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About DrMom

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    Trail Boss
  • Birthday 05/28/2003

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    Central Florida
  • Interests
    swimming, reading, photography, music, boats & things that make me laugh & not necessarily in that order. I don't like cold weather, jogging, or Jello with fruit in it.<br />More in Art of Childgrowing

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    The Message
  1. DrMom

    two-state issues

    And thank goodness our homestudy agency here in Florida was great about updating our 8 year old Tennessee homestudy when we decided to adopt again!
  2. "Mothers are the most instinctive philosophers." -- Harriet Beecher Stowe. (And here's to Dr. Mom, one of our favorite Forum philosophers!)

  3. DrMom

    When To Say When?

    When we got married we planned to have several children - 3 or 4 - or who knows, maybe more - and we also planned to adopt some of them. It never occurred to me that after so many years of running in fear from one single sperm (remember those health class movies?) that I would be unable to conceive! All our friends had babies - several who were teachers planned to have them over summer break - and did just that. So we did some fertility treatments. No luck. Then decided to adopt. Had the baby for 3 days when the mom changed her mind and decided to parent. Decided to be child free. Revisited all decisions when my biological clock was about to stop running (plus there had been some medical advances) and decided we really really did want children after all. So ... still no luck with biology - when it came time to consider IVF we looked at the odds of success and costs - and said "What are we doing here? What is our goal?" and that goal was to be parents and have a family -- so we called Abrazo in December, attended a February 21st parents weekend, and 2 weeks later were the proud parents of a baby girl! Adoption is not for everyone. Fertility treatments are not for everyone. There are costs and benefits to both. And sorting those out is both extremely easy, and at the same time the most difficult thing! My advice to those trying to decide is this: What is your ultimate goal? Then decide the road you want to take to get there - neither road is easy - both lead to a very rewarding end - parenthood. Different Trips to the Same Place Deciding to have a baby is like planning a trip to Australia. You've heard it's a wonderful place, you've read many guidebooks and feel certain you're ready to go. Everyone you know has traveled there by plane. They say it can be a turbulent flight with occasional rough landings, but you can look forward to being pampered on the trip. So you go to the airport and ask the ticket agent for a ticket to Australia. All around you, excited people are boarding planes for Australia. It seems there is no seat for you; you'll have to wait for the next flight. Impatient, but anticipating a wonderful trip, you wait—and wait--and wait. Flights to Australia continue to come and go. People say silly things like, "Relax. You'll get on a flight soon." Other people actually get on a plane and then cancel their trip, to which you cry, "It's not fair!" After a long time the ticket agent tells you, "I'm sorry, we're not going to be able to get you on a plane to Australia. Perhaps you should think about going by boat." "By BOAT!" you say. "Going by boat will take a very long time and it costs a great deal of money. I really had my heart set on going by plane." So you go home and think about not going to Australia at all. You wonder if Australia will be as beautiful if you approach it by sea rather than air. But you have long dreamed of this wonderful place, and finally you decide to travel by boat. It is a long trip, many months over many rough seas. No one pampers you. You wonder if you will ever see Australia. Meanwhile, your friends have flown back and forth to Australia two or three more times, marveling about each trip. Then one glorious day, the boat docks in Australia. It is more exquisite than you ever imagined, and the beauty is magnified by your long days at sea. You have made many wonderful friends during your voyage, and you find yourself comparing stories with others who also traveled by sea rather than by air. People continue to fly to Australia as often as they like, but you are able to travel only once, perhaps twice. Some say things like, "Oh, be glad you didn't fly. My flight was horrible; traveling by sea is so easy." You will always wonder what it would have been like to fly to Australia. Still, you know God blessed you with a special appreciation of Australia, and the beauty of Australia is not the way you get there, but in the place itself.
  4. DrMom

    Parenting: Then & Now

    Speaking of what "used to be" in caring for children and also thinking about playpens reminded me of B.F. Skinner (I had the pleasure of meeting Fred Skinner once - one of my Profs was his graduate assistant. If you took psych you no doubt remember the Skinner Box) and his "baby tender." Anyway, according to his web site, when his wife was pregnant, "she wondered whether he might design a crib that would be safer than the typical crib with its bars that could trap a leg and blankets that could suffocate a baby. He could, and did. Proud of his new invention, an enclosed and heated crib with a plexiglass window, he sent an article to the popular magazine the Lady's Home Journal. Changing Skinner's title to grab attention, the article came out as "Baby in a Box". The "baby tender", as Skinner called his crib, was used only as a bed for the new baby. Deborah had a playpen and spent as much time out of her bed as do other infants." There were rumors that being reared in a "human Skinner-Box" had caused tremendous problems for his daughter. You might want to read her rebuttal to that in an artice titled I was not a lab rat. Mostly I have just included the link so you can see a photo of her in the baby tender. Can you imagine telling your social worker that you have your child sleeping in one of these? Talk about an investigation by Child Protective Services!
  5. DrMom

