This month, we are excited and honored to welcome a new member to the Adoption Choices of Oklahoma team: Hannah Carlsward! She will be working as an Editorial Intern with us for the next six months.
Hannah Carlsward is an aspiring journalist and photographer. She loves connecting the world through stories and photography, and loves showing others a new perspective of the world around them. During her six months with Adoption Choices, Hannah hopes to learn more about the adoption process and how to help birth and adoptive families navigate their options.
Before she begins her regular blogs, I wanted to give her a chance to introduce herself and for you all to get to know her.
RR: When you hear the word,” adoption,” what comes to mind?
When I think about adoption, I think about a second chance. The adoption process has so many different interesting parts to it. However, I feel like the one aspect that remains the same is the opportunity for hope and second chances. From the child involved to both of the families, adoption is a process that changes a lot in people’s lives. This change does not have to be negative, though, and I like to see it as a beacon of hope and happiness.
RR: What/Who inspires you?
I know it is cliché, but my parents are my biggest supporters and the people that inspire me the most. They have been right there by my side through thick and thin, and they always push me to do my absolute best. I know I can go to them for anything, and they will always give me the best advice to help keep me moving forward.
RR: What was the last book you read?
I am currently reading The Testaments, which is the sequel to Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. I am a big fan of dystopian books or any book that takes you into a different world. This sequel takes place 50 years after the original, and it is interesting seeing a new set of characters navigate the world set in the first book.
RR: What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
I would say the craziest thing I have ever done is move to St. Augustine to go to college. Although it is only 5 hours away from where I am from, I knew almost nobody and started completely from scratch. It was definitely intimidating at the beginning, but I have learned so much about myself. I really am a person who loves an adventure and a challenge. Moving to St. Augustine was both of those things, but the people I have met along the way have made it all worthwhile. I definitely have some crazy stories to tell my grandchildren someday!
RR: What are you passionate about?
One thing I am very passionate about is caring for others. The value of helping others is something that has been instilled into me from a young age. I always love giving back to my community and realizing how the slightest bit of kindness can make a person’s day.
This is why I chose journalism as my major. When writing a story, I get to talk to people, hear their struggles and then make them known to others. In a way, I get to give back to people through writing about the things that are hurting them the most. In sharing their stories, I get to help other people see these challenges and find ways to help them.
RR: What are you currently watching on Netflix?
I just finished watching The Circle on Netflix, and I absolutely loved it! The show is based around a social media competition where contestants try to win over other contestants without ever meeting them face to face. While it has the potential of a reality tv show full of unnecessary drama, it is truly wholesome and definitely a great show to lift your spirits up. It really offers a different, more positive view on both reality tv and social media.
RR: What did you want to be when you grew up?
From a young age, I knew I wanted to be a writer. When I was really young, I used to want to be a pop star and write songs for a living. That has evolved over the years, and, now, I want to be a journalist. I have always loved writing and telling stories. Writing gives an opportunity to look into people’s lives. It can allow you to see things from a new perspective and help challenge what you already know.
RR: What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working?
I am quite the adventurer, so I am always looking for something new and different to do in my free time. Most of the time, I love exploring new areas and places – whether it be through walking around, trying new food, or just sitting and watching people walk by. There was this one time where I walked around my city and flipped a coin. If it landed on heads, I would go to the left, and if it landed on tails, I would go to the right. Little random things like this might seem silly, but it is a very cool way to explore somewhere new and get a little bit out of that comfort zone. Although sometimes you might need to use a map to help find your way back home.
RR: What are your career aspirations?
I am not sure what I truly want to do after college. However, I have learned I really love photography. I love capturing beautiful moments and sharing them with other people. My dream job would be combining writing and photography in a way that helps the community I live in. My most recent career idea has been photojournalism, but I am not set on any specific career path.
RR: Why Adoption Choices?
One thing I have always loved is children. They are so bright and full of joy and fill any day with laughter and happiness. While I never went through adoption personally, I do have a few family members that went through the foster care and adoption processes. It is such a complex but interesting process, and I wanted to learn more about it.
When I was first looking at this internship, one of the biggest things that stuck out to me was Adoption Choices’ compassion and care for those that they serve. They are all so kind and care to provide the best experience possible, and I cannot wait to be a part of the team.