about my journey towards domestic adoption and other musings

Blogging

Well, it seems that I’m an inconsistent blogger, which doesn’t surprise me. I’m that way with journaling too. So, I’ll stop apologizing for the length of time it’s been since I wrote my last blog post and write when I feel like it (or when I remember that I have a blog) and be ok with that. I’m not going to be the kind of person who will write every day, or even every month, apparently. I was looking at my stats and was surprised that people are finding and reading my blog…not many, mind you, but a few and I hope that it has been an encouragement to them. That was my goal in starting the blog, to encourage other women who are going through miscarriage, infertility or who are in the process of adopting. To let them know that they are not alone. I’ll update on what’s happening in our lives in a separate post…that way I can have 2 in one day!

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Wow! It’s been a really long time since I’ve been on here. I guess you could say I was hibernating for the winter months.

At the end of 2009, we began re-evaluating our adoption plans. Given the length of time it was taking to adopt through our adoption attorney, we wanted to pursue other options. I spent some time doing research and we contacted two places, in January. They seemed to be good options on the surface, but the more we investigated and asked questions we realized they were not the right fit for us. We decided to look extensively at many options and I was back on the computer researching agencies, attorneys, and facilitators (there are pretty significant differences between the three options). The whole process was quite overwhelming for me. I found it very difficult to look at options objectively. I worked very slowly on it all the while feeling like I was wasting time that could be spent towards the process with a particular organization. But, I also wanted to find the right fit for us and know what we were getting into before we signed up. Once I had gathered basic information on about 6 places, Isaac and I talked through our thoughts on each one and we easily narrowed it down to one. Since I had been doing the research and had all the information, I knew, before we talked which one I was most comfortable working with. All told, the research process took about 3 months, this doesn’t include all the research I had done on international adoption and the research I did when we signed up with the adoption attorney over a year ago.

It was really tempting for me to only consider the options that were seemingly “fast”, but I am letting that go for a place that fits our needs. The time frame of adoption is so hard to predict. Sometimes it happens quickly and sometimes it takes a long time. In most cases for domestic adoption, the average wait time to be matched with a birthmom is one year. We’ll be working with Bethany Christian Services, which is a full service agency. They take care of everything, start to finish. We could have also worked with a referral agency, or facilitator, where we pay a fee for advertising and matching and then complete the legal side of things with an attorney or agency. It can be a little quicker to go that route as they will start looking for matches before you complete the required home study. In our case, we will have to complete the home study (which can take 3-6 months) before we can be matched with a birthmom. In all cases, the birthmom chooses us, by looking at profiles that fit what she (and we) are looking for.

So now that we have chosen to work with Bethany, we have two information meetings to attend this month, then we will be given our formal application. Once we complete that, we can start our “Family Assessment” which is also known as the home study.

We’ve been on this journey now for nearly 6 years. It’s really hard to believe it’s been that long and it some ways it feels like it will never end. So many times it feels like we’ve been so close to reaching our dream of having children. I’m excited about pursuing adoption, and to be on to the next phase of our journey. It hasn’t gone at all like I expected it would, but I’ll continue to trust in God and I can’t wait to bring the baby, that God has chosen for us, into our home. In the meanwhile, I’ll pray for the birthmom we will be matched with, for our baby, and work diligently through the steps of the adoption process.

A few new things I’ve discovered as we’ve changed our eating habits (click on the names to get more details).

1.  Mary’s Gone Crackers ~ really yummy, gluten free, crackers.  Tastes great with hummus.

2.  Seeds of Change – Indian Simmer Sauces ~ ok, really yum.  Just tried the Jalfrezi one tonight, with chicken and spinach. super good and I didn’t find it too spicy at all.  I’ll try the Madras one next. 

3. Rice and Bean Chips with Adzuki Beans ~ great alternative for tortilla chips, but very addictive 🙂

This next one is not so new, but one of my favorite go-to soup recipes.  SOOO good.

4.   Smoky Sweet Potato Chicken Stoup ~click on the name to go to the recipe.

Enjoy!

She’s alive!!

Sometimes there’s just not much to say…or it takes too much effort to think of something to write.  That’s how I feel right now.  I’ve been working on alot in my personal life, including the change of diet.  That’s had it’s frustrating moments as I haven’t seen the results I was expecting, yet.  I’m still hoping that things will improve and I will begin to feel better soon.  How can it not be good to eat more fruits and veggies and cut out fast food??  Anyways, I’m sticking with it and I have noticed a decrease in my cravings this week.  Now I would like to see an increase in my energy level and less irritability.  Maybe my body is just slower in responding to the change than I thought it would be.   I guess there’s a reason why it’s a 6 week program, but one I hope to continue for much longer.  Isaac told me that one positive that has come out of this change in eating habits has been that we’ve discovered what a good cook I am.  Well, I don’t know how true that is (thanks for the compliment), but it’s been fun to try out new recipes, especially when they turn out well.  I think another positive is that Isaac is eating vegetables 🙂  If you know him, then you know that this is, in fact, quite shocking!