    Determining God's will

    As some of you know, we brought a baby home from the hospital only to have it reclaimed by the mother 3 days later. That was a painful, wrenching experience for us - and was at first interpreted by us as somthing that God had not intended to happen. And clearly He did not intend for that child to be ours, however, hindsight being what it is - He clearly intended for us to match with that birthmother - He knew we were strong enough to take the disappointment and He knew that the 3 days would be exactly the right amount of time for the birth mother and father to decide they did, in fact, love each other enough to get married - and then they went on to have 2 other children and be married for more than 20 years (we've lost track of them now). This is only to say that perhaps it will give a little comfort to those who have (or are) suffering from "plowing ahead" - that God may use your situation in ways you cannot imagine. And sometimes, amazingly sometimes, God does show us "written there in black and white" what His will is regarding specific decisions - even regarding things like job decisions or adoption matches! Sometimes the words you have read on so many previous occasions (or perhaps the words you are reading for the first time) just jump off the page and sing clearly that this is what you are meant to do, and God is showing that to you, right there in back and white, right there in the minute that you are reading.
  6. DrMom

    Nursery Notes

    While there are some special challenges with adopting an older child I am not sure they are any 'worse' than the challenges you get with a newborn. And boy oh boy do we ever know what those folks are missing!
  7. DrMom


    Claudia - have you read Purpose driven life? In it, the author Rick Warren, argues that God created each of us for a specific purpose, and that if we don't do our portion of that plan - it doesn't get done. Your comment about "practicing being better servants" reminded me of my reading - as this is one of the major themes of the book. I know a lot of churches take the 40 days of the Lent to read this book - you read a (short) chapter a day for the 40 days - I have read almost the entire book and was planning to attempt to figure out my 'purpose' during the days of Lent. Warren says that in addition to whatever spiritual gifts you have recieved, your various skills, natural abilities, likes and dislikes, and personal experiences are designed to equip you for the work God wants you to do. I am currently on chapter 32 which begins: "He shaped you for a purpose, and he expects you to make the most of what you have been given. He doesn't want you to worry about or covet abilities you don't have. Instead he wants you to focus on talents he has given you to use." Later he goes on that you should not "try to figure out your gifts before volunteering to serve somewhere. Just start serving. You discover your gifts by getting involved ... When it doesn't work out, call it an "experiment," not a failure." In Galations 6:4 "the Bible says, Be sure to do what you should for then you will enjoy the personal satisfaction of having done your work well, and you won't need to compare yourself to anyone else." So as you see, I am also striving to be a better servant! Your sister in Christ - Cat
  8. DrMom

    Things Infertile Folk Hate to Hear

    Asked by a relative: "You DO know what time of the month you can get pregnant, right?"
  9. DrMom

    Positive Adoption Language

    Our children do have two mothers - me, and the mother who gave birth to them and gave them a wonderful start in life - So in very many important ways I do think of Carmen and Net as our birthmothers - because they are the ones who gave birth to our family. Right now we are refering to Elizabeth's mother as Mama 'Net and I am just mama or mommie. I think there are a lot of families who might call the birthmother Mom and the forever mother Mommie or something similar. I don't think that is confusing to the child - they accept it just like they accept anyone's name and to them Mom is a different name/person from Mama or Mommie or Mother or ... It seems to me that where it gets confusing is in trying to explain it to someone else, usually someone outside the family, without going into either tons of detail or an elaborate explanation. And I honestly don't know what the answer is - if you were talking about parent who has been remarried you would just say, oh I'm his mother and Susan is his step mother (what does the step in step parent mean, anyway?). How DO we find a term that will honor the important role played by the other mothers in our lives and the lives of our children? And if WE can't agree on a term, is it any wonder the rest of the world is having difficulty?
  10. DrMom

    Baby Announcements 2005

    It was interesting how God opened so many doors for this adoption - leaving us no doubt that this was his will for our family - I will post more of this story in who is this Dr Mom person? Thank you all for your prayers and support - Cat
  11. DrMom

