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Daniel & Shannon
We are excited to be building our family through adoption. We had our first child using a donated egg, but the doctor has told Shannon that she should not become pregnant again. We both grew up with siblings, and always hoped to have multiple children in our family as well. We look forward to meeting you and the wonderful baby that you're bringing into the world!
Why We Chose Adoption
We love being parents and sharing our lives with our son, Vincent. However, the road to parenthood has not been easy for us. Before we got married, we knew that it was possible that we might have fertility problems. When we were unable to conceive naturally, we started seeing a fertility doctor. Less invasive treatments were ineffective, and we eventually turned to in vitro fertilization (IVF) using a donated egg. Our son was born in 2020 using an egg from an anonymous donor. Vincent was our last shot at fertility treatment. If Shannon hadn't gotten pregnant with him, we would have gone straight to adoption.
Vincent is a great kid. He's a goofy guy, who laughs easily and loves to make us laugh. He likes to "fix" his toy cars with us. He also likes to cook food in his play kitchen and brings us whatever he makes. It's fun to imagine him playing trains or throwing a ball with a little brother or sister, just like he does with friends at school.
We spent the first year and a half of our son's life learning to be parents and enjoying the time with him. We wanted a second child, but the doctor strongly advised against Shannon getting pregnant again. Completing our family with an adopted child seems a natural fit for us. We will already be having conversations with our son about the unique circumstances of his birth, since Shannon is his mother, but not his genetic parent. We will greet our adopted child with the same love and open arms that we have for our son.
Our Leisure Time
Like a lot of families during the pandemic, we have been focusing on hobbies that we can practice at home. We love to cook a new dish in the kitchen or get into a discussion about a TV show.
Recently, we've been returning to the hobbies that we practiced while we were dating and earlier in our married life. We met swing dancing, and we still love it. Over the summer, we did some swing dancing at a friend's birthday party at a winery. It was fantastic to be back on the dance floor!
We love board games and puzzles. We have two big dining tables in our house, one for eating, and the other gaming. We selected our house in part because it has an open floor plan that works well for hosting game days for friends. Having several game tables going simultaneously makes for a lively event.
We also both love to play the piano. Shannon's parents gifted us their old piano. We plan to get Vincent and your child involved in piano lessons, if they show interest. If either child does play, we will likely study alongside them, and the house will be filled with music.
Lastly, we love hiking. We had two honeymoons, which both involved hiking. Daniel's family in Colorado have taken us hiking in the Rockies, and we look forward to going back. There is a state park about 25 minutes from our house with wonderful views.
Adoption in Our Family
We have several family members and friends in our circle who are adopted themselves or who are adoptive parents.
Two of Shannon's father's cousins are adopted and one of Daniel's cousins and his wife have adopted two sons from Korea.
Shannon talks to her Aunt Katie about once a month. Katie was adopted in the 1960s in a closed adoption. She located her birth mother some years ago and they have built a positive relationship. Katie is aware that we intend to adopt and she will be available to offer her love and an adoptee's perspective as we move forward.
In addition, one of Daniel's bosses, who he interacts with frequently, adopted both of her children as a single parent. Both of her children are of a different race than her, and one of them has special needs. One of their recent holiday cards included a family picture; their smiles were radiant. It was plain to see how happy adoption has made them as a family. Their experience has been an inspiration to us.
Finally, our son's daycare says they have several other families enrolled whose children are adopted. We look forward to connecting with them as we move forward.
Our House and Neighborhood
We live in a suburb of a large Midwestern city, about 25 minutes from the city center. Our house is a three-bedroom ranch house with a nice yard. Our favorite rooms are the living room and kitchen; whenever we have people over, that's where people end up. There are seats at the counter so our guests can talk to us as we cook, and we can watch the kids play in the living room.
