Adoption of the Month December 2016

Life before Madeline was well life; eat, sleep, work, repeat; pretty normal and mundane really. We pretty much knew what to expect and when to expect it. That was all well and good, but something or should we say someone was missing from the equation.

Our journey to Madeline essentially started a little over eight years ago in 2008 when we had gone our first date. During our pre-engaged and then engaged relationship we talked about having kids, how many we wanted, boys versus girls etc. We got married and we started to get more serious about having children. After almost three years of “no two pink lines,” concern started to set in. Then came the heartbreak. William Shakespeare’s “Beware the Ides of March” couldn’t have been truer for us. In March 2014 we went to a fertility specialist to see what was up. She told us the chances of us conceiving naturally were less than 5%. Not accepting this news we sought out second opinion only to get similar news. For Lisa, not having children was not going to be acceptable. For Scott, he felt that if this was our fate then that is what it will be and although not happy with it, could accept it.

So then what? We could sink our savings and then some into modern science in the hopes of perhaps getting pregnant with our genetics/DNA. We could go the donor route. Both just weren’t going to work. We had heard stories of friends of friends sinking significant sums of money into this route only to get no closer to their goal. In all honesty this was probably the darkest part of our, to this point, six year relationship. There was resentment, angry, sadness, and confusion.

After much thought and prayer we came upon adoption. This obviously was not our first though/option, but upon reflection, perhaps it was meant for us all along. We started the actual adoption journey the summer of 2014 by exploring our adoption options. We ultimately found and worked with Spokane Consultants in Family Living.

In the beginning, before she was born, we had some concerns over how she/we would bond, but those concerns were erased the minute we saw her for the first time in the hospital. It was love at first sight! As of this writing, Maddie is a little over four months old. There have been no bonding issues at all. She knows us as Mommy and Daddy or at the very least the purveyors of food and love. Excuse the proud parent bias, but she is pretty darn perfect and cute as can be. Maddie is bright and bubbly with a little sass thrown in for good measure. It’s amazing how much she looks like us so far. It would be hard for someone to look at her and think that she wasn’t from our genetics. We sometimes wonder if we could have done any better ourselves.

Given the higher risk nature and background of the birth mother there were some worries over how she would progress. But, so far our worries are unsubstantiated as Maddie is progressing as she should both physically and cognitively. In some cases she seems to be ahead of the curve. We had a few medical worries in the beginning due to the birth mother’s background, but those are gone and she is just growing up quickly before our eyes. She is just a happy little baby, as she should be.

For some reason, we went into the adoption process thinking that it would be relatively straightforward. Little did we know that it would be as lengthy as it was. It did take a bit of an emotional toll on us that was up until the date we were told that a birth mother had chosen us. Up until that point we would check in with the agency and would second guess ourselves. However, after we were chosen relief set in and then it was a matter of waiting for Maddie to come into our world.

As this was an open adoption we met the birth mother. Our one and only meeting with her was wrought with nervousness on both sides of the table. What do we say, what do we do? But it went well and most importantly we used the opportunity to assure her that she made the right decision in choosing us to raise her then unborn child.

We had Madeline for one week shy of four months when we finally were able to finalize her adoption. Quite frankly the fact that she has been adopted is somewhat irrelevant at this point. Our life with her is what we would expect as if we had given birth to her ourselves. It is no longer normal and mundane. So, now instead of our lives being eat, sleep, work repeat we now throw in her schedule and our lives runs on her schedule of eat, sleep, poop, repeat. So, there are those typical sleepless nights and worrying about every little cough or sneeze or rash that seems to pop up out of nowhere and frustrations when she just won’t cooperate with you, but all of that is erased when she looks up at us and smiles, giggles and coos.

The only time we really have to point out the adoption is when someone at the doctor’s office who is unfamiliar with Maddie looks at her chart and comes across certain entries. Maddie is truly our daughter. At this point, the birth mother has chosen not to make contact with us, but we are more than happy to chat with her and introduce her to Maddie should she want that.

Mark and his staff I think had the easy part in the whole process. They got to be the icing on the cake for us to wrap up this whole process. Once we finally got to the finalization of the adoption, it couldn’t have gone smoother or easier for us. It was a really quick and relatively easy way to end our journey. Mark is wonderful to work with, although he’s done hundreds of adoption a year, you’re not just another number. Although our interactions were relatively brief, he made it a point to get to know us a little bit prior to the court hearing. We would like to thank Mark and his staff for taking us the final distance in this journey and getting across the finish line.

We most definitely will recommend Mark and his staff and should we be blessed to give Maddie a little brother or sister through this process, we will call upon Mark again to get us through to the end.