    Baby Announcements 2005

    How exciting that so many families are growing!!! What a wonderful Christmas this year!
  12. Susan, How wonderful for you that you are starting another adoption! As you already know, it is an exciting, hectic, and absolutely wonderful time. Domestic adoption isn't quite as complicated as international adoption - you only have to have 1,000 pounds of paperwork instead of 10,000! LOL You ask what you can do while you are in the planning stages: Go ahead with your homestudy. Maybe you will be finished well ahead of time and that will be one less hassle to worry about. Since you already have an almost 3-year-old, your home is probably already baby-safe - but if it isn't go ahead and start with all the safety stuff. In Tennessee we had to have all safety gear in place before our homestudy could be complete. That included having things almost everyone has like smoke alarms and electrical outlet protectors as well as some things we didn't have yet like drawer and cabinet locks (we thought we could wait until we had the baby home to get those things - we couldn't) and some things we just didn't own - like a fire extinguisher. The child abuse registry checks and other background checks are usually the things that take the longest in a domestic adoption - at least that has been my experience. Also, fitting in with the social worker's case load can sometimes be tricky if you get an unexpected match and are trying to hurry the process along. I'm in the midst of a placement myself, so there are probably things I am forgetting to mention. Maybe some of the other members can pick up where I am leaving off. Also there are some other topics on the forum on what to do while waiting - they have some good suggestions there. Abrazo is a wonderful agency and if you choose to work with them I feel certain you will be pleased. And if you decide to go with another agency, I think you will find that this forum is still a great place to get information and support.
  13. DrMom

    Adopting a second time

    When hubby and I got married, we wanted 3 or 4 children. We have since come to realize that we will be a family of three not the parents of 3 (or even 2) and I, the only child of an only child, will be raising an only child. How did I come to live peacefully with this realization? Hmm, well, some days I am much more peaceful than other days. But in the same way I came to peace with my inability to produce children from my body and common items you have around the house I realize this is just more of God's plan for us. I don't understand it, but there it is, so I might as well accept it, not worry about it, and move on. Humor and faith are my coping stratagies for pretty much everything, and when they don't work I pretend there is no problem - and then the stupidity of that pretense usually makes me laugh, so then I am back to humor and faith. Kati says some of the kids in her class tell her she laughs too much - but I don't think it is possible to laugh too much -
  14. When in sorrow.....................................call John 14 When men fail you.................................call Psalm 27 When you have sinned..............................call Psalm 51 When you worry.............................call Matthew 6:19-34 When you are in danger............................call Psalm 91 When God seems far away..........................call Psalm 139 When your faith needs stirring..................call Hebrews 11 When you are lonely and fearful...................call Psalm 23 When you grow bitter and critical.........call I Corinthians 13 When you feel down and out.....................call Romans 8:31 When you want peace and rest..............call Matthew 11:25-30 When the world seems bigger than God..............call Psalm 90 When you want Christian assurance............call Romans 8:1-30 When you leave home for labor or travel..........call Psalm 121 When your prayers grow narrow or selfish..........call Psalm 67 When you want courage for a task..................call Joshua 1 When you think of investments and returns..........call Mark 10 If you are depressed..............................call Psalm 27 If your pocketbook is empty.......................call Psalm 37 If you are losing confidence in people...call I Corinthians 13 If people seem unkind..............................call John 15 If discouraged about your work...................call Psalm 126 If self pride/greatness takes hold................call Psalm 19 If you want to be fruitful.........................call John 15 For understanding of Christianity...call II Corinthians 5:15-19 For a great invention/opportunity................call Isaiah 55 For how to get along with fellow men.............call Romans 12 For Paul's secret to happiness..........call Colossians 3:12-17 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ALTERNATE NUMBERS: For dealing with fear............................call Psalm 347 For security...................................call Psalm 121:3 For assurance....................................call Mark 8:35 For reassurance........................call Psalm 145:18 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PLEASE NOTE: Emergency numbers may be dialed direct. No operator assistance is necessary. All lines to Heaven are open 24 hours a day!
  15. DrMom

    What made you pick Abrazo?

    Our infertility doctor knew another Abrazo family - when we told him we were stopping treatment and going to Russia to adopt, he asked if we specifically wanted to adopt from Russia - we said we were too old (at 39) to adopt here and that even if we could find an agency that would take us, I didn't want to wait 5 years or more for a newborn! He said he would have the other patient call us - and in the meantime it was an agency called Abrazo in San Antonio -- I called directory assistance and got the number and spoke with Holly before I ever was able to speak with the Abrazo family that lived (lives?) in Dalton, GA. Went to a Parents of Tomorrow weekend on Feb 21 - one week later we were matched with a birthmom, two weeks to the day later I was holding Kati in my arms!