The baby's room will have the best view in the house, onto a large green space backed by a small wooded area. A creek runs through the woods, and we see deer, hawks, owls, and the occasional fox and groundhog in our yard. The neighborhood is a peaceful place with tree-lined streets and sidewalks. We see dog-walkers and kids playing outside all the time. There's no park within walking distance, but there are several within 10 minutes' drive which have playground equipment for younger and older kids. Our favorite park has a fountain to run through in the summertime.
We chose this neighborhood in part because it is in the best school district in the area. In addition to having an older brother, the baby will have lots of kids on our street and in our neighborhood to play with.
Our Extended Families
Both of our parents live within 15 minutes' drive of our house. The baby will see both sets of grandparents at least once a week. In addition, we each have one sibling in town, who have families of their own. We see them for birthdays and holidays, and sometimes just to hang out. The child will have a cheering section at sports games and music recitals, and will have lots of people there to see them blow out their birthday candles.
When there's a problem, our families are there for us. This has been especially helpful when the refrigerator dies, someone has car trouble, or the daycare is closed.
Our families love holidays. Daniel's favorite holiday is the Fourth of July. His dad taught him to grill, and the guys all work the grill together. The table will be full of hamburgers, brats, roasted vegetables, and several kinds of BBQ sauce. Shannon's favorite holiday is Christmas. Her family loves to decorate a big tree and wrap gifts. Shannon's sister will put together a holiday playlist. We'll enjoy looking at each other's gifts and have a buffet lunch, with fruitcake, butter cookies, and chocolate peppermint cookies for dessert. But first, on Christmas Eve, we follow Daniel's family's tradition of driving around to look at Christmas lights with our son.
Our extended families are aware of and supportive of our adoption plan. They can't wait to meet the latest member of the family!
From Us to You
Hi, we are very happy that you have decided to learn more about us! We are honored that you are considering entrusting us with the precious little life you are about to bring into the world.
Let us tell you a bit about ourselves. We have known each other for over 10 years and in 2022, we celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary. Shannon is an attorney at a large law firm, practicing banking and securities law. Daniel is an environmental scientist who works for a utility company. Both of us are fortunate to have jobs that allow us a measure of flexibility. We both work from home at least 2-3 days each week, and can take time off for vacations and to cover household responsibilities. We own a home and we don't presently have any pets. We have one son, born in 2020, after four and a half years of fertility treatments, using an egg from an anonymous donor. He is the light of our lives and we'd love for him to have a little brother or sister.
When we got married, we talked about and hoped for 2 or 3 kids, but we knew it was possible that we might have fertility problems - and we did. Getting pregnant was much harder than anyone would have thought and carrying a child also turned out to be more dangerous for Shannon than we had expected. Because of that, we decided not to attempt to get pregnant again and to instead grow our family through adoption.
We imagine that this must be a time of great stress and uncertainty for you. Every day moves you closer to one of the biggest decisions you will ever make: will you choose to parent, and if you choose not to, who will be the best parents for your child? We're sure that you will make the right decision for yourself and your child. Have faith in yourself, and you'll find the right answer in your heart.
We'd love to tell you that we're absolutely certain we would be the best parents for your child, but we've found that parenting doesn't leave much room for absolute certainty! Like every other parent, we're learning every day. Every day brings new challenges and requires constant adjustment. Being parents is a balancing act, steadied by certain core principles that drive our lives:
Everything else is a process of discovery, a daily adventure that we take together.
As you move forward, please remember that choosing to place your child for an open adoption does not mean the child disappears from your heart, or from your life. We'll send pictures and letters as the child grows. We should talk about a schedule for emails and phone calls, if you're interested. At least once in the child's first five years, we'll arrange a face-to-face meeting with you, if you're open to it. We promise you that the child will be raised to know your name, to honor your choice in placing him or her for adoption, and to think of you with respect. If the child is from a different ethnic or racial background than ours, we are prepared to forge relationships and learn how to connect the child to that part of their heritage.
Adoption is a lifelong commitment. When you're ready, we look forward to meeting you and to talking about the kind of future we all hope to build for this child.
Daniel & Shannon
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