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Sanes Family Adoption

It’s been five years (on June 8th) since we had our first child, Micah! He is truly our miracle baby. He gave us the biggest scare of our lives a few days after birth when we were transported to Wolfson’s Children Hospital in Jacksonville, FL. We had noticed some red dots appearing on his skin, and thought it was a simple skin rash. We went to a local Doctor, who no longer practices in Camden, and he agreed it was a skin rash. For some reason, we just didn’t have a good feeling about it. Our parents were concerned for Micah and said something didn’t look right, even after taking him to the Doctor. So, the next day we took him to the Emergency Room, where he was quickly transported to Wolfson’s Children’s Hospital. The medical team performed many tests that night, and although the staff was excellent, it seemed like an eternity. There were many tests performed to include complete blood counts, ultrasounds to ensure there was no bleeding on the brain, and x-rays as well. The next morning, we discovered his platelet levels were abnormally low compared to normal newborn platelet counts. The doctors with whom we have spoken with, say a transfusion is given anytime platelets are less than 20-30k/mcL. Micah’s were at an extremely low level of 7k/mcL. He was given a platelet transfusion the first night in the hospital and responded very well. We spent several more nights there, but, Thank God, went home a few days later with a healthy baby boy! It wasn’t until several weeks later, at a follow-up appointment at Nemour’s that we learned the exact cause of Micah’s condition at birth–Neonatal Alloimmune Thrombocytopenia (NAIT).

Since bringing Micah home, we have often thought about having another child. We wanted Micah to have a brother or sister. So, we researched NAIT and the chances of our next child having complications. We looked into adoption. We weren’t seriously considering it at the time, but we did research it. After reading about the process of adoption, and how much goes into it, we were afraid to look much further. The paperwork, legal aspects, cost, and mental stress that goes with adoption seemed too much to accept, so we backed away for a while. Fast forward to February 2017. We talked with my OBGYN about having a second child, and he was quick to refer us to a specialist in Jacksonville, FL, who works with high-risk pregnancies, specifically cases with blood disorders. The first available appointment was April 2017, so we had two months before we would get any answers on possible outcomes for a second child. During these two months, we spent our spare time researching NAIT. We also, once again, began to talk about the possibility of adoption. I talked with a friend, who was adopted at birth, and picked her brain about what it was like growing up with adoptive parents, how she feels about her adoptive parents and birth parents, was she part of an open adoption or closed adoption, etc. I wanted to get an understanding of adoption from the child’s perspective. Adam and I also talked with adoptive parents at our church, who just so happened to be counselors in the school system as well. They were very educated in child behavior/psychology and had worked in the field for many years, so their perspective was important to us. We asked questions like: What age should we look to adopt? What are the differences between closed and open adoption? How will adoption affect Micah? Our questions were getting answered and our fears of adoption were slowly fading away.

So, the day was finally here. It was April 18th, 2017. We had already had our blood drawn, sent to a special laboratory for processing and typing, and we were headed to Jacksonville to get answers on future pregnancies and NAIT. The Specialist was a very nice lady, who talked with us for about an hour about every question we could think to ask. She had the results of the blood work. She knew exactly what had happened with Micah by just by seeing our blood work and was able to share with us what we could expect in our next pregnancy. She also, very early in the conversation, stated: “If you’re planning on a family of four or five, go ahead and start re-thinking that.” We learned that NAIT is more aggressive with each pregnancy and the risk of complications is higher with each pregnancy. In fact, Dr. V recommended only one NAIT pregnancy per mother. She said one NAIT pregnancy was more than enough for any one person. At the conclusion of the meeting, we were very overwhelmed. We learned that I was a part of only 2% of women in the world that do not have an HPA-1 antigen attached to my platelets. Adam was tested and found to be positive for HPA-1, and herein lies the problem. It was in this moment, that we realized just how blessed we are to have Micah. I didn’t have any of the injections or the recommended treatments for NAIT during my pregnancy with Micah because we had no idea that NAIT was an issue. It’s not every lab that can run this test, and it’s not common practice to check for this prior to pregnancy since less than 2% of the population is HPA-1 negative. Micah is a Miracle. Having said that, we were also pleased to find out that we could have a second child. It was possible to have another baby, but there would be risks. There would also be costs—very high costs. I’d have to make the trip to Jacksonville twice a week for injections throughout the pregnancy. Even with good health insurance through Adam’s employer, the cost for the injections would be enormous. We were presented a few other options. Of which, IVF is the only one we even marginally considered. The ride home was kind of quiet as we both thought about the future and what was next for our family. It wasn’t until we sat down for dinner that we kind of narrowed things down to three options. We felt like there were only three that would work for us: 1. Injections (IVIG), 2. IVF, 3. Adoption. It was not an easy decision. It was overwhelming. There were still fears in our mind that surrounded each option, BUT, after a several days, many conversations, thoughts and prayers, we decided to ADOPT! The one thought that we couldn’t get away from was this: If we’re going to invest this much into our next child, why not invest it into one that’s already on the way and needs a loving family. God has blessed us with a biological child, Micah. We have experienced that and are grateful for it, but why not give another child an opportunity for a great life!

The cost for the adoption is enormous. Currently, the cost for private, infant domestic adoption is between $35,000 and $45,000, which involves agency fees, legal fees, birthmother expenses, delivery/hospital expenses, etc. At first, I couldn’t understand the costs—it seemed too much. And, honestly, it still seems like there is too much money involved in the process, but this is where we find ourselves. There are other options for adoption, but after several meetings with professionals in this field, we felt this was the path for our family!

 

To DONATE BY MAIL, please make out the check to ABBA Fund (do not write the family name on the physical check, which will invalidate the charitable aspect of your gift … instead either print out this page to send with it or include a separate note to request that we preference your gift toward the family profiled on this page) — then mail your check and preference request to:  

ABBA Fund, PO BOX 868049, Plano, TX 75086-8049

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**AN IMPORTANT CLARIFICATION FROM ABBA FUND ABOUT YOUR DONATION**
Using the online form on this page automatically submits a request to preference your gift to the family profiled on this page as part of ABBA Fund’s Christian Family Adoption Grant Fund. ABBA Fund administers this fund and maintains full control and administration of all donated funds. We also strive to honor our donor’s preference requests in accordance with IRS and Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) guidelines.

The IRS allows donors to state a preference of how their contribution is used and request that the gift support a particular family — and it allows the charitable organization (ABBA Fund) to fully consider that request as long as the donor understands and acknowledges for charitably given tax-deductible gifts that the ultimate authority regarding the disposition of your gift is at the discretion of the charitable organization. By using this online form, or other method described above, you are acknowledging an understanding of those IRS guidelines.

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