Wednesday, November 14, 2012

oUr AdOpTiOn StOrY: PaRt 1

Many have asked about our adoption story, so I thought I would break it into 2 parts. Here's (a long) Part 1 (pre-birth)...

October 5...Wait. Let me rewind to the weekend before: Saturday, September 29. It was the general RS broadcast and I had gone with my sister and mom. I had a rough previous week - having to do with adoption. Sometimes I have good weeks and sometimes I don't. I felt as though the RS broadcast was just for me. After the broadcast I was talking with our stake RS president (whom I adore). She has adopted before, so we have become close friends. She asked me how things were going and I said "not so great - rough week." She said, "That means something good is going to happen soon, right?" I sure hope so...

Fast forward to Friday, October 5. Nic calls me at work around 9:00. He tells me we have gotten our first e-mail from a birthmom: Kelbi. What?! Are you kidding me? I immediately start freaking out (at work). In this e-mail from Kelbi she tells us that she has been looking at our profile and has a few questions: further schooling, travel, mission, fish/hunt, baby gender, etc. We corresponded with Kelbi via e-mail a few times during the day. She just wanted to get to know us. By now we learned that she has a supportive boyfriend, Dylan. Kelbi lives north of Klamath Falls a few hours and is into sports and is on her high school equestrian team.

This weekend was also General Conference. I absolutely bawled through President Eyring's talk on the Sunday morning session. I felt as though his words were for me. He talked about his daughter who wasn't able to have children, so she decided to dedicate her life in service. Nic and I had previously taken on an additional calling as ward missionaries - this makes 2 callings for Nic and 3 for me. So imagine my surprise that when we accepted this calling, we started e-mailing with Kelbi.

After this day of e-mailing we didn't hear from her all week. Of course then I started analyzing our responses to her: did we say the right thing, should we have said this different or that. All that mattered was that we were open and honest. We assumed Kelbi was looking at other couples (mind you there are over 750 couples on LDSFS, but only about 15 from Oregon) and that she was also going through a lot. Patience was a hard thing to remember.

Saturday, October 13 brought Nic and I on a youth baptism temple trip. Before the session, the temple president came and spoke to the youth. I had a hard time focusing as my eyes were drawn to a painting of Christ when he came to the Americas. I had this overwhelming feeling of peace. I knew at that moment that truly God was in control and that no matter what happens with Kelbi will be for the best of the child and according to His will and plan. At that moment I could truly say and believe, "Thy will be done." A huge weight was lifted off my shoulders and the Atonement was in effect.

Sunday, October 14 Nic and I were watching TV. We both have our adoption e-mail account on our phones. When I get an e-mail my phone only vibrates - when Nic gets an e-mail his lets off some ringtone. As we were sitting watching TV our phones went off at the same time. Nic's ringtone was this crazy loud sound. We looked at each other and were like, "Wait. I'm pretty sure it's from our adoption account." We look at our phones and indeed it was an e-mail from Kelbi asking to meet us. Say wha'?! We arranged to meet with Kelbi and Dylan in Corvallis, where Dylan attends school, on Sunday, October 21. Imagine the immediate panic and nervousness that began to set in. My first thought was, "What am I going to wear?" How silly! Could this really be happening? Are we really going to be meeting with a birthmom? Yes, yes we are.

No matter what happens at this meeting, what a great experience we are having. I was at a girls trip the following days, so it was great to freak out with my sisters and mom. Thank goodness for family. At the girls trip I had these crazy dreams (surprising since I wasn't sleeping much) about our meeting with Kelbi. I had this absurd concern that she wasn't going to like me because my hair is too extreme. I know, crazy. My sister-in-law reminded me that if Kelbi doesn't choose us, it won't be because of my hair or that we said the wrong thing - it would be because this child wasn't meant to be in our family.

After church on Sunday, October 21 we headed home after church to furiously change and get on the road and head to Corvallis. We really had no idea what to expect. I know we were both anxious to meet her and put a face with a name. We didn't know what questions she would ask. [People continually asked us "what happens next?" throughout this whole process. Honestly, we don't know. We are in correspondence with our case manager and we had forwarded her all of the e-mails we had with Kelbi. She reassured us that we had said great things and were asking appropriate questions to her.]

We met with with Kelbi, Dylan and her parents (Marney and Travis) at a stake center in Corvallis. Just to see what everyone looked like was exciting and I couldn't wait to sit down and talk - I was so nervous. Right when we got there we needed to use the restroom. Of course I texted my mom from the bathroom letting her know that we had just barely met everyone. haha I'm such a dork, I'll admit it.

What a great meeting we had getting to know everyone. We talked for a few hours. We learned that Kelbi was looking at a few other couples. What's interesting is that her mom looked at all of the profiles on LDSFS and picked us out. Kelbi later looked at all of the couples and picked us out (without her mom knowing). Kelbi told her mom that there was a couple she liked. Lo and behold, it was us! Crazy that they both had chosen us. What an amazing support system Kelbi has with her friends and family. We told Kelbi that she didn't need to make a decision here and now, but that we would wait. We're not going anywhere. Kelbi and Dylan went in to a separate room to talk. They came back and asked us to be the adoptive couple. What?! I wanted to scream and cry with joy. Luckily, I didn't cry. We were all smiles. This must be a dream. Kelbi is having a boy and she's due November 15. She plans to deliver in Bend at St. Charles Medical Center.

Dylan, Kelbi, me and Nic

We discussed names with Kelbi and Dylan. They knew which names we had picked out (Myron, Nolan and Kade). They both liked Nolan and Kade. Kelbi and Dylan also liked the name Jay (they combined their middle names). I couldn't believe it because Jay is a family name on my side of the family. How cool is that.

What a crazy night. We walked in to this meeting with a dream of hoping to adopt and walked out future parents all because of this amazing birthmom. Imagine that drive home...Many phone calls and text messages to family. I just kept telling myself that this was a dream. After waiting for over 3 years, this moment was finally here. We were going to be parents thanks to this beautiful girl we had just met. We were flooded with so many emotions.

Monday, October 22 I met my mom and sister at the fabric store and began picking out fabric for crib bedding. Let the planning begin! November 15 isn't very far away. Thankfully we already had the big furniture purchased, now it's just the little things we need. Our profile went live April 27 and here we are 6 months later...we're having a baby! Being in adoption it seemed like it was taking forever, but now that it was actually here, time flew!

Our announcement to the world (thank you Pinterest)

Come to find out, we had the same case manager as Kelbi. Nic and I were switched back to our original case manager, Joseph. We began corresponding with our case manager and Kelbi regarding the openness of the adoption. Nic and I decided that we want a good relationship with Kelbi. We will be open with this little guy about adoption - we want him to know where he came from and how many people love him. It's amazing how many lives are affected because of this little boy. He has touched so many lives already.

To be continued...


Summer said...

Ah! I already knew all of this, and I still sat here and bawled reading it. I'm so grateful for Kelbi, Dylan, and their family and friends - what a blessing they have been in not only your lives, but in all of ours!

Jackie said...

I am so happy for you and Nic! You will be an amazing mom! Enjoy every second as I am sure you both will. Congrats.