Category: General
Posted by: jason
The day we've been waiting for... Tracy and Brayden are on a plane bound for Oregon.

Yesterday afternoon Tracy got a call from the adoption agency relaying that the State of Oregon ICPC has approved them to go home. She boarded a plane at about 6:30am this morning. She'll be home in time for breakfast. :-)

Still have a few more steps to the adoption process, but they should only be technicallities at this point. As long as we're at least average parents and our home is safe for a baby. We intend to be better than average parents and we're going to start baby-proofing the house right away. We're also going to be painting the nursery and making that room his.

03/21/07: It's official!

Category: General
Posted by: jason
On Thursday, the last tribal letter came back which told us exactly what we already knew; Lisa's family/ancestors did not register with any tribes and thus they have nothing to say about whether we can adopt Brayden. So 40 days later, we're finally clear to sign paperwork and hopefully get Tracy and Brayden home. On Friday, Lisa signed her portion of the adoption paperwork and Saturday morning we drove to La Mirada and signed our portion of the paperwork. We were told that it would go out in Monday's (3/19) mail (overnight), but the adoption agency dropped the ball and it didn't go out until Tuesday (3/20). We've been told that the ICPC process with Oregon should go very quickly and we should expect a response within a day or two. Once that comes back, Tracy and Brayden will be clear to go home. We're hoping that will be by Friday so that they can be home this weekend.

Tracy is due to go back to work next week. We had no idea that the adoption process would take this long. It's been 54 days since Tracy has been home. We owe a big thank you to Sandy & Stu for letting Tracy and Brayden stay with them for at least 35 of those days. We also thank everyone who took care of our dog. Things may not have gone perfectly, but the important thing is that he got to live at home (didn't have to be boarded) and he survived. We'll work on the psychological damage when we get home. :-)

We hope to be posting a lot more photos soon; when the camera gets home.
Category: General
Posted by: jason
2/5/07 early afternoon - Southern California - A baby boy was born.

Tracy and Jason went to the hospital at 7AM to meet Lisa, the birth-mom. She was going to be induced into labor. We waited and waited, but the progress was slow. At about 12:30pm, we asked the nurses if they felt that we had time to grab some lunch. They said that it shouldn't be a problem, so we headed off to lunch. Just as we finished lunch and were trying to find some flowers to bring to Lisa, we got a call from Lisa's mom. The baby was coming and we needed to get back fast. We sped back to the hospital and Tracy made it to the delivery room with about 5 minutes to spare. Brayden was born just before 2pm.

The nurse came in to check on Brayden a couple hours after his birth and said that he wasn't breathing properly and that they'd need to take him to the nursery for closer observation. We were allowed to go visit him there any time. We spent a lot of time visiting him. He was hooked to a monitor to measure his breathing rate and his oxygen saturation level (SaO2). He had several episodes in which his SaO2 level got into sub-optimal levels and his feet turned blue. The doctor came in on 2/6/07 in the afternoon and diagnosed Brayden with pneumonia. He was immediately put on antibiotics and moved to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). He spent the next few days in the NICU and we were allowed to continue to visit him, but the process was a little more involved. We had to scrub up and wear gowns.

A few days later he was making good progress and responding well to the meds. They moved him back into the nursery and continued to receive his meds. He continued to make good progress and 8 days after his birth, he was released from the hospital into our care. We're still waiting for some approvals to come back before we can officially complete the adoption. It could take up to 60 days (starting around January 31). During this time, Brayden is not allowed to leave California. We're hoping it won't take the full 60 days, but at this time it's looking like it might. Still, it's all worth it in the end. It looks like our dream will come true.

01/22/07: New Hope...

Category: General
Posted by: jason
No, I'm not talking about Episode 4 of Starwars. Tracy and I were chosen by a birth-mom. The baby is due within the next couple of weeks. We are trying to contain our excitement to some extent because of the previous times we've been bitten (once bitten, twice shy). The baby will be born in Southern California and is expected to be a boy. Tracy and I are planning to go to Southern Cal. in the next few days. We'll hopefully be there when the baby is born. Tracy has been invited to be in the delivery room. The single birth-mom has 2 sons and feels that she is resented by her older one because he doesn't know his father. The younger one does know his father. She doesn't want another child to resent her and miss out on having a dad.

