As I mentioned, I want this blog to be an informal discussion of adoption tips, how to deal with infertility, and all the little things that make me feel hopeful each day. I will draw from many of my own experiences and, with permission, the experiences of some of my friends and family members. If you ever have anything you would like to add or share, please make a comment. I'd love to hear about these things from your perspective. We are all at different points in our journey, and it helps us all to know that we are not alone. For now, I think I'll just start from the beginning.
For those of you who are dealing with infertility, I'd first like to send my empathy. I know how very difficult this can be to talk about and work through. But, it is my firm belief that each one of us CAN work through it. I once heard an old lady on a video say that infertility was like 'her old friend'. She had lived a full life and adopted some children who she loved with all her heart, but still felt times of sadness for the unfulfilled desire to bear children. I'll be honest with you. That bothered me. Let me just state up front that I am a Christian. I believe that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. That He suffered - not only for our sins - but also for our frustrations, our sadness, our fears, and the hurt and sorrow that comes as we make our way through life. With this belief firmly imbedded in my heart, it bothered me to think that the sadness that I felt at not being able to have the experiences of a full and healthy pregnancy would always linger. Was I really destined to have ever-recurring moments of sadness and regret? If that was true, if the Savior couldn't heal me...fully and completely...then what was His Atonement all about?
But, maybe I'm getting ahead of myself. Maybe some of you are where I started, and you're angry. Perhaps even angry at God for "denying" you what you want most. If you're there, then you probably don't want to hear about the goodness and love of our Savior. So, let me just say that it hasn't been easy, and it hasn't been painless, and it hasn't happened quickly, but as sure as I am sitting at my computer typing these words, my soul HAS been healed. Completely, one hundred percent, healed. I feel genuine excitement for my loved ones who get pregnant. I no longer cast angry glances at random pregnant women in the supermarket (on the contrary, I usually smile at them), or come home and cry myself to sleep when I think of the giant, gaping hole in my life. Because (and this is the miracle) THERE IS NO MORE HOLE! Christ filled it in and made me a better person than I ever was before. And please believe me when I say that He can do the same for you. Let's take that journey together.
Now, for those of you who have arrived at the decision to pursue adoption...I am so happy for you! The experiences I have had with adoption are some of my choicest, most happy, most loving memories. If you are there, my first piece of advice is to PRAY. Pray for help to get through the mountains of paperwork (okay, in this day and age most of it is done online, but when I did it, it was literally mountains of paperwork. Just ask my husband, he had to move around them all as they were stacked on the dining room table and kitchen counter for weeks on end). Pray for your birth mom. Just because you don't know who she is yet, doesn't mean you can't pray for her. And pray for the guidance of the Holy Ghost to help you as you start your profile. I know that is a little vague, and I promise to give some concrete ideas and tips as we move forward, but trust me - prayer is always the best place to start.