April 24, 2015

Meditating on Loss

"A child born to another woman calls me 'Mommy'. The magnitude of that tragedy and the depth of that privilege are not lost on me." - Jody Landers

I keep coming back around to the thought that our joy will be at the expense of someone else's loss. It is surreal to know that somewhere in this state, there is a woman who, in a few months or a year, is going to find out she is unexpectedly pregnant. And that crisis, coupled with conditions unknown, will cause her to seek out options.

I mean...think about it! Very few situations in life put us in the position of praying for someone else's loss. The only other one I can come up with right now is war. You pray for the other side to lose and that probably realistically means they will sustain more casualties.

And then, there is the other loss that can occur. Our loss. We might match with an expectant mother only to have her choose at some point to parent rather than to place. Which is entirely her right, her decision, and we will have to respect it. But how to manage the pain and sorrow we feel with the understanding that we essentially feel bad that a child is *not* losing their first family, their biological identity. How can you mourn that? I guess we have to figure out how to rejoice in what is retained for that child, while grieving for the loss of our own hopes and dreams, however inexplicable. If we have a failed match, I pray it happens early on. A failed match at the time of placement would be...like a death.

I think I keep coming back around to this because it is useful to keep things in perspective. If I am deeply conscious of the *loss* involved in adoption, then I pray I can honor the birth parents in a meaningful way. I pray it will give me more than sweet sounding words for my child whose first life experience will be losing the only familiar person to them. It's not just a sad idea to be ignored, it is the reality of the situation.

Somewhere out there, right now, is a woman who has no idea the trajectory of her near future. A woman who God might lead to M and I. That pain, and crisis, and loss can be the foundation of a healthy life is so baffling.

April 16, 2015

It Won't Be Long Now

Being a task oriented person, there is nothing I love more than to check off items on a long "To-Do" list. We have finished our adoption classes! CHECK! We finally got fingerprinted! CHECK! The last few papers required before our homestudy are printed and signed! CHECK!

Tomorrow, I'll mail a fat manila envelope to our agency and we should soon be assigned to a social worker for our in-home interviews :-D That is crazy exciting! My fingers are crossed that by the end of the summer, we will officially be waiting to be matched.

I even started an outline for our profile book after reading about 27 articles on what to say and what not to say. I took some time at my sister's house to scroll through 3 years of photos she has on her computer to pull out potential pictures for the profile. I still need to look through what my mom has on her computer. Writing the profile doesn't feel quite so terrifying now, but it is still a *major* task to accomplish.

We are also very nearly done saving up for the bulk of the adoption expenses - the big stuff that requires us to write a check for several thousands of dollars at once. The little stuff (Ha! Listen to me, "little stuff" - cause $400 ain't no thang, LOL! In adoption expenses it isn't.) we are paying for out of our regular budget because I know we can absorb those costs and adjust for them by eating out less or planning cheap meals for a week, etc. I double checked our savings against the fee schedule outlined by our agency and we are so close! Of course, there may be additional, unplanned for costs, such as renewing our homestudy or paying for 2 sets of birthmother expenses if we have a match fall through. But we will have time to save up those funds again if it comes to that and I have decided to think positive.

In a few weekends we will take our CPR certification and then in June we have "infant care" classes. The items checked off the mile long list of things to do are quickly outnumbering the unchecked tasks. At times it felt like we would never get to this point. Can I throw a party when we are officially a "waiting couple"? Because I think we will deserve a party after 6 months of hard work :-D