Even though it’s tempting to spend every moment with the baby, it’s important to spend some quality time with the birth mother if she is up to it. This is a good time to talk and share family information and stories to pass on to your child. Again, be sensitive to what your birth mother is comfortable doing. If she would prefer to rest, spend a little private time with her family or the baby, this is fine. Flowers are a nice touch. She has done a wonderful thing and she needs to know that she (not just the baby) is important. After relinquishments have been signed a token gift is appropriate, perhaps a locket with a keepsake picture or a special photo album in which you have noted that you will send pictures. She will cherish any memory of her baby and appreciate your thoughtfulness. Please do check with your attorney to confirm that this is ok, however. Some states/counties might be more stringent about gifts to the birthmom than others.
Some birthmoms want to be there when you see the baby for the first time, even take a picture of that moment. Be sensitive to that, and when you get to the hospital ask to see the birthmom first (if she is comfortable seeing you at all), and let her determine when and where the baby comes in. Remember, you want to show her that you care for her, and won't just take the baby and run. Particularly if you have already established that there will be continuing contact after the placement, now is the time to demonstrate that you will be comfortable continuing that contact by showing concern and attention to her, not just your new baby.
Hospitals all have different policies about adoption. Some are very rigid and some are very accommodating. If we have worked with the hospital before, we can tell you a little about what to expect, however, there is a fair amount of unpredictability. For instance, some hospitals will allow you a room to bond with the baby. However, if it is a particularly busy day and they have more deliveries than usual, they may not have the room to allow you to do this. In that case, you may be bonding in the nursery or, in some cases, in the hospital room of the birth mother (if everyone is comfortable with this).
Meeting the birthparents of your child for the first time is intimidating. You're thrilled that your long journey may be finally coming to end, but you are also aware what a struggle this must be for them. Whether it is before the birth of the child, or at the hospital afterwards, it's hard to gauge how to act. Should you show you are excited and happy or try to tone it down so that they won't feel worse?
It is important to consider the birthparents feelings, and act appropriately. (more…)
What should you take to the hospital? You should have an infant car seat, a layette set, an outfit for taking the baby home, and a stocked diaper bag. When you first get there, however, leave all that in the car and take in just a few things. If you are there for labor and delivery, pack a few necessities such as an energy bar and water. When you need to take a break, leave the room to eat.
Bring your cameras and have a change of clothes in the car in case you’re there for a long time. After a long delivery, your adrenalin will kick in and you’ll be so excited by the new arrival that time will pass quickly and you may be at the hospital for 24 hours before you even realize it. (more…)
Often we are asked, “What happens at the hospital?” The answers to that question are as numerous as the hospitals where our families will go to hold their newborns for the first time. The common theme is “be flexible”. Expect the unexpected and don’t let the little things upset you.
Adoptive parents are understandably anxious and nervous about going to the hospital and perhaps meeting the birth mother for the first time. Will she want to keep the baby? Generally, she just needs a chance to say goodbye. (more…)