Episodes

  • Noah and April say goodbye to season 5 and give some inside scoop behind the scenes of ADOPTION NOW.

    It has been 3.5 years of story-telling, and 120 episodes later, the couple has learned so much about adoption and foster care. They started the show telling their adoption journey, saying yes to 6 placements but only finalized on 3 children.

    They knew all to well of the heartbreak the adoption road can bring, but also the amazing joy of seeing God connect you to your forever child.

    The show started as a local radio program in Denver, Colorado. It soon became a national podcast and then quickly gained international listenership. As the show grew, so did Noah and April’s family. They got a call two years after the launch of ADOPTION NOW about a full biological sibling to their last daughter. They welcomed baby Maliyah in March 2017!

    The show went from telling stories from the adoptive parent’s perspective to sharing the stories from adoptees and birth parents. The topics ranged from international adoption, foster to adopt, private infant adoption and embryo adoption. Hearing stories started to create an adoption community that would ultimately changed Noah and April’s life forever.

    On this episode they speak from the heart about the journey they have had with ADOPTION NOW and the much needed break they need at this time. Don’t miss this episode as they bring on a special guest, AJ, their 9 year old son, who shares his thoughts on adoption.

    As the show ends…the couple signs of with…

    “See you soon!”

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  • Author, Adrian Collins, is a returning guest on ADOPTION NOW. Last year she and her husband came on to share their journey as birth parents and adoptive parents. Together they have 5 children, three biological sons, one adopted son, and one daughter relinquished at birth and later re-adopted back into the family. You can hear that full episode here.

    Today she speaks on a topic that she has never publicly opened up about and that has not been discussed on ADOPTION NOW until this episode: Abortion vs. Adoption.

    What is it like to have an abortion?
    What is it like to choose adoption?
    What is the grief process like with both choices?

    Adrian shares about getting pregnant as a teenager and feeling trapped and overwhelmed. She did not think she had any choices and did not feel the support from her family. Abortion seemed like the easy way out. It seemed it was a way that could solve the problem fast and bring the least amount of shame. What she learned was quite different.

    "I knew God was there, I knew I was forgiven, I just couldn't accept it for myself."

    This episode is a look into what a woman goes through on the journey of an unplanned pregnancy. Adrian shares from the heart in this very candid and raw interview.

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  • Our guests today on ADOPTION NOW are Aaron and Kelli Couch. They have been married for 25 years, serve as pastors in the Denver area, and have planted 2 churches. They have 3 biological children and one child they adopted from China. On today's episode, April Fallon and her husband Noah talk with Aaron and Kelli about adoption in the church and their experience with international adoption.
    This episode addresses the relationship between the church and adoptive/foster families as well as some common mistakes churches make when supporting a family going through adoption or foster care. It also touches on what God says about adoption and how to love a child that has endured trauma.
    These topics are discussed as Aaron and Kelli share about their adoption experience. They talk about what it was like to travel to China and adopt a baby the same day that 73 other babies were being adopted!! They share what it was like to say yes to a special needs baby and how she responded to them during the first few days they were together.

    Aaron and Kelli give a unique perspective on how to love a child that is not born to you biologically. They unpack the questions they had before bringing Ellie home, including their concerns about adopting a child with special needs. Ellie was born with Microtia and Aural Atresia. She did not have ears, and her paperwork stated that she was "stubborn and liked loud places." It was their oldest daughter, Cartier, that knew this baby was meant to be her sister, and they had to go get her. Ellie was 19 months when they brought her home. It wasn't a comfortable journey at first, but over time, Ellie did attach.

    Aaron said at first Ellie would not even look at him, but he decided…
    "I am going to love this child because this child is worthy of being loved; that doesn't mean they are going to love me back well."

    Adoption is a never-ending journey that takes commitment and dedication, and it can take time for a child to trust their new parents. When choosing to adopt, it is best not to "missionary adopt." April says,
    "Don't adopt out of the kindness of your heart, adopt because you want to parent a child and you're in it for the long run. Adoption is a journey forever."

