Tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow

I’m in State X with MsV. I’ve been here since Tuesday. After a false labor alarm earlier this week, I flew out early… just in case. But, baby boy hasn’t made his appearance yet. MsV is scheduled to be induced tomorrow (Halloween).

I’m glad I flew out early. I’ve been able to spend some time with MsV, and we’re starting to get to know each other better. It’s such a delicate dance, building a relationship that is inherently built on loss for her.

Yesterday, we had a very long and very honest conversation about adoption and how it will feel to her. She says she knows it will be very painful and she knows she’s going to not want to do it. However, MsV is insistent that it’s the right choice for her and baby boy. She’s spoken to other local birth moms, women who decided not to relinquish, and even a few adult adoptees. She’s done her research. And she still feels this is the best option.

Unlike MissS, who was barely a teenager, MsV is an adult. She knows the world and how harsh it can be. She understands her own mind. She’s honest about why she’s doing this, sometimes brutally so.

MsV is quite a bit like MsJ. Both strong black women who have seen quite a bit in their lives. Both are honest and speak their minds, which I love. I have told her, a few times, that she could parent this child. That I and her attorney and her family could find her resources and more support. But, she still talks about the adoption as the right choice.

Will she place? I don’t know. I’m sticking at 50/50 odds. I won’t know until this time next week (she must wait several days after the birth before she can sign the papers).

Until then, I continue to be as supportive as I can of her, not the adoption. Because, ultimately, this isn’t about the adoption for me. It’s about being a good person who was there for another in their time of need…offering an option…but not pressuring in any way.

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So, as usual, I ask for your thoughts and prayers for MsV and baby boy. Don’t pray about the adoption or that it happens/doesn’t happen. Send your energy to her and baby boy…just support for whatever she feels is right.

And, for me that I remain open to whatever happens…

Categories: Other Stuff | 9 Comments

What’s the latest?

Make sure you read all the way to the bottom…gender reveal is there! Please skip if you’re not in a good place to read that sort of thing.

So…plans have changed a bit. We’re scrambling.

  • MsV decided that she wants to induce labor next Friday…as in 7 days…as in 3-5 days before her original induction dates.
  • The current plan has me flying out the day before the induction, and McRuger and Cadet following a few days after (once the baby is released from the hospital). It’s a little unclear what (if any) role I’ll have the day of the birth. I am generally against adoptive parents being at the hospital, but I will do whatever MsV asks of me. MsV’s attorney will be clarifying that this week.
  • We’ve decided on a name….whew. It took several very long discussions…and lots of internet/book/family history look-up work. At one point we had iPads, iPhones, a laptop, and several books all out with different pages open. It’s a name we’re both happy with. It’s a wonderful name that ties in with MsV’s family/history and our family. MsV will get final say, if she doesn’t like it…we are happy to change it.
  • McRuger and I have so much to get done before I fly out. The lists are accumulating like crazy. And the numbers of orders we’ve placed on Amazon is kinda astounding…
  • We’ve spoken to MIL, and she’s ready to fly down to State X and stay with me, Cadet, and baby while McRuger is in Asia. Yes, he’s still going. Yes, we know it’s crazy. But, it’s really important for him to make this trip. The earlier induction date does mean he’ll be able to spend time with MsV and the baby before he leaves.
  • MsV and I spoke briefly this morning and have been texting on and off for the past week. Overall, she says she’s still very positive about everything…just ready for the pregnancy part to be over.
  • I’d still say there’s a 50-50 chance that she will end up parenting. In the event that that happens, we have a list of things to do/see while there to make up for it. The most important being, seeing MsJ. The date of the induction rules out a visit to MsJ before the birth (her limitations, not ours). So, if this all falls through, we get to have a lovely vacation with her!
  • We’re slowly introducing the idea of a sibling to Cadet. Not sure how much he really understands, but we’ve been talking about babies and how we are gentle with them. Thankfully, he’s been around a few babies recently, so we’ve had some learning opportunities. Today, in fact, we were visiting with some new friends and they just had a baby…Cadet was totally cool about the whole thing. He was far more interested in their cat than the baby.
  • Pretty much only the people who read this blog, our parents, McRuger’s boss/department, and a few other people know about this adoption. In fact, Bro and Jewel don’t know…just because they haven’t called me back. I’ll be missing Bug’s 5th birthday party because I’ll be in State X, and I’m sad about that.
  • Be thinking good thoughts people. For everyone involved. But, mostly, please be hoping and praying that MsV makes the choice that’s best for her.

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Drum Roll Please…… Baby is a…..

 

 

 

BOY!

