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Adoption Was NOT A Last Resort For Me

One of the negative comments that often go hand in hand with adoption and with adoption sentiment is that adoption is a last resort in family creation after a long journey with infertility. It’s seen as a second best option when all other paths to family creation have been exhausted. What many people fail to see is that this sentiment is furtherest from the truth, while adoption may not be the first port of call for those of us who are…. breeder challenged, it is  not a last resort option, but rather a refocus on what is important and changing direction in order to achieve the dream of parenting. I’ve long maintained that pregnancy does not make a parent and that too many people get too hung up on the idea of pregnancy and lose sight of the fact that pregnancy, like adoption is just another path to parenting.

For me, adoption was not a last resort, a refocus on a journey or any of the other common denominators that makes a couple look at adoption for family creation. In hindsight, the more years that are put between me and my years of fertility treatment, I see things differently, I have a much clearer view of why I went through what I did and of how it led me to where I am today, a mother of two gorgeous little girls. My journey,our journey, was about finding common ground, about having Walter and I be on the same page in terms of our journey to family creation.

walterandsharon

I had my first miscarriage in September 2002, just a couple of months after we were married when I feel pregnant, accidentally while on honeymoon. You can read my summarized journey through infertility here: Broken To Blessed. But from the moment my first miscarriage was confirmed, I knew, in my heart of hearts, that the path to parenthood would not be an easy one for me, I knew my journey would be different. Call it intuition or a premonition but I knew from that day, that I wanted to adopt, that I was meant to adopt. Walter of course, thought I was totally crazy, he felt that we’d hardly even started on our journey to parenthood and here I was already wanting to adopt.

With each year that past and each miscarriage I suffered, my feelings about adoption grew stronger. But quite simply, Walter and I were not on the same page. Add to that, the mounds of misinformation surrounding adoption and everyone and his Aunt telling us how impossible it would be to adopt and you can understand that Walter was not ready to go down that path.

So we persevered through two fertility clinics, two surgeries, countless timed & medicated cycles, invasive tests, 5 IUI’s, 4 fresh IVF’s, 1 FET, loads of chemical pregnancies and 7 1st trimester miscarriages.

While I was absolutely obsessive about treatment, I had very little faith in it, in my heart, I never believed it would actually work for us, I just constantly felt called to adopt. But I was terrified of what that would entail. Through out all these treatments and surgeries and procedures, Walter never felt ready to consider adoption and it was only after my FET resulted in another miscarriage, when I told him I was done. I quit. I give up. To here and no further.

It was around the time of my 7th miscarriage that we also had to make the very painful decision to put our precious rescue dog down and it was those events that led to clarity for Walter re. adoption. You can read that amazing story here: Sometimes Clarity Comes From The Most Unlikely Sources. 

It was only then that he was ready to refocus on our journey, it was only then that he was able to believe that regardless of the path to parenthood, the goal would remain unchanged even if the journey there would be different.

So the next time you make the assumption that adoption is the last resort, or second best choice, remember that often, our journey’s are about finding ourselves amidst the chaos and only then can our goals become clear and our journey’s definable.

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20 Comments

  • Reply Joyce

    Hi Sharon, I hear you loud and clear. Firstly, I want to thank Warren Smith for making me cry this morning, what a beautiful letter. I sincerely hope that my two beautiful adopted children will be able to speak like that one day.

    Now that I am pregnant after adopting our two most precious children, people are referring to the baby that I am carrying as ” your own child” and I know they don’t mean anything bad by it, but they do not understand how “my own” the two are that we have adopted!! They are completely my own and I love cherish and adore them as any biological mom would. And I must add, feeling pretty crappy during pregnancy doesn’t make pregnancy the easiest and most pleasant experience either.

    And Warren is right, no one has to understand us and our choices, but it would be nice if people could feel what we feel for our children, then they would understand and not have the opinions that they have. It is all just because of ignorance.

    Lots of love xxx

    November 20, 2013 at 10:20 am
  • Reply Ailsa Jean Loudon

    Another great read. I had exactly one miscarriage and it was awful – you are one gutsy lady!!

    November 20, 2013 at 4:43 pm
  • Reply Ncumisa

    Indeed. After we adopted, people often asked when / if we planned to have our own. I answered “She IS our own” with a smile. They answered “You know what I mean!” I know exactly what they meant.

    They also can’t comprehend why we are considering adopting again because we now also “have our own” (born almost three months ago). It’s a difficult one to explain when people are sometimes not listening with an open mind.

    November 20, 2013 at 8:13 pm
  • Reply Megan

    I love reading your story, I have only recently stumbled apon your blog!
    I have never wanted to become a mother in the traditional way, I have always wanted to adopt, I cannot explain it other than I will love that child because it is my child, it is my own. The average person does not get me, I get many frowns and questions. I cannot explain my need to adopt or the reason that I don’t need my child to grow in my womb.
    I am at the age that everyone is asking whether I am thinking of having children, yes but not falling pregnant.
    When the time is right I will persue an adoption, adoption is my first choice.
    It is heart warming to hear all the stories shared on your blog, there really is diversity in our country, it is shameful that we should have to justify our choices, but yet we all question so naturally, I do hope that the generations to follow view a broader scope than what we consider the norm.
    Thank you Sharon for being an upliftment for my passion to adopt, I will be in contact when my time comes!

    November 21, 2013 at 4:50 pm
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