    Noah shares about his experience as a dad and the fears he had not only becoming a father but becoming a father through adoption. Aaron and Noah agree that that the child you bring home is meant to be with you and you love them more than you ever thought possible. They become your child, and you love them as your own because they are yours.
    Kelli opens up about what Ellie was like as a little girl and how the siblings got along together. She is now 14 years old, and through many surgeries, they have reconstructed her ears, and she can hear. Ellie completed the Couch family, and they needed her just as much as she needed them.

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    Don't forget you can watch the episode on YOUTUBE!
  • In this episode, we have an adoption story from across the pond. Earl and Rebecca Robinson stop by and give you a breakdown of what an adoption in the UK looks like.

    Key Links

    Earl’s book Our Road to Adoption: Softcover & Kindle

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    In particular, two common themes that run parallel throughout this story are patience and trust in God. They faced a lot of waiting, uncertainty, and confusion, Earl and Rebecca needed to trust in God as much as they could.

    Wow, the results definitely speak for themselves! God blessed them repeatedly with the gift of children, and to this day their decision to stick with adoption despite the difficulties is a great example of just how beautiful adoption can be.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    Information on working with U.S. adoption agencies while living in the UK. How long it takes to become a long term resident of the UK. The importance of patience and determination in adoption. How to adopt in the UK. Information on Earl and Rebecca’s home studies and adoption training. What a matching panel is. The exhilaration of getting the call for a match! How waiting led to a complete family.

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • The guest of this episode is Nicole Ketchum. She has her own business called Hey Girl Decor, and like the beautiful acrylic chandeliers she crafts, her story is just as exceptional.

    Key Links

    Hey Girl Decor

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    Nicole talks about the challenges of adoption, as well as the emotional heartbreak of failed IVF treatments, her difficulties with endometriosis, and how she all but gave up on having children. In fact, adoption was her last attempt to be a mother. Through that decision, her life changed forever.

    As she said no to multiple phone calls about possible matches, as she had false starts with lawyers and agencies, Nicole trusted her gut, and eventually she and her husband were matched with the perfect little girl: Lulu.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    Why doing an independent adoption might be a wrong choice for you. The importance of trusting your gut when it comes to adoption lawyers. Why physically meeting the birth mother (no matter what!) is so important. Being gentle with the birth mother and why it’s a necessary step. Adoptive mothers and their right to be depressed, sad, or emotional during the adoption. Why birth mothers deserve a lot of care and attention during any adoption. Telling the adoptee their story at the right time.

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • This story is told from the invaluable perspective of Kathy Mackecheny, who is an adoption-competent therapist. She knows what it’s like to be an adoptee and to have burning questions about finding the truth of one’s unique narrative.

    Key Links

    Kathy’s Therapy Practice: https://www.adopteetherapy.com/ Contact her at: kathy@adopteetherapy.com

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    She answers questions about the right way to approach communication with your adopted child, the importance of openness, and other important aspects of the adoption experience.

    Her story is full of surprises, interesting nuggets of information, and overall a testament to the connective power of adoption and how it can pave the way for reconnection.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    Information on Oklahoma adoptions and ‘closed states’. The importance of treating your child like an adoptee as well as a part of the family. On the communication role that adoptive parents have. The importance of staying open with your children. The steps she took to reconnect with her birth parents. Information on her birth parents and their stories. How Kathy came to be an adoption-competent therapist.

    More details at: https://adoptionnow.com/podcast/how-being-adopted-led-to-becoming-an-adoption-therapist-kathy-mackechenys-story/

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • Veronica has a varied perspective on adoption. As a child welfare professional, Veronica was called to fight for the rights of traumatized and broken children. Through that calling, she worked with adoption and foster care.

    Key Links

    The organization Veronica currently works for: https://www.wayfinderfamily.org/

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    At first, she had no idea she’d end up adopting. After three years of trying for pregnancy, Veronica and her husband pursued IUI and were successful! God had also called Veronica to go through foster care. He gave her a sign and before they knew it, they said yes to a baby girl.

    After fostering her, having a biological daughter, and then later adopting another boy, Veronica now has a full house. In this story, she gets honest about the struggles as well as the countless blessings that adoption has brought her family.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    Perspectives on adoption from a social worker. On frustrations and empathy towards birth parents. What it like to go through foster care. Why resources like ADOPTION NOW is so important for new adoptive parents. How God has worked in Veronica’s life. Loving your biological child the same as your adopted child. The struggles of reunification when you attach to a child.

