'Tis the season of expectation. Of waiting. Of longing. And finally... receiving. It's about giving, thanksgiving and excitement.
At Choice Network, we're in a new season. This year we've been waiting, we've been working, developing, dreaming and expecting. And just last month, National Adoption Month, (coincidence?) we birthed a new series of helpful tech tools to help expectant women make connections with adoptive families, right from the clinic, as well as a new interface (as you are reading from!) for adoptive families and those looking for more info on the adoption process on our website.
We are particularly excited about our new app that's making it into the hands of women facing crisis pregnancy in our partner clinics who are considering their options. Our main focus with this new direction is to provide all options counseling, giving them the opportunity to explore adoption as one of those choices in a way that's more informative and more personal than ever. They connect with a Choice Network Coach right from the app if they'd like to learn more, and we walk with them every step of the way. We never pressure them to choose adoption, of course, we simply present information, share families who might appeal to them based on their desires, and lovingingly help guide them. We trust our women.
One of the first women to utilize the new app contacted us about adoption and decided, after talking with our amazing social worker Joni, that adoption was the right choice for her baby due in January. We started working with her on her information, her desires for a family for her child, etc. And then we got an unexpected call a few days later...
SHE WAS IN LABOR! This baby wasn't waiting until January, this baby wanted to make their debut on Turkey Day!
This is where our expertise and our network of amazing adoptive families came into play. We had to act quickly to make the perfect match, something we've done many times before. We are truly a 24/7/365 operation -- there is no "holiday" :) Molly and Joni talked with lawyers and families, and of course stayed in close contact with our sweet birth mom as she labored and delivered. For some families, an unexpected call from your adoption agency -- on a major holiday, no less -- can cause anxiety. There is so much to consider... but the "R" family knew this was their baby. Without hesitation, the out-of-state couple booked a red-eye to the hospital and met their birth mom and their new baby. They said "Yes!" to the unexpected, to their birth mother in need of a solid family. To their baby they knew was meant for their family as much as she did.
Our favorite part? The extra unexpected coming true... The birth mother originally wanted a closed adoption, but when the "R" Family was quickly matched with her, they immediately started to build a relationship, encouraging her, supporting her and cheering her on, even though they hadn't yet met face-to-face. The birth mother changed her mind and chose an open adoption. Now this child will have the opportunity to know where they come from, to have access to medical history, and to have a relationship that could mean so much for their well being and security in the long-run. Such an important, meaningful and unexpected choice, and one we pray will be full of love, trust and connection over their lives for the birth mother's benefit, the child's and the family's!
Adoption surely is about the unexpected. The timing that is not our own. The emotions, the highs and lows. The longing, the hoping, the receiving. The grief, the joy, the loss. In the end, through open adoption, we have one another. An unexpected union of two families committed to a culture of honor, love and trust.