A NICU Thank You

September is Neonatal Intensive Care Awareness month. Until this year, my only knowledge of a NICU was what I saw portrayed in TV medical dramas. I had no idea of the reality of NICU life let alone that there was a month dedicated to promoting awareness.

That all changed on July 30th when my husband and I received a call from the adoption agency. We had been matched with a baby boy, our son. He had been born 2 days prior and was expected to be in the NICU for at least one week. One week turned into three of the most emotional and stressful weeks of our lives. The shining light through that period were the healthcare professionals who took care of our son and were there for us day and night.

We bought them some sweet treats and wrote a thank you card on our last day but we were still so in the thick of things that it was a brief thank you. I never had the opportunity to truly express how thankful we were. Now that the dust has settled a bit, I want to make sure they know the impact they had. Continue reading

The Call

As we celebrated another Monday in the books by lounging on the couch, my husband’s phone began to ring. He planned on ignoring it but I just happened to look down at my phone and saw that I had a missed call from the social worker at the adoption agency. Immediately my heart started beating faster and I told him to grab his phone. It was from the same number.

We knew our on-line profile had just went live but could someone have already seen it and picked us? Or did she just have a few more follow up questions for us? It had to be important to warrant an after hours call right?

He picked up the phone and put it on speaker. The first few seconds of pleasantries lasted for what seemed to be minutes! Finally, the often thought about but not truly internalized words were spoken, “You have been matched”. Continue reading

Coming Back From My Breaking Point

As I attempted to zip up my size 16 bridesmaid dress, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and barely recognized the person looking back.

6 months prior I had ordered the dress 2 sizes too big in hopes of being pregnant. Yet I wasn’t pregnant and was barely able to squeeze myself into a dress I would have been swimming in a year earlier.

To an outsider it may have appeared to be about my weight but my ever widening waistline was merely a side effect of my pain. I was broken physically, mentally and emotionally and had no idea how to recover. Continue reading

What’s in a Name?

One night, early in our marriage, my husband and I were talking about what our future child would be like. I remember it vividly since it was the first time an abstract idea was being discussed as an actual person. While we were years away from becoming parents, it was fun to talk about the possibility of a little Palmer.

What characteristics would they get from each of us? Would they have my full lips and his blue eyes? Would they be athletic like him or clumsy like me?

Our discussion soon turned to names and we starting throwing out potential options. Many were shot down for various reasons, the name of an ex, an annoying co-worker or any other random reason that didn’t sit well with the other person. Continue reading

Home Study and Interview Process – The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Of all the components of the adoption process the home study/interview portion freaked me out the most.

I knew the background checks would come back clear and I was confident our friends and coworkers would write glowing references but the prospect of having a virtual stanger come into our home and ask us intimate questions was intimidating.

Our friends who had completed the process kept assuring us that it wasn’t nearly as scary as I was making it to be in my mind and said we would easily “pass”. In a major sense they were correct, after a visit to our home and two 1-on-1 interviews we were approved. Yet there were emotions that I went through that greatly impacted me. Here are the good, the bad and the “ugly” aspects of our home study process. Continue reading

Breakdown of Baby Items – Cost to Date

Alrighty here goes!

I want to stay on top of what the first year of our new addition is going to cost us and the best way for me to do that is to visually see where the money is going. Since we don’t know when we will welcome our baby home I’m starting with the very first baby item that we received. I say received because thankfully they won’t all be purchases (thank goodness for Buy Nothing groups!).

Continue reading

Generosity of a Stranger

As we start the process of setting up the nursery we are being as fiscally prudent as possible. When I heard that Babies R’ Us was going out of business I thought it would a great time to find some great deals. I entered the store with high hopes and left with them dashed.

5% off baby toiletry items, 10% off strollers and 20% off bottles and accessories. A quick check of Amazon and Target told me, even with the discount, the prices were still higher at Babies R’ Us. Baby items are so expensive!! Continue reading

Baby on a Budget!

As first time parents, we are starting from scratch in the baby item department. Being adoptive parents, we have spent a lot of money before even welcoming home our new addition. Suffice to say we are feeling a little overwhelmed by the expense of everything.

My goal is to find a way to do a lot with a little (money wise) in the way of baby items. I plan to document what has been acquired and the cost of each item. If there is a fun story about an item I will share that as well.

This is a great way for me to stay accountable and hopefully you will find it fun to follow along and maybe pick up a tip or two!


Our Journey Part 2 – Deciding on Adoption

Prior to us attending the adoption seminar, I had made an appointment with a Catholic fertility expert. With the Catholic fertility clinic, there would be no IUI or IVF options. Their goal was to get to the root of the problem rather than work around the problem.

This meant more testing and learning the Creighton Model of observing and charting cycles. The doctor we consulted with said it could take months to truly figure out what was going on. Due to the fact that I had lost a fallopian tube, I knew my chances were lower but we were never told the reason for the dismal approximation of a 3% fertility rate. The next step would be to attend a class on the Creighton Model. Continue reading

Our Journey Part 1 – Infertility

To be completely truthful, growing up I never dreamed about becoming a mother. My dreams consisted of building my career, traveling, falling in love and living for the moment. When my husband and I got married we didn’t try to prevent a pregnancy but we weren’t actively trying either. We were married 3 years before I became pregnant.

My initial reaction was disbelief. Ready or not, we were going to be parents.

Disbelief soon morphed into excitement, I was going to be a mom! Our excitement was short lived. The same day that I bought my first maternity outfit was the day that the bottom fell out. Continue reading