- June- Began what we thought was a long wait
- July- chosen by our birth mother
- August- drove to meet our birth mother
- November- flew to meet Declan (he was supposed to be due in December)
- November- had a car wreck while taking Declan to his pediatrician appointment (a man ran a red light and hit us)
- November- spent Thanksgiving in another state in an extended stay hotel
- December- finally came back home with our little family
Positives from our adoption:
- DECLAN DECLAN DECLAN DECLAN
- Ability to have PRIVATE BONDING TIME with Declan in a small hotel room with just daddy, mommy and baby (this was actually priceless) I didn't have to cook or clean a house. I had time to sleep because daddy and I took turns being a parent and we didn't have people asking to come visit so we were open to visit a lot when we returned to Georgia
- Ability to develop a close relationship with our birthmother and her family (they helped us when we had the wreck and had no car, they hosted us at their home for a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner and allowed us to do laundry)
- We felt a ton of support from friends and family and we were given a lot in terms of support and things we needed (friends donated and bought T-Shirts, friends gave us a ride to and from the airport, etc.)
Cons from our adoption:
- It happened very quickly (which is also a positive), but we were not able to raise the money we needed
- We had a wreck which has caused a lot of my back pain over the last year (positive from back pain, my Hashimotos was diagnosed)
So, all of that said, we are taking this adoption a little slower. Everything in my being is SCREAMING to move forward because I am ready to have another little baby in this house and Declan keeps asking when God is going to be finished with her so we can meet her. But, we also want to be more prepared financially this time. We know God has our baby already chosen for us to parent. It is just a matter of when we get to meet her.
So, at this time we have filled out our initial paperwork and we have begun our fundraising. We are currently selling T-shirts.
Because Gary and I are also wearing our T-shirts, the owner of Chic-Fil-A reached out to us and wants to help us. His idea is much larger than what we originally even dreamed.
Gary and I have always been very open about our experiences with adoption. We have wanted to share and speak up in a candid and open way, but really haven't had the platform before now.
We have also found that there is a lot of stigma attached to adoption. The questions we have been asked before, during and now are questions that need to be answered (I am going to write another post about this). There is also a lack of information for people who wish to adopt, wish to support others in adoption or are just curious and really don't know why or what goes into a couple deciding to adopt. America also has the highest adoption rate. People in other countries are not led to adopt very often. There is often a stigma attached to adoption in other countries as well. (More on this later)
The plans are just in the initial stages right now and we welcome any input from our readers, but we plan to have a Family Night at Chic-Fil-A geared toward adoption. This night will be a night for us to sell T-Shirts which will directly help our adoption, but we want this to be (and the owner does as well) a time where people can gain useful information relating to adoption and people can gather together who wish to learn more and support the cause of adoption. There was also discussion of offering percentage of online catering orders in the future.
Gary and I had the goal originally of funding our adoption to help offset the costs. Now we are excited that this could help not only us, but be the beginnings of helping another couple to fund their adoption as well. With advertising and support, this could be something that could be long lasting.
Gary and I know the pain involved with not being able to have children. We know the pain in being told you probably never will. We know the financial strain placed on a family who wishes to pursue fertility treatments and or adoption. All of this puts a strain on a marriage. Adoption puts a strain on a family as well. There are a lot of different emotions involved.
Through all of this time God has never taken away our desire to be parents. But, He did prepare our hearts for adoption. We do not know what God has planned for our family. We do know God led us to adopt. We do know Declan was the child chosen for us to parent. We also know that we are to adopt again. We also know that our child is begin planned for and designed already by God for us.
We covet your prayers during this time. Beginning this adoption process again a second time has brought us a lot of old emotions and fears. It seems easier to trust God this time around, but those feelings are human feelings that were buried after we met Declan for the first time. Now some feelings are resurfacing and we need prayer to go the distance whatever that looks like for our family.
Psalms 139 A Psalm of David
You have searched me, Lord,
and you know me.
2You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
4Before a word is on my tongue
you, Lord, know it completely.
5You hem me in behind and before,
and you lay your hand upon me.
6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.
7Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
8If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
11If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,”
12even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
13For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
How vast is the sum of them!
18Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand—
when I awake, I am still with you.
19If only you, God, would slay the wicked!
Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty!
20They speak of you with evil intent;
your adversaries misuse your name.
21Do I not hate those who hate you, Lord,
and abhor those who are in rebellion against you?
22I have nothing but hatred for them;
I count them my enemies.
23Search me, God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24See if there is any offensive way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.