Posts tagged ‘open adoption’

Birth Family Christmas

photo 3(1)Tonight we kicked off the first of our family Christmas gatherings. But it was unlike any others we’ll experience this week. A local BBQ restaurant made a great ‘neutral’ meeting place as we traveled across town to get together with people we met a little less than three years ago. A group who we see only a few times each year, yet consider them family. Our birth family.

When we initially began our adoption process we requested a semi-open arrangement. We were cool with exchanging first names and maybe state or city, but we didn’t think we wanted a lot of contact with the birth family. Mae’s adoption came along unexpectedly and detoured our plans. The situation created an open adoption by default. And now looking back over the past three years, I couldn’t be more thankful that our plans and preferences changed.

photo 2(1)I don’t talk about our open adoption a lot, nor have I ever specifically blogged about it. But coming off of a night like tonight, I felt I needed to share about how wonderful this arrangement can be, and how fortunate we’ve been to have a birth family enter our lives. Sure, it’s nice to have a direct connection to Mae’s birth mom for reasons most would assume – health history and knowing her story, etc. But more than that, it’s amazing to have a birth mom, birth uncle and cousin and birth grandparents in the picture for indescribable reasons. There’s something about continuing and nurturing the bond of family even if it looks a little different from the ‘norm’ that is powerful. Redemptive. And all around blessed.

We sat and laughed tonight (mostly at my energetic three-year-old.) We told stories and caught up on life. We exchanged Christmas gifts. And more than anything, we all gleamed an unspoken appreciation for one another yet again. It happens every time we get together. And as the years go on and our relationships deepen, I know it will only continue to grow.

photo 1(1)I recognize that not everyone in an open adoption has this kind of relationship with their birth family members. There are a lot of other stories out there that aren’t so ideal. We’re lucky to have a birth family that’s kind, considerate and amazing with boundaries. They’ve truly made this an incredible experience.

Open adoption might not be for everyone, but I’m glad that it was the right path for me. Our birth mom is the strongest person I know and she continues to amaze me. Her love for [our] daughter has taught me more about selflessness than anything on this side of heaven ever will. Knowing the family my daughter was born into gives me even more appreciation and understanding of her. That in and of itself is an amazing gift – especially at Christmas.

December 23, 2013 at 11:30 pm Leave a comment

Miracle of Adoption | National Adoption Day

Last year on National Adoption Day I carefully crafted an announcement that our process had begun, and adoption plans were in our near future. I had no clue that a short two-and-a-half months later, we would be leaving a courtroom with precious Baby Mae in our arms. The Lord is good.

As I reflect back on our past 10 months as parents, on National Adoption Day, I am thankful for the miracle that’s termed “adoption.” And while I’ve heard that term a lot, not until I experienced it did I understand how adoption was a miracle.

Any baby is a miracle – the process of creating life is not chump change. And while I understood how giving birth and making life was a miracle, I searched to understand how adoption fell under that same category. In a world that functions heavily on bloodlines, keeping things “in the family” and passing on family names – adoption can be counter-cultural and unnatural. Especially when there’s multiple races involved. However, over the past many months, I’ve experienced the miracle of loving a child as if she were my own blood. I have the opportunity to be a parent; an opportunity that I would not have gotten otherwise. And maybe more than anything, I’ve received a spirit of adoption that comes only from the Lord. I love her with a supernatural love that’s been gifted to me; the same love God has for each of us. And that, I feel, is the absolute miracle and blessing of adoption.

In a season full of thankfulness, I am so thankful that God’s plans are not my plans, and His ways look radically different from mine. Last year at this time I thought we might have a baby in our house right now, but one that was itty bitty and from a different state. Never in my wildest dreams did I think we’d have a 14-month old daughter who was born in our zip code, and a very blessed open adoption situation. We are indeed blessed, and so grateful for the Miracle of Adoption. Oh the Lord is good to me…. I mean our party of three.

November 19, 2011 at 7:36 am 3 comments

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