A few weeks ago we experienced our craziest day yet walking through the adoption process... we met with a birth mother.
We haven't shared this publicly until now because ultimately it is up to her (really the Lord) to choose us and at this point she has not chosen us.
But WOW, this is one crazy roller coaster ride so far. I describe it as a roller coaster ride because I am not sure people can truly understand the range of emotions experienced unless you have also walked through this process.
It is similar to thinking you might be pregnant, but don't know for sure... except this baby might come much sooner than 9 months from now (this particular birth mom is due in October).
It was similar to a job interview, except it was the most important job interview we will ever attend because it is interviewing for parenthood (except most people never have to "interview" to become a parent).
At this point, I cannot imagine how my heart will hold up if we have to do this again and again.
Don't get me wrong, we are doing well... this is such an exciting journey. We know for a FACT that the Lord is in complete control and he has hand picked each of our children way before we ever had the ability to even consider adoption. But I just have to be real and say this is an unbelievably hard journey, which requires us to walk in complete reliance on the Lord - which is the sweetest place to be.
So now for the details (which is why you are here in the first place, right?) ...
Towards the end of May we received a message from some friends indicating that they had learned of a birth mom who is looking for a good family and they wondered if we were interested in meeting with her. We agreed to meet with her to see if this was a possibility.
On a Saturday a few weeks ago, we drove to the Metroplex, where she lives, to meet with this sweet girl. It was a beautiful afternoon, so we sat outside on the patio underneath a umbrella and waited for her to arrive. I can't even begin to put words to the emotions we felt as we sat there waiting for her to arrive. But soon they arrived (she and her mom) and the conversation flowed fairly easily.
Kate (not her real name) is 18 and her mom is only 3 years older than me and younger than DJ. Her mom (I'll call her Missy) had Kate at 18 and she was really encouraging Kate to give the baby up for adoption because she wants her granddaughter to be able to have the life she was not able to provide for Kate. Kate was also very much on board with the plan of adoption, although we did sense how difficult this decision is for her.
Kate and Missy asked us some very difficult questions and at times it seemed that they were looking for very specific answers in return. They were so warm and friendly in response to our answers, but we really don't know exactly how our answers matched up with what they are looking for.
Kate was very interested in Open Adoption (which is what we are choosing to do) and wanted to know how "open" we are to open adoption. We shared how important she is to us as the birth mom and that our baby would know from the beginning that he/she is adopted. DJ did a great job of explaining to her that our adoption counselor with Christian Homes would be able to help us set up the expectations and parameters for our open adoption and that this would be something that we would all come to a written agreement about. (Side note: Open adoption has become the most common form of adoption today and I will write another post later about how this works and why it is the method we have chosen for our family.)
They asked us if the baby would go to private school or if we would choose to homeschool. I shared with them my heart for public school and some simple reasons why we had chosen that path for our family. We told them that our children would either attend the school where I teach or the great school in our neighborhood.
They also asked if I would be staying home with the baby or what our plans were for childcare if I continued to work.
We shared with them many, many details about our life... our jobs, family, church, home etc.
Faith was very important to them and we were able to share the up most importance that Christ holds in our lives. They also asked specific questions about our church and denomination.
Before we left DJ asked if could pray for us. We prayed and then told Kate that we would continue to pray for her regardless of whether or not she chose us for her baby. We also told her that the ball is in her court. We are very open to meeting with her again or talking on the phone if she has more questions, but we are not going to contact her again unless she chooses to make contact. We gave her the contact information for our adoption agency, in case she was interested.
We walked away feeling hopeful, but also guarded. From the beginning we were so excited about the opportunity to meet her, but we also tried to guard our hearts knowing that she may not choose us. At this point, it has been 3 weeks and we have not heard from her. We are OK with that because we know God is sovereign, but we would definitely ask you to pray for us as walk this exciting but difficult journey. We wouldn't have it any other way and we are so excited for the testimony God is unfolding for our precious babes even before they are ever born.