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Tuesday, January 3, 2006

Aren't we lucky that we're "just adopting"

I don't normally blog about this because I'm kind of shy and because it isn't the biggest thing about me or us right now, but in the last week three different people have mentioned that they either didn't know or forgot that we are "infertile" and that's kind of interesting. I think it's because we're giddy that we're adopting and people see that and know adoption isn't just something we settled on as a second choice. (Note: I hate that word "infertile," by the way, for about a million different reasons, not the least of which that it just plain sounds idiotic when you say it outloud or in normal conversation. But "can't have kids" isn't right either because sometime in 2006 our adoption will be finalized and Funshine will be here in our house grinning a big gummy smile and stomping all over that stupid "can't have kids" description! So just for simplicity, and until one of you comes up with a better suggestion for me, and I have every faith that you WILL, I'll just use the stupid "i" word.) When we were first trying to start a family it didn't seem like anyone else was in quite the same boat, so here's our story. If someone reads it and thinks "oh thank god I'm not the only one who feels that way!" or if it stops even one person from telling an infertile friend they can "just adopt" then I'll feel like I earned my coffee today. Back before adoption was even a twinkle in our hearts we had some friends our age who jumpstarted the whole parental thing and were a few months pregnant at their wedding. "Wow," we thought, "we're going to do that too!" Awwwww, weren't we cute in our naivete? Well can you blame us? Anyone clinging to in their late thirties has spent at least half their lives trying to avoid the horrible fate almost worse than death: the accidental pregnancy. (As I type this I hear the ominous da duh DUM music in my head.) Heh. I'm sure that was a valid concern as a teenager, but the newsflash for late thirtysomethings: y'all don't need to lose sleep over that one any longer. Anyhow we were in love, knew we wanted a family, and thought things would just fall into place. One slight difference between our story and so many others that I read about, and something that someone out there might relate to, is that while I always wanted a child, I never really wanted to be pregnant. (Looking back now, I wonder if my brain and my body weren't fighting a little war behind the scenes and my brain won without telling me.) Anyhow, we gave it the old college try, our problems were quite technically diagnosed as "unexplained" (gee that's helpful), we gamely worked with a bunch of experts for a loooong time, then we sucked it up and attended a gory seminar on in vitro fertilization to see if we wanted to take the final step. OK, since you know we're adopting do I even need to tell you that we ran, not walked but RAN, out of that seminar and agreed that we had zero interest in that particular form of torture? Yeah, I didn't think so. It just wasn't us. I know it works for a whole lot of people and you are all amazing and your children are gifts and I admire you. But we just didn't have that drive. For us, the end goal was a family, and we could meet that goal in many ways, and for us the way is adoption. I honestly don't remember if we decided on the way to the car that night, or the next morning, or that week. But sometime after that seminar we really easily and happily and satisfyingly chose international adoption as the way to form our family. It's been almost a year since we made that decision. The paperwork is filed, we've made some amazing new friends through this process, and we're waiting for our referral(!). And at this point I can't imagine doing it any other way. This path is so perfect for us it's almost frightening. If one of those doctors called us tomorrow and said they had figured out "the problem" and asked us to come back, I'd smile and say "no thanks, we're adopting, so we don't need to just get pregnant anymore."