The moment youíve been waiting for has arrived. Itís time to head to the hospital to meet the child you are planning to adopt. But before you go, here are some important things to keep in mind.
1. Itís not over yet. Until the childís birth parents sign relinquishment papers, they are still considered legal parents. They have every right to question their decision and change their minds. Please give them the privacy they need to visit with the baby and be certain they are making the choice thatís best for both them and their child.
2. You will feel sad. Becoming new parents is an exciting and joyful time. However, adoption brings with it a double-edged sword. In order for you to become a mom or dad, someone else has to say good-bye to their precious child. No matter what circumstances brought everyone to this point, it is a heartbreaking situation. Watching birth parents grieve is one of the hardest things you will ever witness. You may even shed some tears for them as you imagine what being in their shoes would be like.
3. This day isnít about you. As much as you would love to just invite your friends and family to come to the hospital to meet your soon-to-be baby, please donít. There will be plenty of time for visits and celebrations later. Today is about the child and his family of origin. Be sure to respect them and their feelings.
4. You donít need to bring much. Before you load up on baby gear and supplies to bring along, remember that you wonít need everything immediately. Most hospitals will provide a small diaper bag and some formula to get you started. Bring along a few diapers, a couple of clean bottles, burp cloths, a receiving blanket, a going-home outfit and an infant car seat. And, of course, donít forget your camera to capture the first days!
5. Your life will never be the same. The simple act of seeing and holding the baby for the first time will transform you. Life is truly a miracle. You will gaze in awe at the tiny, beautiful person that has entered the world. She will fill you with love and appreciation. You will be a different person than you were before. No matter what the outcome of the adoption, this baby will touch your heart and remain there.