    More details at:

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • Natalie was here in 2017, when she shared the story of her first adoption and just how smoothly everything worked out during that whole process.

    Key Links

    Natalie and Stephen’s Story from Season 2

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    Fast forwarding to the past year, Natalie had a second adoption which would prove to be more chaotic than the first. Although she was weathered the storm and is enjoying her beautiful baby boy, Adam, her story is still hard to relive.

    Her experiences with Adam’s adoption can also function as a cautionary episode. After everything she went through, you should take note of what Natalie has to say on her experience with agencies, lawyers, and child services.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    A discussion and reminder of the high cost of adoption. The risks of not being involved with an agency. Important information on private infant adoption. Why hiring an adoption lawyer specifically is crucial. What Natalie describes as the most difficult day of her life. A brief explanation of ‘agency states’, and why it’s important to know if your state is an agency state. How this story can help us avoid the occasional chaotic adoption. An exciting announcement at the end of the episode!

    More details at:

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • Involved in a seemingly healthy open adoption with a birth mother named Elizabeth Jones, Matt and Laura were ecstatic that they had found the right mom. But things were not as they seemed.

    Key Links

    A Sibling for Hudson

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    Even though they had been confronted with a few red flags and ignored some aspects of the open adoption that they pegged as strange, Matt and Laura gave Elizabeth the benefit of the doubt.

    This episode is full of twists and turns and is a cautionary story for all adoptive parents to seek proof of pregnancy!

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    Why Matt and Laura decided against an agency at first. How their website connected them to Elizabeth. The importance of having your lawyer sign paperwork that allows for crucial medical documents. Details on why adoptive parents should always get proof of pregnancy. On the prevalence of adoption scams. Elizabeth’s prosecution and charges. Words of advice from Matt and Laura on why those who commit adoption fraud should be held accountable!

    More details at: https://adoptionnow.com/podcast/adoption-scam-matt-laura-traytes-devastating-story/

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  • This episode of ADOPTION NOW is told from the perspective of Erica Shields. As she shares in the episode, she has never really told anyone her full story before, so this is special for all of us.

    Key Links

    Erica Sheilds on Facebook The Kempe Center For The Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse and Neglect

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    For many years, Erica didn’t have all of the answers. Since she was seven years old though, she was obsessed with finding every detail of her story: who her biological parents were, the details of her birth that weren’t openly discussed, her real name, and why her original adoptive parents gave her back to be placed in foster care.

    With charm and a likable lightheartedness, Erica recounts some of the most tragic moments of her life, as well how grateful she is to just be alive and to have been adopted.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    What it was like for Erica to have a Japanese mother and Caucasian father. The moment she first realized she was adopted. On being Mormon and how that helped drive her search for her genealogical roots. How she ended up getting the information about her adoption. The challenges of searching for biological parents and the emotional response this can elicit from adoptive parents. On cultural differences between siblings. Erica meets her biological mother. Her advice to listeners.

    More details at: https://adoptionnow.com/podcast/mrs-colorado-2016-erica-shields-amazing-adoption-story-s5e9/

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • Three years! Wow, what a journey it has been so far for April and Noah Fallon. Starting from a radio show with a small domestic following to a now international reach, Host April and her husband Noah reminisce about the overall evolution of ADOPTION NOW.

    Key Links

    One of April’s favorite ADOPTION NOW stories: Nellya, Adopting a Baby from India

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    April and Noah both share the hardships and the mostly-joyous moments of their adoption journey, leading to their reinforced position that yes, adoption is incredibly life-changing, but at the same time, not easy at all.

    Within the episode, they answer the questions of listeners, share their favorite moments of the show, and get candid about their views that have changed, and those that have not.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    April and Noah share their favorite ADOPTION NOW moments. Your questions and comments are addressed! On Christianity and religion in the adoption experience. How adoption is a constant learning experience. Advice for those who are waiting for their child. How adoption will change you in a positive way if you let it!

