Sunday, April 17, 2011

Creating a family

After it was judged that I was firm in my decision to do an open adoption, I started looking through books that these prospective adoptive families had prepared, portfolios of their lives. It was very touching, how these people just opened themselves up, wrote letters and shared pictures of themselves, their lives, their past and their dreams. I tried to picture myself having a relationship with each of these families, so if that was okay, I knew this baby would be okay in their home. I chose Sally and Dan.

I met them in September, while I was seven months pregnant. I felt I had totally prepared myself for this first meeting. Then, when I was driving down to the restaurant, I was talking to the baby, and I said, "We're going to go meet your mom and dad now." And it hit me like a fist. It was real, I was changing lives, life was changing me. I was going down a path that I'd never dreamed of taking, but there I was, foraging my way.

I loved them! They were not perfect, but they were nice and they liked me. They seemed like good people, and my first impression was very favorable. I decided that Sally and Dan would be my baby's parents.

We spent a lot of time together after that first meeting. I got to know them better, they got to know me better, and I felt so good. They treated me like a queen, asked my opinion on important issues like what to name him, and I even brought Sally with me to a doctor's appointment so she could hear her son's heartbeat. They were like a second family to me, which was important to me, because I needed to feel like I could be open and honest with them.

My son was due to be born on Nov. 17, 1998, but he wasn't ready until December 2. I think everyone was frustrated. Sally's parents came across the country for Thanksgiving, expecting to see their new grandson. I felt I had disappointed everyone. Finally, it was time to go to the hospital. I called Sally and Dan and told them what was happening and to come the next day, when hopefully, we would be celebrating a birth! Everybody was in the hospital room with me when it came down to the wire. And I mean everyone! It was pretty crowded in there, and there was soon to be one more!

I will never forget the look on my mother's face when she caught the first sight of my son's head. That look will live forever in my heart. I'm so glad that Dan and Sally were present to watch their son being born. I think that was very important to them, too. Sally cut the cord, and our little boy was finally in the world.

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