Josh. Cali. McKallister. Oakland. Quincy. Camden. Murphy.

Meeting C...

Friday, January 20, 2017

This story starts 26 years ago when a neighbor of my parents, named their daughter Natalie, after my Mom. She had recently added us all as friends on Facebook to reconnect and get to know us all... We had IM'd and talked about adoption together, as it was on her and her husbands radar but she wanted to know more. At the end of May she asked if she could get my adoption attorney's information (because I LOVE him!). Natalie's sister's friend had recently found out she was expecting and looking for a family to place with and asked her. Nat wanted to look into it further to see what it entailed and if they could do it but mentioned if they were unable to, would we be interested?

At the beginning of June she asked if she could forward the expectant Mom my information so I gave her our blog and my phone number. And that's when this crazy, magical journey began...

For the privacy of this expectant Mom, we will call her C. C texted me on Thursday, June 9, later in the afternoon and we talked for 3 hours. About how far along she was (over 20 weeks), how the pregnancy had been going (great!), this one in comparison to her other 3 (none lived with her, two also placed for adoption), where she lived, what she was looking for in an adoptive couple, if she was working with an agency or lawyer, what she did for work, how her last deliveries went (they were all 3-4 weeks early!)... she sent pictures, details about them physically. We talked about Camden and our adoption with him.

Later in the conversation, when I asked about other couples they were looking at, she said so far it was just us! I will never forget how my heart jumped a little when she said "well I have a really good feeling about you all... you seem to have all your ducks in a row being ready for a new baby. Which makes me really happy and comfortable". With that, we decided to meet up that next Sunday. She had a Dr. appointment the next day where she would be finding out the gender and so we agreed to keep in touch in between then and Sunday...

The next day she sent me pictures of the ultrasound! Estimated delivery date was September 22nd, baby was healthy and... a BOY! When I thanked her for sending me the pictures she said "...I hope the pictures make you feel like this is a little more real".

Now, before I can continue on with this journey, I need to explain that in the adoption world, if you put yourself out there with a blog or through social media and don't have an agency to screen for you, you are likely to get scammed. For money and just emotionally. When we adopted Camden, we were scammed twice in those 5 months. Since we had put our hope to adopt out on social media again, we had been emotionally scammed 3 times in just a couple months. It's heart wrenching and ugly and makes you lose faith in everyone for a small second. Well, I was still in that "small second". My heart was guarded but I had to give her this chance. Josh is my protector so he would always just throw out the "what ifs" and "don't get your hopes up". But she sent me a legit ultrasound. I could see her information on it. We had a mutual friend and she had two other kids that she had placed for adoption, all of it was promising.... I'm grateful for whatever reason she knew I needed these small pieces of assurance.

She then started asking me if we were ready for a boy, if we had names picked out yet- I couldn't believe this was real. It was happening so fast and I was getting too invested and excited. We hadn't even met!

And then we did... at 3pm on June 12th at Mimi's Cafe and I adored her! Natalie had prepped me by saying that C currently didn't have any plans to meet or pick anyone else so to not be too nervous. I'm so glad she did because then I could just be myself and pray she liked me. She was real and honest. She wasn't afraid to be who she was. As the two of us sat down she handed me a gift. This was inside...

My mind was racing... was she telling me she had selected us? I'm sure I was so awkward. I asked her if she was sure she wanted me to have the ultrasound pictures and when she said yes, I had no emotion. What? We talked for hours, she would say small things that sounded like she was set on us and I would reply with carefully thought out answers, trying to get her to say it straight forward. Towards the end, I said something about the next few months and if other couples they met were more a fit... she smiled and said "No, I've picked you!"...

Now, mind you, I have taken 3 positive pregnancy tests in my lifetime (and a lot of negative) and can honestly say that the emotions of hearing those words from someone who is carrying something so sweet and precious, are very similar to begging a Heavenly Father to see those plus signs month after month and finally getting that affirmation. But you aren't locked in a bathroom to sort through your ugly/happy cry before coming out into the world. So in the middle of this restaurant, I tried to play it cool while my heart went crazy and my breath was catching in my throat. We said goodbye, with the plan on me coming to the next appointment.

I drove to my parents house because I was only minutes away and laid down on their couch and cried. Partially because my emotions had not yet caught up to me or more likely that too many emotions had caught up. I felt broken because I was hesitant in my excitement and trust. All I could think was, "adoptions aren't a done deal until those papers are signed... and I have 3 months to wait for that" Could I handle that? Would my anxiety skyrocket? I felt crazy and happy and stared at that ultrasound, just wondering what the next few months would bring.

When I got home, I let the kids open the gift from her and explained what the ultrasound pictures were. Camden just said "ooh baby pictures" and Oakland acted so confused and then *lightbulb* full on started screaming!

