Sunday, January 28, 2007

Another Full Circle Moment

Yesterday was the big annual adoption fair in our city. It was very surreal for me to be there this year. I went last January 28th with the intention of getting some info on how long the singles waiting lists for China had gotten. I was turning 34 in February and had decided that I needed to start moving forward with my plans for motherhood. But as a result of this adoption fair, my conversations with 2 women I met at different agency booths, and an adoption seminar the following weekend... my life and my plans changed drastically. I don't want to repeat the whole story again so click here and read that to understand why this event was so significant in my life and click here if you want to read about all the signs to point me in the right direction that followed.

I found both of the women that I spoke to last year and filled them in on the happenings over the past 12 months. They were both thrilled! These two women represented the only two agencies that I tried to work with. The first one I got on a waiting list with and the second provided me with my singles spot immediately and became my agency. All of the people I spoke to last year at the other booths were not very welcoming. They all tried to steer me away from China adoption because of the long waiting lists for singles. Not only were these two women very supportive and extremely personable, but I remember opening up and talking to both of them about my plans. Plan A and Plan B. I felt the need to stress over and over to them that I wasn't ready to move towards adoption but that I was going to try to get pregnant first. They both listened with no judgement. Complete strangers. I ended up talking to both of these women individually for about 45 minutes each. So to find them again, tell them how much I appreciated that, and deliver the good news was so meaningful to me and will be a part of this journey that I'll never forget.

This day was even more surreal to me in the fact that I participated in the fair this year! Our "Single Adoptive Moms Group" had a booth to recruit others. Last February, I met Kati and Kim in our parent education classes which were required as part of our homestudy. We immediately bonded as the only singles there. We formed friendships that started with just the 3 of us hanging out, talking, going to dinner. We realized how valuable this resource was for us. The support, the connection, the shared experiences of other single women who are going through the same thing. So we sought out a formal organization only to find out that our city didn't have one. Surrounding big cities did .... but not ours. We decided to start it ourselves and the "Single Adoptive Moms of Dayton" support group was born! Here's me and Kati at our booth.

We have moms represented from China, Vietnam and Guatemala so far. Some are home with their children, others of us are waiting still. Yesterday we recruited a Kaz mom, a few paperchasers representing these same 3 countries and even a few thinkers. We had a representative from our local children's services agency ask if she could put our group info in their newsletter because they have single moms who've adopted domestically or through foster to adopt. The more the merrier! So we should start to see some new faces amongst us soon. How exciting!
This is Kim. She had her own booth representing the organization that gave her a financial grant to assist in the adoption of her 7 yr old son from Guatemala. She was required to promote the organization as a part of the agreement with accepting the grant. Our booths were right next to each other so we got to hang out all day. Several of our other moms came by throughout the morning, too, so we had an impromptu get together right there at the fair. I always enjoy spending time with these women. They're all remarkable in their own right and I truly feel comfortable amongst them. We all "get it" and never have to offer explanation or listen to criticism about our single mom status. If those of you out there don't have this kind of support, whether you're a single mom or an adopter or whatever it is you need to feel connected, go find it or start your own group. It is a priceless treasure.

So this was a very full circle moment kind of day for me. To be standing in the place that literally changed my life, to be there with 3 very good friends that I wouldn't have known otherwise, to have a booth there with them and to now be so engrossed in this adoption community was an amazing feeling. Just goes to show you how much can change in a year's time.

17 comments:

Johnny said...

It's cool to have the support in place before your adoption so you'll have understanding Moms to lean on if things get crazy after you get back.

a&mg said...

That is so great to have a strong support system set up. And the adoption fair sounds awesome--I don't think we have anything like that around us.

Mark & Michelle said...

Wow - it is amazing what a differnce a year makes and then hopefully next year at the fair, you will be able to be Mia - now that would be cool!!

Mariah said...

What a great experience, it gives me chills just reading it!!

Doris & Dan Clark said...

That is really neat and I admire you for giving back to the adoptive community.

Keep smilin!

Shannon S said...

Starting up your own group-how wonderful for all of you! I really enjoyed this post. Imagine how great visiting this fair will be with Mia in tow!! Is that also full circle or a crazy eight?!

Connie said...

You rock...course we knew that. Nice to see Kim and Kati again (if only in the pics).

And how bout you!?!? Gettin' all skinny arse on me. You're looking fab, chickie!

Joannah said...

What a difference a year makes. Very cool!

tracy said...

What a great year you have had! I can't wait to see what the next year brings your way!

Lee-Anne said...

Amazing!

wzgirl said...

So awesome, Krista - full circle moment for you. And, maybe the beginning of someone else's circle - thanks to this new outreach/group/support you and your buds have created!

You've come a long way, baby!

A Special Family said...

Just think about the January when Mia will be home! Wow, so many changes in a year.

Jill and Jaap said...

I have never heard of a fair like this. Neato!

Catherine said...

What a great day Krista! I got goosebumps reading your story! It's so neat to go back to where you were when your life changed. I had that same opportunity just last ween when I flew 5 hours west to Vancouver and drove past the hotel I was staying at when my decision to adopt was made.

I'm so glad you have these great friends and were able to share the day together. What an encouragement you must have been to the 2 ladies you spoke with from the agencies! I'm so glad you sought them out and updated them on your journey to Mia!

Great support group of single moms you have! Celebrating your wonderful day!

Melissa said...

Awesome story!!
Good for you for starting this group!!!

BTW, what do you type in the eBay search to get those shoes you were telling me about?????

jlittlefield3 said...

I also got goose bumps reafing your story and of the signs! I have had some significant signs along the way as well. This journey is truly magical!!!

Candace said...

Great post, Krista. What a terrific story and support system. I am a member on the National SMBC and just as mentioned a support group is a wonderful resource. What a blessing to belong to a group where you simply "get it" and understand each other. The Adoption Fair looks TERRIFIC...I wish we had those. I live in busy, crowded Central, Florida & have never heard of these locally.
What a lucky little lady Mia will be!