It seems to be sort of the general flow of things that couples, after being together a while, begin to think about an expansion of their little empire. Obviously, the order of such things, or the thoughts about expansion, aren’t the same for everyone–plenty of folks rearrange the order-of-events, and plenty of folks skip certain options altogether (i.e. no kids). But for us, we’d been together for 9 years, married for 6 of those, and had had the discussion about wanting kids for quite some time. For the first, oh, 7-ish years, for both of us, the discussion didn’t seem to be based in reality–it seemed some far-off notion of something we’d eventually get to, and when we did make the decision, it’d just happen. Easy peasy.
Ah, the foolhardiness of youth. (Yes, roll your eyes. I *know* I’m just 31).
Anyway, I (e) was due to finish my second Master’s in a few months–this was spring of 2011–and I really began pushing for a doctor’s visit. We already knew about some fertility issues from *A*’s medical background. As *A* still had a summer and fall semester left until she graduated from her Master’s, there was considerable debate about timing. Finally we decided to just see a fertility specialist–our first appointment was in April 2011.
As this is not a blog about our infertility issues, but rather about our decision to adopt, it’s not our goal to spend a whole lot of time bogged down in what became a nearly 2 year struggle to maintain any shred of positivity we had left about what we once assumed to be a piece-of-cake process. Simply put, it wasn’t fun. And I guess it’s worth admitting that in the end, especially after a pretty significant couple of days in September, when what we thought was our best chance ended before it realy even began, the whole process threatened to take much more from us than money. September marked 18 months (not all contiguous) of fertility treatments. From reading other people’s stories, I know even though we didn’t get pregnant, we still managed to extricate ourselves with fewer bruises and wounds than many. I couldn’t imagine going through this for many more months, even years, like some folks do.
After about a year (by April 2012), we began thinking our first idea of how we could have kids might not work. It made a lot of sense to us to begin considering adoption. We got some books (book reviews forthcoming) and began doing some research on agencies. We quickly learned that adoption is not at all like what we thought it was. We mentally chalked up the reasons why it scared us to think about it. And we jumped back on the fertility rollercoaster for one more round (we had made a deal together that we’d undergo 6 cycles, and we’d done 5 (excluding two cancellations) and put adoption in the back of our minds for a few months (until late September 2012).
After September, we brought the books back out. We started some heavier-duty research. We started to think of adoption as a reality, and oddly, rather than the fear, insecurity, and uncertainly we’d felt just a few months before, we began to think we could deal with it–we began to get just a teeny bit optimistic. So we read some more. We researched agencies. I went in one direction (international adoption) and *A* went in another (domestic infant adoption). We compared notes. *A* won me over. In researching agencies for domestic infant adoption, we had a pretty specific set of criteria, which I might share later on, and we kept coming across this one agency. All over the place. It was weird. Or, as *A* likes to say, it was the universe pointing us in [what I hope is] the right direction. More on the agency in another post.
We took our very first *baby* step (completely intentional pun) on December 2nd, when we attended an information session with this agency. We learned a lot, especially that we have a lot more to learn. But we came away feeling more than ever that we are making the right decision, that adoption is an opportunity like no other, and that we wanted this to be the way we will finally begin to grow our little family.
So, Step 1: Make a decision–Adoption! Yay!–check.
Step 2:Pick an agency / type of adoption–check.
Step 3: Get moving! We’re hoping to get started with our agency in March 2013. That’s not far away!