    More details at: https://adoptionnow.com/podcast/celebrating-3-years-of-adoption-now

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • This episode is all about adult adoptee Jackie Bradfield and her experience with trying to connect with her birth parents. She states that reaching out to her birth parents is to learn more about her overall story.

    Key Links

    • To contact Jackie for therapy: jackie@agapementalhealth.org

    • Her Agape Mental Health webpage

    Sarah Winger’s ADOPTION NOW episode (referenced)

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    Because she had amazing adoptive parents, she stresses that she grew up with strong parental anchors in her life. But because she has not learned her full story--the perspective of her birth family--she has made it her quest to reconnect with her biological parents for closure and to learn more about herself in the process.

    Within the episode, Jackie shares the autobiographical details that led to her finding ADOPTION NOW, the struggles of reconnection, and much more!

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    On the need to search for your birth parents no matter how amazing your adoptive parents are. Details on Jackie’s acceptance of being adopted as a child and adult. Common perceptions that individuals have towards adoptees. The birth parent reconnection process that Jackie underwent. How she used DNA testing to locate her birth father. On finding closure amidst the unknown elements of reconnection. The importance of cultivating an adoption community for adoptees.

    More details at: https://adoptionnow.com/podcast/helping-adoptees-find-their-birth-parents-and-understanding-their-journey-the-jackie-bradfield-story/

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • Today, on this little recap episode of ADOPTION NOW, Reshma’s story is analyzed by April and Noah Fallon.

    Key Links

    Last week’s episode featuring Reshma McClintock John DeYoung’s first appearance in Season 1 John DeYoung’s second appearance in Season 3

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    Because of the complexity of the Reshma’s story and her take on adoption, both hosts wanted to take some time and delve a bit deeper into the topics that were discussed.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    John DeYoung, a South Korean adoptee, shares his reactions to Reshma’s story and talks about his own. The importance of letting every adoptee establish their own voice and narrative. Why noticing the adoptee and respecting their comforts and discomforts is essential for better parenting and communication. The pitfalls of the ‘hero mentality’ for adoptive parents. John talks about the practice of ‘discovering your child’ to fully respect them.

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  • Today we are joined by Reshma McClintock. She’s a writer, an adoptee from India, and the focal point of the new documentary Calcutta is my Mother.

    Key Links

    Information for Calcutta is my Mother: http://calcuttafilm.com/ Reshma’s website: https://writtenbyresh.com/ Her Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/writtenbyresh/ Her Instagram page: https://www.instagram.com/reshma_mcclintock/

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    She sits down with April and Noah to share some of the best, most impactful experiences she’s had with adoption. But to balance out the entire story, she also provides the more challenging aspects of her life, ranging from her identity crisis as an Indian woman who only identified as being white, to the culture and heritage she left behind when she was adopted.

    All in all, Reshma is an amazing woman and a shining example of just how important it is to share these adoption stories.

    In This Episode of ADOPTION NOW

    Reshma’s parents and their decision to adopt Her adoption from Calcutta The different components of grief as it relates to adoption On the importance of communication between parents and adoptees The dichotomy of conflicting good and bad emotions that adoptees often feel How children often save the parents and not the other way around Reshma’s incredible return to Calcutta More details on the film Calcutta is my Mother

    More details at: https://adoptionnow.com/podcast/calcutta-is-my-mother-reshma-mcclintocks-adoption-story/

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    ADOPTION NOW is produced and distributed by Simpler Media

  • Glenn Morey has worked in film since 1981—as a writer, creative director, and a commercial and documentary filmmaker for many years. His documentary “Side by Side” is an Official Selection of the San Diego Asian Film Festival (organized by Pacific Arts Movement), and the Boston Asian American Film Festival, among many other awards.

    Key Links

    Website: sidebysideproject.com FB: facebook.com/SidebySideDocumentary/ Twitter: @sidebysideproj

    Glenn's personal story, as an inter-country adoptee from South Korea, was the initial motivating and creative force behind "Side by Side.” And in this interview, he delves into his own experience to build upon many common elements of the South Korean adoption experience.

    What follows in this podcast is a really interesting and layered talk on the complexity of the adoption experience for many South Koreans, and how giving them a platform to find their voice is so essential.

