I thought I would take a moment and tell you how we joined the adoption world. Please do remember that this is OUR story. Yours may be different. We all come into the adoption circle by different means. It is not a contest to see who deserves to be here the most. All of our stories are different and need to be told. There is often another family out there that went through the same thing you did. They need to hear our journeys.
After 7 years of marriage D and I decided it was time to bring a little person into our house. I did like nearly every woman and rushed off to the doctor to evaluate the state of my reproductive health. I proudly proclaimed to Dr. Indifferent, "We want to have a baby!" Dr. Indifferent tells me, "80% of couples get pregnant in the first 12 months, you are healthy, go for it." So we do.
We purposely did not tell any of our family and friends. Mainly because after 7 years most of them were starting to think that we never wanted children. We thought it might be fun to surprise them and say we were pregnant. Of course there were a few that figured it out and others that were pretty clueless.
After about 8 months of trying I really started to think that this just was not going to work. I knew something was wrong, but wasn't quite sure what it was. A year after we stared I headed back to Dr. Indifferent for the yearly exam. I told doc that we had been at it for a year with no success. No false alarms, nothing. I also told him of pain that I experienced during my cycle. I knew the pain is what was causing the issues. Dr. Indifferent told me that "90% of couples conceive in the first 18 months of trying. Your pain might be caused by endometriosis, but we would have to do surgery to determine that. Or it could be male factor. You should have your husband tested first." Woah, Woah, Woah!!! Did he just say surgery?! Yes, yes he did. The man wanted to cut me open just to look around. So Dr. Indifferent gave me some pamphlets on Endo (info I already knew), a specimen cup for D and sent me on my way.
When I got home I told D what Dr. Indifferent had said. I put the specimen cup in a drawer and we agreed that we would continue to try for another 6 months and then go from there.
The same month as the appointment with Dr. Indifferent I had my 10 year high school reunion. I didn't want to go, but my best friend flew all the way down from Alaska to attend, so I couldn't say no. She was about 4 months pregnant at the time and we had a discussion about getting pregnant. She said the phrase that many hate to hear, "Well if it doesn't work you can always adopt." This phrase doesn't make me cringe as much as others. She followed it up with, "I could see you doing that." The conversation ended right there since we were walking up to the check-in spot for the reunion. But for some reason that phrase stuck with me.
Two months later and still not pregnant I started thinking. I somehow knew in the back of my mind that this just was not going to work. I knew I had endo, but I kept hearing, "oh, so-and-so has endo and they got pregnant." That sentence grated on my brain like nails on a chalk board. I finally said screw it! I sat down at the computer and typed "International Adoption" into Google. It came up with the AWAA web site. I clicked on it and started reading. China - too young, Vietnam - closed, Ukraine - too long of an in-country stay, Russia... All of a sudden it was like someone shoved me in the back and said, "I gave you your child, I put him in Russia." Chills huh? Me too. From that moment on I never looked back. D was another story.
It took me about a while to convince D that this was what was in the cards for us. D is a thinker and analyzer. He read as much as he could find on the internet and slowly but surely he agreed. We decided that this was something that we would actually follow through on. Not another dream we would just think about.
You see, we did know a few things about ourselves. After that second meeting with Dr. Indifferent we had decided that we would not pursue ART (artificial reproductive therapy). At the time we thought that insurance wouldn't cover it and we thought it to be kind of selfish (these are our thoughts). We also decided that we would not even consider a domestic adoption. Being a domestic adoptee I have issues with the "new" system. I don't like the thought of the open adoptions and I didn't like the thought of having to sell yourself as parents. Actually I have many issues with domestic adoption, but that is a whole different story.
So one year ago tomorrow we officially began the process to adopt a child from Russia. Of course we now know what caused the conception issues, but that doesn't matter anymore. What matters is we are now part of this community.
I have met so many people during this journey. I am grateful for each and every one of them. I cry when I hear the stories of the pain they suffered during IVF or the loss of each baby. I am so happy when a new person enters our circle. Our stories are unique, but they are what brings us here. This big family.