At first we got some emails from potential birth parents, but mostly they were scammers looking for trouble and money. It wasn't too hard to spot them. Of those who seemed more legit we would never hear back from them after their initial contact. In May of 2009 our caseworker called us and told us she had a situation to present and were we interested. The details were that the birthmother was in prison, she was due to deliver in July and had no family that could take the baby until she finished her minimum 5 years. She had two older pre-teen children and she was 38 years old. She was in prison for having drugs in the house with her children. Our local LDSFS agency has a program where they go out to the prison to help expectant mothers decide what to do. She approached them about placing her baby boy through their program even though she wasn't of the LDS faith. Our caseworker told us that when she talked to her and heard what kind of family she wanted, she immediately thought of us.
What did we think? We thought about it and we let her know we were interested in having our profile shown to this mother, we'll call her Sally. Our caseworker took a stack of profiles in and gave them to her to look over. She ended up choosing us and said she wanted to meet us in about one month.
So, we started preparing for a baby to come to our home. I did a little shopping and picked out colors for the nursery.
The day we were supposed to meet her at the prison I got an early morning call from our caseworker that Sally had changed her mind and didn't want to meet us. She was confused and wanted to look at other non-denominational agencies. (The word on the street is that private agencies somehow "pay" birthmothers when they place and that she wanted money. I don't know how an agency would be able to pay someone in prison but I am sure they could find a way.) Our caseworker (who was no longer our caseworker because she was Sally's caseworker and couldn't represent us both) talked her into meeting us. I was sick inside and had a really bad feeling.
We showed up at the prison, got checked in, got treated rudely by some guards and waited. She walked into the room and sat down at the table with her prison liaison and we with the caseworkers. We asked her if we could buy her a soda and she accepted. She was pretty and large with child and clearly very nervous, as were we. We had a nice chat and got to know each other a little. She told us she had our profile in her "room" and looked at it often, imagining what we were like. It wasn't a long visit, maybe 30 minutes and at the end she basically told us she was going to place her baby with us. I don't remember everything that was said, but she acted very interested in us and very sincere the whole time. We felt sorry for her.
When we left we felt better than we had that morning but we were still nervous. We decided to stop all preparations, we wouldn't paint the nursery or buy anything else until he was born. He was due in about one month. We planned to name him Samuel. Zack was VERY excited to be getting a brother and had helped pick his name.
Our old caseworker assured us that she didn't have time to switch agencies at that point as it was very hard to even get a phone call out of the prison let alone arrange meetings with other agencies. I prayed that she would deliver early so that she wouldn't have time to switch. I also prayed that if this wasn't meant to be our baby, that it wouldn't work out but that I sure did hope he was meant to be ours and that it would work out. I left it completely up to Heavenly Father and was hope full.
She didn't deliver early. That month was so hard! I was on pins and needles waiting for the call that would come 12 hours after he was born. Prison rules say the mother can only stay in the hospital for 12 hours and then has to go back to the prison and only then can they call the adoptive parents. Then we would have to go out to the prison for her to sign the papers 24 hours after birth and THEN, we could go get the baby at the hospital.
One week before his due date, Steve called our old caseworker to see if she had heard anything. She told him she was just about to call him with the news. Sally had switched agencies. We would not be getting the baby, some other family would. I was helping at a funeral when Steve called to tell me. I went in a room and cried and then I had to go back and spend the rest of the day feeding grieving people, while I silently grieved for the baby we would not have. I had dreams for weeks that she still wanted us to be the parents and the new agency was trying to find us! We were all very sad and Zack cried when I told him.
I feel peace about it now, even though it still makes me sad to think of it. I still think of that little baby boy and wonder how he is. I hope he got a really great family that Heavenly Father picked out for him.