Sunday, April 21, 2013

Needle in a Haystack

Have you ever browsed adoption profiles?  From any agency?  I did like crazy before and after our profile was complete.  To the point that I just had to stop.  Stop looking.  Stop comparing.  This was a really good way for me to get down on myself and something that made me feel inadequate and deflated.  How in the heck would we ever be "chosen"??  I also don't love the word chosen.  It reminds me of standing out on the playground waiting to be chosen for the game of tag.  Or dodge ball.  Or softball.  Or...whatever!  Immediate panic and self-doubt.  Thinking about Birth Moms browsing profiles and deciding who they liked or didn't like was a little unnerving.  Mostly because I felt that we would never win this popularity contest.  Now, I know it isn't actually a popularity contest.  And I had to change the way I thought about it.  I needed an attitude adjustment.  I prayed for the Spirit and comfort and guidance in this regard.  Rather than thinking that we needed to be "chosen," I really felt that we needed to be "found" instead.  Our Birth Mom needed to find us.  And if we were meant for a specific child, then we would be found.  She would find us, with the help of Heavenly Father.  Like finding a needle in a haystack, but we had faith that if that needle needed to be found, then it certainly would.  So the fact that we got even a single email from any potential birth mom is a complete miracle to me.

Our first email on February 4th was brief.  She indicated that she had been looking at many profiles and asked if we were interested in an open adoption.  I can't tell you how your heart jumps to read such a simple email but one that can mean so much.  My fingers shake at the keys trying to figure out how to respond.  It's got to be just right, right?  This is me over-analyzing.  Shane reminded me time and time again...just be you.  Don't put up a front.  Don't try to act like who you think she will like.  Just be you.  And I took his advice to heart.  I really was just me.  Genuinely me, with hopes that she would have a clear picture of who we are and feel of our sincerity.

I responded quickly to that first email and from there we emailed back and forth regularly.  Every day.  Sometimes multiple times a day, doing our best to get to know one another better.  She had been in contact with a few families in the past, all of which fell through.  She was beginning to feel that maybe this road wasn't right for her since things just didn't seem to be falling into place.  Thankfully, she pressed forward and reached out to us and one other family.  We learned that she was due in only 7 weeks with a baby girl.  With every email, we got more and more excited.  After a few days of emails, we talked on the phone briefly.  I was a nervous wreck while we chatted and I don't think I hid that very well.  But she was wonderful and it felt comfortable.  So...we kept moving forward...all while trying to keep our excitement under control.  She was, after all, still in contact with another family.  We weren't sure how she was feeling.  How she was feeling about us.  We felt connected to her but we didn't yet know her side of things.  Our emails continued and they were oh so good.  She opened herself up to us, sharing such a deep and personal side of herself.  And with every email, our love for her only grew.  Lots.

Week after week went by and our contact remained.  We felt comfort, even though we were so unsure about the outcome.  But regardless, we loved her, we supported her, and we were grateful to get to know such a lovely person.  On February 27th, three weeks after our first initial email, we got a phone call.  It was her!!  My heart was outside of my body.  That's the only way to describe my nervous excitement.  She was so cute as she told me that she had met with her case worker and had officially chosen us to adopt her baby girl!  Insert tears down my face.  Really??  I mean...REALLY???  Was this really happening?!  What do you even say after someone offers you the most amazing gift?  "Thank You" just isn't enough.  Everything I said felt completely inadequate.  I felt so much love for her.  She is so kind, beautiful, selfless, faithful, and so very brave.  I felt like I was just floating...for days after receiving the news.  It felt surreal.  Still does.

There were still unknowns, pieces that needed to be added to the puzzle, and much that still would be worked out.  But we moved forward with faith and hope.  So much faith.  We had only 4 weeks before baby girl would make her debut.           


Justin and JoLyn said...

I am loving this "story." I have been so curious about it! Thank you for sharing it in the beautiful way that you always do. Can't wait for more.

(me)linda said...

You two are awesome! You're a great writer. :) Thank you for sharing these exciting details. I can't wait to come see her. I decided I need to invite myself over to come snuggle both your babe and Stephanie's too!

Ashley and Dave said...

Bawling. Happy tears for you!