~ Meet Shauna
My name is Shauna and I am 39 years old. My husband, Paul, and I were married 10 years ago, and we hoped to start our family right away. Unfortunately, after a couple years of trying to conceive without success, we began infertility testing and discovered that we indeed had substantial issues, and the doctors gave us a 1% chance of ever getting pregnant on our own. We briefly discussed our medical options and quickly decided on adoption. I must admit that our infertility was never a major trial for me, and in some ways I was actually relieved to bypass the whole pregnancy/childbirth thing. My brother had adopted three wonderful children, and we were convinced it was the way to go for us too.
Adoption has been a great experience for us, and I'm sure I could write a whole other journal on my adoption stories, but I'll just quickly summarize here. First off, the initial process of paperwork, questionnaires, home studies, interviews, fingerprinting, etc. is overwhelming, invasive and difficult, but we were determined and slogged on through. Then, only 8 months after completing all our paperwork and being approved, we welcomed our first child, Fred, into our lives. His birth mother was very accommodating, and the adoption process was actually a breeze. The one thing I was sure about was that I did NOT want an only child, so as soon as we were able, we started the adoption process again for a second child. This time things did not go so quickly, but four years later (almost to the date), we adopted our daughter Rose. I was delighted to have a boy and girl, and for a time I thought I would be content with just the two children. However, as a family we all agreed that we wanted to try one more time for a third child. It wasn't long before Rose's birth mother contacted our agency to let us know that she was pregnant again (due exactly two years after Rose) and that she hoped we would be willing to adopt this child as well. Of course we were overjoyed to have a half-sibling join the family and we excitedly prepared for the new arrival. This little boy was born February 28 of this year, only he did not end up coming to our home or our family. In the end, the birth mother decided to keep him. I was completely crushed, and I felt like we needed to be "done" because I couldn't endure another loss like that.
Imagine my surprise, only a month and a half later, when I discovered that I was pregnant! It was a complete shock, and I must admit, it was not a completely welcome one. In fact, in the few weeks since learning that I was pregnant, I have been quite depressed and even angry. It may seem strange, since, in the end, we REALLY REALLY want a baby, and this is one baby we will be sure to take home at the end of the process, but I just never wanted to be pregnant, and I was having a hard time accepting the fact that I actually was. Slowly, though, I am becoming acclimated to the idea of my pregnancy, and I am excited to be writing this pregnancy journal so I can document this amazing event in our lives.
Let me end my introduction by actually telling you a little more about myself. As I said, I am 39 years old, and am the second of six children, all of whom live within an hour of me now, as do my parents, with whom I am especially close. I was born and raised in Southern California, where I continue to live. I went away to BYU in Utah for my undergraduate work, and then to London for a six month study abroad program. While in London (and auxiliary travel in Europe), I fell in love with the art museums and decided to pursue a degree in art history, so I came back to California and received my masters in art history from UC Riverside. I worked at the university for several years (which is where I met my husband), and then I taught classes at the local community college until after my first child was born. Since then I have enjoyed being a stay-at-home mom, getting involved with the local chapter of MOMS Club, as well as being very active in my church (currently I work as the nursery leader, as well accompanying the church choir, and playing the organ for services). My favorite hobbies are reading, gardening, sewing and playing the piano. Plus I love cats!