Adoption Interview Project with Laura

Friday, November 15, 2013

Adoption Blogger Interview Project 2013

To celebrate National Adoption Month, I am participating in the 2013 Adoption  Blogger Interview Project. I was paired with Laura, a beautiful birth mom who blogs at A Moment in My Arms, Forever in My Heart. She blogs about life as a birth mom in an open adoption. Be sure to stop by her blog for a visit and show her some love, as well as read her interview with me.

To read more about the Adoption Blogger Interview Project, visit http://openadoptionbloggers.com/adoption-blogger-interview-project/.  You can also read the second set of adoption interviews by clicking HERE, beginning at 11 am eastern time.

Was your family and friends supportive of your adoption decision? How did that support help/hinder your decision?
Yes, my family and friends were very supportive of my decision. I had very little criticism from acquaintances and distant relatives, but from close friends and immediate family, I had nothing but support. 

My mom and sister were present for close to all my doctor visits. If they couldn’t make it, my friends would come. I think I only had one visit where I went by myself. My mom and sister were there for the delivery and my mom even cut Kinley’s umbilical cord! I had friends and family visit me in the hospital, as well as my parents and sisters present. I can’t express enough how much I love and appreciate the support I had and still have from them all!

In your blog, you talk about being from a large family. You also mention that your parents adopted three siblings a few years ago. Can you tell us a little about that?
Yes! My parents had 7 of us biologically (me being the 5th) and about 3 ½ years ago they adopted 3 of my cousins due to drug and child abuse! It is a very different adoption story than Kinley and I’s, but still adoption.
What kind of relationship do you currently have with Kinley? How often do you have contact?
I have a pretty open relationship with Kinley. She is only about a year and a half so it's as open and precious as it can be at that age. She warms up to me easily (which makes me smile) and she is comfortable around me. I see them about every 4 months now. I used to see her every 3 months, but we decided to space them out a bit because it is hard to fit in 4 visits a year with all the craziness life throws at us and with living 4 hours away.
Can you tell us why you chose Kinley’s adoptive parents?
I love talking about how I chose her parents because it’s an amazing story! I went through LDS Family Service’s agency and they have thousands of hopeful adoptive parents listed. I filled out a criteria of what I wanted in a couple (age, occupation, education, how many kids they have, etc). I wanted them to be between 25 and 30 and for the dad to have a master’s degree and the mom to be stay at home. All things I want for my own children. I didn’t really care if they had other children or not, especially coming from a big family where I have both older and younger siblings. 

Anyways, I had actually chosen another couple before Toby and Nicole. I never even saw them on there. When I contacted the other couple, I never heard a reply and my case worker did some research and that couple actually adopted a few months earlier, but they forgot to take their profile off of the website. After a few weeks of getting the courage back up to look, Toby and Nicole appeared. It turns out, when I was originally looking, Toby and Nicole’s profile hadn’t been approved to be viewable from out-of-state birth moms (I live in CO and they live in UT). A few days before I started looking is when their profile was viewable to me! Talk about meant-to-be! When they told me that, I just knew they were the ones!
What has helped you cope on your hardest days? Have you ever regretted your decisions?
What helps me the most is talking with other birth moms. I am part of a few support groups where I can talk with other birth moms who have been on this journey for 5, 10, even 20 years! It helps to talk with others who know the emotions that I’m going through. Blogging also has helped me get my feeling out. Sharing my story is the best therapy! I have never regretted my decision. I have bad days here and there, but I have never once regretted my decision.
In a recent blog post you write about “choosing to be happy.”  I love this. Can you share how you came to this decision?
Thank you! It really has been a turning point for me lately and that post was my way of telling the world. I have found myself playing the victim card and over-thinking things having to do with Kinley. I was starting to expect everything from them and maybe over-stepping some boundaries. I have decided to step back a bit from them and just take things as they come. Yes, we have an open adoption, but I still have to let them be a family and I have a family of my own that needs my undivided attention. It has only been a few months since I made that personal decision and I have already seen some improvement.
I love all the pictures on your blog, especially the ones from Kinley’s first birthday party. What was it like to see her and participate in her first birthday, along with her family?
It was AMAZING! Not just because I got to see my pretty girl, but because I was welcomed in by Toby, Nicole, and their families. It’s such an awesome feeling knowing I’m not just “the birth mom” who they kind of push out and not mention! Every visit I love to just step back and observe Kinley with her aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents. They are all so inviting and friendly, I never felt out of place or awkward once. 

It was so awesome to be involved in the festivities. They really involved me more than I could have ever imagined. They let me help her open her presents and let me take her swimming. They also incorporated me into her party theme. Elephants are my favorite animal and she had elephant cookies and cake! And I bought her a super cute outfit that they had her wear as her party dress! They were just so thoughtful and even now talking about it makes me so happy.
What does your husband think about open adoption?
At first he was a bit indifferent, only because he wasn’t familiar with it. But after meeting Kinley for the first time and getting to know what its all about, he is all for it! He is just as excited as I am when I receive pictures or we visit her. I can remember perfectly when he told me, “You know open adoption is so cool because then the child never has to wonder why they were placed or where their roots came from.” He is such an amazing guy and he loves Kinley even though she isn’t related to him biologically.
What do you wish every adoptive parent knew about birthmothers/birth family?
That we are normal! There are stereotypes that birth moms are drug addicts, irresponsible, or that we are trouble. All the birth moms I know are perfectly normal and we just wanted a better life for our babies. I know there are birth moms who may fall under the stereotype, but they are a small percentage. We are just as scared of the unknown as adoptive parents!
Thanks to Laura for sharing her story with us today. And thanks to Heather at Open Adoption Bloggers for organizing such a great project! I look forward to participating next year.
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This is my first year participating in the Adoption Blogger Interview Project. For more interviews from all sides of the adoption triad, visit Open Adoption Bloggers.

3 comments

  1. Hi from ICLW! I'm so glad I found your blog. We are going through our fourth IVF cycle (Third FET with adopted embryos) and are planning to move on to traditional domestic infant adoption if this fails or I miscarry again. I will be stalking your blog quite a bit. Nice to "meet" you!

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  2. Hello from ICLW! I love your interviews! I'm doing something similar on my own blog. I'm definitely bookmarking your site and reading more of it.

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