The Connection of a Lifetime
When we got married seven years ago, we first focused on enjoying each other and our marriage. When the time felt right, we started preparing for the adoption process. We weighed several options, and adoption was the one that felt right for us. Bringing a baby into our family, which has so much love to offer, sounded like a dream come true.
Partnering with LifeLong was one of our best decisions. We loved that they were so supportive of us. They were passionate about helping us achieve our family goals, and from the very first day, it felt less like a business and more like a family.
As much as you think you can prepare yourself by reading about the ups and downs you will go through in the process, it’s something you can’t really be 100% ready for. The process is hard but beautiful, and we promise it’s worth it. Many times we were anxious, scared, and doubtful. Would we ever be chosen? We had many sleepless nights. Thankfully, we had worked so much on our relationship before starting this process, which allowed us to be there for one another.
The Immense Support
We talked with LifeLong extensively, and they supported us every step of the way. They proactively reached out to us to talk to us when things were difficult and to educate us on what the next step in the process was. We couldn’t ask for more. They were always willing to talk to us when we had questions, especially after being chosen.
Our family was super excited for us as well. They knew that with the adoption process, sometimes things don’t go as planned, but we were all optimistic. We definitely felt everyone’s unconditional love during the process.
When we met our baby’s birth mother and father for the first time, it was almost like the perfect first date experience as we had a long conversation. Later on, we traveled to their home state to have dinner with them and allow them the opportunity to get to know us. That was so important to us.
The week prior to our visit, they had said the baby wasn’t cooperating with the ultrasound and we wouldn’t know yet if it was a boy or a girl. We were a little disappointed as we were dying to know so we could start buying outfits and thinking of décor for the nursery. When they arrived at the restaurant where we all planned to have dinner, they had a present for us, and they asked us to unwrap it once we were seated at our table. When we unwrapped the gift, it was blue paper and beautiful baby boy outfits. We cried and hugged them! Our son’s birth mother said, “This was the reaction I wanted to get!”
Twelve hours after the baby’s birth, as soon as the birth mother gave her okay, we arrived to see our son. At the hospital, when we held our baby for the first time, time froze for us. It was as if we were making a silent vow to him at that moment to love him unconditionally. We held the love and commitment in our hearts.
Although there were many successes along the way, there were still very difficult moments, but those moments are also what make this process so beautiful and rewarding. Definitely the hardest moments are the 48 hours after the baby’s birth; it’s hard on everyone—the adoptive family, the extended family and friends, and the birth family. You can’t help but feel like the bad guy at some point because your happiness doesn’t fit with the energy and feelings in the room. One thing we kept thinking of was the birth mom and dad; we knew this wasn’t easy on them, and we focused our energies on showing them the enormous commitment we had not only to the baby but also to them and the promise we had made to them to give the baby the life he deserved. While it was an emotional moment that took a toll on everyone, they knew they were making the best decision for their baby.
After the birth, we stayed for the entire waiting period at a nearby hotel until we received approval to come home. Every night his birth mother and birth father came by to visit the baby and to eat dinner with us in our room. It was like having family time. We all felt we came together so naturally to establish our family. These meals were really special to us. We knew that seeing the baby every night was hard for them, but they said it was helping them grieve and made them feel better to see him until we had the approval to go home with us. We were happy to do that for them after they had given us the most beautiful gift we will ever receive.
Building a Strong Connection
After this experience, we realized the best thing we did that allowed us to be successful so quickly was to upload a video of us and allow the birth mom to get to know us by more than just through text. Our son’s birth mother more than once mentioned, “You guys were just natural. You were perfectly unscripted.” That’s why she chose us. They mentioned how they could tell we were nervous during the video, but we focused so much on us and who we were that after she had seen every profile, we were the only ones she could remember.
We are so glad we were able to start our strong connection by being our authentic selves in the video. If there was one piece of advice we’d give to other adoptive parents, it would be to put your heart on your profile and take the time to do a video. They really appreciate it. It doesn’t have to be a professional video, just something that shows you as you are. Having an opportunity to hear you instead of just reading about you makes a stronger connection with the birth mom.