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Welcome! We are Rogie, Toni, Jameson and Jackson. We are currently in the process of growing our family through adoption. Our purpose for this site is to keep friends and family updated on our adventure. Our hope is to provide photos, fun quotes, resources, and the current status of our journey.

We hope that this website can also be a resource to those thinking about pursuing adoption. We hope that our journey can inspire others to be open to the possibility of adoption.

We crave your support — whether through prayer, support, or donations. Thank you.

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Baby Time

Well Regina was induced at 7 am this morning. Labor is going slow but progressing in a positive direction. Our prayer is that she does not have a c-section for many reasons. I am in the room with her now but as she starts to have more active labor and then I will go home or go hang out in the waiting room. If she has a normal delivery she will be in the hospital with baby for 24 hours and then baby will come home with us. If she has a c-section it complicates that time line a little. 

Rogie and I both are doing well and very excited for baby. Birth mom and dad seem to be doing very well emotionally. Please keep praying for peace for all. 

I will keep you all updated and things progress.

Toni

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One day at a time

Today is October 26th and yes, we are still waiting for baby to be born.

Monday the 21st, was the 40 week doctor’s appointment and checkup. Doctor said she looked great and thought she would have the baby in the next few days maximum. That was Monday. Today is Saturday.  She ordered an ultrasound for the next day (Tuesday) to make sure baby was doing ok. For me this was the first ultrasound that I got to attend for baby girl. I was super excited! The ultrasound was amazing. They had a regular ultrasound and a 3D ultrasound. I was blown away because baby was so big and had so much fluid around her that it made for fantastic pictures. I could see her eyes, her mouth, her ears and even her hair! She has hair on her head! I loved every second of it and it was so great I felt like I had already met her in an odd way. She felt so real at the moment.

Since the ultrasound on Tuesday we have just been waiting and waiting and waiting… I feel like this week has been 2 or more weeks honestly. To help Regina go into labor we have tried a lot of things! So if you are reading this and pregnant, may some day be pregnant, or just plain bored here are some of the ridiculous and desperate things birth mom has been doing to go into labor. Tip: None of these have worked. 

  • Drinking black Cohosh tea (it’s a diuretic)
  • Breast pumping 
  • Intercourse
  • Walking and walking and walking everyday lots and lots of miles
  • Full term pregnant woman running fast for 20 minutes
  • Acupuncture 
  • Essential Oils
  • Spicy Food
  • Bouncing on Yoga Ball
  • Squats
  • Fishing
  • Telling baby it’s ok to come out now
  • Some new tea that my friend gave me (it’s also a diuretic) 
  • Massage
  • Drinking Gallons of water
  • Relaxation music with oils and a bath
  • Jumping Jacks

Again, don’t try these at home friends, they don’t work. 

In other news:

This week has been by far the hardest yet. I am not sleeping well at night because I have dreams that my phone is ringing so I jump up and grab my phone and… nothing. I have had dreams that the baby is the size of a toddler and has teeth and she terrifies me. Basically I feel like up to this week I have held it together well. I guess my emotional due date was October 20th as well and now I am overdue and a little agitated and anxious.

Birth mom is having an especially rough week with the adoption, pregnancy and lots of other life messes. She had planned on being in a grieving and mourning stage at this point and it hasn’t happened yet. She told me that it was like knowing you were going to get hit by a car and just sitting there waiting for it to happen. At some point you just want the car to hit you so you can get it over with and start healing. That is where she is at. She is miserable and wants to start the healing process so she can move on. It’s unbelievably painful to hear her say that and watch her prepare to get “hit by a car”. I am watching her be so scared and seem so empty that I want to rescue her and take away her pain. I have so much hope for her future and I can’t wait to watch her change her life in a positive way.

Tomorrow she will officially be 41 weeks and we see her doctor on Monday morning. At the appointment Monday they will schedule her induction but it may not be until later in the week. Monday is my birthday WOO HOO! Her having the baby that day would be awesome but it would have to happen naturally as they would not induce the same day.

