Friday, April 9, 2010

Sometimes my friends just overwhelm and humble me...

From Bubbles, for my dossier...

To whom it may concern:

I am writing on behalf of Laurie, my closest friend of nearly 10 years. I met Laurie when I began educational consulting work at her institution. I immediately respected her as a professional and we soon became friends. Although we now live several hundred miles apart, our friendship is still very vibrant and strong. We speak several times a week, she responds to my emails promptly, and we travel to visit each other several times a year. She never misses a special event, or a chance to support me in difficult times. I have come to depend on her strength and wisdom in my life. This commitment to those around her speaks to the heart of Laurie’s desire to be a mother.

Throughout the years I’ve observed her devotion to those she loves, family and friends alike. This unwavering selflessness and sincere care for others will make her the most devoted mother, especially to a child that is adopted. While she has tried to have a child of her own, she never discounted the idea of adoption, and made it clear that the opportunity to raise and love a child is the ultimate blessing, no matter how it came into her life. She truly longs for the chance to provide love and care for a child.

She’s met with other parents who’ve adopted and she’s well read on the challenges facing adoption of ethnic children by American families. I can assure you that a child placed with her will always be loved, respected, and nurtured. Her single and sole priority will be her child. Laurie is also surrounded by a strong and supportive group of family and friends, her child would have a large group of people who would also be there to support and nurture them. This child would be so special to so many people, myself included.

I feel privileged to have been able to be a part of Laurie’s journey to parenthood. It has been a very difficult journey for her, but her commitment has been steadfast. Her faithfulness in this endeavor has been inspiring for me. She has overcome so much to be a mother, and I am hopeful that there is a child out there, meant to be a part of her life.

Thank you for this opportunity to speak on behalf of my beloved friend.


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

My Adoption Statement

I mailed the paperwork to immigration on Saturday -- and from my tracking slip, I know it arrived yesterday. The "up to 90 days" wait begins.

I went to the Sheriff's office on Friday and got my letter. It was easy. I handed over my license. Less than 10 minutes and $10 later, I had my form.

I received my state certified form today.

Just waiting on Bubbles' letter of recommendation and having to take a colleague with me to the doctor's office to get that form notarized (by someone whose commission doesn't expire this year).

The final piece, though it's done and only needs to be notarized, is my adoption statement. It reads:

I knew from my mid-teenage years that I wanted to be a mother. Pregnancy and adoption were both options for me—it didn’t matter how I got there, just that I achieved my dream to be a mom.

I had hoped to fall in love and get married, but that hasn’t happened for me. It’s something that I’ve accepted, but I cannot accept not becoming a mother. I have so much love to give a child.

In April 2007, I began researching adoption. I was drawn to this specific country for a number of reasons.
• I have a great respect for the culture, history, and traditions of the country and look forward to teaching my child about his birth country. I plan to incorporate holidays as part of our traditions.
• One of my dearest friends adopted a little boy from the same country in 2006. I lived the journey vicariously through her and was overjoyed when she brought Robbie home. I look forward to raising my child, with my friend as my mentor, and for Robbie to be a “big brother” to my child.
• The possibility of being able to meet and connect with the birth family is a very powerful opportunity for me. I would welcome the chance to thank the birth family and to assure them of my love for and devotion to their child—our child. It will be such an important moment and one that I will share later with my child. That connection will continue as I send photos and updates to the birth family. It’s a gift that not all adoptive families are able to experience.

I have a book that contains basic words and phrases. Just as I will teach my child colors and numbers in English, we will also learn in his native language. I hope that eventually my child and I can travel so that we can experience the country together.

My extended family and friends, who have been a great support system throughout my journey to becoming a mother, are already embracing the new traditions that will be brought to our large holiday gatherings. As one friend said to me, “It’s so amazing how small the world truly is. Your family will make it that much smaller and more connected.”

I’m lucky to live in a very diverse city that has both a major university and a mid-sized college. Each of these institutions has international students and cultural clubs and organizations that sponsor public events and activities that we will attend. There are also a number of people in the city who are of (the same) heritage, including two professors who work with me.

In addition to the families of (the same) heritage, there are many local and regional families who have adopted children from this country. I have joined the network of these families and hope to organize annual get-togethers, where we can bring our families together and our children can connect with each other.

My home is located about ten minutes south of Ithaca. It is a two-floor, two-bedroom townhouse. My child will have his own room with a window that overlooks a large yard and acres of woods. At any given moment, he will be able to see many varieties of birds, as well as deer and wild turkey.

I hope I can live up to the dreams the birth mother has for her child. I can’t thank her enough for her unselfishness in allowing me to raise her child—to be a mother. She is not only giving her child a better life; she is also giving me a better life.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Into the Home Stretch

I'm still waiting for my home study copies -- Renee said she mailed them out on Tuesday. I should have had them today, hopefully tomorrow and then I can mail my immigration forms out.

My boss gave me his letter confirming my employment, years of service and pay. I got my birth certificate in the mail the other day. I finished my adoption statement. I received one of the two reference letters (specific to the country I'm adopting from) yesterday.

I'm going to the Sheriff's office tomorrow. I still need to call the doctor's office. And I'm awaiting the state certified form to come back from Albany.

I'm still in good shape to be down with all I can do before I turn 40 on the 13th (or go to Baltimore on the 15th).

It will be interesting how I handle the waiting game. Right now, I have tasks. I have excel spread sheets. I have an expandable folder. I have things that I'm needing to get done. Once everything is mailed out, what will I do. What will I focus on?

I'm not a patient person. Three years of fertility treatment didn't really help that. I'll have to do my best. Enjoy the summer. Enjoy my friends. Take some road trips. Save money. And continue to work out like a machine.