badge



Adoption IV – Our search for ISHIKA



This is an interview with Shalini and Inderjit Sen.  They have graciously volunteered to talk to us about the journey they took to find their daughter Ishika….May God Bless them.

Adoption IV - Our search for ISHIKA+legal adoption of a child

Meet Ishika.  Here she is all decked up on her first birthday.

Why did natural birth elude you?

I was diagnosed with PCOD at the age of eighteen.  Along with irregular periods, I also put on a lot of weight.  This was the side effect of an overdose of cortico steroids for the treatment of uveitis of the eyes.  At that time it was the only drug available for that disease but it was a misguided dose.  To add to my worries the steroids induced hyper thyroid.  It was the reason I decided not to have a biological child.  Medical complications were bound to happen or let say it would put both me and the baby’s life at risk.  After marriage I longed to have a child.  The longing was turning into an ache.

How did you and your spouse react to the news?

My husband was very supportive.  My health and wellbeing were at the top of his list.  We both wanted a child but not at the cost of anyone’s life.  After five years of marriage we thought it was the right time to become parents.  We thought about adoption, discussed my health issues along with the pros and cons of adoption and whole heartedly and with open minds thought about ways to go about it.

How did you decide to adopt?

My aunt (mother’s sister) has an adopted daughter and seeing their happiness, there was no doubt in our minds that we could be as happy as them.  Biological or adopted it did not make any difference to our family and that sealed the deal.  It was all the assurance we needed.  We knew that our child would be accepted with open arms.

Below is 2 year old Ishika with her dad

Adoption IV - Our search for ISHIKA+adoption

What about your extended family?

My father in law advised us to rethink our decision. He was clear that if we went ahead and took the plunge then whatever good or bad happened in future we had better not regret our decision. This was in the interest of the child as the child should not be blamed if it doesn’t turn out as per our expectations.   My mother in law was very happy and she had no doubt that we would make great parents.  Unfortunately my father was not here to share our joy.  My mother and sister were elated and eagerly waiting for the good news.

Where was our bundle of joy?  Was she also waiting for us?  My cousin readily agreed to be our guarantor as required for legal adoption.

How did you find the agency?

We asked every near and dear one for a reference.  We searched the local agencies in Lucknow and we were asked to register if we were genuinely interested and then wait.  The wait could be as long as one year or even three years.   We searched online, called up government adoption agencies but still got nothing positive.  In the meantime whenever I read any news of an abandoned child my heart would break and I would start to long for that child to be mine.  But I knew that there were people much ahead of me in the queue. We were giving up hope when a friend who is a teacher in Nainital called up and asked us to contact her ex student from Kolkata who has an adopted daughter from an agency in Jalna, Maharatra.  We called her immediately and everything fell into place.

We became the proud parents to a five month old baby girl in a fortnight.

What were the provisions that you needed to fulfil?

The agency requires the couple to be married for over five years.  They have to be of sound physical and mental health.  They should not be HIV +ve.  We were checked for blood sugar, needed an Infertility Certificate from a gynaecologist, had to produce our IT returns for the past three years, savings and asset ownership certificates, educational and professional certification, along with our birth and marriage certificates.

How did you decide on the baby?

We reached Jalna and discussed our expectations with a social worker.  We wanted a daughter and we were hoping for her to be less than six months.  The next day we went to the agency and after we signed the papers and deposited the attested copies of all the required certificates we were told to wait for a while.  Those few minutes were the longest of our lives.  All the anxieties of our exams were nothing compared to this moment.  They brought out a child who was fair and well-built and around nine months of age.  Nothing happened to either of us.

There was a bit of hesitation and then they asked us if we minded a dark child.  We didn’t have any colour preference.  We didn’t come here to shop.  They then brought out this malnourished dark child.  She had long hair and a twinkle in her eyes.  It seemed as if they were pleading to us.  Pleading for acceptance.  My husband took her in his arms called out to her.  It was the name we had in mind for her and she smiled back beautifully at the sound of it. That was the moment my husband looked at me and said she is the one.  I couldn’t agree more.

Recent picture of Ishika with her Mommie

Adoption IV - Our search for ISHIKA+adopting a daughter

How were the initial days with her?

The day we selected the baby she was sent for a medical check-up and the next day we were informed that she passed the medical tests successfully.  We then came to pick her up and performed  a small havan, renamed her and took her home.  In the meantime we had contacted a local lawyer who submitted the papers to initiate proceedings for the legal adoption of the child. The entire process generally takes a year and luckily we were not required to personally attend court sessions.   We brought the child to Lucknow in three days with a provisional legal paper.

Once home I managed pretty well and my mother joined us within a week.  We consulted a local child specialist and immediately inoculated her as required.  The baby was underweight but she gradually she picked up in health.  A couple of kgs every month, learnt to sit,  got potty trained, learnt to crawl, subsequently walked and started to utter a couple of words.  Every new activity generated a lot of happiness in us and the bond that started with our first meeting grew stronger each day.  It could not and would never be broken.

 I must also appreciate the fact that my husband, being a hand’s on dad made things easier and the support of my colleagues made it easy for me to work and support the small one at the same time. My mother and my in laws stayed with me for months and pitched in and enjoyed  watching the baby grow.

