Monday, November 21, 2011

We on!

If you want to view our profile copy and paste this in your browser. We are so thrilled! Our baby's birth mother could be looking at our profile right now. Oh how I want to hug her.

Friday, November 18, 2011


When people told me that there were going to be high's and lows in this adoption journey I believed them. Now I REALLY believe them.( refer to previous post ) Today a very, very fun letter came in the mail. It was our approval letter from our agency that we are OFFICIALLY approved by the state of Arizona to adopt a child. When I initially saw the letter my heart wrenched and slid into my stomach because I didn't know what it was going to say......ARE we finally approved? Or are we being rejected. I opened it up with my heart in my gut hoping for approval. When the confetti flew out of the letter I knew that it was good news. :) I screamed YAAAAAAAY! Then I cried. Tatum was in the car and wanted to know what the heck was going on and why I was crying. I said that we are approved to adopt a baby and that these were very happy tears. Then we called daddy to tell him the good news. So thats about it. It is official. We are very fit parents ready for our amazing baby and it's birth parents. They say the average wait time is 2 years......lets hope that it doesn't take that long. We are so happy today!

Monday, November 14, 2011

It being national adoption month, I have been thinking of things to post that have to do with adoption. I myself and trying to find out all that I can about this subject. I do know a lot but even as an adoptee I am continuing to find out more and more! It's great. So today I am going to post about correct terminology.

Birth Parent's do not "give up" their children.............they place them. <3
It is not Adopted is child who was adopted or person who was adopted.
It is not Adoptive is just parents! Or the Parents who are adopting.

At the adoption conference I learned this terminology. I had NO idea and was using it all wrong. Now that I know, I can use it :) So I don't offend anyone. I love the word place. It just has so much meaning to me now. My birth mother placed me in my home with a mom and a dad and I am SO happy she did. I am just SO blessed and love her.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Sad day

Yesterday we found out that a certain sweet baby would not come true for our family. Shane and I were hoping to adopt a perfect, beautiful little 4 month old girl. We were going to call her Zoey. Because of confidentiality reasons I cannot post a picture but she is so breathtakingly beautiful. It has been in the works for a couple months and we were very hopeful. We love her so much and were wanting her to join our family. It felt so right. We got all of our ducks lined up in a row, and then we prayed and prayed and prayed. We did everything we could. She is just so precious to us and we are so happy for the family that "they"(CPS) chose. They are great and I am sure they will love her very much. She was meant for them and she has been all along. When we prayed for this baby girl, we prayed that she would go to the family that she was meant to go to. We were holding out hope that it would be in God's will for her family to be us! Life is hard. This is a roller coaster. There will be ups and downs for our little family. This........ is a down. God has a plan for us and I am so thankful for that little wise piece of information that the spirit continues to whisper to me on a daily basis. It keeps me from getting too upset. I am very thankful for very supportive friends and family as we go through this adoption journey. We could not do it without you. I wanted to post a picture of the baby but won't's hard. SO here is a picture of my very own baby that I already have. She was 10 months old in this picture. Ah! I miss those days. I take her to Kindergarten every day and just about die!! I remember when she was this small. I remember going into her room at night, scooping her up while she was sleeping and sitting in the rocking chair. Rocking her for hours as she slept taking in every ounce of the weight of her body laying on mine. She was such a peanut. My peanut and I was not going to let time go by without holding her. A LOT. Shane would come in the room and ask me what I was doing and I would reply, I just want to hold her. She is not going to be a baby forever. Oh how true that is. It is so cruel that babies grow up. Not that I do not enjoy her as a 6 year old now but wow. It feels just like yesterday they told me that they were going to fly me in a helicopter to another hospital, that our lives were in danger and that I would be having her that day! Scary but amazing and wonderful day. We are both walking miracles. One of these days I will get up the nerve to tell that story on the blog. I have decided that life is not going to get easier. We will always have trials. This past week has been a trying one but we will press forward and have faith in the plan that God has in His will for us. There is light at the end of the tunnel and while it may take what like seems forever to get there I can TOTALLY SEE IT!

Tay tay at ten months old

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The big day!

Yesterday was the most wonderful, informational, crazy exhausting, sweetest, most emotionally draining day ever. I had the opportunity to go the FSA(families supporting adoption) conference and get educated on how to tackle this adoption thing that we are doing head on all while getting the chance to tell my own story as an adoptee. I think that I did ok and was able to relay all of the feelings that I have and then some. You have to understand that I have not talked about these things that I talked about in front of ANYONE ever and so to do it in front of a roomful of people, some being strangers, was intimidating, and a little bit overwhelming. I didn't use my paper. It just came from the heart. Once I got over the first few rocky, non-flowing nervous words, they started to flow out of my mouth and mind and I kinda couldn't stop talking and I really don't ever want to. I want to become a huge adoption advocate. I know that I have A LOT to learn about doing that but I will somehow find a way. I think the whole world is fascinated by adoption and needs to hear everything there is to know about it. I myself can't wait to learn what I don't know!

These two pictures are the first time that I talked. It was the adult adoptee panel where we told our stories and then got asked questions. These two neat people sitting next to me were awesome and seemed like professionals. Their stories were different from mine and so amazing. They made me feel at ease and helped me through telling my story. I loved the kind of support that I was able to feel from them.

These next ones are of the class that my friend Sarah and I taught. She and I kind of live parallel lives and I think she is such a beautiful person all around! She has a really cool story and I am so happy to have met her and have her as my friend now. She has such a wonderful perspective on adoption and it was fun teaching that class with her. She is a rock star!

It totally looks like I am about to flip my class off.....I don't know! All Shane told me was, that I use my hands a TON and I am loud, animated and shake my head back and forth. A lot. I love him.

I can say this. I am glad that it is over and now I can deal with the feelings that I have for adoption. I hope they can grow and develop in ways that I can't even imagine them growing. I love this new chapter in my life. I love adoption. I LOVE being adopted. I love my husband and daughter. I love my parents. I love my birth parents. I have an even more respect and admiration for what a birth mother goes through when she makes the selfless choice to place her child.( if that is even possible my friends ) I am so glad to have had this amazing opportunity. Hopefully I wasn't too "crazy" and they ask me to do it again someday. Peace out. Adoption rules.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

FSA regional conference

This weekend is the Families Supporting Adoption regional conference. November is National Adoption month and I will be co-teaching a 1 hour class and will be a panelist to tell my story as an adoptee. Do I dare say how nervous I am? I am. So. Very. This subject that I am to talk about is so very near and dear to my heart. It makes me cry, it makes me laugh, it makes me have anxiety. It is beautiful. Here is a little bit of what I am going to say, while I am not going to bring this paper with me, I think that it was imperative to write it so that I would be prepared. I didn't want to read from a paper when I told my story, I wanted to have the Spirit lead and guide me on what to say. I wrote it because I wanted to document it plus it really made me think when I wrote it. Here it goes!

As early as I can remember, my parents have told me that I was adopted. The story is super cute and my dad still gets a little choked up when he tells the story about the day that they placed me in their arms and how they just KNEW that I was their baby. They would tell me, Shelley, you are SO special. They said it over and over again. These words were important to me growing up. You are special. I knew that I was special and being adopted has been one of the biggest blessings in my life!

I was born on January 14th 1982 in Phoenix Arizona. I was placed in my wonderful parents arms at the Mesa LDS family services office on January 22nd, 8 days after my birth. Even though I do not remember it, I know that it was one of the best days of my little life.

With closed adoptions 30 years ago there was such limited information. All that my parents receive after placement was a small three to four paragraph piece of paper. It is basically family and medical history, which was very vague. It has some facts of where the family originated. Still the facts are broad. I have read it thousands of times in hopes to pull something more out of it.

If I could have my wish, I would liked to have known these things:

About my birthmother:

What is her name?

What does she look like? Do I look like her?

How old was she when she had me?

What does she like to do?

Can she sing or play a musical instrument?

What type of personality traits did I inherit from her?

Where does she live?

What is all the medical history in her family?

Is she happy?

Did she have more children?

If she has a family do they know about me?

What did she do with her life?

Is she doing the things that Heavenly Father would have her do?

Did she ever see me?

I was born by C- section and so a lot of times back then they would put the mother under for this procedure. I have no idea if my birthmother ever even saw or held me before she let me go. I would really love to know that!

