Cast a Wide Net

I can’t sleep. It’s 1:30 a.m and I have a morning appointment for adoption purposes…why can’t I sleep? This psych exam is the last major ‘check mark’ on our list. I lie awake thinking of adoption and fertility and all the people I personally know who are touched by it in some way.

I have a best friend who adopted an infant son and lost him three months later to cancer. She is now considering IVF. I have another best friend who continues to struggle with fertility and doesn’t think adoption will ever be for her no matter the fertility outcome. I have a dear friend who placed her baby for adoption when she was 18, and a sister-in-law who did the same. I have an aunt who has a son adopted from the state. I have a good friend who was adopted at the age of three. I have another sister-in-law who’s first child was conceived miraculously, but who struggled for years to have a second child. I have other friends who tried for a good while to get pregnant and were finally successful in having biological children. I have other aquaintences and friends who have adopted some or all of their children. And the list goes on…….

Anyway, I’m just thinking how we must ‘cast a wide net’ if we expect a desirable outcome in our lives. I surely wouldn’t be preparing to travel to Colombia if I didn’t. The trick is that each of our nets are individually sewn…and only the individual knows how wide she/he is capable of casting.

My friend Jaime Lynne and I have talked about motherhood options at length, sometimes disagreeing (as she’ll lovingly attest to). In one of our discussions I mentioned that I wanted to be a mom, but that IVF wasn’t for me. Her thought–and many others would agree–was that she would do whatever it took to make her family happen….meaning why wouldn’t I endure more fertility treatments and procedures? And yet, in my mind, spending $20,000+, eight weeks in a hotel in Bogota, and notarizing more documents than any one person should be allowed was doing whatever it took and more.

We’ve had many discussions since and we have each grown in wisdom and understanding on this issue and others. My oh so profound point is that we each travel a different path. Some say they couldn’t foster because giving the child back to a potentially unsafe situation would be too heart-wrenching. Some say they couldn’t adopt because it would be too difficult to parent a child that doesn’t look like them. Some say they couldn’t do IUI or IVF because there is not guarantee they will get what they pay for. Some say they could never let their baby go even if the child’s future was potentially brighter in another home.

If you are struggling with an issue, any issue, cast a wide net and see what you catch. Options always abound, we just have to put on our waders and start fishing. Adam and I found four beautiful siblings all because we were willing to get a little wet.

I guess I’m sufficiently tired now. Thanks for listening. My letter to Oprah will have to wait another day.


  1. Isn’t it amazing how when you have something of concern on you mind you can’t sleep. But the moment you write it down you can sleep again. That is one of the reason have always been big on journal writing. Indeed a wide net has the potential to catch more fish. I know I never thought I would be where I am at this regards. Love you.

  2. How did the adoption meeting go? And did the agency receive our letter of recommendation?

    Your recent posts have been so beautiful. I love that you so openly share the same thoughts and feelings I have experienced but you do it so eloquently. You put them into words that other people can understand. You inspire me.

    Thank you for sharing and for all the discussions and chats we have had.

    And I’m praying for your friend and her baby, too.

  3. Rachel-
    You are such an inspiration to me! You are so strong, so thoughtful and just an amazing person! I have loved following your journey and apologize for not posting more often and being there! You will forever be my friend and I am grateful for the days we spent together, who else would have come to my rescue when there were animals crawling in my walls? You will be such a great mom and more power to you for going the homeschool route! I wish I had it in me to do it! All my clean folded clothes are now being dumped on the floor so I better go rescue them!

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