We have been together since 2009 when we met while living in Africa. Bas was there to protect elephants and gorillas and Sarah was working at the US Embassy on improving the lives of local fishermen. Sarah was in the US Navy for over 20 years, first as a pilot then as a military diplomat. Now, she is working for an organization that helps the hungry by providing them with fish from the Chesapeake Bay. Bas continues to be a conservationist in DC, working at the World Wildlife Fund (perhaps you have seen those funny pandas that tell us to save the planet!). We have an incredible life together and in 2015 we were thrilled to begin sharing it with our son Max, who came to us through surrogacy. Becoming parents has been the most amazing experience of our lives! We had always dreamed of having more than one child and hope to have a sibling for Max to grow up with. Because Sarah had cancer four years ago, she is unable to carry a baby. Having pursued open adoption prior to Max’s birth, we know this is the right path for us as we look to expand our family. We feel strongly about our children always knowing where he or she comes from.
We live in Washington, DC, in a safe, vibrant, and multicultural neighborhood. Our house is sunny with bright walls, lots of artwork and souvenirs from all the countries where we have lived, and from Bas’s mother who was an inspiring artist. We have a big kitchen that is always full of the laughter of family and friends, not to mention the delicious scents of Sarah’s cooking. Max has begun to cover the walls in our home with his artwork. We look forward to both of our children doing so! We can’t wait to watch them play with the other children in our family-oriented neighborhood. We live near several parks, libraries, and schools. We love our neighborhood very much and hope our children will too. Bas is especially excited about taking our children to the local park to play on the jungle gym!
About Bas as a daddy:
As a Dad, Bas has always dreamed of having that tingling feeling - day and night - of having children to love, to cherish, to protect, to support in any way he can, and to laugh with every day. Bedtime reading, their first steps, and calling for him: ‘papa, papa’! He particularly dreamed of carrying them on his back for walks in the woods to jointly discover the beautiful world -the leaves, the flowers, the rivers, the animals. And then taking his kids on the back of his bike, followed by teaching them to bike on their own. Looking at the smile on their faces when they manage to stay on. Going together to sports, their first swim or tennis lessons. Bas can’t wait to extend his love to our baby daughter, and to nourish her curiosity to learn, to love, and to be loved. Blessed by our first beautiful child, our son Max, Bas can’t wait to complete his family by having a baby daughter, and to introduce her to his family and friends. He is deeply saddened thinking that his mother, who he loved so much, is not around to see her grand-daughter and to hug her grand-son. He can’t wait for the moments of joy when his children receive their first school diploma, or they speak their first words. In fact, Bas has been dreaming of growing his family with a daughter for so long, and oh, what a good father he already is for Max!!
About Sarah as a mommy:
Sarah is beyond the moon with happiness every day as she gets to be with Max, the love of her life. He brings her infinite joy. But she knows that her family cannot be complete until a beautiful baby girl joins them. She looks forward to long, long cuddles where she can bury her nose in her baby girl’s neck and smell that intoxicating, new baby scent. She cannot wait to carry her daughter close to her chest so that the little one can feel comforted and loved - she plans to carry her in a wrap as long as possible. Sarah looks forward to knowing what the baby’s favorite foods will be and to cooking those for her. She can’t wait to share her love of cooking either; to baking cookies together and showing her how to measure out the flour, sugar, butter. She looks forward to walking her to the playground and hear her giggles of delight as she goes down the slide, into Daddy’s arms. And flying through the sky in the swing, one of Max’s favorite things to do! Or going sledding, with her between Sarah’s knees. Max is ecstatic about all of these activities – and looks forward to sharing them with his little sister!