Today we pray, we hope and have faith.  Now come on sweet baby girl! Come home! We say we are patient but we really aren’t anymore!

That’s it for now! I hope our next post brings something with more exciting news.~Toni

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Due date, courage and vulnerability

Happy October 20th!

Well today is officially baby due date. These last 3 weeks or so have seemed to drag on. But we’ve made it. So far it doesn’t seem like we have much progression as far delivery goes. Birth mom has been walking quite a bit and bouncing on a yoga ball as much as she can. Early last week she had some painful contractions in the middle of the night that were rough but nothing after that. 

Right now the nursery is all setup! it’s awesome. We are working on some finishing touches and don’t want to share pics until it’s complete. I have washed all the baby clothes and cloth diapers and her dresser and closet are all organized and ready. We packed a diaper bag and gave it to birth mom and got the car seat installed in their car for the ride to our house. If you didn’t read the previous post or don’t remember, birth mom and dad will be driving baby girl from the hospital to our house after being released. The reason for this is our hospital has a policy where baby has to leave with birth mom at the same time and be carried out by birth mom. So the only opportunity we would have to make the “exchange” would be in the hospital parking lot, which we all agreed isn’t peaceful or comforting to anyone. So they will be driving her to our house and that way we can all take our time and handle our emotions in private.

We have been spending lots of quality time together, our family and her and her family. I love her family, we just connect so well and they are so loving and sweet. On Monday last week Regina and I went to her OB/GYN appointment for her 39 week check up. She was looking healthy and checked up fantastic. They did “check her” for any baby progression and there wasn’t any at that point. On Wednesday of this last week we were invited to their house for a big family dinner and birth grandma or as we will call her from now on “Grandma Heidi”, cooked up a huge family dinner feast. It was fantastic. We sat at a long table and shared hunting stories, family traditions and just laughed and enjoyed time together. Regina has 2 younger brothers that are still in school and they were so wonderful with our boys. They played Lego’s, wrestled, had pillow fights etc. They look forward to being uncles to this baby as well as our boys.  It was a really special time for me but I think for all as well. On Friday night, Regina and I along with a couple of my friends went and got pedicures. I told her it was nice to have your toes looking cute for delivery. Nothing else about delivery is pretty so having your toe nails painted at least helps that. 

Throughout this journey I have been “all in”.  I have let all my feelings, emotions, thoughts, be raw and vulnerable. I have been reading a lot about vulnerability in a book called “Daring Greatly”. It has taught me a lot and was the perfect read to help me through this time. It has taught me everything opposite of what everyone else is telling me to do. I heard a lot of be careful, guard your heart, you are entering dangerous territory, you could get your heart broken, and keep her at an arm’s length. Basically everyone told me to put up walls to protect myself.

Here is a fantastic quote from Theodore Roosevelt in 1910.

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. 

The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, 

because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; 

who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly…”

Rather than sitting on the sidelines and hurling judgement and advice, we must dare to show up and let ourselves be seen.

 ”What’s worth doing even if I fail?” and “Give me the courage to show up and let myself be seen.” are some of my favorite quotes and thoughts I have read about vulnerability.

If I think about this adoption experience and the what if’s I think about “what if she changes her mind”, “what if it gets too messy or scary”, “what if she runs away with baby”, “what if something goes wrong with baby and delivery”, “what if baby doesn’t attach to me or has separation problems”, what if what if what if.  But even going through worst case scenarios I can still answer the question “Is adoption worth doing even if I fail?” with a strong “Yes!”. I know this is where I am supposed to be. I know that regardless of outcome, I have grown to be a more vulnerable, open and loving person. 

These next few days and weeks I know will be the hardest yet. Regina is really struggling emotionally as I would expect. I feel like as things gets closer and closer we are getting more emotional, more scared and I am sleeping less. But I know that in the end it will be worth every second.

