adoption journey

Pregnant: To Be or Not To Be?

Am I pregnant?

That is the question of the day. Obviously I am not physically pregnant (and I have the cramps to prove it!). But do I – should Iconsider myself pregnant?

We have to meet with our SW two more times: once to go over our autobiographies that we slaved over and sent and once so she can go over our house (which certainly won’t win us any HGTV prizes for stylishness, but is comfortable and safe). Rockin’ SW says this will be done within the next three weeks! DH still has his physical to go (but has passed his DOT physical) and FBI fingerprints to get (but qualified to haul controlled substances for the DEA) so those are sort of non-issues (other than the agency needing the forms).

The lawyer has our “Dear BM” letter and in two days will have FORTY-EIGHT photos from which to choose to make us look like good parents (don’t get me started today on THAT process).

By the end of the month the “Dear BM” letter will be combined with our “Dear Judge” letter and we will “officially” be on the THE LIST. Hopefully. Please, God, before I go back to school. And judging from the couples we met at both of our parenting classes, it’s only taking 3-5 months before the baby comes home.

At above-mentioned parenting classes, both the lecturer/adoption expert and the head of the agency said we should consider ourselves pregnant/expecting. In fact, they told all of us to go register at the baby stores (we did because we had a rare day off together – and it was mostly fun) and pick stuff out and get excited and begin thinking “We’re pregnant.” We should be slowing down our schedule, exercising, eating like we’re pregnant [healthy, they meant, not for two, unfortunately 🙂 ]. We should be thinking about baby names and baby showers (not that THAT will happen until after baby comes home, I think…we’ll see how I feel after being matched). We should be thinking about outfitting the nursery (it’s painted, and that’s as far as I’ve been able to get). We should be having fun with this process – we should be thinking about being pregnant.

But am I really? Am I having fun? Am I really pregnant?

Suddenly all of the stories I hear involve birth mothers choosing to parent. Well, except for one. But all of the others: yet. another. loss.

I’m scared to think of myself as pregnant.
I’m scared to get excited.

If I were physically pregnant, I’d be praying that our baby was healthy, safe, protected by God, protected from any harm that I may unintentionally cause (like from my migraine pills, let’s say, or my totally clumsy-fall-down-a-lot awkwardness). I’d be praying for a safe and easy delivery.

Now I pray that our baby is healthy, safe, protected by God, protected from any harm that the birth mother (that obviously we haven’t been matched with yet and who may not yet even be pregnant [although I hope she is – less of a wait]) might unintentionally cause. And I pray – almost every day, and definitely every time I pray for said baby – that the birth mother won’t change her mind.

Is it wrong to pray from the beginning that we only have one match – one birth mother – one trip to the hospital? I’m torn between feeling selfish because I’m praying this way strictly out of fear (for my heart, my emotions, my husband having to deal with yet ANOTHER emotional outburst he has no idea how to soothe), and feeling angry at myself for not trusting God in this process or not trusting the birth mother.

Where’s the handbook for THIS?

How about you other adopting parents out there…especially you mommies…are you pregnant? When did you decided you were pregnant? Or did you ever feel pregnant? Or let yourself feel pregnant?

And if you have a handbook – can I borrow it?

2 thoughts on “Pregnant: To Be or Not To Be?

  1. I never heard that advice. And I think I would have rejected it if I had. That just feels so artificial and creepy.

    Aside from painting the baby's room, we didn't actually didn't ANYTHING to prepare for a child coming home until the day the birthmother went into labor, when we bought a rocking chair. A few friends with kids set aside piles of things we would need — car seat, diapers, bottles, blankets, onesies — to get us through the first few days.

    After we brought our son home, then we assembled the crib that had been in our basement for 3 years (family heirloom). It's a good thing we didn't buy anything: With all the baby showers — his work, my work, church, friends — we didn't NEED to buy anything.

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  2. Our placement agency gave us the “homework” of setting up the baby's room, registering for gifts, and basically considering ourselves “pregnant.” while i haven't yet done much of that (still working on finishing paperwork!) yet, i'm now looking forward to it.

    the agency that we're working with strongly advocates for open adoptions and i've been reading a lot about what that means lately. the agency is in texas and we live in wisconsin, so it will be a long-distance relationship, but even so, the more i read about open adoption, the more sense it makes to me. I even feel less anxiety about the BM changing her mind–not so much because i somehow know she won't change her mind (we can never know for sure what her decision will be until she signs the paperwork), but because I feel like I have a better understanding of her emotions and her needs and the baby's needs. It's kind of hard to explain until you've done some reading to lay a base layer of understanding about this concept. If you're at all interested (or even if you're just looking for some reassurance) I highly recommend reading the book “The Open Adoption Experience”–or at least chapter 2.

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