    Below are some (but not all!) of the most compelling aspects of the talk, ranging from Glenn’s realization that he had operated under a supplied narrative about his own racial identity, to the importance of communicating and being honest with your adopted children about the complete picture of their ethnic identity.

    [#1 Some Details on Glenn’s Adoption from Seoul]

    Glenn retells the details of how he came to be claimed from city hall in Seoul, later placed in an orphanage, and then how he found himself on a plane with 81 other babies to the U.S. This whole experience would eventually become the catalyst for “Side by Side” and would lead him to find how fortunate he had been to become adopted and have such a relatively positive experience. He was adopted by a loving family who lived in Littleton, Colorado. He joined 3 biological daughters, was the first of four adopted children in the family, and had multiple siblings.

    [#2 Important Conversations About Race]

    Because of Glenn’s experience with not having the proper amount of racial mirroring and acknowledgment during his upbringing, he didn’t fully understand from a sociological and psychological perspective that he was Asian until he was in his middle age. He understood it intellectually, just not culturally. So when considering transracial adoptees, he wants to stress the importance of having open, honest acknowledgments about race and what is apparent to the child. Don’t suppress it and don’t shut out their culture for your own. Glenn reminds us that a good rule of thumb when having conversations about race with your child is that if you’re afraid to have the conversation, you should consider having it anyways, despite the discomfort you feel because it really is that important! Glenn talks about how there was zero acknowledgement in his own story and he subsequently built up an identity that didn’t include the most essential aspects of his story.

    [#3 Film and Interview as a Platform for the Voiceless]

    After he worked through the counter-narratives of his adoptive experience in the U.S., he began to understand that his story was actually a cliche when compared with other Korean American adoptees. There was immense power in having that reinforcement of other South-Korean adoptees who had the same experience in America. And through interviews and what would lay the groundwork for the “Side by Side” project, Glenn gave a platform for those who hadn’t shared their story virtually anyone else before. He helped them find their voice.

    [#4 The Traditional Narrative of Adoption for Glenn]

    During the interview, he talks about some of the reasons for adoptees not telling their story. The most prominent one being that adoptive parents were told that assimilation into the culture had to be seamless--this generally meant that ignoring the culture of the adopted child was seen as the best way to achieve this assimilation. And because the standard narrative of adoption was often: “You are extremely lucky to have escaped poverty and abject conditions.” Most adoptees Glenn interviewed didn’t feel comfortable subverting this traditional narrative. They felt reluctant to go against that sentiment of how fortunate they were.

    More details at: https://adoptionnow.com/podcast/out-of-a-south-korean-orphanage-glenn-moreys-story-about-finding-his-voice-and-creating-a-documentary

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  • Shawn and Shannon’s story began with multiple heartbreaks, but their desire to create and grow a family persevered past the disappointments, and they are now parents to three beautiful children.

    After failed fertility treatments left them feeling disheartened, they were told that adoption was the best option. They decided to pursue foster care first but landed on private infant adoption. At the same time, an episode of ADOPTION NOW got them interested in embryo adoption. On this episode, Shawn and Shannon dive deep into their story and the heartbreaking and heartwarming decisions one is faced with when trying to have children. They share why they decided to listen to their heart and God for answers, and how their ‘empty car seat experience’ ultimately ended up leading to the creation of their family.

    Here are just a few of the most impactful parts of the episode:

    [#1 The Devastating Nature of Shawn and Shannon’s Failed Fertility Treatments ]

    Since her first date with Shawn, Shannon expressed her strong desire to be a mother. And shortly after marriage, they tried their best to have children. But after a year of not conceiving, they decided to see a fertility specialist. They started with fertility treatments and then went to IUI, but were again unsuccessful. Still steadfast and determined to get pregnant, Shawn and Shannon would begin In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) treatment. And despite the confidence of Shannon’s doctor, they were not successful. Yet despite the hardships faced and the tragedy of being called the night before their last round of IVF, when Shawn and Shannon were told not to come in because none of the embryos had continued to divide, they still didn’t lose hope. Shawn and Shannon were overwhelmed with emotion and frustration during their fertility treatments--feeling helpless but ultimately, they maintained faith and hope despite the tribulations they experienced.