Thanks for all your kind emails and comments. We are in the final stretch! I will probably be posting almost daily through this next week or so.

Have a great Sunday and a great week.

Toni 

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Thank you!

Happy day to you all!

For those of you who have given to our adoption fund we want to again say Thank You. Every dime that has been donated to us through this blog has gone directly to our adoption agency to pay off our balance. We don’t even take transaction fees out of your donation, we pay those on our own. So if you give $5 we pay $5 to our agency. FYI, our agency is a non-profit agency that isn’t making bank on finding homes for children (gross right? it happens everyday). 

Today I updated our totals on the blog as to exactly where we are with the adoption fund so for those of you that have invested in this can know where and how your money has been spent. Our total adoption fees are $12,000. You all in total have donated $2750 and we have paid $4250 totaling $7000 paid so far to the agency. That leaves a balance of $5000 that we are hoping to chip away as fast as possible before our adoption is finalized.

Thanks again for those who have supported us financially, given us baby goods, baby TOMS :), prayers and loving support. We are constantly blown away by the love of others.

As of tomorrow we are on the 10 day count down to baby due date! We are having a family dinner with the birth mom’s entire family next week and look forward to making wonderful connections with them. Regina’s doctors appointment on Monday went fantastic and she is feeling good and taking great care of herself. I am so thankful for her, she has taught me a lot about love.

These next few days and weeks will be the hardest for all involved so we thank you for your continued support.

Cheers!

Rogie and Toni

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13 days and counting!

Howdy folks! It’s October!

We are still cruising a long the baby girl adoption train! choo-choo! Regina turned 38 weeks on Sunday and as of today has 13 days until due date! So baby girl could be arriving at anytime. I have been attending weekly doctors appointments with Regina and she is feeling really good.

We met with our Social Worker 3 weeks ago to discuss a hospital plan and how we will be involved in that process. Regina would like to do a lot of the laboring on her own at home, so she intends to call me when she first starts laboring so we can make proper arrangements for the boys. When she is ready to head to the hospital she will call and we will head up. Once the baby is born and mama and baby are healthy and happy we will head home. At that point we wait… and wait.

Once mama and baby are released from hospital, Regina and Cliff will drive baby girl to our house. So Regina and Cliff will have at least 24 hours with her and possibly more if they need to stay in the hospital longer for some reason. Regina will feed the baby that first day or so to give baby girl the best possible nutrition she can. From there baby will be with us! I have worked hard to induce lactation on my end and look forward to seeing that being successful for our baby.

After that, nothing is official until baby girl is 3 days old and Regina and Cliff can officially relinquish their parental rights. How that works is our Social Worker will go to their house with the documents for them to sign. We will not be a part of that process, but we will be notified as soon as they are signed. Beware of a tad bit of stress during this period! Yikes! I may need some oxygen :)

In the meantime we have been baby prepping! We finished the boys bedroom and it looks fantastic. We are now working on baby room. This weekend we painted the nursery, cut and painted trim and chair rail and are now trying a Pinterest version of wainscoting. I really like the fun colors we are doing and I can’t wait to show you the finished product. 

In my last post I mentioned that birth mom was really struggling. She was sad, mad, jealous and many other emotions. Lately she has taken a complete turn around. Not to say that she still doesn’t have those emotions but she is doing much better. She is starting to see the big picture and the reality of things and I think has worked out a lot of her struggles. She is starting to be interested in my baby prepping and things that we are planning for the future. For awhile she couldn’t even talk to me about anything to do with me having baby or anything post delivery. Now it’s fun to look at clothes together and talk about dreams and exciting baby things to come. We continue to spend more and more time together and have gotten really close. I think we both are aware that the hardest part is still to come though, and I think us being closer and being positive about the end result will help ease the hardest times. 

So today we are going to her 38 week doctors appointment and then I will continue to work on wainscoting and painting today. Hopefully in the next 2 days I should be able to start putting together crib and nursery furniture! 

