Dear Expectant Parent(s),
We are Anna and David, and we live in a small New England town surrounded by friendly people, abundant farmlands, and rolling mountains. Central to our lives are the values of caring, sharing, and spirituality, which we have incorporated into our careers. Anna serves as a college chaplain and pastor, and David teaches college students about world religions. While our work is very important to us, even more important to us is our desire to be parents. We want to raise children who will be kind, caring, and curious about the world.
If you choose us to be parents for your child, we will always speak of you with respect and appreciation. As we think about adoption, we live in hope that your choice and our choice can lead to a life for your baby where they will always know your love as well as ours.
Both of us have friends and family who are adopted. David has cousins who are adopted, and Anna has close friends who are an adoptive family. She’s had the honor of being in their children’s lives to see the ups and downs, struggles, joy, and love of adoption. We’ve found that adoptive families are, in the end, families, complex in some ways and also simple in being bound together by love, commitment, and caring.
Our own story as a family began four years ago. We were both single throughout our twenties and early thirties as we went to school and began our careers. We had almost given up on ever meeting anyone until a mutual friend told us about each other. David lived in upstate New York, and Anna lived in California. The physical distance between us might have prevented us from giving a relationship a try, but we trusted our mutual friend. We began to email each other, Skyped frequently, and then met in person. We found that we really liked being around each other! We also fell in love. A year and a half later, we were married in Colorado, surrounded by family and friends.
Even when we were single, we each wanted to be parents and considered adoption on our own. Now that we have been married for two and a half years, we are fully committed to parenting together. We have always been open to the idea of growing our family through adoption, and in our journey toward parenthood we have had several pregnancy losses, one resulting in an emergency surgery for Anna. Since that time, we have not been able to get pregnant. The two of us are a family now, but we hope to be a larger family. We feel that part of our calling in life is to grow our family through adoption.
We know that parenting will not be easy, and no books, classes, or conversations will fully prepare us for its day-to-day challenges. Our siblings and close friends with kids endure sleepless nights, worries about childcare and budgets, and feelings of self-doubt about how best to parent their little ones. We’re sure this will happen to us, as well as further challenges that we can’t yet imagine. Still, we believe that the hard work of parenting will be worth it. We look forward to loving and nurturing a little human being as they discover who they are and how they are needed in the world.
Close friends (that we consider chosen family) have adopted children, and their kids are overjoyed that we are adopting. These kids want to be there for our child, too. As one of them asked us recently, “Can I come help and hold your baby?” There are many, many people in our lives who are excited to hold and love a little one.
While you now know a bit about us as a family, we should tell you about our extended family. To sum it up in a few words, our extended family is loving and large. Anna is the oldest of seven children. David is the second of four children. Our siblings live in the Pacific Northwest, the Midwest, and New England. Along with their spouses, this group includes two firefighters, two teachers, a mechanic, a therapist, a social worker, a mechanical engineer, a medical doctor, a nurse, a parts department employee, and a data scientist. Our family makes an effort to get together on a regular basis, and we plan our vacation time to see each other, despite the distance that separates us. These uncles and aunties all look forward to welcoming a new niece or nephew to our family.
Beyond our siblings, we look forward to introducing our future child to his or her cousins. Right now, there are three of them, all under the age of seven. They love playing together whenever there is a big family gathering, and we have enjoyed watching them grow into people with their own unique personalities and interests. One nephew, for example, loves sharks and dinosaurs, and fancies himself popular with the girls in his first grade class. His younger sister looks forward to going to kindergarten soon and is also an aspiring dancer and pianist. Their cousin loves, loves, loves all things dealing with trash and recycling. He collects the recycling at his church every week and tells his parents that he wants to go to trash school when grows up. Our niece and nephews would love to have another cousin.
As a pastor (Anna) and a religious studies professor (David), we are committed to raising a child in a family that values kindness, love, justice, spirituality, diversity, and curiosity. Anna founded a congregation in California that brought together a diverse group of people, from those who didn’t have homes and those who did, to construction workers and downtown lawyers. All of them transformed an empty lot into a garden where, on any Sunday, they gardened, worshiped, and shared a meal together. Anna now serves as a chaplain for college students from many different backgrounds, supports the efforts of a church that works with people who are experiencing homelessness, and volunteers in a women’s prison. David teaches about the world’s religions, helping his students learn about people different than themselves. He has traveled to conduct research in India, the Philippines, France, and the US.
Beyond our careers, we try to live by our values in everyday life. We love reading Harry Potter books and watching the Great British Baking Show, shopping at farmer’s markets and going to donut shops, taking hikes in nature and exploring museums, cooking together and having friends at our table every week. Anna loves doing arts and crafts. She looks forward to teaching our children how to sew and knit, as well as painting with watercolors. David loves singing in the community choir and playing the piano. He looks forward to sharing with our children an appreciation of music. We love Christmas caroling and inviting friends over for Easter dinner. We love birthday celebrations and naming what we’re thankful for at dinner each night. We are committed to raising our child in a generous and loving church community where she or he will have friendships and role models with people of all ages. Within these family traditions and communities of love, we hope that our child can blossom into a confident, caring person who will want to make the world a more just and generous place.
We know that your journey towards adoption likely hasn’t been easy. When we have confronted some of the hardest times in our own lives, we’ve often found that different feelings can be true at the same time. Sadness can sit alongside joy. Doubt can happen at the same time as we experience hope. If you are experiencing these feelings, know that we understand how this can be. And, even though we have not yet met, we already care about your well-being.
As parents, we promise to love and care for your child. We promise to be patient with them. We will not use physical punishment with them, and we will never shame her or him. We want to emphasize good communication in our parenting. In addition, we will make sure that you can have as much or as little contact as you wish, and we will raise the child knowing the love and care you have for them. And, we promise to put his or her well-being before ourselves as we navigate all of life’s challenges together. Thank you for taking the time to consider us as prospective parents to your child. Please call Full Circle Adoptions at 1-800-452-3678 if you would like to learn more about us or speak with us.