David and Lara's Adventures

Our journey through life, infertility, and adoption

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Ready and waiting...

We had dinner with G's birth mom last night, and really enjoyed another night of getting to know her. We seriously love that we know her. She painted something for the baby room and it is impressive! It has a jungle theme, with vibrant colors, and it all seems to match the room. I love it when things work out when you aren’t even planning them too! We will try to post a picture when we hang it up. It was done with crayon and water colors, and the texture is really neat. We ended up getting it out of the car before we had dinner, and David pulled up our car so it didn’t get rained on. We transferred it over, along with a few extra gifts, and G's birth mom and I walked into the restaurant together. She has put her arm around me as we chatted about the cute giraffe she bought Graydon, and walked away together. In that moment, everything felt right. David said he smiled as he saw us walking away. Two moms, both knowing each other because of one little boy. It is really amazing to watch our story play our right in front of us. While it was never the journey we expected, it is a ride we are embracing.

This Thursday marks a year exactly since I was sat down in a tiny room, with a urologist I just met, telling me the possibility of us having children together was impossible. I have reflected on that moment all week. Reliving some of the pain, still stunned that we are here, a year later in a very different place. We were different people when we walked into that urologist’s office. We walked out changed. Our path hit a dead end, and we were kneeling at the sign, not ready to stand up again.  And we didn’t stand up right away. We grieved. We held on to each other, and we did our best to heal. And we decided adoption would be the way to grow our family. I’m thankful for our choice. God took us out of the ashes, and made our path beautiful again.

Infertility is quite the beast. Maybe not compared to some things, but it is still a beast. It still affects me in ways I am not always prepared for. I feel very out of place in groups of women that talk about child birth. Not that I don’t mind the stories, but I can’t help feeling like I am the odd one out. It’s hard to hear pregnant women complain about their aches and pains...knowing I would trade anything to walk in their shoes. Mostly we still mourn the easiness that most experience when growing a family. Our journey takes a lot of money, time, and paperwork. Our “labor” just looks different, I guess. It happens every time we give up time together for David to tutor, so we can pay for our adoption without any debt, our countless hours filling out paperwork (which became my homework) and meetings at the agency.

We are now less than a week away from the due date. It seems to be all we can talk about. What will he look like? What will the hospital experience look like? WHEN will my phone ring with her on the other line saying labor has started? We have (I’m sure) all the questions, dreams, and fears of every other first time parent. And we are still cautious in our feelings. Guarding ourselves for the possibility of what could happen if she decides to parent. In so many ways, this little boy feels like ours, even though we have only felt him kick. Soon, and very soon we will get to meet him face to face. It is very unreal that we are so close. Almost three years of waiting, pleading, praying.

To say we are excited is even an understatement. We have cleaned every nook and cranny, there are tons of meals in our freezer, the hospital bag is packed, and the car seat is waiting in the kitchen. Now, we just need the phone to ring!

The poem that I wanted to close with is one I read in the scrapbook Graydon’s birth mom made for him. Along with this, she put in pictures and stories from each side of his family. We learned a lot, and it will be neat to share it with him along the way. And it has lots of space for pictures that we can add as we all grow. I liked it, and thought I would share:

Legacy of An Adopted Child
Author Unknown

Once there were two women,
Who barely knew each other.
One is in your heart forever,
The other you’ll call mother.

Two different lives,
Shaped to make yours one.
One became your guiding star,
The other became your sun.

The first gave you life,
And the second taught you how to live it.
The first gave you a need for love,
And the second was there to give it.

One gave you a nationality,
The other gave you a name.
One gave you the seed of talent,
The other gave you an aim.

One gave you emotions,
The other calmed your fears.
One saw your first sweet smile,
The other dried your tears.

One gave you a family,
It was what God intended for her to do.
The other prayed for a child,
And God led her straight to you.

And now you ask me
Through your tears,
The age old question through the years.
Heredity or environment…
Which are you a product of?
Neither, my darling… neither,
Just two different kinds of love.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

A new stage

I promise that not every blog post will always be about grief. It just happens to be what is on my heart, most of the time. I have entered a new stage lately in my grief process. It is the, oh my, this really happened, and there is nothing I can do to change it stage. I’m sure there is a much better name for it, but I think mine is much more descriptive. (Cue sly smile)

I have laid awake the last few nights almost marveling at the way my brain is trying to understand my loss. I repeat the same images over and over again, almost trying to convince myself of my new reality without my dad. I feel like there is a Mr. Magoo is my head (with his bottle top glasses, looking ever so closely) picking up the pieces of me, inspecting them, dusting them off, and trying to put them back together. I have shifted from the I miss him (like I haven’t seen him in a few months) to the I miss him like I will never see him again. And it breaks my heart every time. Donna (my wonderful step-mom) brought my “dad” to visit me. I decided to keep him, during his “visit” in the baby room, since that is where he would want to be. I walked him upstairs, sat in the rocking chair, and wept harder than I ever have. I clutched that urn full of burned remnants of my dad, and really mourned what I was actually losing. Not just a dad, but a grandpa for my child.  And while I was rocking back and forth one name came to mind and I repeated it over and over…Jesus.* Jesus, the one who heals, who is there, and who washes over us again and again.

I keep listening to a song by Jimmy Needham called the Gospel. The lyrics talk about just letting the words of the Gospel wash over us. I have run in the opposite direction of the peace that awaits me in the arms of Jesus. I feel too broken to be peaceful. But, then, Jesus waits, watches, and walks just by my side. I remember my friend, Veronica, after losing her husband, writing that God would rather us yell at Him, than not be speaking at all. (You can read her story at Everyday Kings) I like that, mostly because I am doing my fair share of yelling. So, here we are, yelling, pleading, and wanting desperately to be able to stand on our own two feet again. And sometimes forgetting just to be silent, and be calmed by our Creator. I especially like what the song says here:

The Gospel, the Gospel
Fragrance in words
The sea of my soul
Is calmed when it’s heard
Peace to the broken
The captives set free
May the Gospel of Jesus
Wash over me

Now, I am not pretending that my last few months have been full of clutching to the Gospel. In fact, the past few months have been confusing in our faith walk. We are asking big questions, and the why’s are still unanswered. But, and there is a big BUT, (yes, I did just say that, but don’t read it with an extra T) in all of our questions, Jesus still remains the same. His sacrifice still the same.

The last part of the song talks about breathing in with faith and out with His peace. So for today, that will be my mantra. And may the Gospel of Jesus just wash over us.

*Now before I take too much credit, the actual pratice of this was demonstrated for me by a friend in my share group during a great trial in her life. I have been so blessed to know my share group, full of people that have walked the same difficult roads, and are right there by my side.