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Griffin & Bekah
Thank you for thinking of us as your adoptive parents. It's hard to know what to say to convey how much this means to us, or how we can introduce ourselves in a way that makes you feel like you really know us. This profile might not be able to do all of that, but hopefully it's a good start to what will be a significant lifelong relationship for both of us.
How We Met
We both worked for a non-profit organization that assisted families with counseling, community resource needs, and refugee resettlement. While Bekah worked in the counseling department and Griffin worked in the business department, the office was fairly small and we ran into each other a lot. Initially we would just see each other in the break room or during meetings. Bekah was finishing her master's degree at the time and was drinking more coffee than was good for her, Griffin (also a lover of coffee) was grabbing a cup one day and asked Bekah if he could bring anything back for her. She was already on cup #3, so said no thank you but asked for a rain check.
Griffin came back from his coffee run with a caffeinated fruit drink for her anyway. That's when she knew this thoughtful guy was one to pay more attention to. A few days later we met up at a community concert and made plans for our first date shortly after that. It didn't take long for us to find that we had tons of similar interests and we made each other laugh. Our sense of humor is pretty dry, so when we found that we both thought the other was hilarious it was magic.
Our lifestyle is experience oriented as opposed to "stuff" oriented. When it comes to how we spend our time we like to gather experiences and to do things we haven't done before. We have only lived in our current city for three years and know there is so much more to do. This year we have decided we are going to do at least one thing each month in town that we have never done before. Last month we checked out a historic music venue that was new to us, and last summer we went on a cross-state camping trip (we learned that ticks really freak us out, and that if you believe in yourself and find enough pine cones you can start a campfire without a starter log!)
The experience part of our life isn't just about what we do on the weekends. We cook and eat dinner together almost every day of the week. This is a special part of our day when we come together and talk about the good, the bad, and the ugly. Dinnertime gives us a chance to refocus on our family and process through what is going on in our lives. We have always prioritized people and memories over having the latest and greatest. We have been so fortunate to have so many experiences that have broadened our perspectives and exposed us to new people and ideas, we can't wait to welcome a child into this same space of opportunity.
To us, adoption is an important aspect of a person's history and something that shapes who he or she becomes. We think it is important for the child to know where they come from at the beginning so they have as much opportunity to develop their own sense of identify as possible. We see the adoption conversation as beginning from the day the child is born and being an opportunity for the child to know that they are at the center of great network of love. We already see our child's birth mother as a part of our family. We plan to make sure our child knows who his or her birth mother is, and plan to share as much information about her as the child wants to know.
Because we don't know our child yet, we have a hard time nailing down the details on when or how to have "the adoption talk," our intention is to be ready to be open and honest as questions come up. We know this will be a life-long conversation. Bekah's parents had a memory book for her for the first years of her life and it was really special to be able to revisit that time by looking at the book. Our child will have a memory book too that will document their birth and adoption story, we hope this will be as special of a memory for them as it was for Bekah.
Our House and Neighborhood
We are transplants to Missouri, and have loved exploring our new home the past few years. After working our way through the local barbecue joints, we have enjoyed getting to know the city parks and local hiking spots that are all minutes from our front door. Our two dogs love it. One of Bekah's favorite things to do when friends and relatives visit is to take them to the art museum or antique fair, and Griffin loves the local jazz clubs.
It seems like every season brings a new celebration, either for the whole city or for our neighborhood. We have been fortunate to find a second family here that helps us take advantage of these "minor" holidays with annual traditions of our own. Some of our favorite festivals are the Annual Chili Cook Off (we came in second last year!), St. Patrick's Day Brunch, "House"-o-ween, and Labor Day barbecue.
Our house is in a family neighborhood with a lot of young and diverse families. We are also in the middle of the school district, the elementary school is walking distance from our home. Being big DIY people, we have made our 1950s ranch house our own by redoing our kitchen and bathroom. Dinner time is an important part of our day to come together, the dining room in the center of our home reflects that. Gatherings in the evenings with a gentle breeze and the dogs chasing squirrels around the yard is the perfect end to our day.
Our Extended Families
Family is a huge part of our lives, and with everyone spread around the country we have a lot of opportunity to visit people throughout the year. Griffin has family in the west and with three beautiful nieces that we have a lot of fun exploring with, and playing with the occasional pony :). Everyone loves to be outside, which means lots of hiking, fishing, rafting, gardening, BBQs, and lake time. We celebrate Christmas every year at Griffin's mom's house in the mountains, and have an annual gingerbread house decorating competition. The family makes it a priority to get out to the lake every summer, and Griffin's family has been gathering there for four generations. We are so excited to welcome this child into the tradition.
Bekah's family is originally from Kentucky, and is now spread throughout the south and east. They are also lovers of the outdoors, and when the group gets together there is always a hunt for a good hike or walk outside. Bekah's dad is a retired chef, and being a southern man has passed along old traditions like celebrating the Kentucky Derby and always serving Thanksgiving dinner at 2 p.m. (so we can eat dinner twice!)
From Us to You
Before we started our adoption journey we had been praying for our future family. That you are considering us as adoptive parents is such a gift. We can't imagine our family growing any other way. It is hard for us to know everything that you must be thinking and feeling right now, but we hope that as you consider us a parents you can see a future for this child that is everything that you hope for them. We want for you to feel supported and loved, and as you look down the road that you can feel confident in the choice that you made. We want you to know that, to us, you are a part of this child's family and always will be.
Growing up we both had very different experiences, so our perspectives coming into the adoption process aren't the same. Bekah is from a traditional family with her mom, dad, and two siblings. Griffin is from a blended family with mom, dad, step-dad, step-mom, siblings, half-siblings, and step-siblings. The positive things we remember from childhood and the challenges we experienced have brought us to this unique place where we are ready to parent and love a child. We are learning from each other on what we can't wait to do with our child and what experiences we want share as a family.
We were both involved in tons of activities as kids, from hockey, to basketball, boy/girl scouts, fishing, rafting, water sports, ballet, and music lessons. Our parents gave us opportunities to "dabble" in different things - even when we weren't very good at the activity (Bekah is not a basketball star!) We can both remember doing these things with our parents, having mom or dad come to games or performances, or spending the summer out on the water learning to fish. It was so meaningful to have our parents share in our lives with us, and we can't wait to share the same experiences with our own child.
Practical life skills are another thing that stand out in our memory as things that we learned from our parents that have really stuck with us. Griffin's dad is a very handy guy and Grif has picked up skills that have come in really handy fixing up our home. Bekah learned to sew from her mom starting with making clothes for her dolls, and got the secrets for old family recipes from both mom and dad. We are both independent people who appreciate being "taught to fish." Skill building is important for being successful as an adult, we already fiercely love our future child and want them to feel they have the tools to take on the world and chase the future they dream for themselves.
In every area of our lives we try to gather as much information as we can, to be prepared, to feel ready to take on all possible outcomes. And we find that no matter how prepared we feel that we still get surprised. After all the books, blogs, newsletters, and classes to prep a person for parenting and adoption we could always get more - but our hearts are ready. Through this whole process we have tons of feelings and questions every day and imagine you do too. We want to tell you so many things that just don't fit into this letter. It'll have to boil down to our hearts are ready and we've never been so excited to meet someone.
There isn't anyway for us to express how much parenting means to us and what a gift it will be to love a child, to grow with them, and to have an opportunity to get to know them. To be able to discover what our kiddo likes, what fuels them, who they are and want to become. We’ll send letters, emails, and photos several times a year so that you to know them too and are able to watch them grow and be a part of their life. We hope this is just a start, and that we get a chance to know more about you together in the future.
Griffin & Bekah
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