This time 14 years ago Andy and I were getting ready to head to Craigavon Civic Centre in the morning to marry each other in our jeans with just our parents as witnesses.
This time 6 years ago a VERY nervous Andy and Janine were counting down the hours till we met our sons for the first time. We first heard about them on May 6th 2011. I was photographing a wedding and as I was leaving I noticed a few missed calls from Andy. I returned the call, thinking he was wondering what I fancied for tea. When he answered he asked me to pull over on the side of the road. “But I’m on bluetooth, it’s fine.” I said. “No Janine, I need you parked up for this.”
He proceeded to tell me that we’d had THE CALL. A senior social worked had phoned and told him they would like to meet us about two little boys who needed a forever family. We met that social worker the next morning and the rest is history.
So, after That Meeting and That Call we spent all of May and June saying ‘YES!’, building Ikea furniture, crying over tiny beautiful faces that we loved instantly and preparing to love two humans we'd never met with all of our hearts, no matter what.
This time 6 years ago we had no clue. We couldn’t have fathomed the love. The chaos. The dirt. The food bills. The craic. The wonderful, wonderful world that our boys brought us. Thank goodness for adoption. Thank goodness for families made from hope and love and gratitude. Thank goodness we were brave enough to say YES!
THANK GOODNESS everyone else was there to support us.
Every year on this night I love to sit and feel the gratitude. For the jean-clad wedding, the fish n’ chip reception, the gut feeling that IVF wasn’t for us, the tears and frustration with the adoption process, the boys who had to endure too much and The Curly One who ended up being the ‘add-on’.
It’s one hell of a story and I got to live it.
Some of the most important photos of my life, on our official legal Adoption Day, taken by my amazeballs friend Paula O'Hara 💛