Wednesday, March 30, 2011

What's Going On

I wouldn't be lying if I said that the past month has been an extremely difficult time for me.  Believe me - all you have to do is bear witness to the new cluster of white hairs on my head.  They all seem to congregate on the front of my hair in a nice little Cruella patch.  All I need is a long cigarette and a white coat to complete the look. Oh and 98 more puppies which I would have if my husband was a pushover and I was a hoarder. 
Nonetheless, I had said some time ago that I was going to take up some new projects to keep me busy while we waited.  The first project was learning how to crochet.  I am 2/3 of the way through the class and I am master of one stitch.  Ok master is the wrong word.  For those of you who know anything about crocheting (and the rest of you can either have your eyes glaze over or you can skip down a few paragraphs) I can usually tie a slip knot in about a minute.  I can chain stitch.  Single crochet?  ok.  Double quad, half loop treble axle salchow with a twist- you got me.  I gave up making a granny square this weekend.  Only took me 15+ attempts before I threw the whole batch of yarn on the coffee table and cursed like a Deadwood character.  My granny square sucked b***.  (Been hanging around the 10 and 14 year old nieces lately)
But I shouldn't be so hard on myself.  I have improved since that first class.  When I came home with my first project and showed my husband he burst out laughing.  5 years together and he still has not mastered the inner laugh (which is related to the inner voice, things he would love to say but can't if he ever wants to feel the touch of his wife again). 
All I want to do is learn how to crochet a baby blanket.  Desperately trying to find a silver lining in this whole MOWA anticipated increase in wait times/slowdown in processing, I figure I may just have enough time to learn how to crochet a blanket.  A year should be enough time, you think?   Or at the very least I should be able to crochet a washcloth, maybe?  A washcloth consisting entirely of single stitches.  Yeah, that's the ticket.
Well once class ends in 2 weeks I'll most definitely continue with the crocheting.  Rumor is that once you master this skill it is meditative.  And I figure if those people are wrong at the very least it would induce a life long fear of yarn and needle perhaps even supplanting my all time fear of klowns and enabling me to visit the circus or Circus Circus.  And for the school teachers out there, I know how to spell klown - I just add the K because it makes it seem so much more evil.   
Oh and just for those of you who keep track - Our new numbers for March are 54 on the Boys List and 69 on the Girls List.  Our actual numbers are a little lower.  Our agency had a flurry of referrals in March and families are not removed from the wait list until they return all their acceptance paperwork which can take some time.  We are anxiously awaiting our April numbers next week.  Wow.  It alternates between time flying and time creeping so slowly. 
And for Anne - congratulations.  I wouldn't be honest or human if I didn't admit that the news of your referral tweaked my heart a bit.  But a little voice told me this is not my time yet.  I am genuinely happy for you.  Your journey began over two years ago and your grace and resolve in the obstacles you have faced has been inspiring.  Please keep blogging about your journey and I will definitely hit you up for travel tips and mommy tips when my time rolls around. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


My family suffered an unexpected heartbreaking loss.  My brother passed away.  He was a loved and cherished father, son, brother, uncle and friend. 

Thursday, March 10, 2011


The news this past week about the slowdown in adoptions out of Ethiopia hit me hard.  Yes, I was crushed.  I did the ugly cry.  Pity, Table for one.  I felt despair as I wondered whether I would ever become a mom. 
What if all Ethiopian adoptions cease?  That is my real fear. 
The wait is hard, but that is what really scares me.  If this door closes, would I have the strength (not to mention the finances) to start another program?  Would I even qualify for another program?  Could we afford domestic adoption?  
I've been struggling with such horrible feelings - anger at myself for wanting this so much, helplessness because there really is nothing I can do, grief at the prospect of never being able to look into my child's eyes. 
I have walked around these past few days on the verge of tears, like a zombie, feeling envious of my friends with children, of anyone with children. 
Adoption is hard.  It opens up feelings of you being a  failure.  You have to open up the most private aspects of your lives to total strangers to prove that you can be good parents.  My social worker knows more about my innermost thoughts and feelings than my best friend of 25 years!  Adoption makes you grieve.  You have to come to terms with knowing that you will never feel your child grow inside of you, that you will miss out on those precious first moments of your child's life, that your child will not have mommy's eyes and daddy's smile.  And you open yourself up to believing that your dream of becoming a family will be realized.  At the same time, adoption is not certain and things can go awry.  You have to face the prospect that it -parenthood- might not happen.
It is so hard to describe.  What word do you use to describe a vast emptiness?  Not becoming a parent - that prospect feels like such a huge emotional void.  That something inside you is missing and can never be filled.
I cannot go on feeling this way.
I realized this morning I cannot wallow in these feelings.  Instead I need to focus on other emotions.  
Gratitude.  I am lucky to have a wonderful husband and family.  I have a good job, an education, a nice house.  I have food to eat and a warm bed in which to sleep.  I have many blessings.
I also have Hope.  There is a part of me that, even as this adoption threatens to crash down, still clings to Hope.  Even if it takes much longer than we originally anticipated, we will wait.  And Hope. 
And I will remind myself that there are far worse tragedies in the world and I should feel incredibly lucky to have the life I have.  To simply be alive, to have my health, to have loved ones.
And the true irony is that anyone who knows me would say I am not an optimist.  But I think that if I focus too much on what ifs and what nows, I will miss and dismiss everything that is in front of me. 

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Recently Courtney from AddingAstons wrote on her blog about how many times a day she thinks about the child she will adopt.  Innumerable
Her post made me stop and reflect on how many times a day I think about the child that will someday be mine.  Innumerable. 
This is what I think about:
I think whether we will adopt a boy or girl.
I think about names.
I think about how old he or she will be when we receive our referral.
Is he or she even born yet?
I think about our referral call - when will it come? How will I react?
I think about our child's story.
I think about seeing that first photo - soft skin and curly dark hair.
I think about traveling to Ethiopia.  When will we go? How long will I take off from work?
I think about Hannah's Hope. 
I think about walking through those gates.
I think of how I will feel the first time I see my child in person.
I think about our child sleeping, smiling and laughing.
I think about how wonderful a father my husband will be.
I think about how he will look with our child in his arms.
I think about how much our lives will change once our child is home.
I think about how those things that seemed so important - dining out, movies, lavish vacations - won't seem so important anymore.
I think about toys.
I think about baby clothes.
I think about children's books and reading to our child.
I think about crib bedding - giraffes, puppies or geometric prints?
I think about where our child will sleep.
I think about what color to paint the baby's room.
I think about my mom meeting our child.
I think about my nieces babysitting their cousin.
I think about how much time we will take off from work to cocoon with our baby.
I think about which one of us will become the stay at home parent.
I think about pediatricians.
I think about bottles and diapers.
I think about how many times I am going to have to call my sisters and friends and ask "what do I do?"
I think about zoos, pumpkin patches and visits to Santa.
I think about a woman on the other side of the world who will give life to my child.
I think about meeting her.
I think about what I will say to her.  Will I ever be able to convey my gratitude?
I think about whether I will be a good mother.
Every day - in some manner - I have these thoughts. 
I am so looking forward to the day we have our child in our arms -  When we become a family.