The Cost of an Open Heart

If anyone, like me, applied for college in the days before everything was done online, then you know what kind of an envelope you waited for the mail carrier to bring. A nice thick one. Why? Because the thin ones only meant one thing: a one page rejection letter. 

It was the winter of 2017 and my husband and I had spent weeks filling out preliminary paperwork for a local adoption agency in hopes of being chosen to adopt through them. We had put our hearts on the line, sharing personal stories and deep feelings about our journey and what had led us to adoption. 

After excitedly telling our family and friends that we were adopting, we waited to hear back. I emailed and called, only to get vague answers about “reviewing applications now”.  

We returned from spending Christmas with our families to find a letter in the mail from our agency. It was thin. After being so vulnerable about ourselves, they didn’t even call to reject us. The reason? Money. We didn’t have enough of it. 

It was true, with my husband in school, my salary minus his tuition made us look poor on paper. I only wish they could have seen past that and known that he was furthering his education to provide for our family and that after an average two year wait that most agencies have, he would be well done with school with a good-paying job. They didn’t see it that way. We were devastated. It felt like a paper miscarriage. 

Adoptions today can cost anywhere from $25,000-$45,000+ To put this into perspective, this is like buying a new car outright. For many, this is an annual salary. And while they can afford to support a child (all prospective adopting parents go through extensive financial and background checks by a social worker before they are cleared to adopt), they often have a hard time coming up with such a large sum of money in the short amount of time necessary to become a waiting adoptive family.

But to a heart who hopes for a child, this is something to fight for, no matter the cost. And so we fight. We use one spouse’s income until we have enough. We take on side jobs. We use crowdfunding websites and have garage sales and pancake breakfasts, and we take out large loans. 

My own experience stirred something deep in me that has been brewing ever since: What if no potential parent was told, “no” because they couldn’t afford the fertility treatments or agency bills to have a child? What if we could come together as communities to support couples who have opened their hearts to raise another’s child as their own. What if together we could help give orphans a home?

Hence, Honeycomb Hope was born. Let’s do this together.