Like many parents, when we go out on date nights, we usually end up talking about our kids.
Even when they aren’t around, they consume our lives – and we wouldn’t have it any other way! We often say that we can’t remember life before children, and we love the way that feels. We threw ourselves headfirst and heart-first into the adoption of our kids (a sibling pair who were 5 years and 16 months old when they moved in with us). The adoption process took over 2 years to complete, and to make a long story (extremely) short, to say it was a rollercoaster of emotions is a tremendous understatement. When we finally finalized the adoptions, we felt like the biggest weight in the world had been lifted off our shoulders. So you can imagine our surprise when Rob casually suggested several months ago that we consider adopting again. There was some chuckling followed by nervous laughter. Why would we EVER put ourselves through that emotional process again?!?
It didn’t take long for the nervous laughter to settle into contemplation – well, why shouldn’t we consider adopting again? We didn’t arrive at an answer quickly, but over the next few months, we had an on-again, off-again conversation where we’d take turns playing devil’s advocate. There were lots of questions to answer. Do we have enough physical room in our home to adopt a third child? What about the ability to afford another kid? Is it the right time to adopt again? And even if we think we’re at a place in our lives where it makes sense to adopt again, how will this affect the kids? I mean, we thought that we could approach this new process with an openness and inclusivity that would make it easier on them…but they’ve been through so much in their young lives – would they really be OK? And then there was one final question that kept popping up repeatedly: have we lost our ever-loving minds??? Knowing the emotional rollercoaster that we went through with adoptions #1 and #2, did we REALLY want to put ourselves through that a third time?
But in the midst of all of the conversations about what was practical, we eventually let our hearts take over
We asked ourselves: do we have enough love to offer another child? That was the only question that was easy to answer. No question about it. Words can’t describe the amount of love we have for our kids, and we knew that, just like our love expanded to cover Anna and Christian, it would easily expand for a third child. That’s when we had our answer. As important as it is to consider the practical questions, a child in foster care doesn’t need a fancy house or the extra vacations. They need love and acceptance and safety. We may not be able to offer everything, but we can offer the most important things. It was then that we decided to update our home study and start the matching process again.
We spoke with one of our original social workers who led our MAPP training and helped us make it through the first adoption. We set up a meeting, submitted our fingerprints again, and updated our home study report. We were up and running in no time. But this time around, we knew things would be different. Instead of focusing on finding a child that is a good match for just us, we would now have to ensure that all of the kids are a good match together. For that reason, we are taking things slowly, and we want to make sure that we proceed carefully and thoughtfully.
During the first adoption process, when we first learned about Anna and Christian from the adoption worker, we knew (I mean, we KNEW) that we had found our kids. Everyone had told us that we would know when the right situation presented itself, and they were right. We are trusting and believing that they will be right again. As we begin our third adoption journey, we are nervous and a little scared, but we know that we are doing what is right for us and for our kids. We are ready.
About the Family
Robert and Christopher are from the MetroWest Boston area. They were matched with their children, Anna and Christian (a sibling pair) in 2013 and finalized their adoptions in 2015. Rob and Chris both found the adoption community to be generous and very supportive during their first adoptions, and they love to give back by sharing their adoption experience with new families. They are really excited about expanding their family and the possibility of their third adoption!