This post is not about all the things 40licious is. It is not inspiring or informative. It is just that I wanted to write about how hard it is to be in the waiting phase of an adoption.

I keep wondering if we had better pictures that make us look more, I don’t know, suburban or Malibu, if that would make a difference. Without looking for them I keep seeing stories about how a mom drives her van with the kids into it in the river, or how the boyfriend kept the kids in a tiny cage until CPS freed everybody. And I can’t believe the unfairness of it all.

They mean well, the people who say, “Enjoy this time and take an amazing trip! Because your life will change once you have kids!” You know what? I have been to France, the Netherlands, Italy, Greece, Yugolavia when it was called that, Israel, Ireland, England, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica, and probably some other places that I forgot. I think I’m OK to have a kid. And maybe take her with us to the next place for a vacation.

The ones who say, “How’s the adoption going?” also mean well because they are really interested. Like my Mom. Who keeps sending me sweet little things for this baby we don’t know yet. But if I had something interesting or good to say I would say it. I don’t think she wants to know that I crumbled into a wet gooshy pile the other day when another “maybe but not quite” situation came up, a baby girl abandoned in a hospital where my friend works in another state. Too many systems to navigate. Too much paper to cross.

And the worst part is the people who hate adoption. The ones who had terrible childhoods with abusive adoptive parents, who have made it their mission to share their angst with people like us. We just want a family, and their truth is not our truth. I’ve been called “baby grabber” and “too white” and some really nasty other stuff by people who came across our adoption website. Which is why I’m about to unload the bulk of my savings on a different agency that specializes in marketing people to birthmothers considering adoption.

It is like planting a seed and watching, not knowing when it will come up, what it will be, or if it will even ever appear. And it is hard to believe after a while that anything will ever sprout. But you just wait. And there are infinite temperatures and flavors of waiting. And tonight is one of them.

Vanessa McGradyHard

Comments 7

  1. Mary@Barnmaven.com

    Vanessa, I’m sorry that the anti-adoption voices have found you. Some people seem to feel that their experience is universal and are unable to see adoption as positive. They don’t understand that many people have had amazingly positive experiences and that the world of open adoptions has been a game changer for almost everyone involved. Is it great that a mom can’t parent her baby? No, of course not. But in my opinion, any woman should have all available options, adoption being one of them. My own experience of adoption was incredibly positive, and while I think sealed records laws are unfair and inhumane, I’m not against adoption itself, not at all.

    I remember during my first marriage when I wanted so badly to get pregnant and it just wasn’t happening. We tried for three years, and I know that in the grand scheme of things that is not a long time, but it was agonizing to me. Once the marriage was over I was sure I would never have the chance to be a parent. Life had other plans.

    That deep seated need to mother is so incredibly strong. You needn’t apologize to anyone for wanting be a parent and for approaching parenthood via adoption. I’m sorry the waiting is so hard.

  2. Tracy H

    Vanessa, I’m sorry it’s so long and hard and frustrating and sad and crappy. But just gotta put one foot in front of the other for now and let it go a little and I bet someday when you’re not thinking so hard on it, the thing you most desire will come to you. I pray it will be so!

  3. christophersmom

    Hi Vanessa, new on this blog and enjoying it. I’m sorry to hear it’s been such a long wait. I happen to like the concept of adoption in any form. Hopefully a biological parent will pick you guys soon. Otherwise maybe you might want to look into adopting from the foster system. I know it involves dealing with traumatized children but on the other hand, you may find a child (or more than one) who you’d already know as a person and who’d fit in great with your family. Good luck,

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