Mom at Last
by Sharon Simons
Considering the recent controversy regarding Russian adoption I offer my journey as an example of success and hope. My husband and I are the proud parents of two of the most perfect boys adopted from Russia. Our story, as many other Russian adoption stories, involves hardship but has a fairytale ending.
The journey that eventually led to our Russian adoption started on a long and winding path. Like many women at age 39, I was single but had a terrific urge to be a Mom. Thankfully, a chance knock on the door led to me meeting the man of my dreams. This man not only stole my heart but also dedicates his life to the healing of hearts as a cardiologist. My new husband had survived a bitter divorce and already had three children. When I rather quickly brought up my desire to be a Mom he graciously agreed we should start a family. IVF was our first option as he had a vasectomy years back, and before long we were proceeding through the IVF process. To our surprise after our first IVF procedure I was pregnant, and we were told the fabulous news that we were expecting twins.
Life was perfect. I started buying clothes and reading baby books, but at approximately 5 months gestation I was rushed to the hospital with sharp abdominal pain. We lost our twins that night…after recovering both physically and emotionally I jumped back into the IVF process. We became pregnant again, but not for long as we unfortunately had a tubal pregnancy. Before restarting IVF again I began researching the adoption process. After another failed IVF procedure, and once more recovering emotionally, we decided adoption was our calling as parents.
We initially received conflicting information regarding various aspects of foreign adoption, including Russian adoption. But we found every agency has different guidelines and capabilities. After much determined research (mostly on the internet) we fortunately found an excellent adoption agency 3000 miles away from our home. The agency, based in California, had Russian babies available for adoption. Since we had already completed our state required “homestudy” process and were approved as adoptive parents, we were immediately e-mailed photos of the two little baby boys that are now our sons. The process was quick and scary… we signed contracts, mailed checks and after extensive paperwork we were off on our first adventure to Siberia, Russia.
The trip was long and an emotional rollercoaster. The orphanage was obviously underfunded and bleak, with the staff doing the best they could under trying circumstances. We finally met and accepted our two emaciated and frightened babies as our sons. We very badly wanted to take them home with us immediately. Knowing we had to leave them in this sad, desolate place to return to the U.S. to complete more paperwork was the worst feeling in the world. Fortunately we were returning on our second trip within two months to meet with the Russian judge and were awarded our children. Two additional weeks in Moscow caring for two babies and finishing more paperwork was exhausting and stressful, but most of all a bonding experience. During our time in Russia we experienced the culture and kindness of many people. But touching ground at JFK airport in NYC was the happiest moment knowing that our boys were both officially ours and US citizens. Home at last and most of all I was finally a Mom at last.
After an adjustment period our boys, Dylan and Hunter, began thriving. Our beautiful blonde haired, blue eyed boys are not only intelligent and athletic, but most of all happy. They are our pride and joy. We are extremely fortunate to have had the chance to adopt from Russia. We will give our sons the gift of every opportunity to grow into wonderful young men. But the gift these boys have given us is the most priceless of all, the gift of being a family.
Although my journey had some bumpy roads I am so blessed and fortunate to have my boys in my life and I am a “Mom at last.”
About the Author
Sharon Simons started a website www.momatlast.com capturing the different journey both to and through motherhood such as IVF, Adoption, Surrogacy and Pregnancy. Mom at Last is a place to not only share and learn but a place for support.