And now for my major sappy moment… I heard a song the other day on the radio and it completely crushed me, but in a good way. It’s a song from quite a few years back and frankly annoyed me after it was over played all those years ago. Well this time when I heard it, it floored me. I heard this song in a whole new way. When I heard the words to this song I knew that if birth mom could write a song this is what it would say. BEWARE FOR MY TOTAL SAPPY CHEESE BALL MOMENT! 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RV-Z1YwaOiw

Stay tuned as I will be updating more often as we are getting super close to due date! 

Thanks to those who read this, support us and pray for us.

Toniimage

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An update along the road

It’s been 3 weeks since my last post when I broke the news about our pending adoption of a baby girl! I have had a lot of people ask how it was going and ask a lot of questions in the meantime. I thought I would give you all some updates. 

Everything is still going strong and moving forward with the adoption. Birth mom ( can we call them something other than “birth mom and birth dad”? I want them to have a name for the remainder of our public blogging, lets call her Regina and him Cliff ). Regina is almost 34 weeks along and doing great. We have gotten together with her and the Cliff a couple of times with all 4 of us and I have spent quite a bit of 1 on 1 time with Regina.  I have gotten to go to 1 doctors appointment with her where I got to feel her baby belly, hear the heartbeat and all that fun OB/GYN check up stuff. 

We are in the process of joining the boys’ bedrooms and creating an awesome bedroom for them. Rogie and his dad built suspended bunk beds that are right up next to the ceiling so they have a ton of floor space for legos, toys, action figures, messes and who knows what else. It’s coming a long great and it’s been really fun doing this as a family. We are almost done with that project and then will move onto painting and decorating the nursery! I will post pictures of the boys room really soon.

I have slowly been going to yard sales and doing some shopping for girls clothes. We have 2 boys right now so I have nothing for girls! It’s been so fun and like a whole new world for me, it’s awesome. I am so thankful for a few friends of mine who have generously passed down some wonderful and amazing baby clothes. 

Now for the emotional stuff. I have been experiencing emotions that I did not expect to feel. I have gotten to know Regina well, I have gotten to know her heart and understand why she is making this adoption plan. What I have learned is that she doesn’t want to do this at all, but she loves her daughter so much that she wants a better life for her than she can provide. She has thought about all her options of how she can make this work, and she CAN make it work but she doesn’t feel like it’s the best she can give her daughter. So sacrificial. So selfless. Experiencing her sadness and loss along side of her has made this a bitter sweet adventure. But I am thankful even for the bitter parts. Being a part of this journey with her has changed me and made me see that putting your child or others before yourself really does exist in the world. 

When we are together I feel guilty. I feel guilty that I can give her daughter a life she cannot. I can physically feel her pain even when she says nothing. Although as hard as it’s been so far and knowing it’s only going to get harder has allowed me to love her and respect her really quickly. She gave me all the baby stuff she had, she continues to buy things for baby girl. I told her that wasn’t necessary and she said ” I am not buying these for you, I am buying things for her, I want to”. 

So right now my emotions are on a total roller coaster. Some days I feel great and excited and happy. Other days I wanna cry for her and her pain and it’s hard for me to be excited when I know the thing that is bringing me so much joy is the most painful thing in the world for her. 

We have 6 weeks to go, and I am so excited to hold my baby girl. I would still appreciate your prayers. Pray for our peace, for her peace and pray that God’s will be done with this baby girl. 

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The Adventure Continues

This is the continuing story from our previous post. If you haven’t read the previous part of the story that is recommended. (spoiler alert!)

Now the Adventure continues: 

So I made the call to our adoption agency to tell them my current thoughts and concerns about adoption. My social worker was not available in her office at the moment. The only person in the office was the program director. I had never spoken with her before but felt now was the time to talk to someone, so I asked to speak with her. 

