Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Did you know.....

Did you know that November 17, 2012 is National Adoption Day!  In fact, the entire month of November is National Adoption Month!

You can find out more about it's history etc  by clicking here! If you are interested in Foster care or adoption, please click here. For Kansas specific, please click here.

Adoption is a subject that is special to my heart (and my families).  PV became our daughter through adoption, ( and of course GOD's grace.)  Which I am thankful for daily!  I would like to celebrate National Adoption Month by sharing her birth/adoption story.
Milton and I decided we wanted to have a child together,( TKS and KVH are from a previous marriage for me), and I am unable to carry a child myself, so that led us to alternative routes for a child. Neither one of Milton or I had any knowledge really when beginning either one of the following routes. 

It was like beginning a recipe, only without instructions, and not sure what ingredients were needed, but we knew what we wanted at the end!  The internet became a wonderful resource, along with other people and books.  We are thankful for all of them, as our recipe for our family ended up turning out pretty fabulous we think! 
First, we traveled down the path of gestational surrogacy with the aide of a beautiful human that we consider a close and dear friend.  Our attempt to create a child with a part of each of us did not result in a birth. The road was difficult but I would not change it for a moment, as it is part of our marriage story, and it built us up in strength and character, as all good journeys do.  Perhaps I will write of that journey later.
Once that door closed, adoption became the next avenue for us.  We still desired an infant, so the advice we heard was that it would be a long wait.  Not only because we desired an infant, but we weren't young pups and there were lots of people desiring an infant. We researched extensively and prayed, and decided a domestic adoption through a Kansas agency was the best fit for our family. 

I won't bore you with too many details on it but there is a great deal of paperwork, rules, regulations, choices, time, money, emotions, prayer and energy spent just to get activated! I am exhausted just remembering! I thought about creating a timeline for my readers but after writing this post (it's long), I decided I was too tired!  I would do every emotion, every hurdle, every joy again in our quest for PV! No doubt!

We began our adoption journey May 5, 2006 and our daughter was born on March 28, 2008.  So you can see it took awhile!  We visited with a local attorney and decided we needed exposure to be chosen.  So we found a Kansas adoption agency, jumped through hoops, and were activated, and on their website by September 2006.  The waiting began and my issue of not letting go of control grew anxiety within me.  I did eventually find distractions (exercise, creating the nursery, etc) to keep me from going completely insane!  

In early January 2008, we decided to try and find some different avenues to get us closer to our destination.  After 17 months, we were still waiting and I began researching online.  I found an adoption consultant out of Pennsylvania and we decided to complete an application and pay the fee.  What could it hurt right!? 

Later in January the original adoption agency contacted us.  One time was to have permission to show our profile to a birthmother that was outside our criteria,  we were not chosen by her. The second time was actually about a child that had just been born.  We had an hour and a half to decide if we were interested in taking this child. It was extremely difficult for Milton and I, and we spent that time praying, talking, and praying some more.  We were led by our prayers and talking to the result that we were not this child's forever family.  No one knows what that feels like unless you have been through it. I pray  you understand and continue to read our story, for in reality, it is God's story for our lives.

In mid February, we knew our profile was being shown, (through the adoption consultant, through an adoption agency in Pennsylvania) to a birthmother.  To be honest, I was quite laid back (not the norm for me!) and didn't fret about this, in fact I recall a calmness.  I now look back and see it was God's grace giving me the calm before a storm.  A storm that created beautiful yet crashing waves in an ocean of emotion, lightning to show light at the end of a long tunnel, and soft rain to rest my weary head upon his lap for strength.

I received a telephone call on February 22, 2008. I can shut my eyes and remember vividly how I felt, where I was, who was with me, and the time of day. (in the car, in my driveway, with KVH next to me, and it was evening time.) My cell phone rang and I answered, the adoption consultant was on the phone.  (I am not making the next part up either!) She began to talk and I JUST KNEW, by the tone of her voice, that we were NOT chosen by the birthmom.  I AM SO GLAD I WAS WRONG!  


She proceeded to tell me we had been chosen and some information about the birthmom.  I was sitting in my car, and I began to express excitement by pumping my hands and feet in the air!  (yet the lady on the phone would not have known it!) Yes, KVH loved it, she was a teen then so you can imagine how much! I tried to stay focused and listen to the information she was explaining.  KVH headed in the house, and I stayed in the car to finish the conversation. But as soon as it was over, I high tailed it into the house, shut the door, and began to jump up and down and scream with JOY!

Guess what.... Milton wasn't home.  He was about 20 minutes away from me in another town! The one night he decides to go out with friends! There was no way I was telling him this news on the phone! I called him and told him some "thing" and had him meet me at Casey's (gas station).  Yep, that's where I told him the news and it was a beautiful moment! Who needs candlelight, ambiance, or soft music! WE GOT CHOSEN!


So things progressed and as I have mentioned PV was born March 28, 2008.  So we had alittle over a month to prepare.  Honestly, I am glad it went this way. Where we didn't have very long to wait , did I mention I have control issues!There was paperwork to do, information to share, phone calls to be made, plane tickets to be bought, rules and regulations of adopting outside of Kansas to follow, sonograms to hear about, due dates to be told, and lots of praying. The storm had started increasing in volume.  I had a couple meltdowns during this time, but I think all in all we survived well!

