Hi friends, family, and future baby,
I’m writing this on March 17th, 2021. (Happy Birthday, Bluto!) It has been a year and a half since we started this process, but only 5 months as an official waiting family.
It was a sunny Spring morning. We just finished a slow breakfast. I was cleaning up and John was in the office. Summer vacation was close enough that there was a dream of endless free time, before the reality of end of year work hit. I come into the hall as John stepped out of the office. “Adoption can take 2-5 years. We’re 37. I think we should start at least researching it.” John took a long pause. Then, “ok”. If you’ve watched us make major life decisions over the years, that’s the telltale sign the train has left the station.
There had been years of half conversations leading up to that point. Before we were even engaged, John and I discussed what our future family might look like. We both agreed we weren’t sure if children were in our future. “But if we do have kids, ” I remember saying as I paused by the gate to our yard in Montclair, “I would want to adopt at least one.” “That makes sense,” John replied, “maybe adopt one, have one.” We proceeded into the yard to enjoy the Spring sunshine. Bright light seems to gently stamp and seal these moments.
John and I take our time. We move, marry, move, and find our way in the world. We grow up and establish who we want to be in relation to ourselves and others. All this time, our love and trust in each other continues to grow. There is no single, magical moment where we decide we’re ready to parent. Practically speaking, our natural rhythms shift into earlier wake-up times, and our interests draw us out of the city. Throughout this we learn more about our own capacities. We’ve each believed the other capable, but needed to find that faith in ourselves. Without actively trying, becoming parents shifts from a terrifying possibility we need to prevent against to an opportunity we’re open to.
As we are actively open to growing our family, we wait. We save enough to buy a home. We find a sense of permanency and stability. Although these milestones are adequately timed with our friends from the city, well-timed with our friends from the city, they come along a little later than the general population and the odds biology favors. Still, John and I have always taken our time.
We don’t feel rushed, or urgent. Adoption had always been a possibility. We’ve seen countless examples that prove what a miracle conception and birth truly are, we never assumed that gift would come to us. We were both blessed by the influence of large communities when we were young, we know love comes in all ways. In a world where people are searching for love and safety, it never made sense to put our efforts towards medical intervention when instead we could direct our efforts towards giving a home to a child in need.*
Time flows like a river, thoughts progress like floating leaves. As the river bends, months pass and the conversations trickle along. Then, one sunny Spring morning, we see the love we have to give and the home we can offer. It is time to grow our family, we decide to adopt.
*This statement is reflective of our thoughts at the time. Since then, we have learned this phrasing is problematic, which I will explain in our next post.