Let’s go back to 2005.
It was the end of May. Joanne and I had been together nearly 4 years. We had been discussing becoming parents our entire relationship. But I was there, ready, waiting, NOW! We had gone through all of the options.
I was more than willing to be pregnant. Though I was concerned it couldn’t happen. And we wanted to have a known sperm donor, so that our child would know where they came from. But it seemed as though every single time we found a donor, they ended up backing out.
There I was, defeated, and upset. I stood in front of Joanne and yelled, and cried.
“IT’S NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN FOR US! WE’LL NEVER BE PARENTS!”
Heartbroken, and torn. I cried and shouted. She listened.
Over the next week I went through all the positives of not having kids. Because, let’s face it, there are pros and cons on each side. I was trying to look at the bright side, keep moving. It hardly worked.
Something got into me and I had to find a lost friend, and former roommate. Melissa and I had once been very close but due to a strange circumstance fell out of touch.
But I got a bug and had to get in touch with her. I didn’t know what the deal was. I searched for 2 weeks using any resource I could possibly come up with online. I wonder sometimes, if it had taken me more than 2 weeks to locate her, what would I have done?
Late one night, in June, I finally found Melissa when I remembered a nick name of hers and Google’d it: Zadey.
There she was and within an hour of locating her blog, she and I were talking online. She told me about Zadey’s birth-Mom. I didn’t think, I didn’t hesitate. I told Melissa we would love to adopt Zadey. This precious little baby was about to just be left at the hospital, after she gave birth. But here I am sitting childless and heart broken.
This was my baby. And I knew it.
Melissa connected me with Zadey’s birth-Mom and three days later, she hoped a Greyhound bus and came to Las Vegas to live with us.
We had the opportunity to watch her belly grow. We felt Zadey move in her belly, and she and I became close.
Joanne and I were there when Zadey was born. They broke her water at 6:36 AM and Zadey came out screaming at 11:55 AM on September 18, 2005.
She is perfect.
Within a few months of Zadey’s birth-Mom giving birth to her she found herself pregnant, again. There was a lot of ups and downs to our relationship at the time but she told us that she’d like to give this new baby to Joanne and I.
We were scared, and nervous. Zadey would be just 13 months old when this new baby was due. I never anticipated that we’d have one child, let alone two so quickly.
But nerves turned to excitement quickly. And we started the routine of preparing for a baby again.
All the excitement we had shopping for Zadey we went through again preparing. We picked out a name for this new little girl and decided on Zoey Leah. We told the whole family and everyone waited in anticipation for Zoey to arrive.
Birth-Mom stopped contacting us within just a few months of telling us about Zoey’s arrival. But we held out hope and continued to prepare.
Another few months had passed and I received a phone call from someone birth-Mom and I both knew. He told me to sit down and gave me terrible news… he saw Zadey’s birth-Mom, with a baby.
Our little girl had been born and without so much as an “I’m sorry” she ripped her from Joanne and I’s arms and our family.
We wanted to move on quickly. Everything we bought for our Zoey was returned. We didn’t talk much about it, we just took action.
Joanne and I were melting down over this loss. It felt as though we had experienced death. But neither of us were talking about the incredible pain we were in.
It took a visit from my Mom, months later, to help Joanne and I discuss what our problem was. Our devastation nearly cost us our relationship. But Mom helped and we moved on.
Within a few years, I was ready to give it a go again to have more children. I didn’t care which method we went with, but let’s not give up hope! We had to try to have more kids!
Joanne was done. Her heart had been broken, she was satisfied with one child, she didn’t feel the need to put herself through a potential loss again. And for years, I conceded, understanding where she was coming from.
But it was always there, in the back of my mind, I needed more children. My daughter needed a sibling. And Zadey gave my life so much purpose I couldn’t imagine how full my heart would be with more children.
It took years but Joanne went back and forth with agreeing and then deciding she couldn’t move forward. It was eating at me.
At 38 years old, Joanne simply came to the conclusion that she was too old too start over with a baby. And Zadey at 6 was now used to being an only child.
More devastation for me. How would I ever accept this?
What I want you to take away from reading this experience is this…
Adoptive families put their hopes and dreams in the hands (and womb) of other people. We realize the decision and sacrifice that is made to give up a child. But the loss of never actually receiving that child will forever cause damage to that family.
My personal lesson: NEVER say I will do something that I cannot do. And should I have to go back on my word, I will NEVER do it without consulting the person it would hurt.
Joanne and I would have understood the decision for her to keep her baby. How could we not? It was the complete lack of communication that made this such a tragic event for us.