When Jennifer and Robert got married, they knew right away that they wanted to start a family. However, they quickly learned that conceiving a child would not be an option for them. After struggling with infertility, Jennifer and Rob decided it was time to begin looking at other ways to start a family. That’s when they considered adoption.

“After we got married we knew we wanted a family,” said Kristen.  “And since it wasn’t possible for us to have children ourselves, [adoption] was our next option to starting that family.”

The couple began their adoption journey with Adoptions From The Heart (AFTH) in June of 2014. Unsure of what the process may entail, they established a powerful support group of family and friends to keep them encouraged during the more difficult moments.

“The hardest part of the process was the waiting,” Jennifer says. “Especially, when it was an emergency placement situation and you agreed to be shown.  Waiting to hear if you could potentially be parents pretty quickly was especially nerve-racking.”

After months of agreeing to having their profile shown, but not being chosen – the hopeful parents began to lose hope.

“We went through a number of those situations,” Jennifer explains. “We are thankful for our social worker Jenna, who helped soften the blow when we didn’t get chosen.”

vac hatAfter waiting over a year, and still not being selected – the couple’s social worker suggested they revise their profile key.

“Since [AFTH] is an open adoption agency, we agreed to two visits a year,” says Jennifer. “After about 15 months of waiting Jenna suggested we open our key and the number of visits to see if that may help when we were being shown to birth parents. So we agreed to up 5 visits a year with the birth family.”

Amazingly, their social worker’s suggestion worked. Shortly after adjusting their profile key, the couple was selected – and in January of 2016 Jennifer and Robert became parents to a beautiful baby girl, named Genevieve.

“In the end, the openness to more visits is why our birth parents picked Robert and me,” says Jennifer. “[Our social worker] was there to give us the news when we were chosen, so she is our hero…”

Today, Jennifer and Robert regularly keep in touch with Genevieve’s birth parents, and schedule open adoption visits to meet around Genevieve’s birthday and in the summer.

“Honestly, the first time we met, was a bit awkward,” Jennifer explains. “But as we have more visits it is becoming more comfortable for both families.”

Genevieve is almost two years old, and every day the couple is so thankful for their beautiful daughter.

“Remember being a parent is not about DNA; it’s all about loving and caring for your child,” says Jennifer.  “We couldn’t imagine our lives without Genevieve she truly is our little miracle.”

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