Categories: Adoption, Anxiety/Worry, Cadet, Family | 10 Comments

Microblog Mondays…

Microblog_Mondays

 

I’ve purchased baby items. And not just small stuff….the BIG items that we need. Did I jinx everything? I have this sense of dread every time I open my orders on Ama.zon. Will I have to return everything? Stupid…yes…but still something I worry about.

We’re in the process of choosing a name. MsV has given us “permission” to name the baby, but we really want her input. The middle name has already been decided. There was one name we had already decided on, however, looking into the history of the name took it off the list. So, we’ve narrowed it down to about 5 first names. At the moment, McRuger and I are deadlocked. MsV will have the final say in the name.

Yesterday, McRuger and I discussed things we want to do before baby arrives. One thing that we both felt was important was visiting with MsJ. MsV and MsJ don’t live in the same state, or even neighboring states…but it’s close enough. The current plan is for Cadet and I to fly out for a visit with MsJ a few days before we’re supposed to be in State X with MsV. This will give Cadet a chance to spend time with MsJ, and for them to bond.

The next few weeks are going to be simply insane. INSANE. McRuger is prepping for his trip to Asia…plus he’s moving offices….and that’s on top of his normal work-load. I have about a zillion things I need to do before traveling. Oh, did I mention that I might be getting a cold and I have a tooth that’s bothering me?

However, before I address the zillion things…I need to re-do Cadet’s room. He learned this weekend how to climb up his clothes drawers and chill on the window sill. So, that’s got to stop!

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Categories: Adoption, Anxiety/Worry, Choices | 9 Comments

What to share?

Well, ya’ll, I’m in State X. I’m tired. I miss McRuger and Cadet horribly. But, I’m glad I came here.

I got to spend several hours with MsV yesterday, and while horribly awkward at times, I came away with positive feelings. I got to meet some of MsV’s family and her children. Everyone was welcoming and very supportive of MsV and her decision.

The high point was visiting the doctor with MsV…the whole point of this trip. MsV was very clear when she invited me here…she wanted me at that appointment. The entire appointment took about 2 hours and included a sonogram and meetings with both the OB and the Nurse Practitioner.

First of all, we now know the gender of the baby. MsV had originally not wanted to know the gender when we first started the match process. So, she asked me if I wanted to know, and I left the choice up to her. After a few moments of thinking, she gave the nurse permission to tell us. I’m going to keep you in suspense a little while longer for that one.

The baby is healthy, measuring right on schedule, and looks to be on the bigger side (all MsV’s babies have been bigger). MsV is healthy as well. All the tests have come back normal and her blood pressure is low. The baby is in the “head down” position and is measuring at 36 weeks/5days.

The best part was just getting to spend time with MsV and starting a relationship with her. As with MsJ, if this adoption goes forward, I want to be able to have the start of a life-long friendship with her.

MsV is quiet, down-to-earth, practical, and honest. She told me why she’s choosing adoption and why she chose us. She doesn’t quite know what she wants an “open adoption” to look like yet, but she’s open to it (she wasn’t before).

After the doctor’s appointment, I took her to lunch. We got to talk a lot, and laugh about, our kids. She’s a great mom to her children. From what I saw and heard, she’s really doing her best by them. I told her that she could raise this little one too, but she just shook her head and smiled. She told me that she knew very early on that she would choose adoption, and she feels secure in her choice.

Driving MsV to her sister’s house, she gave me a little tour of the area. She’s always lived in this town, never been out of it. She wants to travel, wants to see the world, but doesn’t know how she can. MsV told me how important it was to her that her child see everything this world has to offer. She wants him/her to have broad horizons.

As we drove, we spoke about parenting philosophies. She and I are amazingly close on so many issues. “Childhood is for playing” she said, “not learning everything”. I told her I couldn’t agree more.

I dropped MsV off, and met a few more of her family members. She gave me a hug and promised that we’d keep in touch. And, as I drove away, I felt really good about things. Do I think MsV will parent? Yes, I think there’s a chance, but more than that…I know she’d be a great parent to this baby as well. She has tons of support, a loving (if slightly scattered family), and lives in a generally nice community.

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So, what’s next? Today I’m supposed to meet with MsV’s attorney. The attorney just wants to meet me, discuss her retainer, and give me a bit more information about what we can expect at the hospital (MsV’s requests). I’m not entirely sure that meeting is going to happen, as the attorney has court all morning and my flight leaves early this afternoon.

I’m going to try to connect with MsV again, but she’s pretty busy and I’m not sure if she has time.

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Over the past few days, I’ve spoken with our attorney several times. She and MsV’s attorney have worked out several details on how this adoption (should it move forward) will be processed.

