Interested in sharing your birth story?

Today I heard from an English professor in Massachusetts who is working with a portrait photographer on a project they’re calling “American Birth Stories.” It’s an oral history of birth stories, and they’ve already traveled much of the United States collecting photos and interviews from mothers willing to share a birth story.

The reason for the call is their impending visit to Missoula July 29 through August 31. They already have some interviews lined up but are hoping to speak with more women.

From Kristen Getchell’s email:

we would need about 30-60 minutes of time and would do a portrait of mother and child.  Each participant will receive a link to a gallery of outtakes (many of our mothers love this).  We’re looking for mothers of all ages with a variety of experiences.  We have no agenda about the “right way” to give birth in this book; instead, it is a representation of the range of birth experiences told by the mothers themselves.

Also: “we are pretty flexible and willing to drive to meet people.”

Sound like something you want to do? Want to learn more and see some of their work? Go to www.americanbirthstories.com for more, including a link to contact info. Or, use my Missoula mom contact info to reach me, and I’ll get you in touch.

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Our adoption story

One summer day, Willow and your dad and I were walking home from the farmer’s market when we passed a table. And who was at that table? Bill! You remember Bill, don’t you?

Well, Bill gave us all kinds of information about foster care and adoption. We took it home and read it and we decided that, yes, this is how we would find you.

So we took lots and lots of classes, and we filled out lots and lots of paperwork, and we got our house all ready for you, which was hard to do because we didn’t know if you were a boy or girl, or how old you were, or what kinds of things you liked and what kinds of things you hated.

Then we waited and waited and waited. One day we got a call about a little kid who needed a home, so we went to the office and read about this kid – but you know what? That kid just wasn’t the right fit for our family. That kid went to live with some other family.

So we waited and waited and waited, until one day we got another call about another kid who needed a home, so we went to the office again and we read about this kid, who was actually a newborn baby. But you know what? That baby wasn’t the right fit for our family either. That baby went to live with some other family.

We waited and waited and waited some more, until we were very tired of waiting. Then we got a call about TWO kids who needed a family. They were sisters, and they were the cutest pair you ever saw. We wanted very much to be the right family for these two, but it turns out, we just weren’t – and a good thing too, because those girls went to live with another family that actually is perfect for them. And if they had stayed with us, we might never have found you.

Anyway, we were done with waiting. Your dad and I said that’s it, we’re not waiting any more!

But still, we waited.

Until finally, one day, we got another call. And this call was about you.

We went to the office and read a little bit about you. We found out that you were 4 years old, and your name is Landon, and you like cars and trucks. We thought, hmm, we’d like to meet this kid!

And when we met you – when we met you! – we knew for sure that you were just right for us, and we were just right for you. You were the one we had been hoping for, and waiting for, all that time.

I remember the very first time I saw you. Your dad and I were walking across the parking lot to Kari’s office, and you were walking across that same parking lot with your foster mom, Momma Kim. We all went inside together, and you sat down at a little table and showed us how you could find letters in the newspaper. And then while the grownups talked, you played with cars. You lined them up all nice and neat, and then you and your dad played cars together, only back then, he wasn’t your dad yet.

After that I got to visit with you a few more times before you came to our house and met your sister – only back then, she wasn’t your sister yet. Willow couldn’t wait to meet you! She was so jealous because your dad and I got to see you before she did. She asked us and asked us and asked us, “When do I get to meet Landon?”

Well, she got to meet you when you came over to our house for the first time and you two spent the whole afternoon playing in the mud in the backyard. It was summertime, so it was hot outside.

Right after that you moved in with us for good. And now I am your mom, and your dad is your dad, and your sister is your sister – and you are a part of our family for ever and ever, no matter what.

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