I had the day off on Friday, March 11, 2016. I followed my normal routine which was to begin the day by drinking coffee and stalking our birthmother’s Facebook page. Much to my surprise, I discovered that she had “unfriended” us. Alarm bells went off in my head. I knew right then it was over. I was in disbelief. I was confused. I was devastated.
After taking a few moments to shed some tears and grab my composure, I decided to text Scott. My exact text to him was, “Honey…..(——-) deleted us on Facebook.” I look back on that decision today and realize how insensitive it was. I should have called him like a normal, caring, decent person. You don’t drop a bombshell like that via text message. What the hell was I thinking? And, now that I think about it, I have never apologized to him for that.
Scott did not know what to say or how to react. We both ended up emailing the birthmother to ask her what happened and if everything was alright. We never received replies.
I thought it was best to contact the lawyer that we had in Missouri to let her know what was going on and to ask for our money back. Scott contacted the adoption agency. Both were very supportive, encouraging and apologetic.
Scott wanted to come home from work to be with me so we could console each other. I really wanted him to, but I thought it was best that he stay and be around his work family for support. He was also scheduled to play tennis that evening, which he wanted to cancel. I told him not to. Hitting tennis balls is a great way to let off steam and get your mind off of your troubles. That’s probably what he needed. If he came home, we would have ended up crying and being depressed all day. I am sure that neither one of us would have done a great job of making the other feel better about the situation.
What I really wanted was to be alone. When something bad happens in my life, I prefer to retreat into my shell like a turtle until I feel better about it. That didn’t quite happen.
I told a friend, who told another friend. Before I knew it, I was hosting a game night with these friends sitting around the dining room table eating Chinese food and getting drunk. It was fine, I guess. It didn’t take my mind off of things because it’s all everyone wanted to talk about.
Scott came home around 8:30. He was not pleased that there were people at the house. I understood that our friends didn’t want me to be alone. It was definitely appreciated. I also understood that Scott didn’t feel like having company. He just wanted to be alone with me so we could grieve in peace.
I was now at a point where I did not want to continue with the adoption process. I didn’t have it in me to go through another failed adoption. If you haven’t gone through one, let me just tell you that it stings. It sucks, actually. Scott was very good at encouraging me to keep going. He kept telling me that everything will work out in the end and that this happened for a reason. Scott is definitely a better man than I am. He is very forgiving and actually wrote a very nice email to the birthmother wishing her well and letting her know that there were no hard feelings. I, on the other hand, could not echo his sentiment. Unfortunately, I tend to take things personally.
The birthmother never responded to either of us, the lawyer, social worker, or the agency. We were just left with unanswered questions, hurt feelings, and sadness. She never completely blocked us from Facebook and her page was public, so Scott checked daily to see if she had given birth. I had no desire to see or hear anything about her.
A couple of weeks later, she did give birth to a beautiful and healthy baby girl.
The adoption agency had put us back up live on their website. Now, we just had to wait again to be picked by another birthmother. We left the nursery alone. It stayed pink as a reminder of what could have been. For a while, I just left the door closed so I didn’t have to look in there. Time really does heal all wounds, though. I have never told Scott this, but as time went by, I would go up to the nursery and just sit in the rocking chair and stair at the crib and gallery that we had put up. It started with me wondering what our lives would be like if that adoption had succeeded. Then, it turned into me using the time I spent in there as inspiration to hang in there and never give up on my dream of becoming a parent.
Fast forward to summer 2016. We were still waiting. One day after work, we went to our local neighborhood bar to have a few drinks. While sitting there at the bar, Scott received a phone call from his cousin in California. He went outside to talk. I just sat there with a big smile on my face because I immediately knew what the call was about. He came back in and told me that his cousin knew a woman that was pregnant, due around Christmas, was having a boy, and was considering adoption. The short version of the story is that this poor woman ended up having an affair with a man she did not know was married. The father didn’t want anything to do with her because he already had a wife and kids who did not know that he got another woman pregnant.
We sent her an introduction letter along with a hard copy of our adoption profile. She, along with her family, loved our profile and decided to move forward with us as the adoptive parents. We were very excited, to say the least. We didn’t want to get our hopes up and make the same mistakes that we had made with our previous connection. We told only our family and closest friends. We didn’t buy or paint anything. We definitely learned our lesson and pretty much kept it quiet.
This was now a private adoption and did not have anything to do with our agency. So, we decided not to tell them about it so we could remain on the website just in case it were to fall through.
A few weeks went by and everything was going smoothly. We had begun to look for a lawyer and social worker in California. Then, out of the blue, we were notified that the birthfather had filed an injunction to not allow the birthmother to put the baby up for adoption. He had also filed for custody of the unborn child. And that was all she wrote.
Dealing with a failed adoption isn’t easy and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. However, we handled this one much better than the last. We only had feelings of disappointment. We weren’t emotional at all. We knew, again, that this one wasn’t meant to be. Our perfect match was out there somewhere. So, we waited.
On December 1, 2016, we were sitting in the living room watching TV. I turned to Scott and asked him if we had a boy, could his middle name be Benjamin? He asked why, and I explained that because his best friend Ben had died when they were kids, I thought it would be a nice way of paying homage to him. Scott was touched and he agreed. I remember him asking me, “You really think we’re going to have a boy, don’t you?” I did. I had a dream about it. The very next day, we received the call that would change our lives forever…….