A blog about infertility, adoption,and adoption loss which has finally led to a beautiful miracle who was worth smiling for."Strength and dignity are her clothing, And she smiles at the future."Proverbs 31:25

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Beauty of Lessons Learned

One week since we said goodbye and three years since we started.  I've had no choice but to learn some lessons.  Lessons in hope & faith.  I've seen my marriage suffer & grow.  I have felt absolute peace and supreme sorrow.  Both in just one small week, and overall in the expanse of three years. 
We decided this weekend that we would continue with Domestic Infant Adoption.  As much as a part of me wants to pursue other avenues to feel as if I'm being proactive, we are going to be still and know that He is God.  We agree that it continues to be His plan for us.  So, we follow Him down the path that he is leading us, after our short, blessed detour with BabyZ.

Some other things that I've learned that might be helpful to others:
  •  Over the years I've collected baby things in neutral colors, but when we knew we were getting a girl the last thing I wanted was yellow & green stuff.  Had she been a he it might have been different (but I doubt it).  I am not a materialistic person so it really shocked me that I had a terrible desire to have pink, girly things for her - but I did.  While my mother was happy to provide me with all of the pink stuff I could stand, not everyone has that luxury.  If you think that you are doing yourself a favor by buying a ton of gender neutral baby stuff while your waiting for your match, consider the possibility that you might want specific stuff later. 
  • Which brings me to my next lesson learned- upon a match (but not certain placement) keep the buying to a minimum.  Both yourself and family & friends.  I have a room full of pink baby stuff right now, and no baby.  In fact, so does my mother.  One of her closets is full of girl clothes from sizes preemie to 24 mos.  I have stuff that people made us for her, and even stuff with the name we picked.  We may never put any of it to use.  It's just sitting in the other room mocking me or taking up space in my mother's home.  Some day soon, I'm going to have to open the door on our babyroom and put all of that stuff away.  It's going to be torture. 
  • Social workers are way underpaid and under valued.  At least the good ones anyway.  We are so fortunate to have a good one. 
  • Don't kid yourself.  I knew things were fishy way before BabyZ was born, but I didn't want to really admit it.  Trust your instincts and don't trust strangers just because they are offering you their baby. 
  • I knew this could happen and I actually thought I could be prepared for it emotionally.  There is no way to prepare for loss. NO WAY!
  • When you are facing an emergency placement, and lets face it - all waiting DIA parents could be, have a plan before hand. 
  1. Have a list of things you need to pack.  As detailed as you can get it.  Your brain isn't working when you get that call to come collect your baby at 3:00 a.m. 
  2. Have a standing arrangement with someone to take care of things while you are gone.  Your pets, your other children, your home, your mail - whatever you know you couldn't leave without someone looking after. 
  3. Have some money saved just for the occasion.  Of course it depends on how long you have to stay away.  I would recommend planning for $100 for every night you stay in a hotel because you never know what the rates are going to be.  If you think you might get stuck staying during a weekend or holiday then you might want to make it $150 or more.  Also, plan for meals.  We ate in the cafeteria while we stayed at the hospital, but we still spent around $15 a meal.  If your eating out then it would be $20 or more every meal.  And theres cash for vending machine snacks. 
  4. Have a baby bag prepared.  For me, a regular diaper bag just wasn't big enough to hold all of the stuff that I wanted to take for caring for BabyZ for three days. 
  5. Have an electronics bag & list ready.  Cameras, laptops, phones, whatever & their chargers. 
  6. Have all of your paperwork organized and in one place so you can just grab it and go.
  • Don't tell everyone you know about your match.  Your happy & excited, but that may not always be the case.  Birthmom can and may change her mind at any point in the process before surrenders are signed.  It's impossible to un-tell. 



kate said...

I'm so so so sorry you had to learn these lessons. My heart breaks for you.

My box of baby boy clothes makes me cry every time I have to open it up. Usually when the military movers have for some reason mixed them all in with Zoe's clothes.

Is there someone who can help you pack away the baby clothes you have? My mom did it for me after losing Evie and Jack and Will because I just could not do it myself.

Again, I'm so sorry. Things like this should never happen to anyone. I know the pain of losing a child, and it's the same whether biological or matched or adopted, whether holding them for a moment or for weeks. I wouldn't wish that kind of pain on my worst enemy. Life is so unfair and I hate that I can't do anything to make it more fair. Praise God that this life is not all there is and that God loves us so intentionally that he sustains us and carries us through suffering like yours.

I refuse to say all the cliche Christian things about there being a plan, etc, no matter how true they might be. Just know that I am praying for you. And hold on to the promise that God will use it for good in your life. Because he will. Because he did it for me. Because even though it still hurts like I can't breathe, there is joy mixed in the tears now.

Praying that you find that same joy and that God fills your arms so very very soon.

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