Program Director gets on the phone and said she had just tried to contact me. I was confused because I hadn’t heard from the agency in a long time and I specifically have never spoken with this woman so I was shocked that she had just tried to contact me. She went on to tell me that just then we had been chosen by a couple to be the adoptive parents to their baby. 

It honestly took my breath away. I was so confused. To the point where I was kind of having a 3 way conversation with her, God and myself. I said      ”God what are you doing right now? I thought I had this figured out. This is not what I expected at all” I said this out loud. She started kind of laughing. I started crying, saying I don’t know what to do. I kind of babbled and cried for a few minutes as she kindly listened to me.

I finally asked her to tell me a little about the situation. To be frank and I know it sounds awful but I was hoping it didn’t sound exciting to me at all. I thought that that would make this decision so much easier. So I asked, “what do you know?” She said, ” Baby is due Oct 20th. And… It’s a girl!!!” Now for those of you that know me, know that I came into adoption wanting a girl and a girl only. However I soon learned that in this adoption process you don’t get to choose gender. So I have always hoped and prayed for a baby girl. As soon as she said that my heart kind of skipped a beat and I said I needed to call my husband ( I was actually at the store at the time).  She said “ok take all the time you need.” 

I called Rogie, I told him everything. He of course was just as blown away as I was. He had told me about his recent prayers and as always God was surprising him. He was most concerned about me. Am I making an emotional decision or was this what I really wanted? I told him I would head home to pray and talk with him before we called her back. So I gather my 2 boys, kinda of in a daze not really paying attention to what’s going on around me, apparently the boys had thrown some expensive legos into the cart of which I didn’t realized until we were home and they were opened and playing with them. I went to the checkout counter, was crying and kind of fumbling around in my purse trying to pay and control myself and the children. Then I head home.

I get home and we prayed and talked and cried and was confused for a bit. But at the end of that time together we felt a peace and a joy about going forward. We called the program director back and told her we wanted to move forward. 

Fast forward 5 days and we were called at 11am saying that the birth parents wanted to meet us at 1pm that day. I was so dang excited but kinda wanted to throw up as well. I had two hours to think about what to say, what to ask, how to be. I know that the right answer here is “just be yourself”. But it’s hard to just “be yourself” when you are so nervous and don’t know what to say or not to say. 

So 1pm rolls around and with my palms sweaty, dry mouth, hair and makeup looking cute, we meet. We meet both birth mom and dad. They are a early 20”s couple, they are super nice, and we connected right away. We all recognized that we were all super nervous. We started chatting about how we all came to this decision and how we got to that moment. She started talking about how much she loved her little girl and how she just wants to best for her and right now she can’t give her the best. She started crying and saying that she thinks we can provide for her in ways that they cannot. She starts really crying at this moment and I feel the biggest lump in my throat I have ever had. How can something so exciting and wonderful for us be the hardest thing this couple has ever or may ever do in their lives? Their obvious pain during my joy was heart wrenching. I look over and see birth dad crying, now I am not a big crier but when I see a rough farmer man crying I was a freakin sobbing mess. It got to the point where Rogie starts questioning and asking if this is what she really wants to do. She was so broken and so sad, Rogie was almost trying to talk her out of this decision. But she said “no” she has already made this decision and she knows that this is what is best for this baby girl. 

After all the tears and ups and downs we started talking about our families and where we come from. We talked some logistics as far as baby naming, how open the adoption will be, the birthing process, breastfeeding and must more factual, less emotional talk.  

Fast forward about 2 1/2 hours we finally leave and then stand out in the parking lot for another 1/2 hour chatting and swapping hunting stories and thoughts about the future. At the end of it all could not have gone better. Both couples exchanges phone numbers, info, and both agreed we wanted to move forward to the next step. They said they knew that when they picked us it was the right decision but then after meeting us and spending this time together they were confirmed in that decision and they had so much peace about it. 

A couple of ironic tidbits of info: When I checked out at the store in my fumbling mess after finding out the news, SHE was the checker. Boom.  

