Never in a million years did we think that we would have the perfect adoption experience like we did with our son Nolan. We could not have asked for a more perfect match with Amanda, his birthmother. Adoption is often looked at as intimidating, uneasy and uncomfortable. Our experience proved to be the exact opposite.
For two years we had tried everything to have a baby on our own. After the second failed in Vitro Fertilization cycle, we decided that it was God's will to adopt a baby. After talking to many other people who had adopted their children, we were very excited to start the next chapter of our lives. We started the home study process in October 2004. By December 6, 2004 we were active with American Adoptions thanks to their organization, willingness, assertiveness and expertise in this area. After we were activated, we had a conference call to go over the next steps...then we started the waiting game. We were told that our profile was getting a lot of exposure, so we felt very confident that we would get a match soon. Little did we know it would be 17 days after we were activate in the agency!
On December 23, 2004 we got a call from Alli Garlich. She told us that we had been matched but that the birthmother, Amanda, wanted to call and tell us herself. We were in shock and disbelief...there is no way that we could have already been matched! About 20 minutes later we got a call from Amanda and she said, "Merry Christmas! It's a boy!" We both didn't know what to say. There were definitely tears shed, but tears of joy! We learned that Amanda lived in Arizona and that she was due January 25th! We couldn't believe it was all happening so fast! We couldn't have asked for a better Christmas present.
The next month flew by. We communicated with Amanda via email, confernce calls, and by the end of the it we felt so comfortable with her that we started calling her directly ourselves. We really got to know each other and were able to ask questions that we both had on our minds. She asked us if we knew what we were going to name the baby and after that she referred to him as Nolan.
Her doctor planned for her to be induced on January 23rd to make it easier for us to plan a date for us to go out to Arizona. We met Amanda for dinner with both families attending as well on Saturday, January 22nd. After dinner we went back to Amanda's house to visit and get to know each other better. It was amazing how comfortable we all were...it was like we had known each other forever.
The next day was a long day. Amanda was in labor for 25 hours! She had asked us to be in the room with her whenever possible so we all just hung around the hospital the entire time. At 10:45 pm on January 23rd, Amanda's nurse thought that the umbilical cord must be wrapped around the baby's neck because she wasn't progressing. The nurse called the doctor and he arrived and prepped her for a C-Section. She has asked us to be in the delivery room and for Cliff to cut the cord, but the would only allow one person in the operating room. She needed her mom to be with her and we completely understood. Nolan was born at 11:12 pm. Amanda's mom carried Nolan from the operating room and then let us see him. Amanda asked for a minute alone with him, and then invited us into her room and then handed him to us. He was the most precious baby.
We were there with Amanda for the entire birthing process. It meant so much that she wanted us there so we would be a part of his life from the beginning. We spent the next 2 1/2 days at the hospital with Amanda, Nolan and members of her family. On the day they were discharged Amanda asked us to all walk out of the hospital together. She carried Nolan as they wheeled her out. When she got up she has a moment with him then handed him to us. She hugged us and through her tears told us that if there was ever anything that we ever needed to please let her know. We were speechless. Amanda's mom hugged us and told us to make sure that Nolan knew how much he was loved by them. We assured her that he would know that he is loved twice as much.
We still remain in contact with Amanda and her family. They are a very special family and we think so much of them. Nolan is a wonderful baby that we love so very much. We tell everyone what a great adoption experience we had and that we could not have asked for a better birth mom. Our lives are so blessed and we know that it was meant to be...it was God's will.
Cliff & Julie
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