Jen and Tracy were matched with a birth mom the Saturday before Thanksgiving. The birth mom was due to give birth to a baby girl on January 16th. They decided to drive down to Tampa to meet the birth mom and father the weekend after Thanksgiving. It was a whirlwind trip but very meaningful. It was great meeting them and being able to ask our questions and answer there’s. Fast forward 3 weeks later, Thursday December 20th the date in which the baby decided to make her appearance.
Sawyer Elizabeth Woollen was born at 12:38 pm on December 20th weighing 6 lbs. 15 oz. and was 21.5 inches long.
Jen and Tracy were beside themselves and dropped everything packed their car and drove down to Florida to be with her. They arrived on Saturday and will remain there for at the next 3 weeks or so. The birth mom was on methadone for the entire pregnancy which means baby Sawyer was born with it in her system. Sawyer was admitted into the NICU and will remain there for at least 7 days after birth. The reason for this is because she will have to detox from the Methadone and the NICU is the safest place for this to happen. While she is there they will score her on many different things including her breathing, how well she eats and other categories. If she doesn't score well and begins to have severe effects from the withdrawal they will have to administer medication. If this happens she will then have to be weaned off and will have to remain in the NICU longer.
Once Sawyer is released from the NICU, Jen and Tracy will have at least another 2 weeks in which they will remain in their Florida hotel until both states approve the adoption and they can come home. Please keep Jen, Tracy and Sawyer in your thoughts and prayers over the upcoming weeks and months!
Almost 13 years ago, at the insistence of mutual friends, my sister, Tracy Minkoff Woollen, agreed to meet someone new at a local restaurant for trivia night. She and future wife Jen met over a chocolate shake with two straws. Tracy fell in love with Jen’s infectious smile, her noble midwestern Wisconsin values, strong sense of family and genuine concern for the well-being of others. Jen was immediately smitten with Tracy’s unparalleled passion for helping those in need, her sense of humor and the ability to make everyone around her laugh.
Over these many years, despite their two fur babies, Bo and Brie, they both knew their hearts would not be complete without warmly welcoming a child to call their own. Thus, began their journey. As with many same sex couples, the path to completing their family would prove to be an arduous one.
Their families and friends supported them emotionally through failed artificial insemination attempts, Jen’s subsequent ovarian surgery and the mounting debt that followed. Insurance does not cover these procedures, so as you can imagine the cost was high.
Feeling discouraged and heartbroken, the couple faced the reality of possibly never having a child of their own. Their friends began mentioning adoption as a viable option despite considerable costs, once again. However, these babies are born, need loving homes and chances are far better.
So here we are. Tracy and Jen have engaged adoption consultants who will guide them through the process and help insure the fulfillment of all agency requirements. With the consulting agency and the adoption agencies costs range from $40,000 to $50,000. The funds must be in place before the agencies will move forward with your application.
Tracy and Jen never ask for help much less donations but sometimes "it takes a village" as they say. I ask you to find it in your heart to give a little, a lot, anything so they may become loving parents. Any donation will be incredibly helpful! Tracy and Jen have so much love to give and there is a baby out there who needs it!!!!!
Abby Minkoff Couick
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