Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Adoption Question 5

Because November is National Adoption Month, I'm going to answer any questions you care to ask me about my adoption experience. Please post questions in the comments area at the bottom of any post. You can even post anonymously if you'd like.

How did you get in touch with the birth family and get Joci?

When we decided to adopt last year, we knew we wanted to go through an agency. We researched several and to make a long story short, selected the one we felt most comfortable with - A New Beginning. It's an Idaho agency headquartered in Boise but they have contracts in different states so we could be promoted in Oregon, Texas, Alabama, Utah, and Florida as well.

We advertised on our own as well. We made "pass-along" cards and gave them to anyone who would take them - friends, family, doctors' offices, schools, clergy, etc.

Last October, one of Justin's clients knew a pregnant teen who was considering adoption. She wanted to meet us. So we drove out to that town and met for dinner. It went really well and we all liked each other a lot. This young lady invited us to her ultra-sound which was only a couple weeks away. After that night, she kind of disappeared off the face of the earth. We don't know what happened to her, but we hope for only the best for her and her baby.

In late March, we'd gotten a call from an agency in Utah that A New Beginning was contracted with. There was a birth mom who was very interested in us and we scheduled a conference call. We had that call on April 1st. It went very well. Her caseworker said she loved us and needed to think about things, but we were probably who she would choose.

Literally not even five minutes after that call, our caseworker called us. I thought it was to see how our call went. Nope. A family in Boise wanted us to adopt their baby. Several days before, on a Sunday, they came knocking on the agency's door. The agency is closed on Sundays. But it just so happened that on this Sunday at this exact moment, the agency director had popped in to grab something. She heard a knock and answered the door. Both our birth parents were standing there in tears, asking for help. The director talked to them for awhile and let them look through all the family profiles. When they returned the next day, they had our profile memorized. The agency always asks birth parents to have a first-choice family and a second-choice family just in case the first-choice family doesn't work out for whatever reason. This couple absolutely refused to make a back-up selection. It was us.

We were floored! Two families? And on the same day???? Crazy!!! What a hard, yet exciting decision to make. Justin and I decided we wouldn't talk about either situation with anyone for 24 hours, but just ponder them ourselves. At the end of our 24 hours, we had both came to the same decision. The baby in Boise was our baby.

And Joci came just a couple weeks later on April 17th. She was 3 weeks early, so it was a bit of a shock to get the call from our caseworker that said, "Your daughter is being born right now! Come to Boise!" And the rest, as they say, is history.


Jamie Boyd said...

I still tear up when I read about this. It's like one of those monumental things in the news, or something. I can remember exactly where I was when you called me and said that your baby was being born. Crazy. She's such a sweet little miracle. Give her a kiss for me tonight.

Sean, Jessi and Jaydn Coletti said...

Hi Lara! You don't know me, but I am friends with Ben and Shannon Jensen. We are also in the adoption process, and Ben has told us a lot about you. I loved reading your blog!I think I read almost all of it! Thank you for sharing! I'm so glad you wrote about foster care....we are in the middle of compleating our training classes to become foster parents. Anyway- just wanted to say hi, and tell you thank you for your blog. You can view ours too if you'd like: www.potatoestopapayas.blogspot.com We don't write on it as much as you do, but we try. Love Jessi Coletti


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