Hearts, home and bags ready

We had a difficult week last week. Without going into much detail we heard of a potential opportunity that seems to have fallen through by this point. While last week was definitely hard for us, we felt that if the time was right, we were ready to receive a child in our home.

Our baby room is pretty much all set. Obviously it will forever be a work in progress as we add and as a child grows in it, but we have the basics of what you need to welcome a child. First few months, the baby would sleep in our room obviously, but it is definitely good to know that we have everything pretty much set and ready to go.

One thing that we have learned and has been the hardest for us is that with adoption there is no time frame, it isn’t like having biological children that you know you have so many months to prepare for a child, that has been one of the hardest things for us. Yes, we could get a call that a pregnant woman wants to meet us and she may be half way through pregnancy or close to giving birth and that would give us some kind of hypothetical time frame, but we could also just get a call and have to take off. We are grateful that we have both had that talk with our employers that we may just need to leave suddenly one day and start our leave at work, we are both blessed to have understanding bosses that are perfectly OK with that happening.

We are more ready than we have ever been, our home and hearts are so ready for this!

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We’ve officially started our home study

A thing we have learned through out this adoption process is that when things are slow and silent, patience is the key to survival. Then when things are moving they are fast and they happen right away and there is no slowing down.

We won’t give too many details on exactly what happens during, but today officially marked the start of the home study process! Today we had our first home visit from our social worker who is conducting the study, which is huge. As we have said before, the home study is a 90 day process that is required for every adoption, after that we will be ready to be listed and have our album shown to birth mothers in hopes to picked by one to adopt their baby.

We’ll keep you posted as things progress, but this means we officially are taking the next huge step to meet Baby G!

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Guerrero summer and upcoming things

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Hi everyone! We fully acknowledge that we have not been very good at keeping you posted on what has been going on in our journey this summer (so far, of course!). This is in part because things have been a little busy here at the home front, Danielle is full gear back in school pursuing her Masters in Social Work and I (Luis) have been very busy with work and being a full supporter of my wife and her education.

We have been meaning to update the blog for some time now but the lack of news and other things made it difficult to sit down and do it, but we have some great news moving forward with our adoption that we have been holding on to for a few days as we decided what to do exactly.

So early this week we got an email from our adoption agency asking for an update on how our fundraiser is going and letting us know they have been considering moving things a little bit faster and asked us if we would be interested in starting our home study early through a contracted Social Worker that they work with here in Las Cruces. They told us to discuss it and think about it as this would definitely save us time because then we could get listed sooner and they could start showing our album to birth mothers a lot sooner if we do it now as we are so close from being off the waiting list and becoming an active family. Doing this could potentially save us around 3 months as the home study is a 90 day process and they can’t start doing it until we have completely been taken off the waiting list, which is why they recommended we contacted this social worker that they have done a lot of work with and is based here locally (remember, our agency is in Albuquerque, which is about 3-4 hrs from here).

After talking about it we decided that yes, we would like to move forward with it so hopefully we can start working on our home study soon. This is a crucial part of the adoption process as it gives the agency, the state and birth mothers a bigger picture of who we are as individuals. Our agency works directly with birth mothers and some of them get to pick who they would want raising their child (in some cases they prefer the agency choose for them), so making sure we get all of our ducks in a row is very important.

The agency gave us the contact information for this social worker, although we will probably still hold off on calling her for a couple weeks as there are some things we need to prepare for around the house that we weren’t expecting to have to do for another 2 or 3 months at least, but we will soon!

We will keep you posted on how this goes soon, again sorry for the lack of posting and updating lately.

Love,

The Guerreros

Birthmoms and what they mean to us

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(In order to protect the privacy of these brave women, we are omitting names or even stories we have heard, as those are not ours to tell).

One of the things we loved the most about the training we attended was the panel towards the end where we were introduced to adopted parents, adoptees and birthmothers who had placed their children for adoption. We really enjoyed hearing all of the stories and experiences, but what we got the most out of was the stories we heard from the birth mothers and their experience.

Before going to this training, one of the things that we had conversations about was the subject of open vs closed adoptions. We had talked with our friends that have adopted, and got a wide variety of feedback about their personal experiences. At first, the term “open adoption” seemed a bit daunting, and it was hard for us to visualize what that would look like. Based on our research, personal experience, and the guidance from others, we felt that a semi open adoption was something that we were interested in. Throughout the weekend, we felt our hearts be moved so deeply for the birthmoms that we met. We felt a confirmation in our hearts that having the option to contact the birth mom, and keep her or her family updated on the life of our child, is not only something that we are open to, but something that we are excited for. It is easy to get caught up in differences and worries. It is easy to worry about the things that make an open adoption sound scary. We have learned that although we may be very different in many ways, there is one thing that is the same. We both love this child. We both will make life changing sacrifices for this child. We both will see The Lord in new and amazing ways through the gift of adoption. We both are different pieces of the puzzle of who our child is, and we would not be complete without each other.

