Tell us about yourself.
I grew up on a farm in a very rural part of North Carolina. While it was a beautiful way to grow up, and I learned an incredible work ethic and appreciation for the simpler life, I couldn’t get out of my small town fast enough and high tailed it out of there right after high school. My husband and I met in college and went on to live in a few different places before coming
back to settle in Charlotte. I am a Human Resources Executive and love the day-to-day chaos of such an ever-changing job. You certainly don’t have an opportunity to get bored as there is always a crisis to solve or complex business challenge to figure your way through. No two days are the same and it definitely keeps me on my toes.
How does adoption intersect with your life?
In 2016 my husband and I welcomed our daughter to our family through adoption. We are fortunate to have an open adoption and were afforded the opportunity to be in the delivery room when she was born. The experience of adoption changed us forever in literally every single way. This little person is the center of our world and the road for us all to find each other was amazing....and bumpy at times...and emotional....and incredible. Without the support of organizations like Adoption Support Alliance, the road to and through adoption can feel daunting and I am lucky to be able to benefit from their expertise and feel wrapped up in support.
How did you connect with Adoption Support Alliance?
I knew I wanted to connect with resources in the community to help arm us as parents with the tools needed to help navigate some of the conversations we know will come with our daughter. Adoption Support Alliance held a panel discussion in January 2020 that provided a space to hear from adult adoptees about their experience, their joys, and their challenges. The gracious panelists were able to share what they wish their adoptive parents had perhaps better understood when they were growing up. My husband and I were literally on the edge of our seats and you could hear a pin drop in the room. Hearing adult adoptees share their stories and feeling a common thread that bound everyone in the room was powerful. Shortly after that discussion, Erin approached me about joining the Board of Directors for Adoption Support Alliance and I jumped at the opportunity to be connected and to be of service.
Could you share something adoption has taught you?
While we were waiting to be matched, I quietly worried if the same motherly instincts would kick in at the right time. I had never been a mother before, will I know what to do? Would we bond quickly? Would we have the same emotional and spiritual connection that biological parents have with their children? The answer to those questions hit me square in the face when my daughter was born. I was overcome with the feeling that I had all I needed to be this child's mother and loving her came very naturally to me, even without a biological tie. I realized, for us, the adoption process felt like the longest wait of our lives but, the love arrived instantly.
Are there any words of wisdom you’d want to share with any of part of the adoption triad?
As a prospective adoptive parent, part of your journey is to find a way to get comfortable being uncomfortable. You heart will be stretched and tugged in ways you never imagined and often it feels the adoptive parents in the triad are the shock absorbers of the emotions that swirl around each other member of the triad’s experience. Keep an open heart, continue to push yourself to understand the experience and the path the biological parents have traveled and try every day to be the safe place where your children can feel their feelings without fear.