When we first decided we were going to adopt, we had a picture in our heads of what it would look like. We would get a magical call one day from our social worker that a birth mom had selected us, was eight months pregnant, and would soon deliver a baby. We would rush around to get all the necessities, and before we could even process what had happened to us, we would be bringing home a baby. It seemed good to us. Then what really happened to us was way more than I could have ever imagined.
We waited almost six years to get that magical call from our social worker. I can remember it like it was yesterday. She called while I was at work, and I sat down in our waiting room chair and cried while she proceeded to tell me that a birth mother had contacted her and wanted to meet for dinner the following week. The speed of this meeting was just what we imagined, except for the fact that she was only 19 weeks pregnant. That is not what we expected at all, remember, we thought we would have only weeks to prepare for baby. Now we would have months to prepare for a baby! But that also meant we would have months to get to know this woman who was carrying the baby that was going to be ours.
After the initial shock of not getting what we expected (a short pregnancy), we realized there is great beauty in the unexpected. We first met our son’s birth mom at an Olive Garden with our social worker. There we spent hours getting to know her, even after our social worker left. Then we spent the next 20 weeks getting to know her even more. Our families went to the zoo together. Our families waited in the waiting room while our son was born. Our families celebrated our son’s dedication for our church together. Our families have spent birthdays and Christmases together. Our families have spent weekends camping together.
When we expected a short pregnancy, we also expected a short relationship with our child’s birth family. We may have also been shortsighted at the time and only wanted what was best for US, not our child. I was even a little leery about the whole open adoption thing at first. I was scared she would want to make decisions for him. I was scared she would want to be more involved. And if I am being completely honest with you, I was scared she would want to take him away from us. All those things I was scared of, I embrace now. I call, text, email our son’s birth mom on a regular basis, asking for her opinion on this, that, or the next thing. I have cried out in frustration to her when I’m at my wits end with our child’s behavior. I have cried tears of joy with her when he has excelled at something.
In fact, almost one year ago, I got the idea to start a blog about our open adoption journey. And much to my delight, she has joined forces with me on the blog, and we share in this parenting journey together. It wasn’t too long after I got to know her that I realized I didn’t just love the fact that she was going to give us a child. I loved her. And over the course of the last four years, she has become one of my dearest and closest friends. Not because she made me a mom, but because she has made me a better person in knowing her.
We didn’t just adopt our son, we adopted his whole birth family, and they adopted us.
If you are unexpectedly pregnant, please consider adoption. Visit Adoption.com to view adoption profiles from hopeful adoptive parents. Visit Adoption.com/unplanned-pregnancy to find guidance with your unplanned pregnancy.