I never really planned on writing about this. I don’t like for people to know my business. But it turns out that sometimes when you talk about your life, people care. They listen. They have advice. (Some of it sucks.) They ask questions. It’s helpful. (Sometimes it’s not.)
I have always been… unsure about having kids. I have always wanted them in a very hazy, ambiguous someday in the far away future kind of way, but it’s not something I ever gave a lot of concrete thought to for whatever reason. When people would ask I would just kind of blow them off. Eventually people stopped asking. That was fine with me.
Part of the problem, besides being completely terrified both of the responsibility and what I considered to be the loss of freedom, was my fear of the actual process of pregnancy and childbirth. Fear, and anxiety, and a debilitating sense of oh-my-gosh-there-is-no-way-I-could-ever-do-that-ever-ever-ever. I’m not talking about nervousness. I am talking full-on, counseling-requiring, freak out in the middle of the night anxiety. It is real. I has it.
But finally, after SO MANY CONVERSATIONS about what we want and how to get there and life stages and schedules and blah blah blah, we decided to start trying to get pregnant. I was scared, Aaron was scared, but we made a decision and did not look back.
Months went by. I had it in my head that it would happen fairly quickly. This was based on… nothing. All I could think was that it had taken me so long to decide to try in the first place, surely it would happen quickly before I could change my mind, right? No. Apparently things don’t quite work that way.
We are closing in on two years since we decided to start trying. Obviously, things are not progressing in that area. I wish I had been writing about it all along the process, to help me figure out how I was feeling about everything, but apparently when I say I don’t want people to know my business that sometimes also includes me.
About six months ago we decided to start looking into adoption. I started researching and meeting with social workers and reaching out to friends who’ve adopted. A lot of what I found was really encouraging. Friends who were matched within a few months, friends who found a baby through another friend, people who had massively successful fundraisers and a surprisingly quick process. But a whole mess of it was really discouraging, too. People who had to wait years. People who are still waiting. The thousands and thousands of dollars it can take to adopt, even if you do it domestically. The questionable ethics of agencies and birth mother fees. The kids who don’t attach or adapt. Adoptions that fell through at the last minute.
Turns out there’s no easy way to have kids. I probably should have known that.
Next month we are officially starting the domestic adoption process. There are a few things we need to take care of first, things I think will be simple but probably won’t be. We will sign up with a social worker and complete a home study, and then we will wait. And I want to talk about it.
One of the counselors I met with told me the best thing to do when you’re ready to adopt is just to talk to people. And, she said, it will suck sometimes. Because people are crazy, even when they’re trying to help. They will tell you crazy stories, and say insensitive things, and sometimes you will want to break down crying in the middle of a conversation. But the more people who know, the more people who can potentially help. You never know whose neighbor’s coworker’s sister’s babysitter’s cousin will find out she’s pregnant and decide to put the baby up for adoption. And I want that cousin to talk to the babysitter who talks to the sister who talks to the coworker who talks to the neighbor who knows us and our story and gets us in touch with each other.
Adoption happens by way of the gossip mill, apparently. I can roll with that.
But I want to write about it more. I want to share the process with our friends and family. I needed to get you guys caught up. Here we are. Let’s do this thing.