Also if I had gotten ahold of my social worker when I called, she did not know that we had been chosen just then. She works in a different office. If she had answered and possible taken our withdraw from the program this story might be very different. The only person that knew we were chosen at that point was the program director. Double Boom.

So now what? We wait. We pray. We plan. We save. I get to go to her doctors appointments with her, and we will meet again in 3 weeks to do a planning meeting to discuss the birth, the hospital time and more about the open adoption for the future. They can change their mind at anytime, she cannot sign papers and make any permanent decisions until baby is 3 days old. So for now we trust God and trust that she will make the best decision for this baby girl whatever that may be. 

But as of now, we are expecting a baby girl around October 20th! 

We have had a ton of questions from people about the process and open adoption. I would love to answer any questions you have. Part of the reason we created this blog is to keep our friends, family and others updated on our adventure but also to inform people about adoption and specifically open adoption. So please submit your questions and also please share with your friends! 

Thanks for your donations, your prayers and your comments are appreciated. 

~Toni

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Summer wait…

Hello! Sorry I haven’t updated all summer. I have been busy enjoying the summer with our 2 wild and crazy boys!

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This summer I have spent a lot of time taking the boys swimming and to the children’s museum. Both boys were also in a friends wedding this summer. They were quite the handsome pair.

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This summer has been a lot of fun and I enjoy every minute I get to be with my boys (well not every minute), but during the summer I have begun to question myself and where I am at in my life. I have one son in elementary school and one in pre-k. It’s been 2 years since we initially started our adoption journey and I thought what if it’s 5 more years? Maybe I should start thinking about what the future looks like without a baby? What if I was to go back to school or start a career? But what if I choose those options and 2 months in we get “the call”. I felt very lost and confused and wasn’t sure what to do. 

I felt like I had no control over my future and that is not my personality at all. I am a bit of a control freak. I have to drive the car, I want to steer the ship,  I plan every step of our vacations, etc etc. Not knowing at all what my future looked like was starting to make me lose sleep and lose faith in the whole adoption process. 

So I started to think that it would be best for me to take control over my future on my own. I thought if I put myself in the drivers seat and made some extreme decisions I could start carving out the path of my own future instead of waiting around for “a call”. So I stopped thinking about a baby or adoption because it was too confusing for me. So I started looking into jobs, looking into college, looking into volunteer work, something that I could grab hold of and control things myself. 

I spent some time in prayer, but instead of talking to God about his will or his timing I talked to him about what I thought was best and what seemed most comfortable to me. I started having these conversations as well with Rogie. He was very confused by my thoughts and I really didn’t know how to even convey what I was doing or thinking. I didn’t know how to say that I wanted to be in control. 

This last Thursday, I wanted to get it off my chest, I wanted to be done. I had so much uncertainty and so much unrest I thought that if I threw in the towel I could at least move on to the next chapter of our lives. I told Rogie I was going to call the agency and let them know my thoughts. Rogie started praying, asking God to give him peace in my decision or perform a miracle we could not explain or understand and to make our paths straight. So I made the call…

I would love to tell you the rest of the story but for right now I cannot. An odd end to a story right? There is a lot more to this story but I need a couple days before I can share. What I can tell you is that God did perform a miracle that we could not explain or understand. He did make our paths straight. So God taught me something in the last few days, He is in control, I am not. I can’t wait to tell you how I learned this.

I’m excited to tell you all the rest of the story. I hate to leave you hanging but hopefully in the next couple of days I can tell you more. In the meantime thanks for your prayers and thanks for taking the time and reading about our adventure. 

~Toni

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It’s no secret that we love Disney and Pixar and that our adoption blog is themed after Pixar’s UP. Here is an illustration Rogie himself did in his own style as inspiration for our upcoming adventure. 
"Adventure is out There!" is a giclee print on 11"×17" Smooth, Fine Art, Moab Entrada Rag Natural 290 gsm paper. In other words, a very thick, quality and vibrant poster. All prints will be signed and numbered by Rogie.
This is a limited edition 30 prints. If you want adventure on your walls, you can help fund our adoption by purchasing one at Rogie’s Fine Goods Market.

