Friday, June 13, 2014

Life, and love

We went to visit the birth parents again on Tuesday. She was not due for an ultrasound, but she made arrangements to have one. I appreciated that she did that. It isn't something that we would otherwise get to be a part of. We saw and heard the heartbeat, his face, his hands, his genitals. My heart melted.

This whole thing is so surreal. I went back and read a lot of my old posts and just shook my head and even cried. It is interesting how some of them seemed so void of emotion. It was hard to read. I left so much out, yet all of those emotions were right at the surface with each word that I read. It has been such a long road. I was good at relaying the facts. And while I spend a lot of time rationalizing things in order to stay sane, it was never without feelings. So much of my life has been filled with a combination of laughter and tears and I wish I had been better about writing it down. Five pregnancies and 9 years of effort and here we are.

But as I sit here and try to write, I struggle with words to describe what I am feeling. I am already so in love. But the love inside me isn't just for this baby boy. It is for my husband who has been amazing at keeping me steady and standing by my side and being on board every step of the way. It is for my friends and family who have continued to support me with shoulders and wine. It is for the birth parents, who are about to give me something I can never re-pay them for. They are going to continue to be an important part of our lives, and my love for them is unlike any that I will have for anyone else in my life.

I know people say that there is no love like the love you have for your children. I am excited for that. But I wish sometimes that people would give credit to the love that goes to an from everyone else. Because every relationship in my life is filled with love of some kind. And each one is as indescribable as the next. And I am grateful for each and every one.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Holy crap

I am getting a boy at the end of the month! I am going to be a mom......... I don't even know where to begin. A wise friend told me to journal, and I didn't. So dumb.

It has obviously been a while. And I need a little back story, for myself, and maybe some of you. This is long, but I need to get it down. Writing for me is a therapy, not always an entertainment. So skim, stop, read, whatever you want. Here it is. 

When we had first found out that we couldn't have kids, we had met with an agency, and were quiet turned off by what they had to say. Through heated discussions, and me still under the influence of hormones, there were a lot of tears, and a decision not to try and expand the family. I didn't mention this before. It was painful, and felt so final. And like most women with a biological clock, it didn't go away. We have had a lot of fun in the last couple years. I did 16 weeks of trapeze, which was awesome, we have travelled, I have taken more classes and almost have my Associates of Applied Science in Fashion Design. I still love teaching, and have nurtured some great relationships. It has been a fun few years, and I don't regret it. It was a time of healing and reconnecting and soul searching.

I discovered that the need to be a mom still haunted me. I hate that it was something I hid from Jon, but I knew he wouldn't understand. In the fall of 2012 I decided to tell him. I told him that I wanted to gather some information on adoption. I felt that if we were going to completely close the book on expanding our family, then I wanted to know that we made that decision having had all of the facts. Talking with 1 agency when I had just received a major blow wasn't exactly my idea of having all of the answers. There was a lot of upset, arguing, crying. Jon felt blind sighted, I felt vulnerable. We questioned our marriage. If I wanted it and he didn't, would I stay? What was stopping me from finding someone else who would do this with me? If we did it and he didn't want it would he resent me forever? If he said no, would I hate him? There were a lot of questions. It took some time for him to accept that at this time I just wanted to know more, that if we didn't find something that we were both comfortable with, I was ok with not having kids. But I didn't think we had investigated all of the options. Part of my desire to have kids is because I want to raise them with him, not with anyone else. I married him for better or worse. It was tense, it was hard, and it took a lot of communication. I took my time in part so he could adjust to the idea. And because he needed to know that I still loved him. I needed to know the same from him. 

In the spring of 2013, I went to lunch with a dear friend. She told me about how she adopted her 2 kids by using a lawyer, a private adoption. I had no idea her kids were adopted. How did that work? She told me everything. After mulling it over, I talked to Jon. We argued some. Sure, I could talk to a lawyer, but how would we pay her? We have no money. Oh yeah, fertility, and I have always had a spending problem. 

So we worked on our finances. I became more aware, and more involved. Something I should have been doing a long time ago. We paid off our debt, I got control of my spending, we started saving.  Come fall break, I decided to call the lawyer, who referred me to someone who could do our home certification. Beverly from Adoption Specialists of Arizona happened to be having an informational workshop that Monday and Jon and I went. She was informative, funny, candid, honest, and said all the right things. Things that I knew but that Jon needed to hear. It was a long ride home and Jon chatted the whole time which was wildly unexpected. I thought it would be uncomfortably silent as he processed the information. 

That Friday, my alarm had just gone off and I was lying in bed, doing my morning processing routine. I hadn't really talked to Jon since Tuesday night since he knows better than to talk to me a lot in the mornings, I had class Wednesday night, and Thursday was parent/teacher conferences so I was home late. I was exhausted and today was Shadow a Student day. Ugh. Jon always showers with the light off, so the room was dark when I grumbled a good morning from under the covers. His first words to me were, "why don't you call Bev and get the adoption process started." I just laid there. Did I just hear what I think I heard? How do I respond to this? I tend to overact when I first wake up. Tread carefully. I asked him if he was serious, he said yes, I said ok, and I started silently bawling. When I could compose myself I went to the kitchen and started again. "This is bigger than when you asked me to marry you!" I told him. We got fingerprinted that day.

We got certified by January, we wrote our birth letter, we told everyone we knew in case they knew anyone wanting to place a baby with us. People would tell us all sorts of adoption success stories, and ask if it is as stressful as everyone says it is. Um, no. After everything else we had gone through, having someone come to my house, ask me a few questions, and sign some paperwork was a walk in the park. The lawyer emailed us the occasional potential adoption profile, were we interested, we will include you, blah, blah, blah. We responded and never heard more about any of them. Fast forward to last week. On Monday I received a call from Rita Meiser's office. There was a couple that wanted to meet us, could we drive to Prescott for lunch Tuesday or Wednesday. Yes! I was shaking. Really? Wow. The shock quickly turned to calm. We were told that the couple had 2 families they wanted to meet with, which my lawyer wasn't happy about. And they wanted to meet with them back to back. Another terrible idea. The only thing we could do was be ourselves and late the universe decide. As with fertility, if it didn't happen, life wouldn't be any different, and we could take something from the experience for next time. 

We met them at Applebee's and talked with them for 3 1/2 hours. It went really well. Halfway through they told us that it had come down to just us, there was no other couple, and if we were comfortable they would like to move forward with this. Jon grabbed my hand, I cried and sputtered out a "Yes! Yes, thank you." It was hard to collect myself. Thursday the lawyer called me, she had talked to their lawyer and all looks well. The birth mother and I have been emailing back and forth and we all feel good about the decision. 

Tomorrow we are going up there again to take them to lunch and go to a doctor's appointment with them. We will get to see the baby in an ultrasound. I can't wait!