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Mari, John and I so much appreciate your warm and encouraging words! When we first found out about open adoption at an early juncture in the process, we were not sure if this was the right situation for us. We were already feeling like we had no control over things (through fertility treatments) and we were scared of the unknown. By the time we had shown up at the Abrazo orientation months later, we were convinced that open adoption is exactly what we wanted as we had educated ourselves more. Being on the forum and witnessing how beautifully it can work, we so yearn for that.

Your family has been such an inspiration! Your relationship with Lauranda and Sloan, Lauranda's relationship with Sloan and the adoptive parents, all just so beautiful....As you say, I'm sure it takes nurturing but I see that everyone committed to being there for each other and most importantly for Sloan.

Doing the math, you do not AT ALL look your age!! Wow, what is the secret?!

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Mari, I just wanted to tell you that you are such a blessing to this community. Your insight and wisdom are so valuable. You always have a level head and loving heart in the words you share, and I ap

Thank you Leah! I'm glad I was able to add to my photo gallery. I was trying to figure out how to post from my phone, since I can't get access to Abrazo website from home computer.. And to borrow

Beth Thank you Beth… I needed the hugs …. Not feeling sorry for myself or anything, it’s just part of the journey and process and those bitter sweet moments that creep up especially during SPECIAL/Me

Mari, John and I so much appreciate your warm and encouraging words! When we first found out about open adoption at an early juncture in the process, we were not sure if this was the right situation for us. We were already feeling like we had no control over things (through fertility treatments) and we were scared of the unknown. By the time we had shown up at the Abrazo orientation months later, we were convinced that open adoption is exactly what we wanted as we had educated ourselves more. Being on the forum and witnessing how beautifully it can work, we so yearn for that.

Your family has been such an inspiration! Your relationship with Lauranda and Sloan, Lauranda's relationship with Sloan and the adoptive parents, all just so beautiful....As you say, I'm sure it takes nurturing but I see that everyone committed to being there for each other and most importantly for Sloan.

Doing the math, you do not AT ALL look your age!! Wow, what is the secret?!

Airi,

With all my heart I wish nothing but the best for everyone involved in adoption. In a perfect world there would be no need for it, but we don’t live in a perfect world, and thank goodness adoption does exist for both first parents and adoptive parents. Nothing about adoption is easy I think, and it isn’t perfect from the get go, but open adoption can work and it can get easier. The key players, if you will, must go through a process, an emotional process that I think no one can really know or identify with and fully understand at the beginning, not until you are in the midst of it, but isn't that the case with many things, part of the process of growing/learning and adjusting with much of lifes journey. There are bumps in the road, my thoughts are mainly because everyone needs and well find their place for lack of better words, where they belong, and get comfortable with their new roles, which ever roles those may be. But as you mention, if the commitment is there, everyone will win, especially the child at the center of everyone’s heart. The unknown can be scary, but you’re not alone, for most/many first parents, it is also a journey through the unknown and scared. The beauty is that you can figure it out together and the possibilities’ are endless. What a blessing you and John can/will be to your future family.

I’m sure your math is correct, can't believe in a little more than a month from now, it will be 20 yrs since then, but this time instead of celebrating my daughter’s birth, we will celebrate her 20 birthday (thanks to God).. We are really excited, we'll be spending her bday with my oldest daughter who lives in Las Vegas, so Lauranda will be able to spend with her big sister.. Secret, don’t really have one, wish I did though, have aged I’m sure quite a bit the last almost four years, mainly due to my daughter’s health.. Thank you though for sweet compliment..

Have a blessed day...

Mari

Edited by 1st x grandma
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I have read and listened to some very interesting books in the last year…some bring smiles, some bring tears, but all bring added awareness in some form or another…. All have something written that have made me stop to ponder…Note to self - Where/how/what/why-

I read this piece barely into the second chapter of a book I just started last night.. Left me thinking of some special hearts I’ve recently read about.. Hugs to each one of you...

“Presumptuous promises-If our promise to others is birthed out of pride or arrogance, it is sin, and will only bring a harvest of pain. Any promise we make and do not fulfill can stumble one of God’s precious ones, bringing reproach to Jesus’ name. Forgiveness and restitution must be asked and made. The choice is ours to make, choose wisely.”

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“Presumptuous promises-If our promise to others is birthed out of pride or arrogance, it is sin, and will only bring a harvest of pain. Any promise we make and do not fulfill can stumble one of God’s precious ones, bringing reproach to Jesus’ name. Forgiveness and restitution must be asked and made. The choice is ours to make, choose wisely.”

That passage is amazing. Thanks for sharing.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Airi,

With all my heart I wish nothing but the best for everyone involved in adoption. In a perfect world there would be no need for it, but we don’t live in a perfect world, and thank goodness adoption does exist for both first parents and adoptive parents. Nothing about adoption is easy I think, and it isn’t perfect from the get go, but open adoption can work and it can get easier. The key players, if you will, must go through a process, an emotional process that I think no one can really know or identify with and fully understand at the beginning, not until you are in the midst of it, but isn't that the case with many things, part of the process of growing/learning and adjusting with much of lifes journey. There are bumps in the road, my thoughts are mainly because everyone needs and well find their place for lack of better words, where they belong, and get comfortable with their new roles, which ever roles those may be. But as you mention, if the commitment is there, everyone will win, especially the child at the center of everyone’s heart. The unknown can be scary, but you’re not alone, for most/many first parents, it is also a journey through the unknown and scared. The beauty is that you can figure it out together and the possibilities’ are endless. What a blessing you and John can/will be to your future family.