The weeks that followed, I was on an emotional rollercoaster. Amazed with how much I loved C's selflessness and getting to know her. There were so many feelings of excitement and content. Happiness and love. But then there was the other side of me, that has just been through way too much when it comes to getting my kids here.... anxiety, apprehension, feeling overwhelmed.

Here is the timeline of what transpired. We had deep conversations or met up at least once a week from here on out. We texted daily and I can honestly say I have the fondest memories with her.

June 16th- asked if she would be open to meeting with our lawyer. They like to meet with birth parents and adoptive parents prior to the baby being born to go over questions and make arrangements.

Camden carried this baby around for weeks saying "This is my brother that is in Mommy C's tummy"

June 22nd- The first Dr appointment I went to. Most of them were very typical; get weight, measure, listen to heart beat, etc. (I cried EVERYTIME that heartbeat was picked up on the Doppler, it has to be one of my favorite sounds in this world) She did have a very thin cervix so they also checked that every time to ensure she wasn't effacing to quickly. I joked with Josh later that I felt like her "responsible lesbian partner" lol. I answered all the questions about insurance and payment and she relayed the pregnancy details. It was super funny and kind of awesome wondering what everyone was thinking.

June 27th- Met with our Lawyer. This was the first time Josh met her and we were able to meet her husband, D. It was really formal so not really the best atmosphere for us all to get to know each other. The birth plan was brought up though and she said "I would love for you and Josh to be in the room and get to see the birth of your baby." When we left Josh said, "I can see why you like her so much, she is awesome".
PS- June is also Mac's birthday, my Amniotic Fluid Embolism Anniversary, Quincy's Birthday and Josh's birthday. So I apologize to anyone who had contact with me in June- I was more than a mess and should not have gone out in public.

July 10th- We wanted them to meet our family (at least a portion of them because there are SO many), so we had a BBQ at my Grandparents house where she met them, my parents, and Josh's parents. We ate outside and joked around, it was really chill and D was hilarious! I was so quickly wanting them to be in our lives forever.

At one point during the pregnancy, she sent me this picture. Which we laugh about now because Murph is BALD!

July 14- dr appointment- heard heart beat and cried

July 29- dr appointment= heard heart beat and cried some more.

August 4th- Oakland desperately wanted to be a part of everything that was going on. She had to grown up really fast and for a few years had a hard time understanding how some Mom's are pregnant, and some babies don't make it, and sometimes the Mom is in critical condition for weeks after, and some never get pregnant and adoption (and those are just my cases). We talked with her a lot about how this baby wasn't ours until after he was born and the papers were signed. She understood that but wanted to hang out with C. We decided to take her for pedicures, lunch, and shopping for the babies take home outfit! Oakland ate it up. It's hard not being able to give Oakland those pregnancy memories of her siblings. I desperately want her to feel included and this day was exactly what she needed. It was beyond kind of C to be willing to let her have this.

We brought along my niece so Oak could chat with her and I'd still have time with C

August 9- dr appointment, this was the first one I missed because Oakland had a bloody nose and was spitting up blood. C was dilated to a 1 and was measuring small so the Dr. wanted to do an ultrasound, which was scheduled for when we were in Bear Lake.

August 12- C was great with my Mom going to that ultrasound and we were able to FaceTime. Afterwards C sent me a text,
"so how much were you crying?"
To which I replied;
"I was bawling. like the best cry I've ever had!
It was real, and happening. I was so choked up and in love with that small little tyke.

August 16- appointment

August 20- contractions began, 5-15 minutes apart.

August 23-  appointment, dilated to a 2.

"Just practicing" was so hard to be preparing for a baby that not a lot of people knew about. The kids excitement was contagious and they would tell everyone that would listen about their new baby brother! Josh didn't want me posting anything until it was happening... his way of protecting me.

August 24- Contractions were closer to 5 minutes apart so I met C and D at the hospital. As soon as they hooked her up to the monitors though, the contractions all stopped!

August 27- C thought her water broke so we trekked back to the hospital and they ran test after test to make sure because they were all coming in negative. This little guy just wanted us all to be sure we were ready to meet him!!!

August 30- Dr. appointment, she was 3 cm and 80% effaced with the contractions still always there so the Dr. had told her she could come at any time (yes folks that's right, even then, he didn't come for another 2 1/2 weeks. We were both going crazy!)

September 6- appointment. After this appointment I knew it was getting close so had sent her a text... she replied,
"Aww youre welcome. I couldn't be happier to be giving you another member to your family. You are all so great. This little guy is one lucky dude to be getting you for his Mom."
See?! She's amazing right? All the tears!!!!

September 13- Last appointment. She asked if they would induce her and he said he would only consider that one week prior to her due date, which meant the 16th of September, they would start the process that would change our entire life.

Birth story coming soon...

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