This guest post is by Tim Elder, an adoptive father and founder of the Infant Adoption Guide. It is part of A Dad’s Devotion, a month-long series of original stories related to adoption, fatherhood and Father’s Day.
This is the dream of thousands of men every year, and it was my dream too — to adopt a newborn and finally become a daddy.
I have to admit that adoption wasn’t the way I thought my wife and I would grow our family — even after being married for a few years and having a biological child wasn’t easily happening for us.
Month after month went by and nothing happened — until we finally got a positive mark on the pregnancy test! We were on cloud nine! Wow — if only we could bottle that kind of joy.
Then after 10 wonderful weeks, my wife had a miscarriage. No way. This couldn’t be happening. After all of those weeks of getting baby books, talking about names, preparing for our little one to come into the world…it was over. Just like that. We were devastated and crushed.
After taking time to grieve, we started trying again. We eventually started infertility treatments and went many more months without getting pregnant. We wondered if we were ever going to have a family.
Even though we weren’t stopping our infertility treatments, we started looking into adoption. We decided early on that we wanted to adopt a newborn. I remember praying to God that he would make me a daddy however it would happen.
We completed our home study with a local agency and contracted with Lifetime Adoption Center. We wrote our ‘Dear Birthmother’ letter, put together our profile and we were ready to be matched.
The waiting time was tough. We worried that our profile didn’t look good enough –- or maybe we said the wrong things in our ‘Dear Birthmother’ letter. Lifetime assured us that it would just take time for the right birthmother to choose us, and they were right.
Ironically, it took 9 months until our daughter was placed with us.
When we got “the call” I nearly drove off the road as our adoption coordinator told me a birthmother wanted to match with us -– and she was due in a week! The next day we spoke with her and we were matched! It was a whirlwind week as we made plans to go to Nevada for the birth.
All of the waiting and suddenly everything was happening fast! I was really excited because our daughter’s birthmother wanted us there at the birth and for me to cut the umbilical cord -– how cool would that be?
We ended up getting to the hospital four hours after our daughter was born. It was awkward seeing our daughter’s birthmother for the first time, but we hugged and loved her like family -– because now she was.
As I held our baby girl for the first time – it was a little weird, yet I was struck by my love for her. She was so tiny, so precious, and such a miracle. When that kind of love takes you in, it changes you.
The day we left the hospital was rough. We were so happy to have our little girl, yet so sad for our daughter’s birthmother. As we hugged goodbye, we were all in tears. We assured her that we would take great care of this special little angel. We agreed to send pictures and letters every month for the first year, then more or less after that if she wished.
As we got off the airplane back home, I was trying to record video of us walking up to meet our family that were waiting to greet us. I carried several bags and my wife was trying to console our baby girl – who was crying because she was hungry.
As we walked up to our family and saw the tears in their eyes…I felt it…my dream. After 13 years of marriage and trying so hard to start our family, our dream had come true –- and my dream of becoming an adoptive daddy had finally come true.
Tim Elder is an adoptive dad, blogger about domestic adoption at InfantAdoptionGuide.com, and husband to his wife of 18 years. He loves connecting with other couples that are starting or are already on their adoption journey.
Do you have an adoption story?
Share it with us as part of A Dad’s Devotion, a month-long series of original stories by adoptive parents, birthparents and hopeful adoptive parents and adoptees. How has adoption changed your definition of fatherhood or family? What impact has it had on your life and what do you want people to know about it? Submit your story here or learn more by checking out our Guidelines For Guest Posts at America Adopts!