Thursday, August 5, 2010

An Adoption Story - Brought to You by Hope Cottage

Share this adoption journey and a family made by Hope Cottage. 

Seven years ago Joe and I sat in separate steel chairs as the doctor leaned forward, resting his elbows on his desk, his words betrayed his smile..."I give you no more than a 5% chance of ever having children."  We were devastated.  The dream of our curly, red-headed, freckle-faced, green-eyed child smashed against the white walls.  It wasn't supposed to be this way...but it was.  After that hour passed, we looked at the pieces of our dream that were left.  Our hearts and our hopes had survived in the shards and we held onto them as we made a new path for our journey.

According to our doctor, adoption was our only option.  It was also the safest bet that we would end up with a child.  My search ended at Hope Cottage.  I loved the name.  A name is a bizarre reason to choose an adoption agency, I know, but the reality of our family was dependant on that idea, the idea of hope.  Joe and I combed through the website and absorbed all the information.  Soon we made the initial call.  That call was followed by other calls and orientations and informational sessions and huge binders full of materials.  We made a scrapbook of us to show to perspective birthparents and wrote letters telling about ourselves.  Once a month, we attended a Hope Cottage support group along with other waiting families.  We attended one, then two, then three and so on learning about the legal side of adoptions, birth-families' feelings, and adoptive families' feelings.  We loved learning how to be parents, but wondered along with all the others in the room when we would be.  We jumped when the phone rang hoping it was "the call".  We looked deep into our hearts during the times of helplessness and held strongly to hope that someday all of this would result in a child. 

Eleven months passed, and the phone rang and it was "the call".  We drove anxiously to Dallas wondering what we would say.  When we arrived we learned that Janine, the birthmother we were scheduled to meet, had gone into labor that morning.  We knew we had to meet this little baby boy.  Before we laid eyes on him though, we had to meet with his birthmother.  We called Hope Cottage and set up the second meeting with Janine. 

We met her at a Starbucks in Dallas close the the hospital after she was released.  Scariest first encounter I have ever experienced.  She was tall, blonde, loud, gregarious and just as scared as we were.  The conversation was easy and the answer then was simple.  It was a match.  We met our baby the following day.

The first time we saw him he was hooked up to tubes, but breathing on his own.  Joe held him.  I fed him.  He pooped and I changed him.  Janine was there and smiling.  She asked us what we were going to call him and we told her the name we had decided on during the drive down.  She even asked the nurses to start calling him that name.  We continued to visit daily for the next four weeks.  Joe would work a full day, drive to pick me up and we would drive to Dallas and spend time with our baby.  We held him and sang to him and read to him.  I brought Charlotte's Web and Stuart Little and Baby Island and we went through all of those.  Slowly but surely the tubes came off, and it was time for us to take our baby home.  Years of trying, 11 months of waiting, and now, instant baby.

It didn't matter that he didn't have my curls or green eyes or Joe's red hair and freckles, he had our hearts, our hopes and our dreams.  The shards had come together to make this family.  This is exactly how our life is supposed to be.  We are grateful for the heartache and the frustration and the wait.  We are grateful for Janine.  We are grateful for the feeling of hope. 

Hope Cottage is the oldest non-profit, non-sectarian adoption agency in Dallas.  Since 1918 Hope Cottage has been building and nurturing strong families through education, counseling and adoption services.  To learn more call 214.526.8721. 

1 comment:

  1. Such a beautiful story! I love this part, "...he had our hearts, our hopes and our dreams." I know that's what it will be like for us too. The other stuff doesn't matter. Thanks so much for sharing your story!