Oh my. I just don't even know how to begin answering this question. I get asked it often though (which doesn't bother me by the way), I just don't always know how to answer it. So there may be more truth thrown out there in this post than I went into it intending.
For one, there is this whole other language used in the adoption world. And along with this language is a culture that I've been put in the midst of and had to find my way around.
Part of this culture is understanding that being turned down by a birthmom is not the same thing as being rejected. But because I so often bow to idol of others approval of me, I don't always tell people that a birthmom is looking at our profile, because odds are she won't pick us. We may be one of 3, 5, 12, or however many families she looks at.
I also don't tell simply because it's a really emotional rollercoaster and I don't know that everyone wants to be along for the ride. I don't even enjoy the ride all the time.
So here's the reality of the situation.
We've been shown to 4 birthmoms. Two in Florida, one in Indiana, and one in Kansas City. We've debated being shown to countless others. We decided not to for two basic reasons, either the baby was going to have known special needs that we decided are outside our scope of openness or they were too expensive. Only 2 were because of special needs and 10? 20? were because of cost.
Just so you know, the cost of adoption varies wildly. There are $10,000 adoptions and there are $80,000+ adoptions. I'm not going to go into our own personal budget, but I can say that we will not be at the high end (or anywhere remotely near it) because at that point I feel like you are dealing with agencies that are preying on families who want a healthy baby that meets specific parameters and we want no part of that. We also just plain don't have that much disposable income.
We are going into birthmom situation #5 right now that we decided to be shown to. It's a local mom. The baby most likely will have some level of special needs. He/she won't be born completely healthy, but who can predict that their child will be? Case and point, our little Evelyn. I won't share the details of the birthmom even if we are matched and even if she follows through with the match and places with us. That information will belong to our child first, and if he/she decides to share it, great. It's their story.
On that note, I debate even sharing with the whole big interwebs even if we are matched. We have a couple different sets of friends who are also adopting. One of them had 3 failed adoptions (birthmom decided to parent), the other has had 2. So even if I decide to post a "Yay, we're matched!" post, that may not mean anything other than grief if it falls through. Do I want to have to go through that publicly? I'm not sure. It feels a little like when you keep a pregnancy a secret at first because of all the what ifs.
This post feels a little like word vomit. It kind of is. It's late (well, in old married with children people time, it's really only about 11:00) and Scott is at work. He let me know he may come home for a catnap sometime in the wee hours before he changes and heads back. So you're welcome internet, you get my ramblings because I don't sleep well on my own.