We met more than 16 years ago and have been married for more than six years. We’ve never cared about the cars we drive or the size of our home. As long as our home is filled with love, we’ve succeeded. We have always wanted children and tried to conceive before our adoption story began.
Going into the adoption process we had concerns. We were concerned about finding an ethical adoption agency, and that when we did we wouldn’t be selected by an expectant parent. You see, when Danielle’s aunt was trying to adopt through a different agency, she had a disruption. She found out that the agency she had been working with was forcing the disruption. The expectant mother she was matched with contacted her directly to tell her she did indeed want her to parent her child. It made us very cautious.
We started our research. Cory called two well-known adoption agencies in Iowa, where we live. Both conversations were quick and rather impersonal. They took our name and address and said that they would send us information in the mail. When Cory started to ask questions of one adoption agency representative they actually told him to have his wife call back. Cory was going to be involved in the adoption process. That simply wasn’t going to work.
We came across Graceful Adoptions through an internet search. By this time, we had done a considerable amount of research. The Graceful Adoptions web-site was the most helpful site we came across. Not only did it provide information about their organization, it provided information about adoption in general. The site provided details that helped us manage our expectations.
It was a year ago when we first spoke to someone at Graceful Adoptions. We called the adoption agency on a Saturday and spoke with Karen Nissly, the founder. She gave us a considerable amount of time telling us adoption stories, the risks, how they avoid the risks and how the agency works. After this conversation we called additional adoption agencies, there was no comparison regarding the information shared and the time they took with us.
Graceful Adoptions really cares for the birth parents and adoptive parents. We really liked Graceful Adoptions’ processes and didn’t feel we would be a number in a large pool of adoptive families. It seemed Graceful Adoptions was a great fit for us. We knew that if birth parents felt the same way, we would have a good chance to be selected.
And we were right! Within five months after completing our Family Profile we were talking to a couple who were considering us to parent their child. It was surreal to hear their voices. They were happy and laughing. We laughed together and joked about different things. It was reassuring to hear peace in the birth mother’s voice. We had so much in common we kept getting sidetracked and realized we had to get back to the interview. It all felt natural and easy.
Nervous turned to utter excitement when Graceful Adoptions, along with this amazing couple we had talked to, called. It was the mother who told me that they had selected Cory and I to be the parents of their precious child. I cried! We were in disbelief. We hoped it was real, we were speechless.
Within a week we traveled to meet them in person. Initially we were worried that we would say or do the wrong thing. Instead it was easy. We didn’t talk about the adoption we were just hanging out making new friends.
When we got to the hospital for the birth, the first 24 hours were exciting and easy. It was like a big happy family with a new baby. We felt we were one family, not two. Of course, I was so overwhelmed with happiness when I got to see and hold the baby the first time.
Just six months after our Family Profile was complete, we were on our way home with our daughter. Our lives have forever changed and grown. Not just because we now have a child, but because our child’s parents have become a part of our family and we can’t wait to share our future with them. They are incredible people.
For those families going through the adoption process, know that it’s worth all the heartache and fear. It’s worth every scary thought and every doubt. The right child will find you!
For those of you trying to select an adoption agency , Graceful Adoptions is a great agency to work with. Everything they do has a very personal touch, they care and make each step easy. Going through the emotions associated with adoption was hard enough, it helps when the staff laid out everything we needed to do. The responsibility wasn’t left on our shoulders to figure everything out. The interview process, the meeting, the paperwork and even what to pack was explained to us. There was no mystery about what was going to happen and when.
Without Graceful Adoptions, we wouldn’t be parents to this beautiful baby girl.
Danielle and Cory