Thursday, March 21, 2013

We're Down, But Not Out

Our match failed, the father wants to parent. Now what?  So far, we've run the gamut of emotions. We took the day off, slept 'til noon and wallowed in self-pity.  Then we got up, dusted ourselves off and started over.  What else can you do?

We learned a lot from this experience, so it wasn't for nothing.  Thanks J, for speaking up and putting us in touch with this girl. I know you feel terrible about it not working out, but don't. Our hearts are broken, but it wasn't meant to be. Please continue to help people and have hope for good things.

We'll do things differently next time.  We won't announce it again.  We'll ask more questions and not worry so much about whether we are upsetting the birth family.  We will try not get so attached and protect our hearts a little better.

We know that all of you are excited for us and sad for us at the same time. We appreciate your love and support.  Marlon and I are disappointed, but resilient, so don't worry about us too much.  When you get knocked down, you have to get back up again. It's the only choice you can make.  Better days will come, they always do.

If you know of anyone that wants to make an adoption plan for their newborn, please do not hestitate to contact us or share our profile information.  If you'd like more information about what are our adoption preferences, please email me. Thank you for thinking of us.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Bumps in the Road

I was planning to write about how Marlon and I celebrated our 19th wedding anniversary this past weekend with a romantic getaway to the Berkshires. I was going to tell you all about how this is our last anniversary as a couple and next year we will celebrate our 20th anniversary with our daughter. But that doesn't look like it will be the case.

This adoption is unraveling faster than my cats can unwind a ball of string.  I really thought it was meant to be.  The girl was from our hometown, it was like she found us. This baby found us.  Our social worker assured us there were no red flags when I called to spaz out a couple of weeks ago. I am usually not a spaz, I should have trusted my gut.  The huge red flag now is that the biological father was contacted by our agency to terminate his rights.  Now all of sudden, he doesn't want to do that.  His family doesn't want the baby to be adopted.  They want to raise this baby.  Which is his right, but where the hell has he been for the last 7 months?  I feel like this isn't going to work out for us. I feel like I can't compete with the promises they are making.

Maybe that is the way it is meant to be, maybe this is what's best, but I am absolutely crushed and devastated.  I didn't protect my heart. I fell in love.  I am angry at myself for being so naive. I was warned not to announce it, but she told me to tell people.  She said to us, "I pick you." I wanted to act like an expecting mom.  I feel stupid for not pressing more about the father.  I didn't want to upset anyone and trusted it would all work out.

This past week, Marlon let me cry myself to sleep while laying on his shoulder. He's giving me pep talks, telling me how strong I am and for me to have hope. I am thinking maybe just us is good.  Honey bunny, thanks for holding me up when I can't stand. I love you.  That, my friends, is why we've been married for 19 years.

I guess there is a little hope that the father and his family will change their mind.  Our expectant mom's mom texted me on Friday to say that she would be going with her to meet the father and his parents.  That she is praying that it will work out and for us not to give up hope.  It's not the same now, my guard is now firmly up.  I am building a wall around my heart.

I tried to stay in the moment during our anniversary weekend.  We went to the Berkshires and I pushed all of this to the back of my mind. We focused on what is good.  19 years is good. Marlon and I love each other and we'll get through this. For better or for worse.

Photobooth at Baldwin & Sons ~ March 16, 2013

Monday, March 11, 2013

What Did Moms Do Before the Internet?

As we excitely prepare for our baby, I've become addicted Pinterest, Facebook forums for adoptive parents and the Adoptive Familes Circle website. There is a wealth of information just waiting for me to discover. I'm absorbing as much as I can now, because when this baby arrives I have a feeling I am not going to have much time to lazily watch TV on the couch and surf Pinterest. 

I have pinned so many articles to read about parenting, baby foods, getting baby to sleep, Halloween costumes, potty training, fun activities for toddlers, etc. that this kid is going to be busy until kindergarden. If you want to follow my boards on Pinterest, click on the links here: All Things Adoption, Dream Nursery ~ Dream Baby, Baby Foods, Yay For Girls!, and my personal favorite OMG! I'm gonna be a MOM!. You can also follow the Two Cats and a Cradle blog on Pinterest.

Adoption Facebook forums have been a great support to me. I love to hear from other adoptive parents and how their families are thriving. It's also great to be constant touch with those that are experiencing the same feelings as me.  It's nice to have all these wonderful people holding my hand throughout the process.  Thanks guys!

Adoption Familes Circle is a great website with a terrific community. I've looked for advice and enjoyed discussions on their website. I feel like it's a good place to get a consensus of opinions.

Having all these great web communities at my fingertips is like having my very own personal What to Expect When You're Expecting book, but the adoption version.  Oooo, now there's a good idea. What in the world did moms and dads do before the Internet?

If you'd like to contribute to our adoption fund, check out our Fundraising page! Thank you!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Awaiting Mom

So, I know that nothing is 100% with adoption. Matches fail. Things can turn on a dime. However, I feel really confident about our match and I am choosing to be positive and happy. I want to act like any awaiting mother. I want to be excited, I want to share this excitement with everyone.

I debated about announcing the news. Do we register? Do even think about having a baby shower? Someone reminded me, even though it is somewhat morbid, that no pregnancy is 100%. Things can happen too. That I should be excited and I should prepare for motherhood.

Instead of being pregnant and worrying about all the normal things expectant moms worry about, I will have alternate experience waiting for our daughter's birth.  I will worry about if I will be the mom our birthmom hopes that I will be. I'll be reading books about parenting adopted children and parenting a child of another race. (Our daughter will be biracial, her biological mother is white and her biological father is black.)  I will wonder what our child will look like. I will be nervous about how things will go at the hospital.  And in the back of my mind, I may worry a little about whether this will really happen.

We felt a connection with this courageous, bright girl.  When I asked her if we may tell people she said, "tell people I pick you and it's official." She had a big smile on her face. She gave us like five hugs and showed us her round little belly.  She said she was excited too.  What more could I ask for?

I know things could go not the way I hope, but I am all in and will not let myself be reserved. I am going to do all the things that any awaiting mom is supposed to do. My wait is only a little more than 3 months, ok maybe 9 years and 3 months of hoping that this would happen.  It's too late anyway, I love this daughter of mine already.

illustration by Alessandro Gottardo
UPDATE: Our match failed.  We are heart broken, but we are dusting ourselves off and getting back on the rollercoaster. Read about it here: