This past week I've had several people inquire about our open adoption. I don't mind talking about it because I'm passionate about adoption. There are definitely details that are private and personal to our family (how "open" is our adoption, details about the birthparents, etc). If anything is specifically asked about those issues I tend to give more of a surfacey answer. Truth be told it is hard for people not in our boat to understand our relationship with the birthparents. The comments started from day 1 when people heard that the birthparents actually brought Declan to our home after they signed relinquishments instead of us picking him up from the agency. To us, this was such a special and memorable moment and it was surprising to me when we heard comments like "THEY came and brought him...that's crazy (or weird) or wasn't it uncomfortable?" That day was amazing and, though it was heartbreaking to know it was the hardest day of their life, it was amazing to see their strength and their certainty of their decision- in person.
I know by now that our situation is not completely normal. We had an "identified" match (a mutual friend gave our number to Declan's birthmom and she contacted us). But the best part of our match were the months we were able to build a friendship with the birthparents as a foundation for our future. We truly see them as part of our extended family and we hope, especially for Decs, that it stays that way.
Please know it's not all roses in open adoption. It takes a great deal of effort (emotional, etc) and consideration on both sides. We are forever grateful to Declan's birthparents and are thrilled that he'll have 2 more people to love on him as he grows. We hope he'll be a bright, open minded, educated child (regarding adoption and other things). We pray he feels special and adored no matter the fact that he didn't grow inside of me. We've vowed to not hide or sugarcoat how he joined our family but instead to celebrate it.
Now to all those that say "I just could never do an open adoption," I want to say that you're right, you might not be able to. BUT...I did have some of the same thoughts and judgments before reading a handful of great books (Spirit of Open Adoption is one that comes right to my sleepy mind). After meeting Declan's birthparents there was no question that we CAN do this. Let me be the first to say I'm no expert on this topic. My son is 13 weeks old and I'm sure we have a lot of learning and experiencing to do. But through many conversations I've realized open adoption might not be for everyone, but it is our life...and we're blessed.