Andrea and Jarred, plus one

Barts Profile-1

Thank you for viewing our profile. What a way to begin communicating to a complete stranger! It is our hope that when you are finished reading this letter that stranger gap will have decreased! As we sit down to write this letter our hearts are pounding with excitement and emotion. As parents already, we understand that this is a very difficult time for you, and definitely understand the wide range of emotions the adoption process can inflict. We are right there with you and we have learned through our journey that once you connect, start to talk to, and get to know each other it gets a bit easier.

To begin, we want to share that our family watches a lot of Disney thanks to our 4 year old! In the story of Mulan, a beautiful Chinese proverb is brought to light, “the flower that blooms in adversity is the rarest and most beautiful of all”. How we handle things when the waters get rough reveals a lot about our character. To best help you get to know us, we felt the best way would be to share our greatest struggle during our almost 10 year relationship (6 of those 10 years as a married couple).
We met and began dating in 2008 while attending Grand Valley and became engaged in 2011. We married in a Catholic ceremony in 2012 surrounded by many family and friends wishing us health, wealth and lots of babies! Everything was perfect, we were recent college grads (Jarred with his bachelors and Andrea her Master’s), obtained our first jobs in our chosen fields and bought our first home. 7 months into our marriage we found out we were expecting our first child, a little girl. Everything was falling into place perfectly. She was born healthy in January 2014 and (despite the ups and downs of parenting and balancing home and work schedules) bloomed in our new roles with bags under our eyes!

Parenthood is definitely a struggle, and not every day is roses and daisies; sometimes its walking on egg shells and just hoping the next day is better. It always was. Our daughter was almost 18 months old (July 2015) when we decided she needed a sibling. A year into trying (July 2016) we became discouraged when we weren’t pregnant yet. I mean, it happened so fast the first time, so what was going on? We visited medical providers who soon diagnosed us with male infertility. Total bummer. But, there was an elective surgery to help correct the issue and further increase our chances or begin to consider adoption. We gave both options significant thought. Fast forward to January 2017 and electing to have the surgery first to see if our chances were increased. We were both healthy people, so why not? It was suggested we begin fertility treatments in unison with the surgery. Expensive and painful are the two words to describe it. For 6 months Andrea took medication, and went in for ultrasounds and blood work regularly. Nothing. In June 2017, a tubal pregnancy developed. We were heartbroken and delayed another 3 months to allow Andrea’s body to heal before trying again. We were discouraged but never let go of the potential for adoption. At this point we decided that forgoing furture fertility treatments was in our families best interest and focused our time and energy not only on the possibility of miraculously becoming pregnant naturally if that is God’s plan, but also adoption. For several months off and on we researched different agencies and what it meangt to adopt. We’ll admit that it was the most difficulty decision to make not just because of expense and uncertainty, but because as parents we could not fathom the thought of seeking adoptiove parents for our own daughter. The anguish a birth parent may feel going through this process was something we weren’t sure we could handle if we’re being totally honest. This new path had only just begun for us and we had no idea how to navigate it.

We want you as future parents who might place your child for adoption to know that this decision was not taken lightly. We have prayed about it, sought help and guidance from others who have been in our position and educated ourselves on the different aspects of what adoption means not just for the child but for us (you included) as parents and the parts we play in the child’s life. Hours and hours have been spent on the internet researching the questions we had and ultimately it led us to open our hearts and home to another child. We have learned that open adoption is the best way to proceed and it is our hope that we can share this experience and common goal with you! So here we are looking to share our love and lives with another child in our family. If you’re looking for stability, love and opportunity for your child we may just be looking for each other. We hope to meet you soon!

Much love and respect,

Jarred and Andrea

Our current occupations
Andrea is a licensed social worker working within the medical field providing support to patients seeking assistance as well as other clinical staff. She currently is working part time.

Jarred is a systems analyst for an electronic medical record software. He troubleshoots issues and provides support to clinical staff. He currently is working full time.

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Our anticipated employment plan following placement
Andrea-12 weeks maternity leave, then return to work part time
Jarred- At least 1 week off initially and then back to work full time

We are…
Andrea is a very compassionate and resourceful person. She is hardworking and loves being a mother to the couples 4 year old daughter. She values honesty, commitment and family.

Jarred describes himself as a hardworking, organized, trusting individual. He values honesty, commitment, and family above all else.

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Our relationship
Jarred and Andrea met in 2008 while attending Grand Valley State University and began dating later that summer. We became engaged in 2011 and married in 2012. We bought our first house in 2013, had our daughter in 2014 and then moved again 2017. The relationship has had it’s typical ups and downs as we learn to navigate life together. We are constantly learning, compromising and growing with love and understanding. Relationships take consistent work that we are both committed to. While we take our relationship seriously, we also leave plenty of time for fun!

View More: http://alyssandrew.pass.us/barts-2016

Religion
We attend Catholic services on holidays and sporadically throughout the year. Our daughter was baptized in the Catholic church.

Fun and relaxation
As a family, we enjoy watching movies, playing games taking our dog for walks and going to the beach in the summer. During the winter you will find us building snowmen and making snow angels! Individually, Jarred likes to watch sports, play cards, listen to music and golf. Andrea enjoys cooking, baking, reading, playing house or family with Natalie and taking naps. Natalie is a big fan of coloring, spending time with her 3 closest friends and her cousin, doing crafts and playing with the family dog and cat.

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Discipline
Discipline is important in creating boundaries and structure to keep the child safe and adjusted. A typical punishment would be time out or removal of priviledges/toys. Spanking or any other physical contact is not used as a method.

Education
Both Jarred and Andrea hold education in high regard, not only individual to further your career and skill set, but also ongoing throughout and after the adoption process and while parenting.

Our values
Our family values honesty, integrity, a strong work ethic and commitment. Being truthful and always trying your best to accomplish something are things that are very important to us. It is further important that we as parents provide for our children in all aspects to allow them the best future and life they can have by teaching them these things. We believe in supporting and encouraging each other to pursue our interests with our whole heart and knowing we have each other we can lean on.

View More: http://alyssandrew.pass.us/barts-2016

Our home and neighborhood
Jarred and Andrea bought their current home in October 2017 and moved in November 2017. It is a two story home with a finished basement and 4 bedrooms. There is a large yard where you will find our daughter and family dog running and playing with friends. Our home is located in a family oriented neighborhood and children of all ages can be seen playing outside at any given time. It is a very active place and is connected with the local school district. There are mutliple playgrounds within walking distance as well as a community beach in which we frequent often during the summer. We plan to remain in this home throughout our daughter and future childrens schooling career.

Our relationships with family and friends
We all have a lot of friends and family that we see on a regular basis. Both Jarred and Andrea have close relationships with members of their families and interact with them regularly. The majority of Andrea and Jarred’s friends are people they have known 10+ years; some live close by and others require a little bit of travel. As a family we make time throughout the year to visit with family or friends and on all holidays and sporadic weekends. These relationships are held in high regard and these friends who have become family.

View More: http://alyssandrew.pass.us/barts-2016

Thank you for your consideration!

For more information about this family, please text or call our on-call worker at 616.451.0245, or email cathyr@greaterhopes.org