In Which I Tell You the Truth

Last July, we applied to adopt from Thailand from our #2 choice of adoption agency (our #1 had been closed to Thailand applications for a while). We got accepted, began the enormous paper trail that is adoption, had a yard sale to raise some initial money, and set up a donation Pay Pal account. Then our #1 agency re-opened to Thailand applications, and we decided to switch agencies. The #1 agency had a longer history with Thailand and a bit of a shorter wait time than #2. We put announcements on facebook and received a few small donations. We started planning a few fundraisers, although we were a bit overwhelmed by the enormous amount of money to be raised ($23,000).

Then I got pregnant.

We asked our agency to put us on hold in the adoption process. In some ways, I was disappointed about the pregnancy, because I knew that Thailand won’t let you adopt from there if you have 3 biological children. But eventually I came to get excited about a new baby. The pregnancy symptoms set in: exhaustion and nausea. I went in for an 8 week checkup and everything was fine. By this point we had told our children and our parents. I went in two weeks later for the first ultrasound.

There was no baby. There was an empty sac. He saw the amniotic sac, but no “fetal pole.” Which means baby. In addition, it was showing me at only 7.5 weeks instead of 10 weeks. My doctor tried to be hopeful and told me we would wait a week and have another ultrasound to see if there had been any growth.

It was a difficult week. A week that I waited to find out if my baby lived or died.

At the second ultrasound, there was still no baby. I had initially been pregnant, but the baby had died very early on, before it was big enough to be seen on an ultrasound. I remembered seeing Ephraim’s heartbeat on an ultrasound at 6 weeks pregnant, so I knew it had probably stopped growing before 6 weeks.

The next day, I had a D & C.

It was heartbreaking to have to tell our children that there was no baby. They had begun to get excited about having a sibling.

It was heartbreaking to feel like my womb had become a tomb.

I felt like I’d been on an emotional rollercoaster all winter.

After all of it, it was my writing that saved me. Of course, my family and the few friends we’d told showed support and love, but it was writing that helped me process it all and carried me through. Maybe one day I will share some of that writing with you.

So where does all this leave us? Do we try again? Do we go back to the adoption process? For a while I really wanted to forget about ever trying to get pregnant again and just go back to the adoption. But due to several recent unexpected expenses, we feel like we are not financially ready to dive back into the adoption process. I don’t know that we are emotionally ready, either. Yet I don’t know that I can handle getting pregnant again and losing it again. When I think of all our options right now, I feel like what we need to do is wait. I don’t know what for or how long.

So we have asked our adoption agency to continue to keep us on hold. They can do so for up to a year without us having to reapply. (If we do not re-enter the process soon, we will return all of our adoption donations – thank you to those of you who have given.) For now, we wait. For now, I keep loving the children that I have. For now, I keep praying for the children that I have lost. For now, I live one day at a time, I find things to be thankful for, and I look for God’s grace.


  1. Margie says:

    God bless you Karissa, and your precious family, here and with God! He will be with you throughout all the coming days as He has sustained you through these times. I will keep you all in prayer, thank you for letting us know.

  2. Cassie says:

    Karissa, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. To have fresh heartache on top of the pain you already carry breaks my heart. (((HUGS))) and *tears*

  3. Bertie DeWane says:

    Karissa, I know this had to be difficult to share with everyone. I’m so sorry for the loss of your baby and will remember you and your family in my prayers.

  4. Holly says:

    Karissa (and family)- I am sorry for your loss. I know this must be a very difficult time and I hope you sharing your feelings is a sign that you feel God’s love. You’ve been in my prayers, but now, with more intentions! Love ya.

  5. Chelsea says:

    Oh Karissa, I am so so sorry for your loss. May God grant you and your family healing mercies. Praying for you all…

  6. Jean says:


    I am so sorry. I wish that I could bear your sorrow for you. I picture my mom and dad holding your babies in Heaven, and Uncle Will is close by to play with them and make them laugh. I wish the babies were here on earth with you, but I am thankful that they are blessed by being in the presence of God. They are experiencing being loved and cared for in ways beyond our understanding. May God bless us on earth as we wait to meet them and live with forever one day. I love you.

  7. Karla Gutel says:

    Thanks for sharing so transparently. You are in my thoughts and prayers. May God’s grace and wisdom be with you throughout this time. Blessings.

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