Overall, this will be a California adoption, however, all waiting periods and consent forms will be signed on State X’s schedule. It’s complex, but State X gives MsV more time after the baby is born before she can sign any consents. While that’s scary for us, it’s what is best for MsV…and that’s what this should be about.

On Friday, MsV has another doctor’s appointment. At that time, they will do an internal exam, and discuss a possible induction in a few weeks (MsV indicated she’d be interested in that). Once that happens, MsV and I will talk about when we should fly out for the birth…because she wants us there. Not in the room, but at the hospital.

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And right now? I’m going to luxuriate in my hotel bed just a bit longer, maybe read a book, and then text MsV. I thank you all for your support and good wishes. Please send some love out to MsV. She could use a bit more of that (can’t we all??)!!

Categories: Adoption, Choices, Family, feelings, Motherhood, Other Stuff | 10 Comments

MicroBlog Monday…

Microblog_Mondays

Monday. After a weekend of HORRIBLE sleep for everyone, we’ve arrived at Monday. I have no idea what’s been causing Cadet’s frequent wake-ups, McRuger’s upset stomach, or my insomnia…but it sucks. It’s to the point where we’re all getting about 6 hours a night of tossy-turny sleep…and then another 2-3 of BAD sleep (if we’re lucky).

What makes this worse is that I’m heading to State X tomorrow to meet MsV. Can I be honest with you? I’m terrified. Terrified.

You see, I partially blame myself for MissS not placing. Maybe if I had been skinnier? Or not had glasses? Or said something different? Or had done something…anything different. Clearly, it’s not a rational way of thinking. MissS decided to parent for her own reasons, not because of me.

But, that thread of doubt is with me as I’m planning for this trip. What if my outfit isn’t right? What if she doesn’t like that I cut my hair since my main profile picture was taken? Will I look okay in my new jeans and shirt (this looks surprisingly good on me, even though it’s a bit youthful). Or should I wear my blue dress with the cranberry shrug? Or my black dress with a floral scarf? Silly stuff, I know. I need to give myself and MsV more credit than that.

In the end, I know it won’t really matter what I look like or what color my shoes are. MsV will make the decision she feels is best for her. And the most I can do is be authentically me and be a calming, non-pressure-y, presence in her life.

I spoke to MsV today for a few minutes. I wanted to check in to see if anything had changed….nothing has. She’s meeting with her attorney again to go over some paperwork and sign a few things. Then, on Wednesday, we’ll be together for most of the day. She seemed really excited for me to go with her to the doctor’s office and see how the baby is doing. We may find out what gender the baby is, but that’s up to MsV. And, I’m perfectly find not knowing. The conversation, while short, went incredibly well. She was so up-beat and excited for my visit.

And, then…I have no idea what. I’d love to meet her mom and her children, but that is entirely up to her. There’s a relatively famous restaurant near MsV’s town that I’d love to try. And apparently, there’s a few very interesting museums too. No matter what, I’m sure I’ll keep busy!

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Categories: Adoption, Anxiety/Worry | 6 Comments

Quickly…

So, I don’t have a ton of time to write. But….

  • We’re moving forward with the match and MsV (the expectant mother). I’m still about 85% convinced she’ll parent the baby.
  • I’m flying out to meet her next week.
  • Life is crazy right now. Everything seems to be moving at a very fast pace.
  • Cadet has learned how to open jars…and loves to show off his new talent, as such, I’ve had a lot more cleaning to do recently.
  • I have, literally, piles of laundry I need to fold right now.
  • The heat wave has passed, so life is much more pleasant.
  • McRuger is working insanely long hours. He sees Cadet for maybe an hour in the morning and 90 minutes in the evening.
  • I don’t have TB!
  • We have a social worker coming to the house this weekend to do our home study update.
  • I need to fire another one of Cadet’s therapists.

 

Hope all is well with you.

Categories: Other Stuff | 2 Comments

Microblog Monday…

 

Microblog_Mondays

 

I have no idea how “micro” this post will be, but I’m going to just write.

OMFG…it’s been an insane few weeks. I really have NO words to describe the amount of insanity we’ve been experiencing. Bullet points for the win!

