We are, obviously, very excited about adopting our little boy in four weeks (yikes! that's fast!!). We have been working feverishly to get his room ready, find clothes to put him in, etc. Our families and friends have been working over-time to get baby showers together so we will have everything we need! It has been such a blessing to see how everyone has rallied around us and prayed for us and supported us since we found out we will be adopting him.
I couldn't help buying these precious little shoes! They are sitting on a shelf in his room, just waiting for his precious little baby feet to fill them!
Austin has never dressed a baby by himself before, so we went over the basics of how to support their necks/heads, getting the onesie on, diapering them, and what to look for with diaper rash, color of poo, etc. Thankfully, Austin's mom had kept his cabbage patch doll from HIS childhood so he could practice on him... Yes, I did say it was AUSTIN's doll. hahaha. Please mock him.
In the midst of all of our excitement, we have equal amounts of pain and fear entering our world. The fear is simple: everything is unknown. When people get pregnant and have a child in the "natural way", there are very certain expectations that come with the whole process. You know you will be in the hospital while you and the baby recover. You know you and your husband will meet your new baby together. Once you leave the hospital, the baby is fully yours, and you go home as a fully complete family. And the list goes on... Now, I know, there are complications that can arise in natural childbirth as well, and those things are still out of our control, but most often, we know what to expect in those situations! With adoption, especially an open adoption, the waters are a little more muddy. There is not a clear-cut plan or procedure that you can follow. For example, we know that the birthmother will get time alone with the baby after he is born. We will get time with him also, but it will all be split somehow. I will get to be in the operating room as the baby is born, but Austin won't get to meet him until later. Although we don't foresee this happening, there is always a possibility that the birthmother can change her mind if she wants. There is a possibility that we will leave the hospital without a baby. We don't know when we will be able to take the baby home - not because of health reasons, but because of legal reasons. Once we leave the hospital, there is no structure or frame of reference for how our relationship with the birthmother will go, and the baby is not officially "ours" until our court date months later. We know that fear is never from the Lord. We know that if something "goes wrong", it is ultimately in God's perfect plan. We know that He has guided us to this point, and He will guide us for the rest of our lives. However, it is still scary! It is emotional! It is uncertain!
The pain goes much deeper. It is difficult to explain, and I probably wouldn't have understood it had I not experienced it. We feel two conflicting, yet fully formed, emotions simultaneously. We feel excitement because we are having a baby, but we feel pain because of how we are getting him. We love adoption, and we believe it is such a beautiful thing that mirrors our relationship with God. But, as it was so beautifully explained in this article, adoption also involves a great deal of suffering. I recommend for everyone to read this article. It did wonders for my heart! We feel pain for the birthmother. We have already formed such a sweet bond with her, and we hate that she will suffer during this process and afterwards. We feel pain for our baby. We know that this is not the ideal or perfect way for him to enter this world, and there was a lot of pain and suffering that led to his adoption, and we know that he will always have a longing for the life he never had a chance to have. We can't even wrap our minds or hearts around the moment when we leave the hospital with the baby and the birthmother will still be recovering there. I am already feeling the heartbreak that comes with receiving our blessing with joy while she hurts in the next room. The article above speaks of our own adoption as sons and daughters of God. There was so much suffering that had to take place in order to save us from the life that was not God's best for us. Jesus had to die in order for God, the Father, to adopt us as His children. We know God has orchestrated and ordained for this child to be in our home and to enter our home through adoption. We know that He can identify with our suffering. We also know that He is the greatest comforter. We believe He will comfort the birthmother of our child. We believe that He will bless her abundantly for loving her child enough to place him in the best home for him. We know that He will create a beautiful and loving relationship between our child and her for the rest of their lives because of what she sacrificed for him. In order to receive the blessings that come with adoption, there must first be sacrifice, then suffering, then joy. God is good. He loves His children, and He will carry us all through, all the while increasing our joy.
We can't wait to see all that God accomplishes through building our family! We are excited; we are joyful; and we are resting on the promises of God. Thanks for all of your support, encouragement, and prayers through this!
Countdown to baby boy: 4 weeks, 1 day