With my birthfather I didn’t have quite so many questions but I did always wonder where he went and ended up.

What was he like?

Is he happy?

Is he doing the things that Heavenly Father would want him to be doing?

Some of you would ask why do you want to know these things? My answer to that would be that it definitely differs from person to person. Having a few friends, a couple of cousins and my own mother having been adopted I know that I am not alone on some of the questions that I have had. Growing up, when people would find out that I was adopted, there was always a really positive reaction and then they would ask a whole bunch of questions that I was NOT prepared to answer. I didn’t know any of the answers and there is so many questions that a person can take when they just don’t know. I want to make a note before I go any further that it is different for everyone and these are my own personal feelings. I am sure that I made my mom’s head spin at all of the million questions that I spit at her. I would always ask her if she was hiding something from me and often would snoop in their stuff to find a document or letter of some sort. The truth is that the letters or hidden documents that I had hoped to find had never even existed. It was hard and me being a very curious girl to begin with wasn’t making it any easier. Here is the way that I coped with not knowing the things that I wondered and the things that people would ask me: I used to make things up. I used a toy bunny that I told everyone she gave to me. I even went as far as telling everyone that my birthmother was Whitney Houston! For those of you who don’t know her, she is very black and an amazing singer. I used to think I could sing exactly like her when I was 5 & 6. I remember telling my mom very seriously that I thought that she truly was my birth mother and then proceeded to sing “ Oh I wanna dance with somebody.” You know....just to prove it. To this day my family won’t let me live it down. If she comes up on TV or is on a poster somewhere my siblings laugh and say “Hey Shelley! It’s your birth mom!” It’s pretty funny now.

Now while I have a lot of questions about my origin and birth parents, I do need to add that there is one very important question that I can answer without fail. I found this answer through personal revelation. Why? Why they did it. Well everyone I KNOW why. It is because they loved me. They wanted something more for their precious daughter of Heavenly Father that they chose to place me with two wonderful parents that were able to provide me with so much. I am very sure that I was meant to go to the family that I went to and I had the most amazing childhood ever! By doing what they did, my birthparents provided me with a stable, spiritually sustaining home with a mother and a father, where I was able to thrive upon my parent’s wonderful testimonies. They taught me about the Savior and what it meant to be a good example and serve other people. They were able to give me four siblings shortly after I came to the family. They took me to the temple when I was one to be sealed to them for all of Eternity by my very own grandfather, who was a temple sealer. My birthparents gave me the gift of being raised in a home where I learned that we are all God’s children.

I am a mother of one precious little girl. She is six years old and her name is Tatum. My husband and I feel so blessed to have her and know that Heavenly Father sent her to us so that we can teach her how to live her life in a way that emulates the Savior. It is a humbling experience and I feel such a responsibility to do it right. I feel that the knowledge and testimony that I have of the gospel is a direct blessing that came from my birth parent’s decision to place me in the home that they did. They were not ready for the challenges of parenthood and knew that it was important for me to go to my family. I commend, respect and love them so much for that.

On August 11th of this year, my husband Shane and I entered the very same LDS family services building that I was placed in my parents arms 29 years and 10 months ago. I am so happy to announce that we are now embarking on our own adoption journey. My husband and I just got certified and our profile is up on the LDS family services website. We are currently looking for our baby and we could not be more excited! We look forward to welcoming a new baby into our home to love, to teach, and to guide throughout this life. So you see? The decision that my birthparents made so long ago continues to bless my life and those that I love. My very own special parents that raised me, those wonderful and amazing parents who adopted me taught me how to be who I am today. I love them so much. I would have never had their great examples and guidance if my birth parents had not been so selfless.

I love my birth parents. It would be so great if I could someday get the answers to the questions that I have behind those two mystery people that I love. While it is not totally important to my happiness to know the things I want to about them, I feel that it would be a sort of healing experience and would put an end to all the wondering. I want to make sure that when we are placed with a beautiful child of our Heavenly Father, that they will never have any of the questions that I had growing up.