  • Biggest news first. We’re officially matched with an expectant mother. I’m about 85% sure she’ll end up parenting, but I’ll write more about that later. She’s due in just over a month and I’ll be flying out to visit with her in two weeks. This whole experience has been insane…because we’ve had 3 potential matches in the last month. I seriously have been talking with our attorney on a daily basis. I’ll be writing more about this when I can….
  • Our home study was due for an update. So, we’ve been dealing with fingerprinting, medical visits, and have to prepare for a social worker to inspect our house (that’s fun!!). There’s been lots of cleaning, coordinating, and faxing. It reminds me again how much I hate our home study agency.
  • McRuger is crazy-busy at work. 10-12 hour days, lunch at his desk, and he’s also mentoring his department’s new hire. On top of that, he’s preparing for an office move…a trip to Asia…and trying to keep up with some new stuff he’s been “read in” on (meaning secret stuff he can’t talk about). He leaves early, gets home late, and weekends are precious.
  • Over the past three weeks, we’ve been slowly weaning Cadet from his therapies. He’s down to one hour of speech, one hour of OT, and only 6-8 hours of in-home ABA per week. Last year at this time, he was getting close to 25 hours a week of therapy. While this is great, it’s also so strange to find myself with time to actually DO things with my son. We’ve been busy discovering new things to do.
  • We’ve been having a heat wave here. Serious heat. This weekend it almost hit 100F. I hate it. I hate it. I hate it. I can’t express to you how much I want autumn to be here. The heat makes everything more icky.
  • There’s been lots of drama in my family over the “who-spends-the-holiday-where” debate. It’s been stressful.
  • Cadet has been in full-blown “tyrannical threes” for the few weeks. Daily tantrums. Lots of screaming and crying for no reason (the light didn’t turn on fast enough, Em didn’t eat a raisin he fed her, his bike made a squeaking sound). It’s so dramatic and over-the-top that I really have to stop myself from laughing half the time.
  • Oh, and did I mention that McRuger’s car, my car, our dishwasher, and our portable A/C unit are all having issues? Because we clearly needed more to worry about.
  • And, because Mel asked….my celebrity crush is Russell Crowe…

That’s it from here…

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Categories: Adoption, blogging, Cadet, Family, Household, McRuger | 6 Comments

Microblog Mondays…

Microblog_Mondays

 

Today is Michaelmas, the feast day of Saint Michael. It’s a very old holiday, one that dates back to the middle ages. In the “Waldorf-World”, this is a day to celebrate overcoming our demons and a time of new beginnings. It’s a time to celebrate our strong will as we move forward into the dying year.

Cadet woke up to a small stuffed dragon and a book about dragons (symbolic of demons). Cadet and I are making “Capes of Light” with silks dyed with turmeric, and we’re having some of the traditional foods for dinner tonight.

For me, I am reflecting on my own demons, those which I have overcome…and those that I still fight.

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Categories: blogging, Celebrations, Homeschool | 7 Comments

Birthdays and Updates

Last weekend, Cadet turned three. Overall, it was a mixed bag of how everything went. Despite the great news about Cadet’s latest batch of testing, parts of the weekend proved to be very challenging.

First of all, my parents were planning on coming down…then my father’s back went out. So, my mom came down for a little less than 18 hours. She was here for his birthday morning, his race, breakfast (french toast with nutella),  presents, and his birthday train ride…

And while it was nice to see her, it was challenging for Cadet. Rapid changes freak him out. And my mom arriving and then leaving put him out-of-sorts. I think even my minimal decorations threw him for a loop. Cadet’s birthday was pretty simple. We’ve learned the hard way that people, lots of decorations, even too much singing can really upset Cadet’s equilibrium.

His presents were equally minimal. A new candle holder for our dinner candle, a few wooden animals for his collection, several books, and some materials for homeschooling that he’ll enjoy. The grandparents chipped in an purchased pass-card for the local train…so he and I can go on a TON of rides.

The train ride, for him, was the main event. A 45 minute loop on the commuter train, and it’s just perfect for him. He loves to watch the train approaching, climbing up the stairs, and finding his seat. He narrated the entire trip, telling us what he saw. Sometimes, just leaning back in his seat and watching the world go by…absorbing everything. In fact, he’s still talking about going “on the long train for birthday”.

After the ride, he took a nap…and that’s when my mom left. He woke up in a foul mood, and from then to bed, it was a challenge to keep him happy. He even melted down when his cupcake fell apart slightly. Poor kiddo. Even though we tried to keep it simple, I think it ended up being too much.

We also made the trip to a local Bes.t Bu.y to purchase new cases for McRuger’s iPhone 6 and my hand-me-down 5. Cadet LOVED riding the escalator and elevators we took to get there!

I texted MsJ and told her that we were thinking about her and sending her lots of love. Because, it’s not just Cadet’s birthday…it’s also marks a day in her life that was really hard. She texted back that she was thinking of us and Cadet.