The due date changed a couple times.  We didn't know if we were going to be able to be there when PV was born or not.  Lucky for us, she was scheduled to be born by C-section in Pennsylvania.  I received the call on March 25, 2008 that it was scheduled for March 28, 2008.  SO! I got online and bought some plane tickets!  We flew out on the 27th! We left behind our two older daughters, family and friends, all praying for a safe trip and the return of a third member to our family.  

- Note- in Pennslyvania, birthmothers can not sign their rights away for at least 72 hours/ 3 days. 

At about 8:10 am, on March 28, 2008, I totally forgot about the paper pregnancy I endured (which by the way, I think is harder than actually carry babies, just my opinion, since I have had two by birth with no pain medication!)

PV was born at 7:57am and by 8:10 am, we were in the nursery falling instantly in love with our daughter.  She was crying, they were cleaning her up, putting an IV in, and preparing the oxygen "caketop" because she had lost some oxygen on her way out. She also had some fluid in her lungs so they began treating her for that.



















SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL! The 2nd best sight of that day, was watching my husband fall in love with his child. The child GOD intended him to be Father of.  I am so glad I looked over to see my husband's face. Priceless!












Since PV was on oxygen, we were unable to hold her.

I want to say right here that the nurses were FABULOUS at the hospital that she was born at.  They welcomed us in and never made us feel out of place. They were just the best!  We were actually alone in a nursery the entire 4 days she was in the hospital.  The regular nursery was quite full!  (I like to think this was a God moment!)  We stayed next to her and talked to her, and held her little hand until late in the night.

The next morning as we walked in the nursery we saw our little bundle of joy with no "caketop", bathed, and we were excited! That meant we got to hold her! 































We were able to bond with our child, care for her, feed her, change her, and bathe her in the next couple days.  The last night we got to stay in a hospital room with her and we left the hospital on March 31st for our our home away home.

That was Comfort Suites hotels!  I think this is why PV LOVES to go to hotels/motels now! Seriously, she gets all giddy & excited!  We stayed in them for about 11 days, and then stayed about 5 days in a more "home setting" place.  

We were in Pennsylvania for 14 days total including the day we flew out.  The birthmother has to complete her documents and then each State (Kansas and Pennsylvania) have to approve for us to travel.  Needless to say, our stay was 14 days long.  That is alittle long to be in a new state, winter months, with a newborn, etc.  I look back now and wouldn't change it for the world though.  If we had come right home, we would not have had that time alone, just the three of us, to bond with one another.  Milton would have went right back to work pretty quickly and visitors would have been over to meet the lovely little vessel!  
On the final day, we were at the airport (literally). Milton was parking the car and when he got to us in the airport he had just received the call that we were clear to fly home to Kansas! I call this another God moment.... cause that Daddy wasn't about to stay any longer! PV did great flying, Mommy and Daddy were quite nervous about it though! She slept through most of it! It was a late flight!

Along with all the ups and downs of our stay in Pennsylvania, my father was extremely sick and hospitalized.  They were not sure he would make it and that was a difficult thing for me.  We had to decide if I should stay or come home.  We chose to stay together as a family unit.  

The very next morning, upon returning to Kansas, we headed to the hospital to have Grandpa meet his newest grandaughter.  I can recall walking down the hall, getting close to his room, and looking up. He was sitting up in his bed, arms extended to take this "little angel" from me.  It was the best feeling!

















Here is where she got to meet her big sisters!













This our family on the day PV was baptized~!















PV knows she is adopted. We began early on telling her about her birth story, and how God chose us to be her family.  We aren't sure what lies ahead and there are lots of things we do not know, but we put our faith in God to provide the answers and strength. Just like we did on our adoption journey.

As I wrote this post, many emotions stirred within me.  I looked through scrapbooks, journal, and photos to relive one of the best decisions we ever made. I enjoyed it and am so thankful I could write this post.  As I tell PV (often) "I'm so glad God chose me to be YOUR Mommy!"  She is a blessing from HIM.

Although you may not be interested in adopting a child  yourself.  You can still support those that choose to adopt and it will mean alot I promise. It can be as simple as you could be a sounding board, a much needed hug, an invitation out for fun, or a sitter for the foster children they have.

If you have comments or questions about adoption, please feel free to comment below or email me privately.  I would be happy to visit with you! I don't know it all, but I can at least relate alittle!

Thanks for stopping by!
Julie








9 comments:

  1. What a beautiful story to have! Thanks for sharing!

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  2. You have touched my heart once again! Just beautiful! Thank you! PV is a blessing to all of us. Love her with all of my heart!! xxoo

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    1. Tamara! :) Thank you ! Love you & she loves you too!

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  3. I have seen this one Julie, but had not had a chance to "read" it until now. What a beautiful story. PV is such a blessing to you and your family. I got to witness a wonderful family go through their adoption and am a full believer of the process. Though hard at times I know, still a miracle process.

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    1. Laurie,
      Thanks for commenting! It's a long post! :) Really long! But I had to get all that I felt in it! Adoption is a lovely thing and yes although hard at times, well worth it, just like giving birth in all that pain naturally, you totally forget about it when that baby is laid upon your chest! :)
      Have a great day!

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  4. Of course this is included in the favorites! I can't remember where I was when I found out, but I do remember it must have been a Wednesday because I think we were at church that night and I can still see you in the kitchen telling Brenda all about it. What a remarkable gift!

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  6. What a beautiful story! Amazing how God works out all the details!

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Thanks for stopping by!