I have always known what I wanted in my life. Since childhood the thing I wanted for my life more than a high-flying career, the perfect wedding, or the house with a white picket fence, was to become a mother. I didn’t want to be just any mother, though, I wanted to adopt.
We can say that love is what drives us to adopt a child, but this is not completely true. There are other factors that come into play sometimes like professional commitments, financial stability, and infertility, to name just a few. For me personally, the desire to adopt was none of those reasons. I simply just wanted to adopt a child that was here among us and give him or her all the love in the world. It was a pure emotional urge, and one that I have never regretted submitting to.
Adoption or fostering is not exclusive to humans, but is actually a phenomenon that can be observed in the animal kingdom as well. Even interspecies fostering can exist among animal mothers. It’s something that happens for various reasons, but is a wonder that is as natural as it gets.
As a woman, motherhood was always part of my identity. After college, I focused on my career, became financially stable, and got married. But before tying the knot, I made my intentions clear. After giving the idea some serious thought, he joined the bandwagon and we were on our way. Or so I thought.
If you are serious about adoption, there are plenty of options and plenty of variables that can directly impact how successful you will be. When I started looking into the process, it became clear that it wasn’t as straight forward. The endless forms, meetings, and home visits all took a toll on us, but I was still certain about what I wanted.
When starting the process, you’ll first need to decide on the best option for your family by choosing the right type of adoption. The three most common ways to adopt are:
- Domestic Infant adoption
- International adoption
- Foster care adoption
Each option comes with its own expectations and its own set of hurdles that you’ll need to overcome. In recognition of this it is a good idea to seek professional advice. I only wish I had been unaware that there was help out there, and can only imagine how much easier it could have been! Not-for-profit organizations out there like Bethany Christian Services offer guidance and support even after the adoption is finalized, which can be extremely helpful.
I have never been a patient woman and that’s one thing you will need to have when you embark on a journey into both adoption and motherhood in general. You can also expect the anxiety of not knowing, disappointments, and bureaucratic complications in the adoption process. I went through all of that, but when I brought my baby girl home, it was all worth it!
I still remember the first time I laid eyes on her, her chubby cheeks and the way she smiled at me. No one on this planet can tell me that my experience with motherhood was any different than the experience of a biological mother.
We adopted our daughter, Maya, in 2001 before the tragedy of 9/11. Having her home with me was a comfort, but it also brought new fears about how to protect her in a volatile world.
This year Maya begins her freshman year in high school, and I realized that soon she will move away to college. Although that is still some time away, I am horrified at the thought of my baby girl leaving the nest. I worry about her future, how the world will treat her, but she always calms me down by reminding me that she has us, her family!
So if you’re sure about adoption, I say go for it! It will not be an easy road, but as the cliché goes “nothing good in this life comes easy.” With the help of family, friends, and the support from adoption organizations, the transition into motherhood will be easier.
Adoption has been a blessed and fulfilling experience for me to love and care for another human being who was already born, and needed a home. As the global population booms, it is a good option to think about when starting your own family or adding another beautiful child to it.
Vera is a wife and working mother juggling the demands of a career and motherhood. As someone who strives for complete work-life balance, she treasures every moment with her daughter and husband. In her downtime she writes about mindfulness, parenting, and adoption.
Bethany Christian Services is a Christ-centered, not-for-profit, pro-life, adoption agency with more than 75 locations in 32 states and orphan care and other ministries in more than a dozen countries. As the largest adoption agency in the country, they place close to 2,000 children nationwide each year. In addition to adoption services, BCC provides pregnancy counseling, family counseling, foster care programs, refugee services, orphan care. They were founded in 1944 and headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Find out more about BCC on their Facebook page.