This is the first night since the new school year started that I haven't brought home a huge pile of work. Mind you, this is because I arrived at school at 7:00 am and left at 5:30 pm, but I digress. Being home with no work to do made me think about my lovely, neglected blog. And so...here I am.
A few posts ago, a wonderful and kind reader of this blog wondered why we had chosen adoption in the first place. I thought it was a fair question, so here is my attempt at an answer.
Before I say anything about our decision, please know that I do not believe that any one way is the right way for all couples to build their family. Whether gay, lesbian, or straight I believe that there is a right decision for each couple. The reasons that worked for Carla and me, obviously don't work for everyone. But here is how we knew adoption was right for us.
When Carla and I came to the conclusion that we wanted to add a child to our family, we immediately discussed if either one of us had a desire to carry a child. Not that this is the most important part of our decision to adopt, but it was what had to be ruled out first. Neither Carla nor I had ever felt a need or urge to carry a child. Some women know their whole lives that it is something they want, but it was never a consideration for either of us. So right away, we were able to rule out insemination.
So then, we started to look for reasons as to why adoption might be right for us. Here is what we came up with:
First of all, adoption provides us this wonderful opportunity to both be equally involved in bringing a child into our family. We loved the idea that we were on equal footing and that we would be going through the same process together. Of course we each reacted, and will continue to react to our journey, in different ways. We know we will each forge a unique and special relationship with our child that will be our own. But we also knew that we loved being able to enter into motherhood, both filling the same role, both having an equal part in the building of our family.
The next thing that made adoption feel so right for us was the amount of love that is involved in the entire process. Obviously, no matter how a family brings a child into its life, there is going to be a whole lot of love. But for us, when we thought about adoption we saw this incredible amount of love on the side of the birthmother. What an amazing decision to put your own wants aside in order to give your biological child the hope of a better life. The fact that women do this, simply amazes me. I see it as an incredible act of love and we both feel so lucky to be a part of that. We feel so lucky to know that is how our child's life will being, with this incredible act of love. One of the things that drew us to open adoption was the possibility of a birth family being a part of our child's life. To have so many people loving and supporting one child just amazes me. Yes, there is heartbreak. Yes, the decision a birthmother makes is heart wrenching and something I will never fully be able to understand, but knowing that it comes from a place of such love is one of the big things that drew us towards adoption.
In addition to the love that goes into the decision to make an adoption plan or to adopt a child, Carla and I were both so taken with the idea of bringing a child into our family that might not have had the stability that we know we can provide. In a world that so often tells us that we are not as good as other families, we hold on to our truth and know that we have so much love to give. We are so strong and our relationship is so strong and to know that we can share this with a child who might not have had it otherwise is an incredible thing for us.
Another reason we ended up at adoption has to do with the things about insemination that I knew I couldn't handle. I know myself and I know that the medical, clinical process of insemination would get to me. It would have made me shut down. I know that I could have handled it if I needed to, but I also know that it is simply not something that would be my first choice. I hate all things medical. I hate that cold feeling of a doctor's office and I knew that if we pursued insemination there would be way more doctor's appointments that I was comfortable with. Instead of feeling like we were on a journey toward building a family, I would have lived the entire time dreading the next doctor's appointment. Maybe that's a reason that doesn't make a lot of sense to people, but it is how I felt and I was glad I knew myself well enough to know that before we began.
The last reason is one that I didn't realize before we began our adoption journey. But now that we find ourselves over two months into the wait, it is something that has given me peace during this journey. While Carla and I wait, we can continue to live our lives. As we sit on the wait list there are moments of incredible angst and anxiety, but there are also moments when we can completely forget that we are even waiting. We can go away for the weekend, we can take a trip to California, we can go camping, we can live our lives and not have to worry about anyone's ovulation cycle or waiting impatiently for two weeks to see if we are pregnant or not. I think it is amazing that there are women who can do that. I think it takes such strength. But it is just not something we wanted. It has been so nice that since we have finished our paperwork, we have been able to just keep living and enjoying our lives as a married couple. I am thankful for this time. Yes, it is incredibly stressful not knowing how long this time is going to last and some days feeling like the waiting just isn't ever going to end, but it is also wonderful to know that we have the freedom to just keep living.
So I guess that's it. I will never fully be able to put into words just how we knew that adoption was right for us. In a lot of ways, the decision was a feeling much more than it was just a list of reasons. Carla and I tend to know when things feel right and adoption just felt right. It just felt like it was what we were supposed to do. And so that it what we did.