I mentioned on Instagram last week that I was hoping to start the nursery pretty soon now that we are home study approved. The truth is that lots of women, including myself, start dreaming about creating a nursery before we even start trying to have kids. There is something so special about the anticipation of meeting your child and creating a warm and beautiful space for them. When we moved into this house we decided to leave the “nursery” empty knowing we wanted kids soon so it’s been sitting empty or as a storage room for years. I’m so excited about the opportunity to decorate and dream about how we will use this room with our baby.
My sister and I always talk about how every single decision you make for your child will be controversial or criticized by someone…this motherhood thing is a tough gig! Well being an adoptive mom is no different. I already received my first criticism for starting the nursery so soon. The truth is, sure to some it may seem too soon since I don’t know when we will meet our baby. But there are also a lot of reasons to go ahead and start preparing for that child. I reached out on an Adoption facebook support group I’m a member of and collected several reasons why adoptive parents choose to start the nursery prior to being matched with a birth mother/parents.
- Step of Faith – For those of us who felt the Lord calling us to adopt, this is just another step of faith to take next steps in trusting that the Lord is going to fill that nursery with a baby/babies!
- Quick Turnarounds – When you are adopting domestically, things can potentially move very quickly. I have a very close friend who was matched and had their baby girl in their arms in less than 24 hours.
- Profile Books – Profile books are very common with domestic adoption. It’s a book all about you and your family and the purpose of them is to try to give birth mothers the best representation of you and the home she is choosing for her child. Sharing the nursery in these books can help birth mothers picture the type of home and environment they are choosing for their child.
- Hope – A lot of adoptive mothers get a lot of hope out of creating and spending time in these nurseries and praying, crying and imagining their future.
- Spreading out the Cost – The average domestic adoption is $25-$35k and often will be due in one big chunk. By starting early it can help spread out the costs.
- This is our pregnancy – Most mothers have around 9 months to plan and prepare their nurseries. Our “pregnancy” may not be the norm or easy to predict but this is still our pregnancy to plan, create and anticipate just like any mother.
- Bonding with your spouse – if you aren’t someone who works on projects together often (like we do) this can be a great experience for you and your spouse. This can be great time spent together painting, assembling and dreaming!
- Help pass the time – In most adoptions there is a significant waiting period. This is the perfect activity to help pass those long days wondering and longing for what your future holds.
- Potential to stand out from other adoptive families – As mentioned in #3, it can be great to include pictures in your profile book. If decorating is a passion of yours, it could be something that helped set you apart or stand out from other adoptive parents.
- It’s one thing we can Control – the infertility and adoptive process is very unpredictable. This is one thing we can control in a time in our life filled with so many questions and unknowns.
- Avoid Stress – If you were selected for a short turnaround for adoption, the thought of completing a nursery on top of travel, paperwork and becoming a new mom can be very stressful and overwhelming. By having the nursery started/complete, it avoids adding that stressor to the mix.
- Nesting – all mothers go through this, even adoptive moms.
Here are some of my favorite responses in the facebook group that will give you a little glimpse into these adoptive mother’s hearts and minds.
“It’s been one of the best decisions we have made so far. First and foremost, after eight years of trying, it was the perfect bonding experience for my husband and I. We grew together so much by shopping and completing our nursery like we wanted to. I’ll never forget how excited he was to paint that we started it late on a weeknight and were so sleepy but so in love with singing and talking about what he or she would be like. It also was a huge factor in our home study that she loved because it showed her that we were excited, ready, and prepared for a baby at a moment’s notice. It also gave us a sense of hope because we’ve tried so many other avenues to have a baby and never got that far and to finally set one up was one of our favorite experiences together. And finally, it really is a big unknown when it comes to adoption. They could call us in ten minutes and tell us to go anywhere in the US. We would hate to come home to a room that isn’t prepared and ready to welcome our precious lil one. I’ve loved every second I’ve spent in his or her room and love showing it to everyone who comes by… Now just to wait until the day we get to share it with our baby.” – Kim
“As a waiting adoptive Mom, we work on the nursery for many reasons; we do anything and everything we can to prepare for our future baby. In doing this, when the time comes, we’ll be a little more prepared. We also “nest” because we want to do all we can to feel like “expecting parents”. We are home study approved and are “waiting”. We won’t know in advance so we are just waiting for “the call”. Being someone that will never experience the beauty of pregnancy, awaiting placement IS my pregnancy. Our nursery is done as far as necessities but we have many things to add once we receive a placement. It’s each waiting-to-adopt parents journey. Do what feels right. And if doing a room in advance is what feels right to you, do it!” – Carrie
“Whether we had a placement in advance of the birth or an emergency placement (which our daughter was!), we believed our child deserved to come home to a ready and waiting nursery just like a biological child would have come home to.” – Brooke
Also just to be transparent, there were responses in the group of why some adoptive parents decide to wait on the nursery, but as for this post, it’s sharing several of the reasons we decide to work on our nurseries prior to being matched.
I realize that adoption is a foreign process to most people, including myself! For this reason, I am hoping to share some of the many things I am learning along the way! So stay tuned for more blog posts about our adoption process!
I would also love to encourage everyone to please keep their opinions and negative thoughts to themselves, especially when it comes to motherhood. It’s a hard enough job without everyone elses opinions. Let’s extend some grace and not share our difference in opinions when it comes to how we prepare for our babies, adoptive or biological.