Monday, September 9, 2013
September 9, 2013 8:30 a.m
(**posted on Facebook**)
I decided a while back that I was going to pull away from Facebook to a certain degree. Although our road has continued to wind around endlessly, and the bumps continue to trip us up when we least expect it, we are continuing as a family to heal after Brynna’s death. I have discovered, over and over again, that words are hard to find to sufficiently explain this process, and I didn’t want to make people uncomfortable with the seemingly endless nature of our grief.
Today, however, I come to you all with a different (but connected) purpose.
Just about 4 months after Brynn died, I began doing some investigating into the world of adoption. Truth be told, Steven and I had discussed adoption as an option for building our family prior to my pregnancy with Brynna, but then we got pregnant and it was a moot point for a while. Then, after things went the way they did, and we were left without any further biological options, I began researching again.
What we discovered about ourselves is that we are incredibly drawn to the idea of growing our family through the adoption of a newborn baby girl or a young sibling group. We researched domestic vs. international adoption, and given that we desire a very young child, we found that an adoption inside the U.S. would be most promising for us.
We attended webinars, and seminars. We read books and spoke with other adoptive families. We did our due diligence, for sure.
We were pre-approved over a year ago, through an adoption center out of CA and all that needed to be done to start the process would be to send them a $17,000 check upfront, which would grant us a 2 year contract for their services in helping to match us with a birth mother. We also needed to pay for a social worker to complete our home study. Once matched, we would have to cover travel expenses to wherever the birth mom lived, as well as lawyer fees to cover the legal side of adoption. When it was all said and done, we were looking to spend between $25,000 and $35,000.
In December, however (as many of you know), we made an offer on a house on nearly 5 acres of property. The house was listed as a short sale and we knew that it may “take a while” for the sellers’ banks to reach an agreement on the deal, so we put adoption on hold figuring there was no point in paying a social worker to have our home study done, if we would just be moving before it was final.
Then, last June, an opportunity dropped, seemingly, out of the sky and we were told about a young girl who lived in WA state, and was in a situation of not really knowing how she would proceed with her pregnancy. She heard our story and was very interested in speaking with us about adopting the baby girl she was due to give birth to, in mid-September.
Although the house situation had still not figured itself out, we knew that to be able to legally adopt any baby, let alone this young birth mom’s child, we would need a completed home study. We set in motion to find a social worker, requested some of our closest friends and family complete letters of recommendation, paid for FBI fingerprinting and background checks, completed a relatively lengthy autobiography about how/why we found ourselves on the adoption road, and had multiple home visits all to complete our home study. We reasoned that if the house worked out, and we ended up moving, we would just pay to append the document.
For three months we have tried to remain cautiously optimistic about the idea that we might be bringing a baby home mid to late September. We texted, spoke on the phone, and even met the teenage birth mom, and her mother, in person. All signs were pointing to this being a “drop in our laps, much more affordable, miraculous, this kind of thing only happens in the movies,” adoption. We chose not to tell many people or post about any of it, in attempt to respect her privacy, and her process.
Simultaneously, several weeks back, we had finally received word (9 months after making the initial offer) that the seller’s banks were in agreement on a deal for the house, and it was going to be ours. We were ecstatic! After calling the agent and our mortgage lender to inquire how likely this was to actually go through, we were given the go-ahead to tell the boys we’d be moving. We took the boys to the property and captured on video, the excitement in their faces when we told them the house was ours.
It was a perfect moment.
Then, two days later the real estate agent called to say the banks were in disagreement again, and it “didn’t look good”. As it stands now, the banks have decided they will not come to a resolution and have refused settlement of the short sale. The house is going into foreclosure and will go up for auction (most likely “cash only”) this coming Friday. When we got the word, we were devastated.
But we thought, “Well at least we’re still moving in the direction of bringing a baby home, and that is something wonderful to look forward to.”
Yesterday, however, we received a text from our birth mom stating she has decided against adoption, and is choosing to parent her baby. While we understand what a hard choice this is for this young mother, and we in no way fault her for choosing to parent, our hearts still broke.
Yesterday, we were numb. Then, we were sad. Then, we were confused. Then, we were feeling defeated and hopeless.
Then, we slept.
Now, we are coming to you all.
Facebook is a powerful and wide-reaching social media tool, and Steven and I know there is a birth mother out there that is meant to be connected with our family. We are in love with the idea of an open adoption, and we know the more people there are to love a child, the better.
We know our hearts are still led to adoption, and we are asking for your help.
To all of our friends and family, please keep us in your hearts and prayers and thoughts. Please send hope our way that one day, our family will grow again through the amazing thing called adoption.
And PLEASE, PLEASE keep your eyes peeled and ears open for any birth mother that may be looking for a family for her sweet baby girl. Ask your pastors, priests, neighbors, relatives, friends, and teenagers if they know of anyone who is struggling to find a forever home for their child(ren).
We are happy to talk about our journey and will answer any questions anybody may have.
I know this is a long entry about a very serious topic, but I’ve heard of it working for other people, and at this point I know we have absolutely nothing to lose.
Thank you. All of you. We love you.