    [#2 Their Decision for Adoption ]

    Shortly after suffering a year and a half of frustration and tribulation with failed fertility treatments, the newly-married couple set their sights on adoption as a viable option for parenthood. They went through the state first, but this proved to be the wrong route for Shawn and Shannon because the state forbade fertility treatments alongside the foster-to-adoption process. Also, Shawn points out the difficulty of not being able to finalize the adoption for a couple of years with the possibility that the child would be reconnected with their biological parents. As a first step, they decided they weren't emotionally comfortable with a foster-to-adopt dynamic.

    [#3 Finding the Right Agency and the Importance of Leaving Good Impressions ]

    For Shawn and Shannon, it was Bethany Christian Services that became the adoption agency they would immediately fall in love with. And just two months later they were matched with an expectant mother! Despite suffering hardship and tragedy with the disruption of their first private infant adoption, they showed the necessary resolve and persevered despite all odds. In the episode, they chronicle just how difficult this period of their lives was. But it was also because of their positive mentality and patience that they were ultimately rewarded in the end. Truly, as Shawn and Shannon have shown through their story, showing grace in the face of disappointment can become very tangible blessings. It’s all about maintaining faith and understanding that your baby’s on the way. It’s only a matter of time!!

    [#4 Details on Their Overseas Embryo Adoption Experience]

    As shared in the episode, embryo adoption is a way to adopt a baby with DNA different from your own, but of course, you still get to carry and deliver the baby yourself! Shawn and Shannon decided on going to Prague to undergo the process. They were sent the medication through the mail and it was all needle-free, unlike the IVF treatments that Shannon had undergone. The embryo adoption, including the plane tickets to Prague, was only around $7,000 to $9,000, which is so much less expensive than in the U.S. And the couple has nothing bad to say about the whole process. It was smooth and now, because they had twins they’re an extremely happy family of five!!

    More details at:

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  • Mike Marsden is an adoptee from Nashville whose story is filled with timing, loss, gratitude, and faith. After being delivered prematurely at only 3 pounds and 2 ounces, Mike spent months in the hospital before finding his forever family.

    Despite a tragic loss at a young age, Mike was able to move forward and find the courage to reach out and connect with his birth mother, only to suffer yet again. Despite his trials, Mike tells his story with grace, humility, and compassion for others.

    This inspiring journey is filled with faith re-establishing moments that are sure to help you heal and move forward. Mike is a true example that despite what life can throw at us, it is indeed a beautiful thing.

    Below are some of key links in Mike’s story that trace the outline of a tragic life, but one that is full of resiliency and strength as well!

    [#1 Some Details on Mike’s Birth and His First Meeting of His Foster Parents]

    In the episode, Mike talks about his adoptive parents and how they had fostered about 30 children before they adopted Mike. After adopting Mike as an infant, his parents stopped fostering other children. He was born prematurely at 3 pounds, 2 ounces but flourished despite this tough beginning. And Mike was named as a tribute to his adoptive uncle who passed away while he was still a baby.

    [#2 Tragedy as a Vehicle for Re-Establishing Your Faith ]

    Mike wants to remind you that tragedy can be used as a strengthener of your faith. It may not seem like it at the time, but you can build and reinforce your faith as a result of tragic events in your life. He states this because he himself had doubts and his faith had started to waver. But in the long run, he knew that God was looking out for him.

    [#3 Mike’s Motivations and Methods For Searching for His Biological Mother ]

    After taking his biological son to the doctor, Mike realized he didn’t have any family medical history to draw from because he was adopted. This was further inspiration to seek his birth mother. After using the DNA tracing service 23andMe, he was able to find a last name which he used as a starting point. While at first this seemed to lead to a dead end, Mike didn’t give up. Mike ended up typing in “Wisconsin Adoption” in a search engine and picked an agency. He then sent a letter, filled an application, and paid $80. And this was last year (2018)! So, this is a viable option for those who have been adopted and looking to connect with their biological parents.

