But She has Your Hair!


Almost a year and a half ago, I wrote an article about infertility and the adoption issues my husband and I were facing. A year and a half ago, we had our 2nd adoption fall through (or was it already the 3rd one… those details are already fuzzy.) It just felt like we were running into closed doors at full speed: Quick! Buy a plain ticket! The baby is born! 

And just as fast: Quick! Cancel that flight! 

Adoption is hard. Beginning, middle, end, and everywhere in between. It’s haaaaaaaaaard.  

We struggled. Fought. Cried. But we pushed on. You know when you were a kid and you felt like you had so far to walk, in the snow, and your boots were about 50 lbs apiece? That’s often how our hearts felt during our adoption process.

But we did it. In March of 2017, we finally got our happy story. We were matched, successfully vetted by social work, medical experts, and the foster parents. We met our daughter-to-be, and I couldn’t help fall in love right away. The little stinker knew if she fell asleep in my arms I would be a soft melty pile of goo! But the first time we met her, we also had to leave her. It was the longest three days of anxiousness to return to her foster house, to bring her home with us.

Ok, so that’s super exciting, right? But here’s the funny part. We didn’t tell anyone ahead of time. Only TWO people knew (both of our bosses.), but that was it. We had to catch up a lot of people!

But She has Your Hair! | Duluth Moms Blog

My husband’s parents were on vacation. We face-timed them and essentially ruined their trip! They were so eager to come back and see her. 

My family lives closer and so when I told my sisters the big news, I also asked them for their help.

The Plan:

  1. Call Mom and say, “Hey we are 30 minutes away from your house, and we have someone for you to meet!”
  2.  Arrive in 30 minutes and cry and gush and hug and love. 

What Really Happened:

  1. Call Mom. No answer. Call Mom. No Answer. 
  2. Immediately get frantic. This is no time to be calm!
  3. Text sisters. Enlist their help in calling Mom.
  4. Still no answer. Call Dad. He says Mom’s still at work. GULP.
  5. Have DAD call Mom. She answers. He had been given the planned line, and repeated it perfectly. Well done, Dad!
  6. Mom goes crazy happy.  Finishes her work as fast as possible, asks some people to help and runs out. WITHOUT TELLING THEM WHY. They were so worried at first! 
  7. Mom rushes home. Slow down Mom!
  8. We beat her to the house by a little bit.
  9. By this time all siblings and parents were home. Cue the crying and smiling and gushing and loving. 

I love telling this story. It’s not perfect. It was chaotic, but it was real, it was with our new daughter; it was the first of many celebrations on her behalf.

So much has happened in between that introduction and now, but it was this past October that we were able to finalize the adoption. Legally, we were bound and charged as her parents… to raise her well, and to care for her unconditionally. The ceremony was short, sweet, and went off without a hitch. It is proof to the world what we already knew in our hearts: She is ours.

Our daughter was born here in the Midwest so we have a lot of genetic features that look similar (even though I’m a mish-mash of a few different ethnicities and hers is more singular). I often here from others who learn that she was adopted, “Oh, but she looks just like you!” But I don’t need to match her. It usually just makes the onlooker feel like they are saying something nice. People like things that match. Even the doctor (who DIDN’T know) joked that she got her good looks from my husband. We had a huge laugh when we told the doc. He was a good sport, but he probably wont use that joke for while!

Our little girl is quickly zipping to her 2nd birthday, and I cannot believe it. We are excited for the future and to see what comes next, but for now, we are loving our new roles as Momma and Daddy. She is ours.

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Alyssa Holmstrom
Creative, always pondering and thinking, Alyssa Holmstrom loves the beautiful landscape Duluth has to offer. Reading a book, walking her beloved dog, cooking, or spending time with her strong and loving husband of six years, Todd are favorite pastimes of Alyssa's. Alyssa loves spending time with her friends. Her friends are so very important: making them laugh and drinking lots of coffee are her favorite ways to unwind! They are a true gift and bring much joy to her life! Walking together through infertility and adoption, they are enjoying their 2.5 year old toddler, and expecting another child early 2019.