For those of you trying to adopt or if you plan on placing your child, try to have an open mind and remember my story when deciding if you will do an open or closed adoption. I hope that I have been able to tell my story and relay my feelings in an adequate way that can help support you in the decisions that you make with adoption. My hope for all children is that they will grow up healthy, happy, and strong. That they will have the kind of stability and wonderful home that I was placed in. It is my prayer that the children who are adopted will not grow up with unanswered questions about their birth parents and that they will come to know and embrace our Savior Jesus Christ. I love being adopted. It is a true gift and I leave these things that I have said with you and wish you well in all of your endeavors to come!

In a nutshell! These are some of the things that I will say at conference. I will probably elaborate much more. Who knows what will come out of my mouth. I feel that sometimes I can be a loose cannon without any filters. Wish me luck that I don't say something silly! Anything could come out of my mouth. I'll update with pictures later:)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Ok. We are ready. Shane and I have decided to try to adopt a baby and we are so excited!! It has been a long hard road to add to our family and without going into too much depth and detail, it has broken our hearts a hundred times over that we have not been successful yet. We would love to be able to provide a sibling for our little girl and so this is the best thing ever. I can't think of anything better to do than to adopt. It just makes a lot of sense to us because I myself am adopted, my mom is adopted, my aunt is adopted and my two cousins are adopted. My family's lives have been so touched by adoption that everyone is very excited that we have decided to do this. My whole life I have wanted to adopt someone. We are so blessed to be able to have this opportunity to try.

We just finished our homestudy. Our link will be up soon and we are hoping that we can get some birthmothers who are considering placing their baby for adoption to look at our blog. We have a love that is already growing for our child's birthmother. I just know she is going to be amazing. Here is our birthparent letter. It will be up on the LDS Family Services website very very soon:


We are very happy that you are reading our profile. We are praying that you will have guidance at this time. Thank you so much for taking the time to get to know us a little better.

We have been married for 8 blissful years and love living life together. We both feel that eternity is not long enough to spend with each other. We have one precious daughter Tatum, who is five years old and wants to be a big sister very badly. As her parents, it has broken our hearts to not be able to provide her with that thus far. However, we have found hope!

Adoption runs in the family so it only feels natural for us to want to do it. Shelley herself was adopted from LDS family services and has had the best experience with being adopted. Her mother is also adopted. Her father's sister is adopted and so are her cousins.The subject of adoption and birth parents happens to be very close to her heart. We very much wish to have a relationship with our child's birth parents if that is their desire.

Shane is the most genuinely kind, caring person that I know. He is very patient, calm and happy. He is a go with the flow type of person and I just love that! He is such a sweet father and I love the way Tatum makes his face light up. It makes my day to see it every time. Although he is humble and would never tell you, he is freakishly good at everything he does. This occurs mostly in sports. It's unnatural! He actually earned the nickname Scooter in high school because of his speed. He is an avid mountain/road biker and participates in many races. Tatum and I enjoy going to them and watching him finish! I tear up almost every time. I am so proud of him. He also makes the best chocolate chip cookies in the universe. Being with my husband is always a pleasant experience and he is my best friend. My everything.

Shelley is the sweetest, charitable person I know. She gives of her time and talents so often to help and bless others. She is a very outgoing, outspoken person. She loves her family very much and would do anything for them. Shelley has so many talents it is tough to name them all. She has a very pretty voice and there is rarely a time where I don't hear her humming or singing a song. She was a swimmer throughout high school and now uses those skills to teach young children how to swim. She started making hair bows when our daughter was born and loved it so much that it is something that she is still doing. She has such a creative and artistic mind that her patterns and designs come naturally to her. She has fun playing dress up with our only daughter and is such a wonderful mother. I love her so much words cannot express it.

Tatum is a beautiful, sweet, loving and outgoing little girl. She loves animals, playing with her cousins and excels in gymnastics and music. If she could wish for anything in the world it would be for a baby brother or sister to love.

We hope that you will consider us as a family for your child. We know that adoption is not about saying goodbye, it is about having everyone come together for the success of the child. It is a blessing to all involved and we know this to be true.

Thanks for getting to know us a little bit! We would love you to get to know us better at

With Love,

Shane and Shelley

So. There it is! We are looking forward to the roller coaster and journey that adoption has to offer. We DO love roller coasters....isn't that the truth! Thanks to all of our family and friends for the support that we have received. You are ALL ROCKSTARS and words will never be able to express how much we love you. XOXOXO.

She would make the cutest, sweetest big sister ever!