What's embyro adoption you might ask? Well, we will be adopting embryos (of an unknown quantity at this point) from a family who has gone through in vitro fertilization, have successfully given birth to children and now have embryos leftover which they do not wish to birth, but also do not want to destroy. They have therefore decided to give their frozen embryos to a family they choose through an adoption agency and forfeit any parental rights and allow their embryos to join a loving home who would like to have them.
Why did we choose adoption? Well, when we found out that we have a one in four chance of any children we have to be born with MEB like Kinsley, we discussed, prayed about and ultimately decided that we would not pursue anymore biological children. I understand that some people may not agree with our decision, but we feel this is right. We believe God blessed us immensely by giving us Kinsely. She is our pride and joy. However I would be lying if I didn't say that every day I wish she did not have to live with this horrible disease. When asked if I could change anything about Kinsley, I have to say that yes I would. I would take away this disease that makes her seize, impairs her vision, stunts her ability to learn, slows her physical progress, stops her ability to speak, and could possibly (but Lord-willing not) weaken her muscles to the point of even death some day. I hate to even say those words, but they are facts about MEB. Does this mean that I think Kinsley is anything less than perfect? Of course not. She is my hero. She works harder than anyone I know to overcome every setback set in front of her. I am so proud to be her mother and I would never, ever go back and not have this sweet girl.
That being said, with this knowledge, Luke and I do not feel that we could bring another biological child into this world knowing we could be subjecting him or her to MEB. It's just not something I would wish on anyone.
We always knew we wanted to adopt some day anyway. This just helped us move in that direction earlier than originally planned.
So, why choose embryo adoption? Well, when we first began thinking about adoption we had never heard of embryo adoption, but a friend of mine (and one of Kinsley's therapists) has worked in the adoption field and mentioned it to me. I was immediately intrigued and researched it quite a bit. With embryo adoption we will be able to implant the embryos into my body and I can carry the child(ren) to term and give birth to them! To say this was exciting to me is an understatement. I LOVED being pregnant and the thought of giving that up was hard for me to do. Also, nursing Kinsley remains one of my favorite life events ever. I am so excited to be able to do these with the children we will adopt as well.
Additionally, as very strong pro-life advocates, Luke and I feel very strongly that these little frozen embryos deserve and need a family. Their lives have begun, but they are literally frozen in time and need someone who is willing to continue their lives to adopt them. We feel very strongly that this is an important issue and one worthy of pursuing. Our hope and prayer is that one day there will no longer be a need for embryo adoption because all these little embryos will have received families and will have a chance at the life that has already been begun.
Embryo adoption is not actually seen legally in the same light as typical domestic or international adoptions, but there are adoption agencies who offer this form of adoption along with the typical types. Their hope is that eventually this will be viewed as a legal form of adoption and will have the same laws applied to it. Therefore they follow all the same guidelines as a domestic adoption and keep track of the paperwork just the same. Because of this we had to complete a home study just like all others adopting. This was just (finally*) completed this week and we have mailed it to our adoption agency. Our next step is the matching phase and I so excited for this phase to begin! It is finally starting to feel real to me. Our family profile is going to be given to the genetic families (as they are called by the agency) and hopefully one will choose us to adopt their embryos. If we choose them back we will receive all of their embryos, and can begin the implantation process! The matching phase takes 3-6 months on average.
We are doing our adoption through Nightlight Christian Adoptions, but there are others who do embryo adoptions as well. Please feel free to read more about it, but also please ask me any other questions you may have. I know with this post I have not given all the information you may be wondering, but I will certainly be telling more as this process continues for us. Most of all we ask for your prayers as we continue on this adoption journey. We will certainly need them!
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