All of them.
I think that sums it all up.
I have all of the emotions of pregnancy plus some anxiety that I never had when I was the one carrying the baby.
Being here in Virginia has done so very much to calm all my worries about the mother changing her mind. While she still reserves that right (for seven days after we go to court for her to sign consent) I feel really confident that she believes in her heart that this is what’s best for Anna.
I have had the pleasure of having two meals with her, the last one was last night and it included my entire family! I am so glad that she was brave enough to have all of us over because she got to watch my kids with all the other littles who were there: the ages: 5, 3, 3, 1, and 3 months. I do hope that seeing my boys with these little ones gave her some sense of what it’ll be like for her child to spend her life with the Hamrick boys.
I read a fantastic blog post by a friend, someone who has walked this path before, and I would love for you to take the time to read it. There was a section in that…
I pause this blog post because while I was writing I got a very important text. Mama had been diagnosed with high blood pressure and was being sent to the hospital to be induced. A shower, rushed packing job, and I’m now sitting in the waiting room of the hospital. Mama has started Pitocin and we begin the waiting game. Begin? I guess we’ve already begun that! Now we begin the race to the finish line.
But back to my original post…
There was a great section in my friend’s blog post where she mentioned a moment earlier in her adoption process when she began to dream about what her baby would be like. Read Kathie’s entire article here:
Somewhere along the journey I began to think about what our child would be like. In adoption, you can choose so much. You can choose the family history, medical issues, color, gender! Choices are power! Control! YES!
NO. No, no, no. For the first time in my life I realized that I didn’t want that power. Choosing the perfect child for us was impossible. How could we possibly know their entire genetic make-up and predict their personality? How could we possibly know what our future held and therefore what kind of baby we needed now? We couldn’t. Ever. But God knew. He knew it all, every detail, even the ones we would never notice. My greatest desire was the perfect baby for us. So I let God have control.
I LOVE that. “Choosing the perfect child for us was impossible.” YES! It is! Only GOD knows which child, out of all the ones needing a family, was the right fit for our family.
And we get to meet her soon! Maybe today!
I’ve been cautious: especially in the first few weeks before we were super confident that the mama liked us.
I’ve been scared: there was one text in particular that had me worried that someone in her life might want to cause trouble. Turned out to be nothing, but for all of about 30 seconds my knees were too wobbly to hold my weight.
I’ve been excited: with every baby item that entered my house; the painting of the nursery; the planning of the trip; and finally, the text that meant ‘it’s time.’
I’ve been angry: there was this one situation with one particular professional in the adoption world that I believe dropped the ball. For about an hour I thought there was a real chance our adoption process was at risk and I may have let her know about my frustrations. (Kathie, I know you said not to do this, but it’s too late. I hadn’t read that blog post yet because it only came out today!) The work of a few other stellar adoption professionals made everything work out perfectly and after about two days I relaxed. I had to practice breathing techniques to calm myself down for two days after that! I had the words of a dear friend that comforted me. See my next emotion…
I’ve been comforted: It’s been a long time since I’ve been the one who needed to be comforted. I tend to be on the side offering the comfort but here are the words that soothed my heart and gave me peace. A peace that I KNOW was from heaven:
Perhaps this is your labor. You will look back and see them as your own labor pains that will bond you to her even more. Becoming a child’s parent will always be a right of passage and you will feel you earned it. You should have to fight for her- it is what you will expect of the world in order to have access to her heart. Consider that spoken in authority over you in love and in God’s love for you. You are on His team, and that is all He asks of you. Listen for His voice. Fill your moments with worship or silence, and still your heart. He is Good.
I don’t get to bond with Anna through the physical aches and pains of labor. I can’t look at her and tell her the stories of delivery like I can with my boys, but I have a different sort of labor, and in many ways, this process has been much harder. Much harder but just as worth it.
I’ve been encouraged: thousands of texts, emails, messages, and notes on my blog and YouCaring website have encouraged me. So incredible! So unspeakably precious to me.
I’ve been blessed: That could mean anything, but in this particular instance I mean with gifts, both tangible and financial. Friends, family, strangers… you name it. Blessings have showered on us and made a hard journey much easier! I couldn’t imagine doing this and adding financial strain on top. Thank you to those who have given baby things to us, loaned us baby things, and given financially. Finally, the prayers of those who love Jesus as much as we do have kept us close as a family (even when there were moments of tension). We are so glad to be bringing Anna into such a wide community of friendship.
I’ve been tense: I might have bitten a few heads off a time or two. I might have gotten my feelings hurt once when one of the boys misbehaved and talked back to me… I might have sent myself to bed early that night and let everyone else finish the family game night that was in progress. But as Matt said, all of our emotions were/are running high and it is to be expected. We recovered and all was well shortly after, and since that evening things have been a little better. Crying is good, sometimes.
In just a few minutes two friends are going to arrive in this room and I want to be able to be fully present with them so I’m going to close here. Please know that I will update as soon as possible and that I’m pretty much ignoring texts for now. I’ll respond on Facebook as time allows.
Thanks for sharing in our journey! And if you have time, go back and read all of Kathie’s posts from the beginning. Start HERE at Open Minds Lead to Open Hearts. I saw the tease on Facebook and ignored it for a few days because it scared me to death. Here’s what I saw:
This is the first post in a series on open adoption.
Recently when my daughter’s birthmother, via email, asked me to call her immediately because she had something important to tell me, my heart dropped into my stomach and I broke out in a cold sweat.
We adopted my daughter almost six years ago, with the help of an adoption agency. A completely legal, binding adoption. And yet I allowed the terror of losing my daughter to overcome me once again. (Read more by Kathie B Harris.)