Saturday, July 25, 2009

Adoption Saga Ends With Happy Ending & New Album From Tammy Cochran

Tammy Cochran’s new album, 30 Something and Single, has just been released this summer off of her own Itty Bitty Indie (IBI) label. The album is Tammy’s fourth career album, and it is one that she is very eager for fans to get their hands on!. “I am so excited about this album, because it's all me. By that, I mean that I got to chose which songs went on the album and how they were produced. It was great to make the album that is 100% me without any external influences.”

One of the highlighted songs on the album is “Half the World Away (Shawn’s Song),” a touching ballad that holds a very special place in Tammy’s heart. Prior to writing that song, she had begun what would become a grueling and drawn out process as she tried to adopt a child from Guatemala. Not long after setting her heart on adopting a little girl, Tammy found herself being thrown in the middle of a controversial tug-of-war, during which she was repeatedly lied to about her case. She would eventually discover that her case hadn’t even been touched let alone processed. “I was told that my case was in family court, then out of family court – when in fact my dossier hadn't even been translated into Spanish.”

It wasn’t long before the adoption facilitator based out of Florida who was assigned to handle Tammy’s case was found guilty on charges for harboring an illegal alien child and sentenced to a year in prison. The adoptive parents for that baby were being told several stories of why they couldn't have their child. A private investigator was hired to look into the situation and found the child living with the facilitator. Tammy reports, “She was passing the child off as one she adopted. The FBI got involved, and the rest is history.”

Charges were filed during Tammy’s adoption, which prompted her to change facilitators and lawyers. “I was just one of several victims of this facilitator. Unknown to me, she used an attorney that was banned by the US Embassy. I sent my money to who I thought was a lawyer. Instead, it ended up being the housekeeper of the lawyer.” In an effort to contain the situation, Tammy recalls, “Just weeks away from bringing Shawn home, I was threatened that my adoption would stop if I went public with my story.”

Discouraged but determined more than ever after witnessing her first effort turn into a fiasco, Tammy began researching another avenue to pursue a second adoption. Through her own research, she found many of her questions being answered by GuatAdopt, a Guatemalan-based organization that facilitates adoption cases on a volunteer basis. The organization is run by adoptive parents and helps to bring adoptive parents and Guatemalan children together. “GuatAdopt is a God send to me. I found them accidentally online and made contact with them. I had been worried about my adoption process and just needed some answers and encouragement. They are wonderful people who care about the children of Guatemala, as they are adoptive parents themselves. They told me how to inquire at the Embassy. I did so and there was NO record of me in the system! I found this funny, since I had supposedly been in and out of family court.”

Tammy’s second adoption went much more smoothly and was soon approved! Now, two years later, Shawn Alan Cochran (named for the memory of Tammy’s two brothers) is a healthy growing 3-year-old boy who has adjusted well since coming home to Tennessee in 2007.

It was amidst those turbulent years of uncertainty, frustration, and controversy surrounding her pending adoption that a true gem was born! Tammy wrote “Half the World Away” during a time when she wasn’t even sure her adoption would go through. “The adoption took two years to complete when it should have only taken about 10 months.” Through music, Tammy found an ideal outlet to express her emotions during that time of turmoil in her life while also capturing the joy that comes with welcoming a new child into the family!

“Half the World Away” is one of eleven total songs on 30 Something and Single. Those interested in purchasing the album can go HERE.

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