Monday, September 10, 2012

Open Adoption

Posted By: Leah
A Note from Leah: Sara of Unofficial Mom is a friend I met via the blog world several years ago. She quickly became a confidant as I was exploring life as a newly single mom. Sara is an amazing lady who has a truly compelling story of her daughter being born out of her heart instead of her belly. Her husband is a stay at home dad and their family is absolutely prescious! They are about to embark on another huge step in their lives and I can't wait to see what happens next, I am truly excited for them! 

When Leah asked me to do a guest post for her, I didn’t hesitate. Of course I would help a friend out. And I do mean friend. Not blog friend, or internet friend, but legit friend. We talk offline, we know stuff about each other’s lives…I mean she’s on my Christmas card list! So I wanted to do a really good post for her, but I had no idea what to write about.

Leah suggested a few things, and one was to write about adoption. For anyone who doesn’t know, this bundle of awesome is my daughter through domestic, open adoption. Online we call her Pie.

I mean who gave these dorks a kid?

Granted it wasn’t for another 12 or so years after this picture but still.

We knew right away that we wanted kids. A houseful. Our own sports team. But that didn’t happen. It continued not happening for years. And then one day my darling girl came along. Our very own miracle.

We have an incredibly open adoption. It was out of necessity at first, because we actually knew the birth parents prior to the pregnancy. And as much as I had always thought a closed adoption was best, I was so wrong. Open adoption isn’t easy. It doesn’t always go the way you think it should, people get hurt, grownups do stupid things, but it is the best thing for the child. Pie’s birthparents come visit, we send texts and pictures, cards and gifts. We are friends, well at least friendly, as we navigate through this very unique set of relationships.

Pie’s adoption is an open book to everyone, Pie included. We have been telling her the story since the day she was born adding details and depth as she gets older. And while we are in total agreement about Pie knowing her story and having a relationship with her birthparents, Husband and I may not always be on the same page about what and when to tell her.

Recently Pie saw someone on tv who looks like her birthmom and started talking about her. So I took the opportunity to tell her the story again, and add a little info. In this telling, I added that she had grown in her birthmom’s tummy and that her birthmom and birthdad took care of her until she came to live with mama and daddy. (Just as a side note, there’s a lot of controversy about the terminology used when referring to people in the adoption triad. The terms birthmom and birthdad are the ones Pie’s first parents choose to use.)

So there I am telling Pie about being in someone else’s tummy and I glance over at Husband only to find him looking uneasy. Pie is so completely ours that when we talk about the fact that she has another set of parents it’s a little disconcerting. Husband struggles with telling her too much too soon. It scares him. He worries that we may tell her something before she’s able to understand it. Or that we may change the way she looks at us. Or the way she looks at her birthparents. Navigating that fine line is a part of the process that we didn’t anticipate. And it feels like a moving target that we’ll have to chase her whole life.

All we know for sure is that Husband and I love her more than either of us realized was possible. And that her birthparents feel the same way. She is a lucky little girl to have so many people who love her and we are even luckier to be her parents.

A Note from Leah:  Thank you Sara! Your sweet story truly brings tears to my eyes. 


  1. How very sweet. I'd like to adopt one day and I can't imagine all the struggles that may come with that choice.

    1. If you ever have any questions Jenn, feel free to ask. I'm always happy to share what I know!! -Sara

  2. Wonderful post, Sara. Pie is one well-loved little girl! :)

    1. Thanks Jackie! Now I just need to get her a Thea of her own :)

  3. Thanks os much for having me Leah! xoxo


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