Ishika came to us on the 12th of June 2010.  My in laws expired last month.  Both of them within days of each other.  I thank God every day for his provision.  I thank him for giving them the chance to know the love of a grand child and her the love of her grandparents.

What is the situation now and what are your future plans?

Our Ishika is three now, she’s healthy by the grace of God, fun loving, shy but full of life.  Her dad is her best friend and he pampers her a lot.  She waits for him to come home every night and then gives him all the news of her day and acts out all her dramas for him.  She has joined a play group and takes part in all activities with a lot of enthusiasm.  She is very sensitive and compassionate.  She loves music, dancing, colouring and watering plants.  We are hoping she gets admission in a good convent school by January next year.

A word of advice to all of you considering adoption.

  •  Please be 1000 % sure.  There should be no confusion in your mind.  You cannot back out of the deal.  It will affect the child badly.
  • Be patient.  You can’t ask for a child today and get it tomorrow.  You may have to keep pestering the agency and showing your face there often.
  • Finally, you don’t choose the child but the child chooses you!  Once the connection is made every thing falls in place.  May the Lord bless you with all your hearts desires.   This is my prayer for every couple.

 Have you got a story to tell us?  How was your journey to finding your child?



Comments

  1. Great post…God will give extra blessings to every couple who adopts.. my aunts daughter is adopted.. nobody saw her any different… we never felt that she was adopted..now she is in college.. 🙂

  2. Really great one…Anamika…. Adoption will helps some child to get the love of parents which is incredible…i always support this…

  3. Shalini, you both are blessed to have Ishika in your lives..I love your journey to motherhood and hope this encourages everyone out there to be supportive of adoption..especially extended family members..

    btw…u mentioned that twinkle in her eye…I can see the same twinkle in yours too! She’s truly meant to be your Ishika!

  4. she is yur shadow Shalini 🙂 Your eyes says it all.

  5. She is beautiful! Lovely family 🙂 and the most heart felt, truthful article I’ve read!

  6. Really heart-warming article. I had tears in my eyes when I read how Ishika reacted when Inderjit called out her name and she smiled back.. Truly, the child chose her parents. God bless the family 🙂

  7. Hi everyone. i have been a silent reader of wiseshe since many months.i wanna say that you are doing a very good thing by sharing adoption stories.its gonna help lot of people.
    i am a medical student and today i saw an adopted girl child with severe diarrhea.she had to be admitted because she wasn’t given treatment for 10days.her parents didn’t even know the number of vomiting or anything abt d illness.she was malnourished.the child was vertically depressed. i was longing to hear somethin that would assure me that people here r changing and i read this story.You are like angels to this child shalini and inderjeet.she is lucky to get such a loving family.

  8. speechless on your initiative Anamika..happiness is what seems to be common in all of their eyes..may God bless the family.

  9. congrats….tears rolled out of my eyes by the time I finished reading this post.

  10. Shalini..ur daughter is beautiful!i wish someday in india ppl wil let go go dark/fair.i have a cousin who is adopted n no one ever feels so… !all the best to you ur husband n to ur gorgeous daughter..that line touched my heart where u talk abt the agency asking if u wud mind a dark child

  11. great job u guys to give a baby a good life. but wat worried me was there was a 6month old baby for adoption. makes me very sad at those people who jus let their kid off.. after i had my son i’ve rely understood wat kids go thru n wat my mom must hav put up.. n wen i read abt ppl trying to get rid of babies coz they r gals or anythin related to kids makes me very sad..

  12. All this is so amazing…n by doing such things we can make one thing sure and that is……
    We are Presenting a better country and future to our own children….
    God bless the couple n God bless All……

  13. I am so moved. Shalini and Inderjit, Gods provision of abundance for you and his infinite Love is guiding you and Ishika. I am so happy she chose you.
    What a lovely family.

  14. Hi I have been on this fit quite some time silently reading and been too lazy to comment . I want to tell you that what you have done is the biggest gift you can give in your life time to anyone . May god bless you . Iam unmarried but I also want to adopt a child . Stay blessed a thousand prayers file your baby girl and you . Also I read somewhere a child chooses his mother even before it’s born . Biological or adoption . Love .

  15. i hav no words to tell.simply to say ” so so so so much proud of u and happy for u.” u gonna be happy throughout.

  16. nice initiative ana… ishika is such a sweet child… its a perfect made for each other story 🙂

  17. Anamika…u have bcome a mother in the truest sense..who is not only only concerned about herself and her daughter but about the less fortunate ones even….
    This post simply touched my heart..even my aunt has an adopted daughter and we love her without discrimination…I BENT MY HEAD DOWN TO ALL THOSE PARENTS WHO ADOPT AND PROVIDE THE LOVE AND CARE AS THEY WOULD GIVE THEIR OWN BLOOD.

  18. God bless you both! I cant praise you enough for choosing a girl! Believe me, I work for animal adoption and people dont even want to adopt a female dog, which is heart wrenching. I luved when you said you had not gone for shopping! Kudos to both of you.
    May God Bless you and the Cutie Pie!

  19. D last pic is so b’ful!

    You hv helped me and many like me by giving answers to a lot of questions in my mind..

    And, I hope one day i too have d same courage and strength.. God Bless u loadza n loadza!! 🙂

    Thanks a ton!

Speak Your Mind

*