Monday, August 3, 2009

Unplanned Children

My daughter was a surprise to us. We met her a year before we began the process of adopting her. When the idea of adopting a child presented itself to us, we were pretty much looking at life as people who were almost to the finish line of child raising. We had about 3 years to go and we were free.

Then my husband uttered his famous last words. "I guess all of this will work unless a little girl falls in our laps."

The next day she stopped by my classroom on the way to the library and announced that was going to be making a video, airing for the purpose of finding a family for her. I knew at that very moment that a little girl had just landed in my lap. If only it had been that easy.

We actually had more of a thought process about that just random "Oh we will grab the first child we see". We prayed. We talked. We wondered how we could do something we thought was never going to be a possibility. Then we decided to at least try and see what the powers that be said to us.

They said no. Then they said yes. Then No. Then Sure. Then maybe. Then Never. Then finally, Yes. But only if. It was a process like no other. Our marriage was tested beyond any limits it had been stretched before. It peeled away layers of our soul that the other had never seen. Sounds corny but spend months reliving your childhood, all previous losses, and everything else you've ever done: Write about it 3 times and then be interviewed twice. You will learn a thing or twelve.

As insane as the fight to her was, the actual 'getting' her was a shock to my system. We were driving home with her. She fell asleep. I looked at her and wondered...What in the name of all that is Holy have I done? I had a vague remembrance of the whole mountain o'crap that we had been through to get her. It was wiped clean pretty much. I was now blown away by the fact that WE were responsible for this child. This innocent child who had probably been through more in her short life that all of us put together. How on earth could we parent her? What had we done?

While I was terrified and throwing up all the time, Dale was as happy as a dead pig in the sunshine. He was confident that once she ever was handed over to us, she was ours. It was as if she had always been ours to him. I'm thrilled that he had such faith.

Me, I was still scared. Right now I can't really elaborate as this small child is over my shoulder, wanting some one on one time.