My very belated thanks for your post, Mari. What wise words! I have no doubt that John and I will keep coming back to this post many times as we experience the joys and the hardships of open adoption. Your perspective as a first grandmother is so valuable and I'm truly grateful to hear your perspective on open adoption. We are definitely nervous about the unknown but also excited to embark on a journey that is nothing like we have taken. My hope is that we will always be honest, respectful and loving in all our actions and that we will have a team to provide a most loving environment for our child.

I’m sure your math is correct, can't believe in a little more than a month from now, it will be 20 yrs since then, but this time instead of celebrating my daughter’s birth, we will celebrate her 20 birthday (thanks to God).. We are really excited, we'll be spending her bday with my oldest daughter who lives in Las Vegas, so Lauranda will be able to spend with her big sister.. Secret, don’t really have one, wish I did though, have aged I’m sure quite a bit the last almost four years, mainly due to my daughter’s health.. Thank you though for sweet compliment..

We will all wish Lauranda a happy birthday when she turns 20! So great to hear about the fun birthday trip coming up to Las Vegas.

No secret? Probably the positive outlook and kindness contribute to your glow (along with good genes!)

Thank you, Mari, for being there for us and for all your warm support!

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Thinking of all new families celebrating and all families grieving, as each goes hand in hand with the other.

“It is this belief in a power larger than myself and other than myself, which allows me to venture into the unknown and even the unknowable.” Maya Angelou, poet, educator

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Lauranda and I pickled three jars of jalapenos.. well she did most of the work :P , I cleaned up :rolleyes: ...we'll have to wait a few weeks to see how they come out...I'll let her taste them though :D keeping fingers crossed...

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Lauranda and I pickled three jars of jalapenos.. well she did most of the work :P , I cleaned up :rolleyes: ...we'll have to wait a few weeks to see how they come out...I'll let her taste them though :D keeping fingers crossed...

Oh, I can't wait to hear how they turn out! I love pickled jalapenos... I'm hoping Ollie loves spicy food as much as we do because I swear I could eat anything if it had a jalapeno on top!

Your camp donations were BEAUTIFUL, Mari! Monica looked like a very happy lady when she won them! They were gorgeous! :D Sure would love to meet you and Lauranda at camp one year!!

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Oh, I can't wait to hear how they turn out! I love pickled jalapenos... I'm hoping Ollie loves spicy food as much as we do because I swear I could eat anything if it had a jalapeno on top!

Your camp donations were BEAUTIFUL, Mari! Monica looked like a very happy lady when she won them! They were gorgeous! :D Sure would love to meet you and Lauranda at camp one year!!

I will have to let Lauranda know to report the outcome..For her the hotter the better, I like to taste my food so do not care for peppers or food that is too spicy now in my older age.. :blink:

Thank you, it was my pleasure to make and donate.. I’m thrilled that Monica liked them. Hope all are getting some rest.

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Counting the days to a much needed get away vacation.. So looking forward to see my two girls spend time with each other. Lauranda has worked extremely hard in school and is ready for some time away, balance is essential.

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Where are you going on vacation? I agree that balance between work/school/regular routine and relaxing on a vacation is greatly needed! I just wish the American culture was more geared towards that balance than work, work, work.

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Enjoy your vacation with your family and your girls!! You are so right on how important it is to find the right balance between work and relaxation!

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Thank you ladies…

Jocelyn, we are headed to Las Vegas, my oldest daughter lives there (9 years now).. We haven’t been since 09, she’s made it home a few times since, (yes we all still say SA is still her home) ..So we knew it was time to go back to visit her.

Hannah, Moncia, Leah, thank you, balance is needed, I learned the hard way… I am a recovering WORKAHOLIC :wacko: and think I have done great the last six years… went from easily working 70 plus hours a week to my current 25 @ week, though it took me a long time to get used to it, thought I would loose my mind for a while and now I can’t imagine going back to even 40 a week….

I am only bummed that I am in a soft cast (boot), bought some new sandals for trip a week ago Sat and then last Monday got put in the boot.. Stuck in this thing for 4 to 6 weeks.. yuk..doc gave me a steroid shot yesterday @ my follow up, (which hurt like heck), I’m hoping the swelling goes down enough to allow me to be more comfortable and maybe sneak a few hours without the boot.. shush, our secret .. ^_^ but other than that we are so ready..

Lauranda has her final tomorrow afternoon (thurs.).. Please send good thoughts her way..

Appreciate you all… have a blessed week..

Mari

Edited by 1st x grandma
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relax and enjoy the HEAT....and rock that boot... :)

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Hoping the boot doesn't slow you down too much and definitely sending some prayers Lauranda's way!