    [#4 The Emotional Impact of Meeting His Birth Mother After 35 years! ]

    Mike was ecstatic to learn that after going through the process of finding his birth mother, she agreed to release the necessary information to meet with him! During the episode, Mike also talks about the power of the letter that he wrote to his mother, and how he thinks it ultimately helped them reconnect. And as a testament to the maxim that things work out in the end, what his mother wanted for Mike was indeed provided by his adoptive parents. She wrote a letter back to him with her contact information and they talked and one of the first things they did was meet up! In addition to meeting her son, Mike’s birth mother also got to meet her grandson.

    [#5 A Miracle of Timing: A Testament Towards Reconnection ]

    As Mike states, as tragic as the story ends, he ultimately received the blessings of closure and completeness in this aspect of his life. He states that he is wholeheartedly glad he embarked on his journey of reconnection. And he gives advice for adoptees when he states, you really have to be open to any type of outcome when reconnecting with a biological parent. You may not get the outcome you want, but if you don’t do it, you won’t be able to experience the joys as well!

    More details at:

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  • As always, ADOPTION NOW focuses on the many powerful stories centered around adoption and foster care. This episode also includes a topic April Fallon is new to, the topic of surrogacy. Dr. Claire Dumke tells us the story of her two daughters, Ruby and Hazel, and how she pursued both adoption and surrogacy at the same time. As a result of this, her two daughters were born 8 months apart!

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    The episode focuses on the many joys that were felt throughout her experience, but also on the challenging aspects. And in addition, surrogacy is explained: the price, what to expect, regulations, details on medication, and so forth.

    Below are four of the most crucial aspects of this episode ranging from surrogacy in a nutshell, transracial adoption, the importance of agencies and the selection process for adoption, as well as the relational interplay between biological and adoptive mothers.

    [#1 What to Expect When your Surrogate is Expecting]

    As was the case with Dr. Claire, surrogacy may be an option for a family if they have embryos either through IVF but cannot personally carry them to full term. It is very expensive! Dr. Claire mentions that the price was in the six-figure range at least. But as always, no amount of money is too much for the wonderful gift of life. Dr. Claire also discusses and warns of the emotional distress that can occur for surrogates after they give birth. Counseling is a very powerful tool for this common circumstance and Dr. Claire highly recommends that the biological family is prepared to provide this resource.

    [#2 Transracial Open Adoption ]

    Ruby--Dr. Claire’s first daughter and who was adopted through an open agreement with her African American birth mother--didn’t make Claire nervous in the slightest at the dynamic. Although she does talk about how nervous she was to meet the extended family of the biological mother, she stresses just how beautiful and wonderful Ruby is. The concept of providing racial mirrors for Ruby is brought up as well, meaning that considerable attention to positive reinforcement of Ruby’s racial identity is a large focal point in their family. And through Claire’s relationship with Ruby’s biological mother and her extended family, Ruby has that much more reinforcement.

    [#3 Agencies and The Adoption Selection Process ]

    When talking about how expectant mothers choose adoptive parents for their child, the best advice is, “Be yourself!” As April states; you never know just what detail will stand out and speak to a birth mother in the midst of her choice. And like it is discussed within the episode, the difference between you being chosen or not could have to do with if you have a golden retriever or not; be yourself! Agencies are very important for introducing you to a bigger pool of possibilities for being matched with a child. And the multi-state agencies also give you a higher probability to be selected faster due to more choices. The Adoption Choices of Colorado was the agency Dr. Claire used. She and her husband were pleasantly surprised to find themselves in Texas for Ruby after just two short months of waiting.

    [#4 Relationship Dynamics Between Surrogates, Biological Mothers, and Adoptive Parents ]

    There is a fair amount of discussion on the interactions between adoptive parents, the birth mother and a surrogate mother. There can be a lot of grief after placement, so counseling and sensitivity towards that issue are imperative. As Dr. Claire states during the episode, what words are there to express to a birth mother or surrogate mother besides gratitude, gratitude, and more gratitude! In addition, the whole process has strengthened the bond between Dr. Claire and her husband.

    More details at: https://adoptionnow.com/podcast/destined-for-motherhood-a-story-of-adoption-and-surrogacy

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  • Brandi Miller shares her story of becoming a birth mother at 16 years old. She talks about how she chose her adoptive parents and how she overcame shame after placement. Brandi also shares her advice on transgender in adoption. Her daughter, now called Micah, has opened that conversation up and Brandi shares how she responded.