Many families shy away from social gatherings during their adoption wait, especially where children are present. But we promise that the 13th Annual Adoption STAR Picnic is not something you will want to miss. With the picnic only days away, we thought we would get some perspectives from some of our families on their thoughts and past experiences. So don’t just take our word for it. Listen to what some of our families had to say about attending the picnic as a waiting family.
“This was the most inspiring event that we attended! I still remember how we felt leaving the picnic as parents-in-waiting…families with children of all ages, happy, smiling, sharing, making us feel so welcomed. Families sharing their stories making you feel welcomed and connected, giving us an understanding that this process works and will happen for us. Jacob came home 2 months later, and I remember thinking one day we will share our story to a family in waiting and they will be inspired too!” -Molly I.
“Angela and I attended the 2011 picnic as a waiting family that had registered with STAR just two days prior. We were a little nervous and must have had that ‘new waiting family’ look about us, as once we settled at one of the tables, we did not move for 3 hours, as family after family came over to welcome us and introduce themselves. It was beyond comforting to feel so welcomed and hear so many positive stories. Like Molly, we now attend the picnic to return the favor and, hopefully, inspire other families-in-waiting.” -Kris A.
“I felt overwhelmed & alone, but it was good to see all the adoptive families because it still gave me hope. For some it can be difficult, however you can talk to any one of the families there & ask questions. I was also very New to the whole process & had no idea how to become involved in any STAR activities without feeling disappointed because we weren’t at the adoptive phase of our journey. Definitely bring people you are comfortable around & with. I was too shy then to talk to anyone. One piece of advice is do what you feel is comfortable for you & your family. Anything you do either alone or with others is a huge part of the journey, but never feel obligated.”
As the annual STAR picnic draws near, I find myself feeling both excited and nostalgic. It was 10 years ago that we attended our first picnic. I remember feeling nervous, as we were a “waiting family”. Upon arriving my nervousness was immediately replaced with inspiration. There were so many families with children of varying ages that had been formed the very same way we were dreaming of creating our family!
Adoption was no longer an abstract concept- it became concrete in every tiny face I saw, in every mother comforting a newborn, in every father pushing a toddler on the swings. I began to slowly realize, all of these families had or would experience the beautiful miracle of adoption. As I heard the placement stories of some, and the waiting stories of others a bond was formed. Attending the picnic allowed me to be with others who knew intimately the same ups and downs that were so familiar to me.
We left the picnic armed with new friends and hearts full of hope. The picnic was on a Sunday. On Wednesday, our social worker called with a profiling opportunity. The next day, we brought our daughter home. She is about to turn 10. We haven’t missed a picnic since.” Teri H.
Whether you have already adopted or are brand new to the agency, we hope you won’t miss this exciting and inspiring event!
Read More on What is Happening at Adoption STAR: Our Calendar of Events for 2013