April Group Session

This month we attended the group session again and learned a lot of information on how the hospital agreement could look and the things to think about. It was great to hear about more of the process once you are ready to match and get some experience going through the type of questions so that we can prepare ourselves.

For the most part the questions are fairly straight forward and are things you would expect on the agreement but then others were things that make sense only in hindsight. Although we can have ideas and preferences for what we want to happen at the hospital for the most part this plan comes from the birth parents and their wishes. For instance, if the birth mother wants to see us or the baby at the hospital or when she wants us to arrive at the hospital once labor has started.

Also, the hospital agreement is more of a plan than a must follow document. So even though one thing is written during the match meeting it could change before delivery or even at the hospital itself. Being able to adjust and be flexible will come in handy during the hospital stay, however that is not something that I am usually great with as I like plans.

After we discussed the hospital agreement we also discussed some of the things we might face at the hospital and how we should deal with them. It will be hard in the moment to think about some of the things so going over them now when we aren’t already running around a little crazy with emotions is helpful. Andy and I hope that we don’t happen to be at a hospital that isn’t familiar with adoptions and how to proceed but we have to put faith in the counselors at the IAC helping us through any hurdles we might face.

 

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We’re past the 1 year mark

Well we have been waiting over a year now on the wait list through our adoption agency. At times the year has flown by and at others it can seem like it was interminable. So much has happened while we were waiting which helps us not stress too much. From working on putting together a nursery so when it happens we have everything ready and everything we will need, hanging out with friends and family in town (getting our fill of holding little babies when we could), and traveling to visit family and friends it has been an incredible past year.

We hope that we don’t cross the next year mark still waiting to start our family but it is also a possibility since for the most part it is up to a birth mother/father choosing us as parents. As we have mentioned previously being over a year does at least mean we are now on the last minute list for the agency which could be better for us and mean an adoption sooner but only time will tell.

I will be working on a new post about the final product of the nursery hopefully soon since we are almost finished with setting it up and getting everything ready/decorated until we bring home a child. While we work on that we also have a lot of travels and things coming up over the coming months to keep us busy so we will try and keep the blog moving forward with updates if/when we have them!

In the Moment: A Pre-Adoptive Dad’s Thoughts on Gratitude

Andy again! This article has to do with a Pre-adoptive dad’s points of view through the process of waiting. I TOTALLY agree with his view. Becoming a father is something that I always wanted. I knew long ago that it was a goal of mine. Stephanie and I talked very early on in dating that we wanted children. After struggling, we continued with a “whatever it takes” attitude.

Looking back on a year of waiting, the road has been long (or it feels that way) and at times, stressful, frustating, and even maddening. But it is our journey, not the other couple here or there, it is ours to travel. It is not the same journey, and you have to sit back and follow the road wherever it goes, and however long it is. Certainly going on the Last Minute List (explained in an earlier blog) could help us reach our goal sooner. We’ll still have to wait and see.

One thing I realized during the adoption process is just how complex it is. There are so many moving parts, and it would be difficult for people who are unorganized to stay on track. Stephanie is the organizer. She is on top of things in a frightening way. Spreadsheets! Lots of them. I love her for that. We found that doing all of the paperwork REALLY puts you out there for the world to see! From what races we are willing to adopt (all of them!), our financials, our bloodwork, and even our fingerprints….and not just local Police…we sent them to the FBI as well. That seems a bit weird, can they not just call eachother and ask for them? We answered questions about birthmother drug useage, and mental issues as well. It was an application to adopt a human. It is weird.

Another aspect of “putting ourselves out there”, is social media. I cannot imagine how much harder it was to spread the word 20 years go, when I can reach the world in 3 seconds on Facebook, Twitter, and WordPress etc. I am sort of a social media junkie, so this was right up my alley. I am constantly itching to find a way to “advertise” our adoption plan further and further into peoples’ hands.

During the wait, I think often about who our Birthmom will be and what will she think of us. That question will be answered later on. I think about our struggles, and our decision to move into Adoption, and what our birthmoms process for doing so will be, and how has she/will she deal with her struggles to make a decision to give her child up for adoption. I think about her support system, and hope that she has one, because going through pregnancy and adoption alone would be very hard, and i hope that they support HER decisions. I cannot wait to meet her.

Article: http://openadoptionbloggers.com/2013/11/28/in-the-moment-a-pre-adoptive-dads-thoughts-on-gratitude/

Understanding Open Adoption

I (Andy) was reading an article about Understanding Open Adoption today, and I wanted to share it with our followers. We often get asked why we are doing an open adoption, and what are the benefits of that over a closed adoption. For Stephanie and I, the choice was easy. Once we started looking into the types of adoption, and the ins and outs of each, an Open Adoption seemed the healthiest for all involved, from the child, to the Birthmother, to Stephanie and I. 

We want our child(ren) to understand where he or she is from, and from whom. We want truth and honestly from the beginning, because we feel that will lead to less questions down the road from the child(ren). We also liked the idea of a blended “family” as our birthmom will bring her family into the relationship with us, expanding our family even greater.

here is the article:

http://www.adoptivefamilies.com/articles.php?aid=577

Group Meeting March – The Match Meeting

So I have fallen behind on updating the blog on our group meeting from last month. Especially since tonight is this month’s group meeting. It was a great meeting last month and had a lot of useful information for us to know what to expect in the match meeting for an adoption through our agency. (We hope to be experiencing this soon :))

We walked through all the questions on the agency form for the type and amount of contact that will take place between the adoptive parents and the birth parents. It is a very detailed form with pretty much any question you can think of on the ways to communicate today. Since the match agreement is legally binding in the state of Georgia it is great to know that it is very specific so that everyone knows what to expect out of the relationship that will bind everyone together.

This topic also bought up questions for some of us on how to handle contact questions after the placement has taken place. For example, some birth parents might fall out of contact for periods of time while others might be looking to revise the match agreement to get more contact. Andy and I are fairly confident in open adoption and we look forward to the contact that will hopefully be a part of our child’s life. We want them to know where they come from not just the family that they grow up in.

There are a lot of open questions that we know won’t be answered until we are actually matched with birth parents and even still there might be questions after placement but we love that our agency is there to support and help everyone through those questions/concerns no matter when they happen. In addition to the discussion during the meeting it was great to catch up with some of the other people in the group that we have gotten to know through the sessions and see what they have been up to. We look forward to seeing some of them again tonight.