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So, that was really it. Since then, however, life has been a bit insane. McRuger’s back has been really bad. He’s been having to take lots of medications to keep the pain under control. It’s been about 3 weeks, and only now are we seeing an improvement.

I had the WORST AF (that time of the month, for those not in the “know”) I’ve ever had. It was really awful. So bad that I considered seeing my doctor for the pain and bleeding. I also ended up with a horrible gas attack, which I had never had before. In then end, it took several days for me to feel normal again.

Oh, yeah, and in the middle of all of this, our adoption attorney calls with a situation she wants to present us for. It’s a complicated situation involving a toddler and a 3 month old. One of the parents is a foreign national and has disappeared. Anyway, nothing will probably come of it, but we said we were interested.

McRuger got his annual review and bonus. Wow. McRuger’s boss is very impressed with McRuger’s work. Between the generous cash bonus, salary increase, and the incredibly large stock grant…it’s safe to say that McRuger’s work is highly appreciated.

We are slowly gearing up for the holiday season here. Already plans have been made for Thansgiving, and Christmas is being discussed. Looks like MIL/FIL will be here for Thanksgiving and there’s also a family gathering of my extended family locally.

Cadet and I are working our way through various fine motor skill activities for his homeschooling. So far, things are going well…but slowly. While Cadet continues to impress me with his language, he’s  he gets easily frustrated at times with things he can’t do easily. So, we go through things patiently…slowly….

In the midst of everything, McRuger and I did get a very rare date night recently. It was lovely. We mostly just ran errands, but it was nice to feel like a couple again. We had a lovely meal, did some shopping, and had a nice little dessert (macaroon ice cream sandwiches).

So, that’s life here. How is life in your world?

 

 

 

 

Categories: Cadet, Celebrations, Family, Marriage | 4 Comments

And the results are….

Today Tay gave us the results of the testing she’s been doing with Cadet’s speech. Read THIS post first for clarification.

First of all, Cadet’s scores from last year were MUCH lower than I had realized. So, last year, at age 23 months, Cadet was in the 4th percentile for receptive language, and the 8th percentile for expressive. He was understanding and speaking at 13 and 15 months, respectively.

Tay and I went back through his old test, and I was shocked at what he didn’t understand back then. For instance, he couldn’t say or identify a ball. He couldn’t say or identify mama. These are basic words that most 2 year olds should know. So where is he now???

In exactly 12 months….how well has he done? Insanely well. Like, OMG, my kid is “normal”. Here’s the numbers: at 35 months, Cadet is in the 87th percentile for receptive language, and the 55th percentile for expressive language. His age equivalents are 3 years/7 months for receptive and 3 years/0months for expressive. His “total language score” puts him at 3 years/2 months (or the 77th percentile). Some of his skills are crazy-high…getting into gifted territory. He is over one standard deviation above the norm in several areas. Tay showed me the graphs from the test, and Cadet has literally hit every skill at or above developmental levels!

My kiddo, who just one year ago was almost a year behind his peers, has not just caught up…but surpassed them in some areas. He’s jumped almost 24 months developmentally in just 12 months. That’s insane.

Tay told me that this is so unusual, she actually reached out to several of her colleagues to check her results. And all of them were astounded at Cadet’s leap in skills. And all of them agreed that the results were accurate.

After I had finished ogling the results, Tay said we needed to talk about where to go from here. At Cadet’s levels, he doesn’t qualify for speech therapy. Not at all. Not one bit. He technically doesn’t need it. She suggests that we go from two hours a week to one hour, and then after a few months we go to “maintenance visits” every month. She said that our insurance would cover a slow transition to ensure we didn’t have a reversal of skills. I told her that I would talk to McRuger, but that it sounded like a good plan.

The rest of the session, Tay probed at some of Cadet’s lower skills and some of his higher ones too. She wants to start coming up with some goals. Because, even if she’s not here, she’s going to come up with a program for me to help Cadet continue his progress.

Then she left. I gave Cadet a zillion kisses until he wormed his way out of my arms in search of his “noisy doggy toy”.

And, just in case I wasn’t sure how well Cadet was doing…he gave me a pretty solid example a few nights ago. Cadet was eating his dinner at the table. I had gone into the kitchen to grab him some more zucchini. I heard his little voice say: “uh-oh”. Then I head the patter of his little feet, and suddenly he was in front of me with a very solemn look on his face. “Mom,” he said, “get the broom”. He’d spilled some rice. He had a problem, wanted to solve it, and came to me for help.I actually cried. How far we’ve come…

Categories: Cadet, Celebrations, developmental delay, speech | Tags: , , , | 9 Comments

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