US Commercial Team
Editor’s Note: Each November, Monsanto’s Family Network publishes employee stories in honor of National Adoption Month. Adoption Family Network member and Monsanto employee Lisa tells her story of how her daughter joined her family through adoption.
My husband Brian and I had two beautiful, healthy sons when we began to feel that we should adopt a child. Brian had been doing some mission work in Central America, and came home troubled by all that he saw with orphans there. He had a strong calling to do something for a child who otherwise would not likely have much of a life, if they even survived at all.
We had always wanted a larger family, but that wasn’t in the cards for us, biologically. So we decided to pursue adoption. There are many questions you have to answer once you decide to adopt, such as whether to adopt from the United States or a foreign country. We felt we should adopt from outside of the United States, although we were indifferent to which country. We finally decided on Russia and asked for a child that would be two or three years old at the time of adoption. Toddler children of that age not as likely to be adopted as babies are and often face a lifetime without a forever family.
I started giving away my baby items, since after all, I would be adopting a toddler. Just like the old wives tale, within one week of sending my last baby items to a friend who was moving away, we received the referral call. The child was an infant, with an untouched bi-lateral cleft lip and palate, and she was failing to thrive. She was very tiny and her face was quite deformed. Clearly, she was not a baby who would be high on anyone’s list to adopt. I sent her picture to my husband who was in Central America, and we agreed almost immediately that this was our baby.
After two long trips to Russia and a very intense adoption hearing where we had some difficulty explaining to a family court judge why we wanted to adopt her, we brought our daughter home on May 23, 2008.
The entire adoption process is scary, exciting, humbling, stressful and fun, and all at once! The support I received from my Monsanto managers during that time, including both trips to Russia, time home with the baby when we returned, as well as time for her many surgeries, was amazing. Now as a leader in the organization, I remember the support I received and work hard to provide the same to my teams.
I’m thrilled to say that our daughter has successfully undergone quite a few surgeries, and continues to “catch up” each and every day. None of us can remember when she wasn’t part of our family, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.