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relax and enjoy the HEAT....and rock that boot... :)

LOL… I will!!!! Had a wedding this past weekend, my dress had been selected, my jewelry had been made and the boot was not part of my attire.. so I had some fun with it and blinged it up for occasion..What other better place to Rock it but in VEGAS... :lol:

Getting through airport security will be fun though :D

Thank you all for good wishes to my baby girl with her final..

We’ll definitely have fun and I won’t let this boot slow me down, been waiting too long for this trip.. What’s that old Nancy Sinatra song… “These boots are made for walking, and that’s just what they’ll do”.. Of course ya’ll are probably too young to remember it, but it was one of my favas as a teen.. Ah, memories… :rolleyes:

Anyway…you all have an awesome weekend…

Mari

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Dear Mari,

I'm finally catching up on the other parts of forum. I wanted to thank you so much for all your support and prayers for me and John. They were answered and as you know, we now have a beautiful baby girl in our arms. Not only that, we have gained a wonderful first family, exactly the kind of family we had dreamed of, a most incredible and beautiful first mother, and her family who have warmly welcomed us. Everything happened so quickly and we didn't have the chance to start building a relationship until after the placement but we feel very good that in the past couple of weeks, we have built a good foundation from which we can continue to deepen our bonds. Your wisdom will continue to guide us, Mari. Thank you for continuing to share your experiences, sage advice, warmth, humor....I know that I will continue to learn from you.

Your necklace was absolutely beautiful and I put in practically all of my raffle tickets into your box. Alas, I was not so lucky.....but we had won the jackpot a few days earlier so I won't complain.

I presume that all went well with Lauranda's exams. She is quite a young woman. I would love for Amber to meet you and Lauranda at some point.....

I'm so sorry to hear about your leg.....I hope that you won't be in pain and that you can fully enjoy your vacation in Vegas with your beautiful daughters!

Lots of love,

Airi

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  • 2 weeks later...

Airi,

You certainly did hit a jackpot!! Have been catching up on your blog in bits and pieces.. What an amazing start to and with your forever family. These are always my prayers for adoption triad..Wonderful blessings for a very lucky little girl all around.

Lauranda's exams went well, she was ready for vacation and we had a great one.. Now she is getting ready to start school again next week, so she is enjoying a few more days of doing no school work and relaxing.. ;)

LOL..my boot certainly did not put a damper on vacation..was a little of a hassel @ airport, but otherwise no problem..

best news is as of yesterday’s doc follow up, I am now in tennis for the next three weeks until my next follow up.. That darn painful steroid shot he gave me before vacation sure did help.. Can't beat that..

Maybe one day Lauranda and Amber will meet, Lauranda's never attended group..mainly due to school/school work that she pushes herself on, and unfortunately she missed the first reunion..but I am hoping she will make it next year God willing. First moms are a group of courages women, that no matter how much others (me included) try to support and understand, we can never fully do so unless we’ve been there, (won't ever stop me from being there when she needs me though, even if it's just a shoulder I can provide) so it’s wonderful that they can share with each other and understand each other’s emotions (good and bad)..

Have a blessed day

Edited by 1st x grandma
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I found out that a jeep liberty is not very user friendly (rental in Vegas).. you would think it be a rooming SUV..no not that back doors when you have a boot on.. Family had to stand around a bit while I would untangle myself trying to get through the door (in or out).. I heard comments about them/someone recording me and sending to Americas funniest videos..couple times did get frustrated though when I got stuck… :blink:

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Maybe one day Lauranda and Amber will meet, Lauranda's never attended group..mainly due to school/school work that she pushes herself on, and unfortunately she missed the first reunion..but I am hoping she will make it next year God willing. First moms are a group of courages women, that no matter how much others (me included) try to support and understand, we can never fully do so unless we’ve been there, (won't ever stop me from being there when she needs me though, even if it's just a shoulder I can provide) so it’s wonderful that they can share with each other and understand each other’s emotions (good and bad)..

Have a blessed day

That would be awesome if Lauranda could spend time with other birthmoms, but I totally understand how important keeping up with and finishing school is to her. Just one of the amazing things about Abrazo is how they support bringing birthparent/expectant parents together for support as well as adoptive parents together for support. You are so right that people who have been or are going through the same things that you are can be the best support out there.

Wishing Lauranda another great year!!

Glad to hear that your trip was great and that your boot didn't slow you down!!

As always thanks for sharing with us!!

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Thanks Monica.. Have an awesome weekend..

Very good book I have started reading.. The Gift of Change

I totally believe this…

“And when all other efforts fail, we are likely, if only in the secret chamber of our heart, to ask God if He would please help us. And He will. He will reprogram us at the deepest levels. And then, through the alchemy of the divine curriculum, we’ll meet the people we’re supposed to meet, in order to go through the situations we need to go through, in order to learn the lessons that will transform us from beings of fear to beings of love. We will be given every opportunity to learn through joy, and when we deny ourselves that, we will learn through pain. But we will learn. “

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