Sunday, May 10, 2015

Great article about being an adoptive parent

Dear Moms of Adopted Children

by Kathy Lynn Harris 

"I know about all those books you read back then. The ones everyone reads about sleep patterns and cloth versus disposable, yes, but the extra ones, too. About dealing with attachment disorders, breast milk banks, babies born addicted to alcohol, cocaine, meth. About cognitive delays, language deficiencies. About counseling support services, tax and insurance issues, open adoption pros and cons, legal rights.
I know about the fingerprinting, the background checks, the credit reports, the interviews, the references. I know about the classes, so many classes. I know the frustration of the never-ending paperwork."

Read the entire article here...

Monday, January 20, 2014

Heartache in Adoption

I found a beautifully written post about the heartache that comes with adoption. I was in tears while reading it and any adoptive parents out there will probably have the same reaction.

Relishing in the Bittersweet: Heartache in Adoption by Rachel Garlinghouse 
Read the entire article here
"What I felt at times, while rocking my daughter in her softly-lit nursery, were waves of guilt, sympathy, confusion, and heartache. This wasn’t how adoption looked on the front of the agency brochures or in the Hallmark movies.
Guilt.   My joy was stemming from another mother’s loss and pain.   How could I have willingly participated in such a severance?
Sympathy.   I couldn’t imagine my life without my child.   Yet someone was living her life without her child.
Confusion.   Why must someone else’s loss be my gain?  How can I be happy when I know my child’s first mother is broken?
Heartache.  Why did my child have to lose her biological mother through adoption?   Would my daughter grow to resent me?"

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Family Day 2013

It is hard to believe that Sydney has been an official and legal member of our family for a year! On this day, last year, we entered the courthouse with our family members and met the judge who would make Sydney's adoption final. She asked if we promised to love and raise her as if she had been biologically born to us (of course!), we signed the adoption papers, and she received our last name! It was such a wonderful day, filled with emotion, excitement, and tons of love!

With the judge who finalized the adoption.

The last year has been fun, crazy, frustrating, joyous, and every other emotion you might imagine. Sydney has grown into an energetic, spirited, independent toddler. She knows what she wants and makes sure everyone around her knows it too! She loves babies, noodles, tacos, trains, Bubble Guppies, iPhones/iPads (much to my dismay), accessories, animals, and preschool. She is such a joy in our lives, and we are so grateful for the amazing little person she is becoming!

We plan to celebrate the day Sydney's adoption was finalized each year. It will be called "Family Day." In the future, we will let her choose a special activity to do as a family. This year, since she can't pick something yet, we rode the train (Sydney loves "choo choos!") to San Juan Capistrano and went to Zoomar's Petting Zoo. Sydney absolutely loved the train ride! Before we left, she kept saying, "Choo Choo?" She had a wonderful time at the petting zoo and "bonded" with one particular guinea pig. We went to lunch and got back on the train.

It was wonderful to spend a fun day together as a family! Here are some photos from our day…

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Sydney's 1st Birthday Party

April 7, 2013 was a special day. Our little girl turned ONE! It is still so hard to believe that we have been blessed to be her parents for an entire year already. She has brought so much joy, love, frustration (haha!), and laughter into our family, and we couldn't be prouder of how much she is learning and growing.

I spent about 4 months planning her birthday was such a fun event to plan! I chose to use the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar for the theme. Everything came together better than I could have imagined! We had a very large group of people (93!) in our backyard. It was such a blessing to see all of our friends and family who love Sydney so much! It was truly a special day and I couldn't be happier with how the party went!

(All photos by Michelle Klewer)

The birthday girl!

 We love having Sydney's birthmother involved in our lives!

Kisses from her birthmother and adoptive mother 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Great Article About Birth Parents!

Click on the title to read the entire article...

Adopting has it's unique hurdles and challenges.  The adoption process, bonding with a little one who has no genetic connection to you, navigating birth parent and transracial issues; the list can be endless.

But possibly one of the most frustrating and sometimes infuriating for adoptive parents is how friends, family, and even strangers speak of their adopted child's birth family. There are still assumptions about big, bad birth moms that come straight from the Lifetime movie channel with birth moms who show up on doorsteps with golf clubs demanding babies back.  Reality is far from this picture and wouldn't come close to creating a movie drama.

Open Adoption Article

A great post on Building Family Counseling about open adoption. Click the title for the full article.
Lots of studies show that openness benefits children (research says they have better self esteem and fewer behavior problems than children adopted in closed adoptions) but this study in particular ties this to communicative openness. In other words, how the familyprocesses adoption is a stronger predictor of positive benefit than how the family structures adoption. Says the study, “… communication openness appears to be a stronger and more consistent predictor of children’s adjustment than the extent of structural openness that exists between the adoptive and birth families.”
This is good news for those adoptive families who are unable to have structural openness; your child can still reap the benefits of openness in adoption provided you are able to foster a sensitivity and respect for your child’s birth origins and are able to convey that to your child. And it’s a reminder to those families who do not have communicative openness; you need to learn how to talk to your kids.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Sydney's Adoption Finalization

Today was truly a magical day! After very little sleep last night and a nervous stomach, we arrived at the Lameroux Justice Center at 1:45pm to finalize Sydney's adoption. Surrounded by our family members, we stood in front of the judge and promised to love and provide for Sydney as if she were born biologically. After a couple of signatures, she announced that Sydney now legally shares our last name! We were feeling over the moon all afternoon and my smile couldn't get any wider! 
It is so amazing to know that there is nothing that anyone can do to take her away from us. She is now our daughter legally, but she has felt like our daughter for 8 months!

Here are some photos from our day in court...

 We are so happy to be finalizing!

 It's official, Sydney!

 With the judge after finalization

 The judge gave Sydney a stuffed doll and she loved it!

 Our wonderful parents

 We feel so blessed to be loved and supported by these wonderful people!

So happy that Janine could come too!