adoption success

Picking a day to celebrate

Adoption is anticlimactic, I’m not going to lie. Of course it has its amazing moments and I wouldn’t change any minute of what we went through to adopt Jackson but it definitely had its ups and downs. Many of you reading this know our story but for those who don’t, here’s a recap:
• April 6th, 2013 – day we got the call from the adoption agency saying we’d been chosen by the birth parents – we were in shock – was it finally happening – amazing, amazing day!!!
• April 14th – a week before Jackson’s due date and a day before we were to meet the birth parents – was told the birth mom had gone to the hospital to get checked out. Didn’t hear any more news that day – anxious day!
• April 15th morning – day we found out our son had in fact been born the day before but that they weren’t sure when we would meet the birth parents. Told to drive back to Toronto from my parents instead of going to meet birth parents – extremely anxious! Also didn’t have any boy names ready so spent the drive going through names.
• April 15th afternoon – day we were asked to turn around from Toronto and drive to London to meet birth parents after all at the hospital – nerve-wracking yet exciting!
• April 15th nighttime – we met Jackson’s birth parents and families for the first time in the hospital and instantly hit it off. We also met and held Jackson for the first time which was incredible and heartbreaking at the same time. How do you act in front of the birth parents when it’s one of the most painful days of their lives? Left hospital feeling incredibly heavy and wondering what tomorrow would hold when it was time for Jackson to go into a foster home.
• April 16th – met Jackson when he arrived at the foster home. Told him his name. Incredibly beautiful moment but then the realization of holy cow, we’re parents? We had 9 days notice! Lol. Then the realization Jackson was placed in a foster home for a reason – to give us time to prepare but also to learn from this amazing couple who had fostered 94 newborns before Jackson and taught us everything we needed to know about formula, diapers, etc. Of course we have tons of people in our lives to help us with this but it was really appreciated.
• April 27th – day that Chris, his sister and I drank margaritas and painted his nursery while listening to music and dancing. We were parents!!!!
• May 4th – the day we brought Jackson home – beyond amazing but it also meant that there were 10 days left for the birth parents to change their minds.
• May 15th – day the waiting period ended. The day we’d been waiting for. The day we’d saved our champagne for and the day I had to go to bed at 7pm and skip the champagne as the stress caught up with me – talk about anticlimactic haha.
• Jan. 29th, 2014 – day I opened the mail and received what looked like the adoption finalization record for Jackson dated January 22nd. We were told it wouldn’t happen until closer to April and the agency hadn’t been notified yet so again, a very anticlimactic day. We couldn’t celebrate as we weren’t 100% sure it had happened.
• Jan 22nd, 2015 – celebrating the 1st anniversary of the date our son’s adoption became finalized in the Court. The day we can all truly celebrate as a family!

Adoptive families celebrate many different days. We will always celebrate Jackson’s birthday as that’s definitely the most special day of the year but we wanted another day to celebrate as a family as we didn’t know him on his day of birth. We originally thought we would celebrate his ‘gotcha day’ – the day we brought him home which is also very special but again, it was still part of the waiting period. The day we are choosing to truly celebrate as a family that will always have positive thoughts is the day our adoption became finalized – January 22nd!!!!

Everything Happens for a Reason – Our Adoption Success Story

My Grandma Gard has always told me everything happens for a reason and things are just meant to be.  It just so happens that 4 years to the week, our time had come for us to finally fulfill our dream of having a child.

It’s hard to believe that as I’m writing this everything unfolded in just under 3 weeks from the time we received the agency call to the time we brought the baby home.  So in 3 weeks we had to assemble a nursery, I had to wrap things up at work and we had to figure out things like formula (luckily we had the amazing expertise of a foster parent couple to guide us) plus our family and friends.

Out of respect for the birth families, I will not be mentioning any details of the adoption but do want to say they are some of the most amazing people we’ve ever met and felt an instant connection to them.  We are so thankful to them and their families and are very excited our son will get to know all of them and how much they love him through an open adoption.

Birth parents sign consents approx. 8 days after their baby is born and from that date there is a 21 waiting period where the birth parents can revoke consent.  During the waiting period we kept the news of our son very quiet so the below are some excerpts I wrote throughout the waiting period.  You’ll note I keep using the word surreal as it really is.

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THE DAY – Bringing Our Son Home

My darling son, we are about to bring you home which makes this one of the best days of our lives (and now I have Summer of ’69 playing in my head lol).  It was 4 years ago exactly when we first got the call about you that we had been trying for a family and we couldn’t be happier with how things worked out.  You were meant to be with us and were born in our hearts.

It’s a bit surreal knowing that today we officially become parents (although there’s still a week and a half left of the waiting period so we can’t shout it from the rooftops yet).

First Mother’s Day

Today is surreal – it’s my very first Mother’s Day.  I wish I could shout it from the rooftops but unfortunately the waiting period for the birth parents to change their mind isn’t up yet so we are staying pretty quiet until then.  Only 3 more days and things are looking good.  I can’t believe we’ve had him home a week now and how every passing second I feel more and more love when I didn’t think I could love him anymore or my heart might burst.  It’s also my first Mother’s Day in 4 years where I haven’t felt sad.

It was such a special moment when Chris wished me a happy mother’s day this morning and gave me a card from my little munchkin.  I was overcome with emotion.  Ok, so now that I’m a mom why is it I get overcome with SOOOO much emotion over everything? Haha.  I can’t even blame it on hormones.

The First Few Weeks

We are 2.5 weeks in and things are amazing!  Our son is perfect in every way and a really good baby (not that we’d care if he wasn’t).  I know there will be days I’ll want to pull my hair out but I’m shocked at how calm things have been and how easy it’s been to completely change our day-to-day lives.  We’ve had lots of visitors which have definitely helped as well.

The first week was a bit stressful as our dog Marvin got bit by a cat and got quite sick with infection.  He was in and out of the vet 6 times in 3 days which was pretty stressful.  He’s back to normal now and loving our son.  Marvin makes it to him first if he’s crying and gives him lots of licks – oh and he checks on him when he’s napping by peeking in the crib or bassinet.  It’s really cute.

The big accomplishments for this new mom so far are walking the dog and pushing the stroller at the same time (sounds easy but you don’t know my dog haha) and changing a poopy diaper without dirtying a 2nd one in the process!  Oh, and not letting J pee on himself as I’m changing the poopy diaper!  The cutest thing J has done so far is when I go to kiss his cheek he turns his head so I get his mouth – priceless!

On that note, I must go find J for his bedtime feeding and snuggles.

Until next time!