I sit here as a humbled woman. Tears stream down my face as I read through our roller coaster ride we were enduring at this time last year. The pain seems so distant. It's hard to verbalize anymore yet my heart knows. Deep down further than I care to explore, the excruciating pain is remembered. My empty arms, my aching heart, our devastation. It was September 1st, 2008 (Labor Day) where we had one more day to hear the fate of Isaac.
Our journey thus far had been so special. We had watched him grown in his firstmom's tummy, we had given him his first bath after arriving in this world, we had directed the medical staff in regards to vaccinations. The time came to pick up our sweet little bundle of joy and we heard. We heard the worst news possible: Isaac's birthparents were going to take him home. Our hearts were ripped from our chest. We felt anger and denial and numbness. We reclused in our home and cried. We held each other and speculated what might happen. It was impossible in our minds that Isaac's b.parents would spend a whole week with him and then turn him over to us. Yet our arms stayed open. No matter how much I cried, I loved Isaac. Even if we didn't end up parenting him, I loved that little boy. He had me immediately from the first moment I saw C's 16 week baby bump.
It was time. September 2nd would be the day we would either be told it was over- this match officially failed- or the day that our lives would turn completely around and NEVER EVER be the same. I want to be completely transparent and say that my weak and wounded self did not believe Isaac would be our son that day. I spent the morning packing up bottles, putting away perfectly folded clothes and blankets. Stocking the diapers away deep in the closet to be used at some time.
The text message alert went off on my phone. I was lying down trying to nap away the obvious stress and sadness when I saw "Isaac is all yours". Insert hyperventilation. He is what? All mine (ours)?! Everything moved very quickly from there. My casework called and congratulated me and said all the relinquishments were signed. The-what-uh-who? "Your son is coming home today" she said. BLANK. My mind went BLANK. I hung up with her and called my husband.
My husband is my rock. When I'm flipping out like no like me can do, he brings me down to earth. I needed him to teleport but since that technology isn't invented, he drove home fast. As he walked in the door, Declan's birthparents were right behind them.
I will never forget C's eyes. It was obvious she had been crying-for awhile. T looked tired and emotional too. The thing that was most amazing was that they tried to be so strong and have such a good attitude. They filled us in that he needed to eat, he had a bath hours before so he was ready to come home (insert bawling here) and that he was a super gassy guy.
I picked him up out of his borrowed car seat and he was wearing an outfit that was way too big. It was a gift from one of C's friends. I still have it tucked away today. I've kept everything she gave me. I feel so honored to be chosen and entrusted with this amazing gift. There is no greater gift.
Yes, my baby love was born August 25th but he was born in to our family on September 2nd and that means more than I'll ever be able to explain. It's my pregnancy story. It's my birth story. It's my story of heartache, pain, anger, love, confusion. Above all else, it's my story of LIFE. I knew very little about that sweet boy named Isaac who's car seat was set on my living room floor 1 year ago.
Now, this September 2nd, I can barely handle how much I love him. He's why I get out of bed in the morning. He's what I look forward to seeing when I get home from work. I oftentimes say (out loud) "I can't believe how much he loves me." Yes, you read that write. You hear over and over how much I love him and I do. But, I wasn't prepared for the feeling of being loved back. Declan knows I'm Mama. He loves me and hugs me and plays hide and seek at ever chance he gets. He squeals at my voice and runs over to me to hang on my legs. He smiles so hard he almost closed his eyes and belly laughs when I tickle him at just the right spot. He lays his head on my chest before his nap time and says "nigh nigh". He hysterically laughs when I make noises or scare him. I know this boy. I know and love him deeper than I thought was possible.
Yes, one year ago most definitely changed my life. That date- September 2nd- is what we celebrate. We celebrate because a courageous young couple decided to be selfless and make a plan for their son's life. They wanted better for him than what they can give. Praise God that we were deemed their choice for their son. I'm humbled.
Click to see our life 9.2.08:
And, our how-do-we-deserve-this-amazingness life now: