Monday, January 20, 2014

The Untold Story of Open Adoption

Tomorrow we are celebrating TWO years together as a family of seven...otherwise known as "gotcha day" and for us, the day that three incredible kids came into our lives and made us the family that we are today. I seriously can't believe that it has been that long already. Although when I look at our very first family picture taken and our most recent one it is clear that time really does fly by (and apparently my hair style does too.) ;-)


When it comes to talking about adoption the only story that I can tell is ours. I plan on continuing to tell our story as it continues to unfold and I'm also really looking forward to sharing other family's perspective & stories throughout this coming year. I know some pretty incredible people that have done some pretty amazing things and I can't wait to share those stories of hope with you.

Last year I wrote a pretty candid summary on how our first year together went. I shared it in hopes that it would encourage others who might be considering adoption. Anyone will tell you that adoption isn't easy but then again...every mom that I've ever known has told me that being a mom isn't easy. I still stand behind my statement from last year that even though it was the hardest year of my life it was definitely the best. Only now I have to tweak that statement a little because...

The past two years have been HANDS DOWN...


I know that adoption can seem scary at times...maybe it is the unknowns that scare us. 

Our situation is a somewhat open adoption not because the courts determined that but because we wanted our kids to have a connection with the people who have loved them from the very start.

There have been little steps along the way this past year where our kids have gotten to reconnect with some of their biological family. It has been a gradual and slow process. Honestly, I didn't know what to expect when it came to having the kids reconnect with their biological family. However, this year has been so good...this past November the kids got to spend time with their mom, grandma, great-grandma, aunt and cousins.

It is absolutely true that SO many people love them dearly!

There is another side to that story though...

the one that affects you as a mother having to explain to your young biological children what is going on. We've chosen to leave our two small children in the care of friends during these connections and hope that this coming year we can bring all of our families together.

It has been a struggle to know what to say, what words to use, what not to say when communicating to our little ones.

Then this dress came...


It is a gift from our oldest daughter's biological aunt.

We have never met.

We have never talked on the phone.

We have never communicated directly.

I guess you could say, I wasn't ready yet.

I was feeling a little overwhelmed with the relationships that I already mentioned on top of still trying to do things like check homework, track down mittens that keep going missing and mentally prepare myself for having all of the kids home over Christmas break...you know, overwhelmed with just being a mom.

Our three oldest children's biological aunt lives in another state. She had sent a Christmas package for the kids through a mutual friend...just like she had last year too. Last year when the gifts came we had our younger two kids hangout with some friends while our three older kids opened the gifts from their aunt. They loved the presents...school supplies, new socks, clothes that fit perfectly and even a new winter jacket. (Our mutual friend had passed along the kids sizes.) I knew that the kids just loved every single thing but it was hard as a mom to think of our two little ones who didn't have anything to open. 

I knew that it was just one of those things that came with the journey. 

Then the package arrived from their aunt just like last year. 

However, this year there were five bags. One labeled with each of our five kids' names. I can't describe to you fully what that night was like as I watched the joy on all of my kids' faces. They opened up the bags of school supplies, new socks and clothes that fit perfectly.

There were definitely tears in my eyes.

There was also a basket with my name on it. It was full of bath supplies and lotion with a note that said, "Something special for you, after a long day after the kids are tucked into bed."

As I watched my daughter twirl in her beautiful dress all I could think of was...

The unknowns of adoption can be scary but they can also be absolutely beautiful.

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15 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. Just beautiful and hopeful. Thank you for sharing your story. We are in the midst of the unknowns of waiting and it is such a blessing to hear from moms who are on the "other side" of the wait.

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    1. Krista,

      The waiting period can be so hard...be encouraged. It is such an important part in the whole journey. Blessings to you and your family!

      ~Sarah

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  3. Sarah, this is beautiful. I am happy for you and your children. It is so nice to see all of them treated equally and loved.

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  4. LOVE THIS STORY!!! God Bless your family!
    Yours In Christ,
    Jeanine

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  5. Oh gosh that was I beautiful story, I'm holding back tears.
    I've only just come across your blog , about doing the laundry lol, and am loving your story.

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    1. Thanks Rebecca, so special to have you here!

      ~Sarah

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  6. I love you story! I can relate to your story! Adoption is hard but so rewarding!! Parenting is hard but so rewarding! Glad I stumbled upon your blog!

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    1. Thanks Susann, glad you are here and so glad you can relate! :-)

      ~Sarah

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  7. I wish I knew you better to ask how/why were these young ones adopted, I praise you, I'm currently helping my son raise 3 of my grandkids, who were in foster care for 2 years, it's been a year and a half, and now i'm dealing with their mom being reunified with the children and moving back home, my son wants to give her another chance, I'm not as sure as him that she has changed, along with many other people. The hardest thing now, as my daughter-in-law was/is very upset that that the children have thrived under my care, (I learned from mistakes I made when mine were young), is that I will have to move out, I feel it's best, but I so worry that things will go back to the way they were, and can only hope and pray that these 3 wonderful children will take what I have taught them and continue to thrive even if things go back to how it was. I wish there were more people out there who took children in, (as I read in your first story how hard but rewarding it was, I feel the same way), treated the kids good, unfortunately the foster home my 2 older grandkids were in was not caring and did not foster good things in them, but thankfully the youngest he was only a year old went to a family that seemed like you to really care about them and not just into it for the money or they were suffering burn out, keep encouraging others who really care not only to adopt but to be foster parents, their are too many of these kiddos in the system who need extra love and understanding. And good luck with the open part of the adoption, because as much as I don't feel these kids mom can raise them properly, I don't think I would totally want her out of their life.

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    1. Thank you for sharing Lori, and thank you for pouring into your 3 grand kids. It sounds like an on going journey of trust and continuing to pour out love like you have been during these precious years spent with them.

      ~Sarah

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  8. Oh also found your site from great ideas, loved the backpack one, keep up the good work. Praying for you, someone who knows.

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    1. Thanks Lori, I sincerely appreciate it.

      ~Sarah

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Thank you for commenting, I read every single one. Because spam is so prevalent I moderate all comments. I also will delete any that are inappropriate or hurtful. All other comments will be approved and published in between me chasing around my five little tornadoes! For any specific questions feel free to email me at aninvitinghome@gmail.com. Thanks for reading and following along!

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