It’s no secret that we love Disney and Pixar and that our adoption blog is themed after Pixar’s UP. Here is an illustration Rogie himself did in his own style as inspiration for our upcoming adventure. 

"Adventure is out There!" is a giclee print on 11"×17" Smooth, Fine Art, Moab Entrada Rag Natural 290 gsm paper. In other words, a very thick, quality and vibrant poster. All prints will be signed and numbered by Rogie.

This is a limited edition 30 prints. If you want adventure on your walls, you can help fund our adoption by purchasing one at Rogie’s Fine Goods Market.

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Another great read

Found a great blog article today that really stood out to me. Here is a small clip of the article. I just grabbed the last half that specifically talks about relationship with birth family. I felt like the experience this family went through in a very small way prepared me for the journey. -Toni

Clip from the site “Storing Up Our Treasures” picking up midway through an adoption story :

Our time in the hospital with Xander and the birth family were some of the richest days of our lives. We experienced the full gamut of emotions: excitement, fear, love, heartache, joy, peace, grief, worry, confusion, hope, hopelessness…it was all there, and all real.  And in it all we saw the hand of God.

We expected several things of the time we would spend in the hospital while Xander was waiting to come home – getting to hold him and feed him, adoption paperwork, nurses and social workers…those type of things.

But there were two things we couldn’t have anticipated:

  1. Getting to spend countless precious hours with Xander’s birth family and falling in love with them
  2. Experiencing the grief of the birth family.

We simply were not prepared for #2 – I don’t think one can prepare for it. For months I’ had this “pie in the sky” screenplay in my head of how we would bundle our new babe into his car seat and walk out of the hospital radiating joy. Ready to stop at every friend’s house on the way home.

But instead leaving the hospital with our sweet boy was the hardest thing I have ever done…and it doesn’t even compare to the level of “hard” the birth family faced in giving him to us. It was just plain gut wrenching.

Xander’s birth family, they love him, they love him fiercely. Giving a baby, a son, a grandson, a nephew up for adoption wasn’t something they had dreamed of or hoped for.  It wasn’t something they planned or even wanted to do. They did it because life has them in a place where adoption was the best option for Xander.

The sacrifice they made was one of love. It was heroic. My God, it was hard – I saw grief on their faces that day that overwhelmed me. It got the best of me.  At one point, while they handed Xander to Brett, I walked away. I couldn’t bear their grief. Or make any sense out of their sorrow being our joy.

The first 4 nights of having Xander home I dreamt I was sitting at my kitchen table, Bible open, crying and pouring over and over these two verses:

He (Jesus) withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, 42“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”  Luke: 22:41 – 42  

I’m sure our birth families prayers and thoughts we extremely similar to Jesus prayer and grief in this passage – Take this cup God – please, if there is any way for this to be good without us giving up this child, make it happen – but if this is best we will do it.   

While no sacrifice is equal to Jesus’ death on the cross – but to give a child that you love away for others to raise, and call mom and dad, so that he or she may have the life you aren’t able to provide, resonates with similarities that I cannot not ignore.   

Adoption is beautiful. It is a miracle. It is the heart of the Lord. It comes with great joy and anticipation. But it also comes with sorrow and grief.  Let us not forget the birth families that make such a sacrifice as this. The birth families matter. They matter as much as the child. It is our prayer that in time joy would come from their sorrow and that birth families would experience beauty from ashes by the goodness of the Lord.

Through all of this I will celebrate this Easter with a greater understanding and humility for the sacrifice God made when he had his own son die so that I could have hope and life, and know love.

Friends, don’t forget the cross this Easter, but look to the resurrection for the promise of hope.

Please feel free to use the comment buttons and share your thoughts. Happy Easter to all! -Toni

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