Becoming a parent may seem like a daunting task — especially if you’ve experienced pregnancy loss or have struggled with infertility. I remember those tearful days when I wondered if I would ever become a mom. Sometimes it seemed like an impossible dream, always out of my reach. Choosing adoption gave me hope; however, it was not an easy road either. The paperwork, uncertainty and the long wait are enough to discourage anyone. If you’re in that situation, don’t despair. There are many things you can do to make your adoption journey a little easier while you’re waiting to bring that special child into your heart and home.
This is by far the most important thing you can do while waiting to adopt. Seize every opportunity to share your plans with others because you never know where it may lead. When we first began the adoption process, we wrote a letter to family and friends telling them of our news. We kindly asked that if anyone heard of a potential situation to please keep us in mind — and they did. A few relatives contacted us with leads and many shared our news with others. Let’s face it: The more people who know, the more chances you have to be matched with an expectant mom. Our match actually came through a woman we met at a bowling fundraiser. She remembered us when she heard of a pregnant woman considering adoption through a friend at her church. That chance encounter led to us bringing home our precious baby girl. Not only does telling people increase your chances of adopting sooner, it also offers you an incredible support system. So many people will be praying for you and encouraging you. It’s like having your very own cheering section. So don’t be shy. Tell everyone you are planning to adopt!
Take Time For Yourself
Parenthood is rewarding and exhilarating, but also busy and exhausting. Use the waiting period to do some things you will be unlikely to do once your child arrives. If there’s a hobby you’ve always wanted to try, now’s the time. If there’s a city or country you’ve been longing to visit, book that vacation. Be sure to spend some alone time with your spouse too, going on date nights, long walks in the park or whatever your heart desires. When we were waiting to adopt, I took a dance class and learned to play the piano — two things I had longed to do since childhood. My husband and I also took a trip to San Francisco. We had a great time and were matched with a birth mom just a few months later. Keeping busy with activities makes the time go by faster and gives you a sense of accomplishment and well-being.
Count Your Blessings
Remember, it’s common to feel down when you’re waiting to adopt. The wait can seem like an eternity, with no end in sight. It’s easy to get discouraged. During those times, take a few minutes to focus on all of the good aspects of your life. Maybe you have an amazingly supportive spouse or partner, a loving extended family or great friends. Or perhaps you just appreciate the little things in life, such as a beautiful sunset or a walk in the park with your pet. When I was at my lowest point, I would sit down with my pen and paper and write everything I was grateful for. My list included family, friends, the birds nesting near our porch and the colorful flowers I had planted. By the time I was done, my spirits were lifted and I was ready to face whatever was ahead.
Miracles really do happen when you believe. Think of how many times you told yourself you could do something you weren’t sure of and actually achieved it. The first step to reaching your dreams is to visualize them and then do everything you can to bring them to fruition. So even in your moments of doubt, know in your heart that you will eventually become a parent. Stay optimistic on your adoption journey: Imagine it, hold on to that thought, and never give up. One day, it will all become real.
Best of luck on your adoption journey!