Tuesday, October 14, 2008

One piece

So I felt like writing about my heart child. One of my children is not my biological child. He is actually my brothers child, but was placed with me when he was only six days old. The reason this is on my mind is because he is finally open for adoption. His parents have apparently signed away their parental rights. This wasn't expected, we all thought we would have to go to court. There was no way they would be getting him back, it would just have made things take longer. This is such a mixed feelings moments for me. A big part of me is so relieved because now we are able to make things official and adopt him. But there is a little part of me that feels sad for what his parents lost. I know it is really hard for them emotionally and it's also hard for them to understand the situation in general because of mental health issues. It's weird to feel happy for something that is so sad to them. They really do love him so much, but are completely unable to care for him, or even have unsupervised visits. I never planned on adopting, I mean it crossed my mind at times, but I figured I would never be able to because it costs so much. And I certainly never thought I would bring another infant into my home while I was five months pregnant with my 2nd child and had a 15 month old. But God always has a bigger plan then we could ever imagine. I remember the day so clearly. A few days prior I had completed a blur of paperwork, petitioned the court, and then waited what seemed an excruciatingly long time to hear the courts decision. I got the call that he was coming, the day before he came, and they asked if I was prepared. I answered yes, because I had all the material belongings they were looking for, but emotionally I do not think there is any way to properly prepare for such a thing. Two very young social workers pulled into my driveway and got out, one carrying a car seat and a small plastic bag that I was to learn was all of his belongings. They brought him in and set him, still asleep in the car seat, onto the coffee table. He was the tiniest little peanut, with a fuzz of red hair, all curled into his car seat, tiny little hands clenched in fists. I could barely focus on all the additional paperwork and on what the caseworkers were saying to me. Finally he woke up and looked at me, I thought he looked just like a wise little wizard, and I asked if I could pick him up. Holding him he felt paper light, weighing about seven pounds. Mind you my first child weighed ten pounds ten and a half ounces, and was built like a brick, so he really did feel light to me. I was almost scared to hold him. He was so wrinkly his own skin didn't fit him. The case worker stayed for about an hour, looked around the house and then left. It was surreal. There I was standing in my living room, with only a weeks notice that my life was going to change and I was going to be responsible for this new life. No nine months (which even that doesn't always seem long enough) to prepare that's for sure. My world felt like it was spinning. Thankfully my closest friend was there that day to help me with the daycare and this life changing event. I couldn't focus on anything else. I just kept staring at this baby snuggled in my arms, and I could feel my heart swelling with love for him that almost hurt. It was such a rush of emotions. Really overwhelming. I remember laying awake that night, just staring at him, how cute and tiny he was, and I knew right then I would do everything in my power to keep him safe for the rest of my life. He has grow in my heart, that is why I call him my heart child. And I feel like on the day we get to make it official and adopt him it will be like giving birth from my heart. He has grown in there since the day he was placed with us, and I can no longer imagine my life with out him, he is my son, my love and my everything. Seeing that he is legally ours with just solidify what I have already know, just like when you give birth. I think one of the hardest parts for me was wanting to bond with him, but being afraid that he would be taking away and that I wouldn't be able to handle that pain. In retrospect it wasn't a choice, we started to bond the moment we saw each other. At first I felt like I wasn't allowed to consider my self his mommy and I called my self Auntie. But as time has gone by, and as we started on the road to adoption, it felt more and more right to call my self mommy. I am his mommy, I know I am not his birth mother, there is no changing that, but I am the only mother he has ever known. The boys have grown up as brothers and at this point they know no different. I know some day there will be a time for explanations and I am scared of that part, because I am so worried about doing it the right way. I firmly believe that a big part of that is not keeping secrets, telling him the honest truth in an age appropriate way. There is also a baby brother born a year after the first child they were unable to keep, and he is in a different state (they couldn't keep him either, which is a whole different story). We talk about him together and look at his pictures up on our wall, and all the boys call him brother. I think it is good that they grow up understanding that family can mean lots of different things, and come in lots of different forms. But I get ahead of myself, I need to remember to take it one piece at a time and the piece I working on right now is finalizing this adoption!


Mama said...

That is a beautiful story. I am so happy to hear that you can finally adopt him. Congratulations. This story made me cry. Your heart child, I love that. He will always be special to you because of all that you have had to go through.

Kiki said...

Such a touching story, how lucky your boys are to have you. Congratulations & best wishes with the adoption..