An Adoption STAR Mom shares the story of her adoption journey. Claudia Meyer, and Adoption STAR adoptive mother, wrote the following guest blog post. It’s entitled, “Adoption STAR doesn’t just help create families; it helps create community!”
Three years ago, my husband John and I started our adoption journey when we attended several informational workshops and then visited Adoption STAR in Buffalo. We live in Albany, NY, a six hour drive from Buffalo, but wanted to visit in person because we thought it was important to meet face to face with the people who would be helping us to create our family.
We worked to complete our home study and began the long, hard wait that lasted 26 months. During this time, a group of local “waiting” adoptive parents invited us to join a monthly get-together, most of whom were working with Adoption STAR. We attended and quickly found that this was a group that really understood what we were going through. Each month, we would share information and encouragement, update each other on how our searches were going, and just generally let our guard down and share our joys and frustrations about the waiting game. After about a year of meeting, two of the regular attendee couples got news that they were matched with their adoptive child, and they left the group to take up parenting responsibilities. We were sad to see them go.
As time went on, and several other couples were matched, the group dwindled down to us and another couple, Anne and RJ. We continued to meet monthly, just the four of us, for another year. At our meeting in February 2016, RJ and Anne shared with us that they had been matched with an expectant mother in Indiana who was due to have a C-section the following Friday. While we were thrilled for them, we were devastated that we were the only couple left without a match, and that the group would be ending.
The following Friday evening, we received a call from Adoption STAR. “A baby girl was born this morning in Indiana. Are you interested in being considered?” My heart stopped… and then raced. Kathy Crissey probably thought I was crazy when I asked, “Was the baby born by C-section?” but she told me that she was not. Still, the coincidence was uncanny.
We were chosen to parent this baby girl and traveled to Indiana the next day. During a phone call with Grant Kirsh (the lawyer who assisted with the placement and legal paperwork in Indiana), I asked if he happened to be working with Anne and RJ, and he said, “Yeah, I just got off the phone with them!” I asked him to let them know that we had also gotten a placement in Indiana. We later compared notes with RJ and Anne, and realized that our babies – theirs, a boy, and ours, a girl – were born an hour and a half apart and 30 miles away from each other!
Because of the coincidence in timing and location, we ended up going to court to start the adoption process on the same day, so we met beforehand at a coffee shop. You have never seen such looks of amazement on all of our faces!
We all returned to the Albany area, and the six of us (my husband and I, Anne & RJ, and our “birthday twin” babies) have gotten together several times… we even met once at the coffee shop where we used to meet monthly!
Four of the adoptive moms from the original “waiting parent” group and their babies recently got together for a “play date,” and talked about how wonderful it was that we can now raise our kids together, and share our experiences as adoptive moms.
I stopped and realized how amazing it is that our connection to Adoption STAR not only helped us to create our family, but helped to foster the creation of a local adoption community!