How did you decide to adopt a baby?
We both always knew we wanted kids, but didn’t know which route we wanted to go. A friend of ours had approached us some time ago and said that she would have our baby for us, but things changed when she found out she had some medical issues. Our family had told us about fostering to adopt, and while that may be something we do in the future, it wasn't what we wanted to do right out of the gate. We wanted to adopt a newborn so that we could help raise a child from birth the way many other families start out.
Why did you choose to work with LifeLong Adoptions?
We ended up choosing LifeLong Adoptions because we liked that they had same sex couples in their company, and we liked how they were able to answer our questions and we didn’t feel pressured to sign up with them. It also seemed exclusive because of the small number of clients they take on a month. We did our homework on other agencies, but LifeLong Adoptions still kept popping up as the best decision for us to choose. The staff was friendly, always took our calls, and made us feel important to them.
What were you most excited about?
We were most excited about getting the process started so that we could start our family.
What were you most nervous about?
We were very nervous about not being connected to a birthmother. You can say that was our biggest fear.
How did your friends and family react to your decision to adopt?
Our friends and family were very accepting and excited for us when we shared our decision to adopt. After we told them that we were going to be adopting, we were always asked, when were we going to adopt? I think that was hard for us because we didn’t have a connection at first and it felt almost like couples that get asked when they are going to get pregnant.
What was it like meeting the birthmother for the first time?
It was very surreal for us meeting the birthmother for the first time. She had chosen us after our daughter was born, so our first time meeting her was also the first time we met our daughter.
Did you choose an open or closed adoption? How did you make that decision?
We chose an open adoption. Before the process started, we had talked about what we wanted and we were open to both options. When we met the birthmother, it was very easy to have an open adoption because of the connection we all shared. We feel she is now an extension of our family.
Describe receiving the call that your baby was being born and traveling to meet her.
I had missed the original call that I received, and so did Randell. I had listened to the voicemail I received from LifeLong Adoptions and told my boss that the voicemail was very different then the calls or voicemails that I normally receive from them, so he excused me to take the call and everything was a blur from there. I was so beyond excited and in a shock. I hung up with LifeLong Adoptions to call Randell and tell him the news. I was shaking and crying when I called him, but I couldn’t get a hold of him at first. When I finally did get a hold of him he started crying and didn’t believe me. We then spoke with the birthmother shortly after and were beside ourselves. Moments after we got off the phone with her, she sent me pictures and I started crying. The drive to Vegas to meet her felt like it took forever, even though it's only a four-hour drive from where we live.
Describe the experience of finally meeting your baby.
We had never been to the hospital where our daughter was born, so we got lost at first. When we finally got there, we picked up a stuffed animal for our daugher and flowers for the birthmother at the shop in the hospital. The nerves were settling in for both of us because we knew after that we would be meeting our daughter and her birthmother. We didn’t know what to expect. When we went in the room we both got teary eyed and hugged the birthmother, and we both play fought over who was going to hold her first. Randell of course won that battle. I knew that I would love our daughter once I met her, but I didn’t want to leave her and have loved her more than I ever imagined.
What is your relationship like with the birthmother?
We feel we have a good relationship with the birthmother. We send pictures to her and text her all the time. We are also planning a trip out there next month so she can see her mom again and meet her biological grandma, grandpa, and brother.
What were the biggest challenges of the adoption process?
The biggest challenge we had was the waiting game. We also hadn’t had a connection with a birthmother until we were chosen. We do think it was better that we were chosen after our daughter was born because we think waiting even longer after we were chosen would have been even more rough.
Adopting a baby can be a lengthy process — how did you get through the wait?
The wait felt very long, but for us it was the same length that a normal pregnancy is for a mother. The hardest part is waiting. Patience is very key and the right child will come along at the right time.
Would you adopt again? Why or why not?
We would probably adopt again. It might not be right away, but in the future. I would want our daughter to have another sibling since both Randell and I had other siblings.
Do you have any advice to share with other adoptive parents?
The advice I would share with other adoptive parents would be to be patient. The right child will come along. We always talk about how everything worked out the way that it should for us. It was almost too perfect because we didn’t live far from Vegas. We even had family in Vegas and were just there the month before for Thanksgiving. Also, the other thing I would say is to trust the process and trust LifeLong Adoptions because they are the professionals. And don’t be afraid to have them tweak your profile! A picture on our profile that we didn’t like was one that the birthmother liked, so I am thankful that LifeLong Adoptions made us keep it! The last piece of advice is congrats! It is worth it!