Saturday, November 17, 2012

They All Matter Hop

Today we are hopping to bring awareness to the need
for a cure for all kinds of cancer.

This hop started today at Lisa's blog
and you should have arrived at my blog
from Christina's blog. If not head on over 
to Lisa's blog so you can see what everyone
is sharing today... Some creations and
some personal stories... 
For my post I have both.
I made this digital layout to document 
my own journey and how it has changed
my family and my dreams.
After a short time of fertility treatments we found out I had
3 large growths in my uterus. I was told at that time
once I finished the cancer treatment my doctors would
allow me one year to try to conceive a child. If I was
not able to within that time I was told I would have to
give up the dream of ever giving birth to my own baby. 
So after 1 1/2 years of miserable treatment and 
horrible medications along with nearly 100 pounds 
of weight gain, we were ready to try. My doctor
referred us to Boston IVF, a 3 hour drive from home.
For each cycle of IVF we had to drive down 2 or 3 
times and would be overnight there each trip.
Our first embryo implantation was on Friday, 
July 13th 2007. I knew when we left that it worked.
I was finally pregnant. A week later I lost the 
pregnancy. After each cycle of treatment your body 
needs a break so we did not try again until October.
I knew when we left the clinic to head back to Maine
that it did not work. I still waited and took all the blood 
tests knowing the outcome. At that point we knew we had
no choice but to take the winter off. So we decided 
not to decide how to proceed until spring. In December 
my sister sent her daughter to live with us for a while. 
So we went from just two of us to 3. We knew she 
was not ours. We were caring for her temporarily.
She went back to my sister in April 2008. By 
then hubby and I had decided not to try again.
I have plenty of health issues we did not want to
pass on to a child and the risk of an unhealthy 
fetus worried my doctor. The other deciding factor 
was want all the medications did to me. I cried a lot
and was very sick and moody. So the decision 
had been made. I went to the doctor and scheduled 
my hysterectomy for July 2nd 2008. We decided 
prior to my surgery that we would do foster care
and maybe eventually adopt. We went to our first 
meeting with the Department of Health and Human
Services on July 16th. In August we began taking
courses to become approved as a foster/adoptive
home. In November, national Adoption month we 
attended an informational event and adoption
celebration. We had no idea what it would be like. 
We were handed a folder with photos and short 
biographies on several children. I knew right away 
when I saw them. My girls were in that folder. From 
that day on I carried their picture and bios with me
everywhere. I had always told my husband I wanted 
a boy and a girl. He had always wanted 2 girls.
When I told him these were our daughters he said
maybe we should look for a boy and a girl. In the 
end he agreed and we began the process of adopting
them. On Dec 23rd we had a meeting set up with 
their case worker and we also had just received
approval to adopt. He missed that meeting due to 
some health issues. In January we met with his 
supervisor. We were on the way to being parents.
We finally met our daughters on February 17th. 
We were shocked at how much they looked like us.
They started staying over on weekends starting the 
following Saturday. We had them every weekend 
for 2 months. Finally on April 17th they came
home. We celebrated by going to the circus that 
weekend. When November rolled around again
we were in court, finalizing our adoption. Ours 
was the last case heard the day before Thanksgiving.
I cannot say it has been easy, but it has been worth 
every bit of energy and emotion we put into it 
and still do. On November 25th we will be celebrating
3 years since we legally became a family. We were a 
family from day one, but there is a waiting period to
try to minimize disrupted adoptions. I cannot
imagine my life any other way now. At times I 
still mourn the loss of what could have been, but 
I have no regrets for what is. Here is a picture of 
us with the judge and adoption worker on adoption day.

Left to right: Judge, hubby, me, adoption worker
in front: youngest daughter, oldest daughter. 
Our girls were 9 and 10 when we brought them 
home, many days I think of them as 3 and 4 now...
They have my heart and I know I have a place in theirs.

Thanks for stopping by, the next stop is 

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