Going to Class on the Other Side

Recently, our adoption agency held a training class for prospective adoptive parents going through the homestudy for the first time.  One of the aspects of the training is bringing in a panel of adoptive parents to speak to the class. On a whim, I volunteered us to talk to the class.  What I didn't expect was to get invited to this one 3 weeks after I volunteered!

I'm starting to find my voice as an adoptive parent.  It took a while, but I knew going into this journey that I wouldn't be someone who just sat back after adoption and faded into the sunset with my family, turning inward and focusing only on us.  It's not my style, and thankfully, S understands that.  I have had this growing desire to be an advocate for ethical adoption when other avenues are not possible.  I support opening records for all adoptees, not this piecemeal state-by-state b.s.  I have a desire to embrace and work through the grief and loss on all sides of the adoption triad, respecting C's grief, and letting my child work through his grief when it comes.

We also have a story that has fits and starts, and it hasn't been easy.  I didn't know the implications of a failed match until it happened to us while I was in the middle of trying to process infertility (again).  The timing was unfortunate for sure and made everything worse as I struggled to decide whether or not to pursue IVF or donor embryo or stay the course for adoption.

We have a wide open adoption as far as contact goes, and while our agency focuses on openness in adoption, I don't believe there are many newish adoptions through the agency where the level of contact is as high as it is for us.  With that level of contact has come much second guessing (is C happy with the way it's going, or is she compliant because she's afraid we'll close the adoption if she expresses her wants and needs).  Anyway, that put us in the running to share our story.

So, we shared our story.  And I found that cramming a several year journey into 15 minutes is damn near impossible.  So many things have happened since the first day I tossed the bcps, and it was hard to remember what it was we had wanted to hear when we were in the class ourselves.  I think we pulled it off, and we'd do it again if asked.