Anyways, I’m still out here and alive, in case anyone was wondering.

Shadows

I just got a copy of the new David Crowder CD – Church Music. This song really ministered to me (the whole cd is great btw!)

Life is full of light and shadow
O the joy and O the sorrow
O the sorrow

And yet will He bring
Dark to light
And yet will He bring
Day from night

When shadows fall on us
We will not fear
We will remember

When darkness falls on us
We will not fear
We will remember

When all seems lost
When we’re thrown and we’re tossed
We remember the cost
We rest in Him
Shadow of the cross

A discussion we had last night at the support group that I attend, caused me to remember and think about the many ways that God has blessed us through this journey we’ve been on. All along the way, with each miscarriage we’ve been through, He has provided for us in so many ways. We’ve moved twice in that time frame and God has always brought wonderful friends into our lives, which have been there for us, praying for us and supporting us through the tough times. Even though they may not realize it, the small ways that they cared are what meant the most. A simple phone call, listening ear, or “I’m praying for you” let me know that they care.

At times, I have felt lonely, but I realize those are usually the times when I have separated myself from people and not really shared what was on my heart. The thing is, I want people to know what I need without me telling them, but that’s not the way it works. They can’t read my mind. I have to share the hurts and difficulties so that people have an opportunity to support me and care for me. If I look fine on the outside, and say that I’m fine when people ask, but really I’m not, I’m not being authentic and can’t expect that people would know any differently. I don’t think it’s wise to try this approach with just anyone, but know the people in your life who truly care about you and have supported you in the past (people you trust) and share with them when you are hurting. Tell them what you need from them. Remember that they can’t read your mind.

How can you support someone who is hurting? It’s not easy to know what to say or do. Ask them! How can I help you? What do you need? How can I be praying for you? Be available to them. Listen. Let them know that you are thinking of them. Acknowledge their hurt, don’t ignore it.

I love this verse:

Galatians 6:2 ~ Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

There are a number of reasons that we have decided to make this change in our diet (there are other lifestyle changes involved as well). It started when we saw a special on PBS with Dr. Mark Hyman. He was talking about The UltraMind Solution, the 7 keys to UltraWellness and how we can heal our brains by healing our bodies first. I have been struggling with depression and some anxiety for some time now, as well as other minor (and some major!) medical issues, it seems like I’m always going to the dr. for some small reason or another. Gluten & dairy are the top food allergens that don’t have severe or noticeable reactions (like a nut allergy might). The book recommends stopping all gluten, dairy & sugar for 6 weeks, then reintroducing gluten & dairy to see if there is an allergy to them. There is so much more to this program, all of which come from the 7 keys to UltraWellness. Changing my diet is only one aspect of the program. I’ll also be adding in supplements that I am lacking in. The book has a number of quizzes to see what you are lacking and offers suggestions of what supplements to use.   I can recommend the book, which has so much helpful information.  After the 6 weeks (or maybe sooner, based on how I’m feeling).  I’ll let you know if I can recommend the lifestyle changes.  I can’t see how it won’t be a good thing though!

Here’s an excerpt from Dr. Mark Hyman’s website:

This epidemic of “broken brains” shows up in radically different ways from person to person, so they seem like separate problems. But the truth is that they are all manifestations of a few common underlying causes.

These seemingly different disorders are ALL really the same problem–imbalances in the 7 keys to UltraWellness.

The imbalances take many shapes including schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s disease.

In addition, there are brain problems that fall on the lighter side of the broken brain continuum, and while many psychiatrists and neurologists wouldn’t qualify these problems as treatable diseases, they still cause unnecessary suffering for many.

These problems include chronic stress, lack of focus, poor concentration, brain fog, anger, mood swings, sleep problems, or just feeling a bit anxious or depressed most of the time.

There is an answer to brain problems, but it’s not more drugs or psychotherapy. Although these tools can be a helpful bridge during your recovery from a broken brain, they won’t provide long term solutions.

The secret that promises to help us fix our broken brains lies in an unlikely place, a place modern medicine has mostly ignored.

The Answer Lies Inside Your Body

You have to fix your broken brain by healing your body first.

Inside The UltraMind Solution you will learn how system imbalances in your body mess up your head, fog your brain, cloud your memory and eventually cause serious disorders.

All we have to do is optimize the 7 keys to an UltraMind, which you’ll learn how to do in the program. All you have to do is:

  • Optimize Your Nutrition
  • Balance your hormones
  • Cool off inflammation
  • Fix your digestive system
  • Enhance detoxification
  • Boost energy metabolism
  • Calm your mind