Birth mothers make a huge sacrifice when they decide to place their child for adoption, sometimes they decide on their own, sometimes the birth father or their parents are involved in their decision. Regardless of what moved them to make that decision, there is still grief, there is a loss and there is the need for healing. One of the things we loved the most about our agency is the fact that they continue to offer support and counseling to the birth families as well, as some agencies kind of just match and then it is the end of the story. They are often forgotten or just seen as a means to an end to a family who is adopting and then they are just left to deal with it on their own. We talked at length with the case worker during our consultation about the process of healing and what that looks like for them, which is why they encourage that even if a closed adoption is what the birth mom wants to still write letter and maybe send pictures to the agency as they have seen before that in some cases they will come or contact them just wanting to know how the child is doing and this also helps them heal and be reassured that they made the right choice.

We know nothing about our birth mother, if she will want an open or a closed adoption, if she will want to get pictures and letters or not. We don’t know what she likes, what her background is or anything. We don’t know if the birth father will be involved in the decision, or won’t care. There is so much we don’t know, but we are excited to get to that place, even if that is still a while away. Birth mothers are strong.

November is Adoption Awareness Month

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Yes, November is Adoption Awareness Month!

This is one of the things that we were not aware existed before we started the journey to adoption, but now it means so much to us than we thought it would. We also can’t believe we have been in plans of adopting since June…wow!

OK, so as an adoptive family, what will we do for this month?

Aside from blog posts about adoption, we are committing to donate a percentage of anything we raise in donations via PayPal to an adoption related organization. It is great to give back too!

If you have a minute, and feel lead to please consider helping us, and helping others as well:

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The Uncomfortable Step in Adoption (or a very honest post about it)

Neither Danielle and I love begging people, specially family and friends we care about for money, we are just not those type of people. We set up a Go Fund Me page and have received an overwhelmingly amount of emotional support from people, loving messages and a lot of shares, we even made a video about adoption and have many people tell us how beautiful it is and we will always appreciate that…but we need your support.

This week we were hit with the realization of something, fundraising is not very easy.

While the idea of coming up with fun ideas and raising money to get your child sounds like a fun thing to do, it is a lot of hard work. Adoption is very costly, and while we are doing some things to raise funds (events and such), we have still be hit with the reality that we are far from the end goal. We are left with the question of “will this even be possible?”

We are still in a very early stage of adoption and being on a waiting list (a long one I should say) gives us hope that we can do this, that we can get to our goal and raise enough funds to adopt our child, but the reality is that we still have so much to get done. Adoption is a blessing, but one that comes with a very high price.

For those who have gone through the process of adoption, you know how challenging it can be, specially when you plan for things to go a certain way and then they turn out to go slower than you thought. It can be frustrating and a little disappointing at times, but we just need to have faith that at the end, everything is going work out the way they should. Just the other day, Danielle and I had a rough time thinking how unnatural it feels to be asking for donations, we shouldn’t have to, we should be able to just make a kid of our own, but God had different plans for us when He had placed the path of adoption in our hearts and we are so happy to be walking that road together. That constant reminder of the fact that because of possible fertility issues we are not able to have a kid “the natural way” can come bite you every now and then, even when you are so excited about the idea of adoption. Even as I sit down in front of my laptop and write these words I feel attacked and wonder if we will even be able to reach our goal, and while I feel confident we will, I still feel scared and worried that we may not.

Many people have shown us so much love and support emotional and prayerfully, and while that is awesome and we couldn’t ask for anything better, we still ask that if you have a minute to please consider with any little bit of help. Also, keep an eye for fundraising events we will have soon. After all, we have always felt that we belong to such a strong and tight community and we know that we have the love and support of it.

So how much does an adoption cost?

While adoption is a huge blessing, it is very costly and depending of the agency you use can be anywhere between $20,000-$30,000 (or maybe more). Now the good thing is that most agencies have a fee schedule where you can break the cost so that huge amount is not due all at once.

From the very beginning we have wanted to work hard to get to that goal, whether it is through setting up events, yard sales and even through little contributions here and there from friends and family. More than ever before, one way or another we need your help!

Luis

Also, when you get a chance, here is the link to our Go Fund Me campaign, just click on the button to get there:

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For international donations (because we have family outside of the USA), you can do so through PayPal as well by clicking here

Once again, thank you and please enjoy our video again!

A Big Thank You!

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We both just wanted to take a moment and thank all of our friends and family for all your comments, calls, text messages and even stories shared about adoption from both ends of the spectrum. We both are so happy to know that our kids will already be so loved and have a community that has their back!

Love,

Luis & Danielle