At age 8 Natasha was diagnosed with Wilms Tumor, a childhood kidney cancer. During this time Natasha started to doubt God and struggled with having a relationship with Him. At age 14 the next health and emotional hurtle came when Natasha found out that due to radiation treatment at age 8 she would never be able to have children. During her teen and adult years Natasha learned about and became passionate about adoption, yet it seemed like an unreachable dream.
Natasha and her husband Chris met and fell in love at work and were married in 2013 after dating for 5 years. During the first few years of their relationship, they each faced surgeries and were there to help each other through the healing process. In 2009, Chris came to a life-altering decision, that he wanted to free himself of his gender identity issues, and became the man that he was always meant to be and transitioned from female to male. Although not all relationships can survive this type of change, Natasha always saw Chris for the person he truly was and supported him through this journey. In 2011, it was Chris’ turn to support Natasha as she was found to have pre-cancerous colon polyps, which were thought to have been another side-effect of radiation that she received as a child. The polyps were so severe that surgery was required which resulted in a permanent Ileostomy bag. Both are now happy to report that they are healthy and enjoying life!
As their home filled with wonderful pets and they welcomed 3 nephews and 1 niece into their lives, they felt parenthood was still a dream.
In 2012, Natasha found a Christian church and fell in love with the people of the church and the Lord! Although she was raised in a Lutheran home, this was a feeling she didn’t know existed – a true connection with the Lord – and she was finally able to heal emotionally from her childhood cancer and infertility. Although Chris is not a Christ follower, he continues to encourage Natasha in her faith and celebrates her spiritual growth that he has witnessed since she started her walk with the Lord in 2012.
In August 2014, Chris was helping Natasha break glass for a mosaic project with a women’s group at her church. It was during this project that Natasha and Chris once again talked about the possibility of adoption; during this discussion they realized that although they loved being an aunt and uncle, they each longed to hold the title of mom and dad!
Throughout all of her health issues and also being diagnosed with anxiety and depression, Natasha believes in finding JOY in every journey and there is no one else other than Chris that she would want to share this journey with!
Natasha graduated from Barat College in Lake Forest, IL in 1998 with a degree in Psychology and Dance Therapy. Natasha also spent one year traveling with the international community service and performing arts program Up With People.
Natasha lives in the Northern Suburbs of Chicago with her husband Chris and their 3 dogs and 2 cats. They are eagerly awaiting the arrival of their first child through adoption!