Every time the phone rings we would get excited that this could be the day. That telephone call could be all of my hopes and dreams that we’ve been waiting for. It could mean that our lives have changed in just an instant.
The truth is, you are not alone. Your heart dropping in disappointment when it’s just a family member calling, or a friend checking in. You panic if you forgot to put your phone on call forward because you stepped out to get groceries and you don’t want to miss the call for your miracle. This does happen. I don’t know how many times we would go to the grocery store and had a “Private Caller” show up on our call display. It would break our hearts. Sometimes there was a message left, and we’d dial frantically to find out that they already found a different placement for the child that they had called us for.
One day, I had left to go shopping in the States with some friends. When we were set to go, I had called my husband to say we were on our way. He said he had a surprise for me. I responded, “it better not be a baby.” He assured me that this was not the case. We get home, and I noticed he’d been working on our front garden all day and that was my surprise. When I entered our home, he said that CAS called us for a baby. I was in shock! We learned of the details from the after hours worker that called us and we decided to decline. The situation was a bit too difficult and we weren’t really 100% looking for an actual baby. The worker said she’d call us back after we had a chance to talk it over. I called my mom, because that’s what we always do when we need to vent, and she kind of talked me into it. It’s not that I didn’t want a baby, but the situation we would be getting ourselves involved in was going to be a stressful one. There was 2 possible birth fathers, and if it was the one birth father, his mother wanted the baby. In any adoption, if there is a willing and capable family member, they will get the child. Which we completely respect. After some long chatter, we decided to have the baby come to our home, as she wouldn’t be here long anyways. (that is what we told ourselves) We were just going to foster the little one, and provide her with love and a warm safe home until things got sorted out.
So we went to the hospital and picked up a beautiful baby girl when she was just 2 days old. I remember it being a beautiful sunny day as we drove to pick her up. Our son at the time was 6 years old and we explained to him that this baby girl may stay with us for a little while or a long while, we really didn’t know. I will admit months later he was still repeating this sentence to anyone that would listen and they would look at us with this insane stare of shock. In adoption, I feel that you have to be upfront and honest so that it can prepare all involved.
We get home with baby B and had lots of close family and friends stop by to meet out addition. I had never really thought about what people would think? I’m not pregnant and one day I just happen to have a newborn? The stares of curiosity that I know I received was not something I had even imagined. Even in my job at the time, I had told people that someday I may just have to leave as I’m trying to adopt, but years had went by and I don’t think anyone ever thought it’d actually happen. In this situation I felt it was best just to be honest and communicate to the onlookers that I was trying to adopt. It’s not that I wanted to broadcast to the world my life story, but maybe they’d think twice about what we were trying to accomplish. I got used to the questions of, “oh, you are just going to have one child?” I figured it was just better to nip everything then, instead of having rumours. It just really wasn’t anything I had considered. I also had not considered how I was going to tell my grandparents of the situation? They are not going to understand what we are going through. So I made up photo cards saying , “Welcome to the family, forever in our Hearts”. I sent these out so that it would diminish the surprises and tried to tell my grandparents the best that I could. I can say that not everyone was on board with everything. Some people chose to not hold baby B as they didn’t want to attached themselves. I admit that I was upset about this, but I had to understand that they didn’t sign up for this. I did. I was the one that had to deal with the stress and attachment issues if this little girl went to her birth family. This is what I signed up for. This baby girl deserved stability and love, even if it would break my heart to give her up. This was the start of a very long road ahead.