Anyone who knows us, please keep your fingers crossed. We're not sure if we can deal with another major disappointment.

01/22/07: No More Comments

Category: General
Posted by: jason
I was getting slammed with SPAM comments, so I've disabled comments. If you do want to comment and you're legitimately interested, you can email me (Jason).
Category: General
Posted by: jason
Those who know me know that I'm not a big fan of government. In my opinion, it has become excessively intrusive and costs way too much for the inefficiency it creates. That said, Tracy and I are trying to adopt through the state. We're taking required courses on doing foster care and are planning on going down the path of foster to adopt. We've already taken half of the 16 hour class and will completing the rest this week. Afterward, we're going to need to take a class on drug affected babies since the large majority of babies that end up in state care are drug affected and we want to foster/adopt children under 1 year of age.

We're also taking steps to go down the surogacy path. The main concern there is cost and still the looming question of whether it will even be successful. Tracy and I are fairly convinced that our issue is a problem with carrying the embryo and not with actually becoming pregnant. If that is the case, then there is no reason that we can think of that surogacy shouldn't work.

Also, we're still working with the agency in California to try to get a match. It's taking a lot longer than we expected with her. Still, she's been sending out our packets to a lot of birth moms, so we're still hopeful.

On a side note, some scumbags are using the comment section on this site to advertise their SPAM. If this continues, I'm going to have to disable the ability to leave comments, which would be a shame.
Category: General
Posted by: jason
Well, the worst has happenned. Melissa backed out. We don't have many details. Here's what we know:
Thursday I got a call from our attorney. He said that he got a call from Melissa's attorney and he said that he could not represent her for "ethical" reasons. We tried to get ahold of her several times to find out what's going on. Never could. This afternoon we got a call from our attorney again. This time the news was much more grim. He said that he had received an email from the attorney in NC again. He said that Melissa called him today and told him to tell us that she decided to parent the child.

So, here's where we're at... Depressed, obviously. We've called the adoption agency in California to unfreeze our contract with them. Also, we contacted the agency that we were going through for Melissa and told them to start searching for us too.

So, on the bright side: We might end up with a boy (our preference, but not a big deal either way), won't have to travel so close to Tracy's birthday and 4th of July, no more payments for phone, electricity, mortgage, cars, or groceries (until we're matched again).

Down sides: More work and time to try to find a baby, depression (we really had our hopes up), might have to get rid of the baby clothes we bought already if it's not a girl, have to figure out if we can change our flights that we had already booked, and we already paid out $2000 for Melissa's expenses which we can't recover.

This will probably be the last posting until we get matched again.
Category: General
Posted by: jason
So, I'm going to be leaving Regence Blue Cross/Blue Shield at the end of this week. Been working there for almost 11 months. I'll be traveling a lot on my new job. Tracy is planning to take off from work for at least the end of June through the end of August. She and I have discussed her & the baby travelling with me. She thinks that 2 weeks traveling and 1 week home sounds good. So far everyone we've talked to about this plan hates it, but noone can give me a good reason why. A few reasons I've heard so far are: Tracy will be bored while I'm at work, you shouldn't travel with a baby, and babies and planes don't do so well together.

Here's the answers to those concerns: Tracy and I both agree she won't be bored... She'll have a baby to look after, a pool, spa, weight room, TV, computer, and new city to explore. Why shouldn't you travel with a baby? Fear of losing the baby? Fear of germs? Because the baby won't know where it is? We'll check with a pediatrician before doing this, but if we can fly home from NC with a new born, I don't see why it'd be any different to travel to my work. Babies and planes often don't go well together, that is true. Benadryl helps babies sleep through the long flight and should wind up on the other side, untraumatized.

