I didn’t expect to be writing this post so soon after this one.
We got a call with another potential birth mother match exactly two weeks after the first one.
There’s often much that has to be weighed in considering whether or not to accept the match. You may or may not get a ton of information in order to make the most informed decision. We did not get near as much detail on this birth mother as the last one, but that was mainly because she wasn’t as wordy as the last one was on her paperwork.
Because birth mothers pick the adoptive parent(s) first, once they’ve made their decision and let their caseworker know, they’re often excited and want to know the adoptive family’s answer as soon as possible. Typically, the agency wants an answer within 24 hours.
Fortunately, we got all this info on a Friday, which gave us the weekend to look over and talk about it. Unfortunately, it was also the same weekend we’d decided to start potty training our 2 ½ year old. Such is life.
While there were a few things that initially gave us pause, we asked all the questions we could think of. We reached out to people we know who are knowledgeable or have experience in areas where we had questions, and we got as much information as we could. We also did our own research. And at the end of it all…
We said yes.
During our first adoption three years ago, we said very little about our process publicly. I made one Facebook post on Mother’s Day saying that we had started the process of adopting. We had a small group of friends and family that we emailed periodic updates along our journey. Other than that, no one knew what was going on until all the paperwork making it irrevocable had been signed, and we officially announced a couple days after his birth in September that we had adopted a son.
Many people, including the agencies, will advise you not to make too big a deal about your adoption. They’ll tell you not to talk too much about it, not to have a baby shower, not to set up a nursery, hold loosely to everything… all in case the adoption fails, whether it’s because the birth mother changes her mind or for any other reason. Because then you are left with all these reminders of what might have been and now isn’t. Even though you’ll likely start the process over again, all of this can take a mental and emotional toll.
Well, my friends, when I started this blog, it was to bring you along on the adoption ride – the highs and lows and twists and turns of it all. And the reality is, unexpected events can occur in biological births too. Women can miscarry, have a stillborn, find out their baby has a genetic abnormality or birth defect. And all of these things have to be processed and/or grieved.
If this adoption match fails, we will need to process and grieve the loss. We will be heartbroken. We will need support from our community.
One of the other things that adoptive parents miss out on is making the big announcement that “We’re pregnant!!” We don’t get to do the cutesy photos with the extra pair of tiny shoes or whatever clever idea expecting parents come up with.
I spent some time on Pinterest recently looking for adoption announcement ideas, and to me, many of them seemed rather cheesy. They also didn’t fit our scenario. We’ve already been matched, and many of the announcement ideas I saw were for parents waiting for the match to happen (them holding a puzzle with a piece missing and the caption “waiting for our missing piece”… or a woman holding a globe in front of her like a pregnant belly, waiting to find that child in another country… that kind of stuff).
I reached out to two close friends for ideas, and here’s the exchange that went down:
Me: I was trying to think/decide if I wanna do some cutesy thing… like when people announce they’re expecting a baby. Do either of you have any ideas?
[They both wrack their brains for ideas.]
Beth: Is there one that you liked for biological that you would like to rework? You want to include your son in it? I don’t have any ideas either… like something with a phone because you got the call…nah… something with a box of matches because you have been matched?
Lauren: The only thing I can think of is a pic of you and Jeff sitting at your desk, surrounded by mountains of paperwork, maybe a pee cup, pulling your hair out.
I laughed out loud as I constructed any of these images in my head. Because they really do sum it up.
And here’s what I ultimately came up with: