When I was little my dad used to listen to Paul Harvey tell the Rest of the Story. So I thought I'd share some more details of our adoption story.
Part of the confusion may have been with the fact that we were matched with a birthmom this past September. She was due with a baby boy and she had chosen the name Jeremiah. We fell in love with this name and all the scriptures in the book of Jeremiah that were so meaningful to us during this time. That baby was due December 23rd. But within a couple of months of being matched with her, after visiting her, and helping her out monetarily, she found out that the birthfather's family wanted to raise that baby. We continue to pray for her and her baby as well, we had to grieve that loss, but we still didn't want to give up on our adoption journey.
After that our Consultant- worked really hard to find the perfect match for us. My best friends surprised us and came to visit for a late birthday. We were standing in PayLess when Courtney called and told us about a birthmom who was going to have her baby possibly by the 21st of Dec. by C-Section. It was a baby girl and the birthmom was in Gary, IN. My heart was numb. We had to talk ourselves into being excited since that last heartache was so fresh. We decided to name the baby girl Darby Layne. This time we had to really start getting things since her arrival date was nearing. Then we got a call that her doctor had changed her due date and she would not be able to have the C-Section that early. At her last Dr's appt. the Dr. would not plan a C-Section and the birthmom was getting anxious to have that baby. She wanted a closed adoption so we knew very little about her. We never got to speak to her over the phone or anything. She was ready to move on with her life and had plans for that in early January. She wanted to be completely recovered, but the Dr's in Indiana would not plan her C-Section early. She was working with an agency out of Utah. They have birthmother housing and a doctors that their clients use in Utah. She found out that in Utah the doctors would do a C-Section up to two weeks early. So she made up her mind to travel to Utah. This was her personal decision and we don't blame her for putting us out of the equation. Her decision to travel to Utah made the adoption much more expensive for us so we had to say no. 1. Her medical expenses were all covered in Indiana, but not in Utah. 2. We would then have much higher travel expenses traveling to Utah versus 30 minutes down the road.
If you adopt a baby from another state there is something called ICPC. That is the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC): An interstate compact, or agreement, that has been enacted into law by all 50 states in the United States, and the District of Columbia, which controls the lawful movement of children from one state to another for the purposes of adoption. Both the originating state, where the child is born, and the receiving state, where the adoptive parents live and where the adoption of the child will take place, must approve the child's movement in writing before the child can legally leave the originating state. This Compact regulates the interstate movement of both foster children and adoptive children. (Taken from: http://glossary.adoption.com/interstate-compact-on-the-placement-of-children-(icpc).html
Because of ICPC we would have had to stay in Utah for up to two weeks.
I posted on my Facebook for everyone to pray for the birthmom to be ready to have that baby! (Now you know the rest of the story- we knew if she wasn't ready to have that baby then we would not be getting baby girl.)
We came to Martin, TN to enjoy Chirstmas with Daniel's family early and postponed Christmas with my family because we just knew that baby girl was going to be born early so that she could come home with us.
The wonderful ladies of Gracepoint had a shower for us and finally our home was filled with tiny little baby things. (I'm very excited to announce that the major purchases were all gender neutral and can be used, but some of the sweet little pink things may have to be returned or tucked away for the possibility of our next baby being a girl.)
So we were in Martin and spending time with family. I knew that Indiana birthmom had a Dr's appointment on December 23rd and if she wasn't ready to have that baby we would be finding out that day. We were just hanging out. We had come for a 3 day vaca. (We only bring the basics to Martin...like for instance we know there are toiletries there and such. We packed light. We left our computers at home so as to get a much needed respite. I mean it was only to be for 3 days right.) :) Luckily I had a cute outfit I was going to wear to the extended family dinner little did I know that would be the outfit that I'd wear to pick up little Jeremiah.
Ok so I'm skipping around a little....back to Martin.
We were sitting there visiting with Daniel's parents, his sister, and Daniel's aunt and Uncle. We were telling them that Darby Layne was coming (praying internally that she really would) and catching them up on the story when it suddenly changed before our eyes. I had my phone attached to my hip that day awaiting a positive dr's report from Indiana birthmom. The adoption agency called to give me an update. The Doctor said that the little baby just wasn't ready yet and that he would not schedule a C-Section. The lady from the agency confirmed that the birthmom would indeed be flying to Utah in hopes of having the baby early. Before I even got a chance to let that all sink in she said....there is a baby boy that was born YESTERDAY. (In adoption world = that is huge. An already born baby is huge considering the fact that some birthmoms change their minds about the adoption decision at the last minute.) So she told me about this birthmom who had just called in a couple of weeks ago, but wasn't due until Jan 16th. She had gone into labor early, but the baby was completely healthy. She was not matched with a family yet and the lady on the phone wanted to know if we were interested. I think she phrased it like this- I mean you would have to spend the holidays in Georgia. I'm pretty sure I squeeled. A BOY! Oh My Goodness. A willing birthmom. Oh My Goodness. He was already here and needing a forever home. OH MY GOODNESS. SIGN ME UP!!! Then I was anticipating the other shoe falling. I was thinking she is going to say he's so stinking expensive that my heart was really going to break. But guess what- HE WAS RIGHT IN OUR PRICE RANGE. (I know that is so strange to say, but that is what we have grown accustomed to. Adoptions range in price due to states laws allowances of birthmother expences, her health care expenses (some birthmoms have healthcare, some don't- some have C-Sections, some have natural births), and the agency fees.
So we were waiting for a phone call from the agency that said that the birthmom would like to chose us after we told them we were DEFINITELY wanting to be presented to her. They were also trying to find a lawyer that would come out to the hospital to go over the paperwork with her and have her sign it. (Remember the agency works in Utah, the Birthmom is in Georgia and we are in TN)
We packed up everything from Daniel's parents house, took showers really quickly, and were ready to head out in record time. We left Martin (after quickly opening gifts) and headed towards GA. Luckily it's two hours from Clarksville and we were able to give some good friends a heads up. Kent and Teresa Hughes made a Toys-R-Us run and got some baby blue things. (I had the diaper bag, but it was full of baby girl things and was only ready with necessities- thinking that if we were headed to pick up a baby straight from Martin it would be all the way in Indiana and we would then get to go straight home. Kent, Teresa, and Taylor Hughes met us at Burger King off exit 4 for the drop off. And my mom met us there for the pick up of our dog Suzy. She'll be staying with them till we travel through and pick her up on our way to Indiana.
We rushed (safely) to Georgia. The trip was 9 hours from Martin, and we stopped about 2 hours short of our final destination since it was getting late. The trip made for a great time to call family and friends and get even more anxious to meet our little man. We hit the hotel and I was up bright and early the next morning (December 24th!!!)
We headed out early and then stopped by Kinko's to pick up one of our adoption profiles our consultant had sent there. We got to talk to the birthmom on a 3 way call the day before and she really liked us, but she had never seen our pictures or anything. We wanted her to have our profile to keep forever and ever. We called her to see if she needed anything or wanted breakfast and then stopped at Target. I roamed the aisles thinking WHAT DO I GET AS A GIFT TO GIVE THE BIRTHMOM OF OUR CHILD....I ended up picking a cute little candle and a bath/lotion set. Really this is a drop of sand in comparison to the gift she is giving us. I was totally embarrassed to even come in with such a shallow gift. We tucked in a CD of Daniel's and the profile to complete the package. (While we talked on the phone with her the night before she told us that she also liked to sing-something I will treasure forever and tell Jeremiah someday.)
So we headed to the hospital. Couldn't find a parking place. Couldn't find the front entrance. Couldn't find the nursery. We were so anxious, excited and nervous all at the same time. We were about to meet the mother of our child. We walk in and she was so cute (birthmom N- from here on out she'll be called N. (She said she didn't even look like she had a baby over the phone...and boy was she right. Cute as a button and so very nice.) She is 23 years old and 5'9" (same height as me!). When we walked in the room Jeremiah wasn't there, she had kept him in the room with her most of the time and was so sweet to cuddle him and love on him until we got there. He was in the nursery getting something checked out when we got there so she asked if we wanted to go see him. We walked down the hall to a windowed nursery, but she declared that he wasn't in sight. She asked at the desk and they said he'd be out in just a few minutes. We went back to the room and gave her her gift. As we got to know her we liked her more and more. Luckily we got one pic of us together. We were able to spend most of the day together as the lawyer couldn't get there till 3pm. We were so glad that the lawyer could come out on Christmas Eve it didn't make that much of a difference what time he came.
A little bit later as we were telling each other a little bit about ourselves they wheeled the baby in. N's perspective was amazing. She immediately was saying things like- "this is the baby's mom and dad"- to the nurse as she introduced us. I know it was still super hard on her, but we were so glad she was steadfast in her decision to give baby Jeremiah up for adoption.
Before the lawyer even got there both the birthmom and baby were discharged. We were allowed to stay in the room until the lawyer arrived. He met with N alone---which took forever by the way and made me super nervous. It was just taking a really long time to fill out all of the paperwork. Then he met with us alone and just like that we were done.
Utah's laws govern the adoption since the agency we were working with is from Utah so once she signed we were good to go. The revocation period- (the time in which the birthmom has to change her mind)- is at the time in which she signs in Utah.
We walk in and N is so so very sad. IT BROKE MY HEART. She KNEW she was making the best decision for her child, but it was still a very very hard decision. I was ecstatic and overjoyed, but seeing her pain made me feel the need to stifle my joy. Hospital policy was that the mother had to carry the child out of the hospital while being wheeled out in a wheelchair. It was literally one of the hardest things I've ever seen. She was so very very sad. There are no other words. I gave her a charm bracelet that I had worn the past few months. It had one charm that said believe. I told her that we believe in her and that we believe she made the right decision. (for me it meant that I believe that someday I would be a mom.) One charm said E- so she would remember who she passed on her child on to to be his mom. And a moon (I saw adoption jewelry that said UNDER THE SAME MOON and it was so precious, but was way too expensive- I got a moon charm at Target and told everyone what it symbolized.) We got outside and loaded Jeremiah in our brand spanking new pimp car seat and N was wheeled to her mom's car. I got out of the car (the nurse told me to get in so that I could strap him in good) ran over to N and said THANK YOU while giving her a hug.
We both had tears. Mine of great joy and hers of great sadness. What a crazy thing this adoption journey has been so far.
We drove quite a ways so as to get closer to home for when they tell us we can leave GA. It seemed like it took forever. I kept thinking is this real- do we really have a BABY in our CAR! OH MY GOODNESS.
And that is the rest of the story of how we met Jeremiah Cole Doss.