I have some concerns about getting reimbursed by FedEx. So far, I don't know of any case that I or anyone I know has been reimbursed by FedEx for damage or loss. I've had 3 packages that I've shipped get damaged during shipping and FedEx alway said it was due to inadequate packaging. I've also ordered something and had it get damaged and most of the contents fell out. They gave the same excuse. In that case, they might have been right. Never had a situation where the driver didn't technically deliver the package. So, they can't claim that it was inadequate packaging. FedEx only guarantees the contents of the envelope up to $100. So, not matter what, we're out some dollars. Hoping that doesn't include shipping costs.

We've decided that we're going to send Melissa a Visa gift card instead of a Walmart gift card next time. That way we can get it to her quicker (don't have to drive all the way to Walmart.) Tracy is going to make a new adoption portfolio packet.

I'm sending out the retainers for the lawyers this week. Seriously hoping that we get a large chunk of that back.
Category: General
Posted by: tracy
I called Melissa yesterday to talk and to make sure that she got the package we sent her. I was very surprised when she said she had not received it. So I called FedEx and they said that she had a rotweiler tied up in the front so they put the package on a car. How absolutely stupid is that?!?!? Well of course they are going to do a further check to see where the driver really did put the package. I am sure it is in the wrong persons hands now because of a scared dumb driver. Now some stranger knows our whole life story, that Melissa is putting a child up for adoption and has a $100 Wal-Mart gift card. Melissa said that in her neighborhood if a package was on a car it would not surprise her in the least if someone took it. Her neighbor has lived there a long time and his house has been broken into about 5 times. I can’t imagine living like that. It truly makes me appreciate the wonderful life I have. I could leave my garage door open and leave for hours and nothing would be touched.

We talked about the attorney again and he has still not called her back. I told her to call him again on Monday and that if she had not talked to him by Wednesday to call me and I will take care of it. I hope that I won’t have to deal with it or that Attorney is not going to have a good day!

We talked about how things will go when she goes into labor and at the hospital. She said “well I think y’all will want to be there from the start and that’s what I want”. I was so happy to hear this. We will be there on 6/28 so we might even get to take her to the hospital when she goes into labor and be with her the whole time. She said that would be nice and I totally agree. She asked us if we would mind taking care of or helping out with her girls while she is in the hospital and of course we said yes. We want to do anything to make it easier for her and also it’s not like we are going anywhere for awhile. She might call her cousin and tell her so that she can come to help but I think that would be a last resort.

We were hoping that she would get another ultra sound but alas she is not, unless something is wrong and we don’t want that. She said that she is not gaining much weight and that she doesn’t look as big as she thought she should be for as far along as she is. She was much bigger wit her other two. I asked how much she feels the baby kick and she said the baby is constantly kicking and moving so much. I love to get to talk to her about this stuff, it’s like I get to experience it too.
Category: General
Posted by: tracy
Melissa called this morning to give us some more info and to chat. She called the docters office on Friday to make her next appointment and to ask if she was going to get another ultra sound. They said that she was most likely going to have another ultra sound and they would tell her more on monday. Her next appointment is in April since all is going well with the pregnancy. We talked again about the type of adoption she wanted and I think that together we found a common ground that will be comfortable for all parties. She wants pictures and letters as the child grows and she said that we can call her anytime. Her family still doesn't know but here mom did make a comment about her gaining weight. She just wants to not deal with the opinions and isuue that might be rasied by her family so she is just going to stay away from them util this is all over. I told her how brave she was because I would never be able to pull that off with my family. We talked about the weather and she said that it is going to be very hot and very humid there in June, it's already in the mid 70's. We sent her a packet so she could see pictures of us and learn more about us. I want to get a picture of her too but Jason says that it doesn't matter. I doesn't but it still would be nice. I know she has brown hair and so does the birth father but she said that her children both have blond hair (she says that she keeps waiting for it to change). As for how things are progressing we are still waiting for a packet from her attorney an we have to get hings signed and payed for.