"...suffering is one of the universal conditions of being alive. We all suffer. We have become terribly vulnerable, not because we suffer, but because we have separated ourselves from each other." -- Rachel Naoimi Remen

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Worth the Wait

Although I'm not superstitious at all, it's been about a month since we've been matched, and I've been anxious that posting about it might be a jinx of some sort!

It's surreal and fantastic, and yet still somehow shrouded in a slightly uncomfortable layer of caution.  As is typical for me, I'm realistically optimistic.  I know, just like with my pregnancies, that there's a chance it won't work out.  Actually, 20-30% is probably a fair estimate for both.  And, I suspect if we do have a disruption, it will be even worse than the miscarriages.  But, I'm more hopeful than I was in my last few pregnancies, and I don't really feel like apologizing for that.   As has always been true through this journey, there have been a number of unusual, awkward and also plenty of joyful interpersonal conversations.  For instance, when I told someone and their response within two sentences included words of caution over "not getting too excited because these things fall through so often."  I thought immediately that if anyone ever said that to a woman in her second trimester that they'd get slapped across the face, and I resented that after all I've been through, that people still feel the need to warn me about how these things can go wrong.  Believe me, between my husband and I, we've dreamt of dozens of different heartbreaking scenarios, in addition to the fact that we've actually lived through a few minor heartbreakers ourselves.  We know these things can go wrong.  I have been guarded for long enough, I think I deserve to be hopeful now.

So this process of being matched with a woman in her second trimester isn't exciting in the exact same ways as being seven months pregnant oneself is.  But, as I read a favorite blogger I follow, where the longing of waiting for an adoption match feels so painfully palpable, I remember dimly that stage which was present in my life just one short month ago as if it were already a lifetime past.  I realize how free I have felt since we've been matched with our birthmother! 

I'm effortlessly happy.  About fifteen months ago, when I first began this blog and was actually unknowingly pregnant for the sixth time, I felt I was on the verge of a major depression.  Through God's grace, this blog, seeing a therapist, and having the most wonderful partner a girl could ever ask for, I've felt for at least nine to twelve months that depression is no longer a concern.  I have felt mentally healthy. 
[And let me say again, that the voice that this blog gave me was empowering and truly helped me recover in ways I never imagined.  I thank you, yes you the individual and you the collective, you who suffer in similar ways and you who are just simply empathic, you helped rescue me from depression.] 
And although I have felt with confidence that I was not depressed for these past several months, I now feel so differently than I did just one short month ago.  The only way I can really explain it is that it's effortless.  I don't have to work to be mindful as much as I did before.  I haven't had to consciously remind myself that this will be worth the wait.

Now, I know it will be worth the wait.  No, our wait is not over, but what remains of it feels weightless.  The light at the end of the tunnel has become visible and that has changed how everything around me looks.

One of the first ways I celebrated our news was by taking down some of the old decorations I've been hoarding in the nursery.  Three years ago when I was pregnant for the second time, I knew with a mother's intuition that I was carrying a baby girl, and with that started purchasing some decorations with a peacock theme.  I've held onto these, or should I say, latched onto them, tighter and tighter as the months have passed in anticipation and longing.  When we were matched, we were fortunate to find out that our birthmother is carrying a boy, and although I know there are no guarantees, I felt completely different about that old d├ęcor.  I actually moved it to our fireplace mantle in our family room.  It's beautiful stuff that I love and I am so happy we are finally using it.  It has a purpose now.  I had also bought peacock cards and am thrilled to finally be using them as thank you's to our supporters. 

Prior to this past month, I didn't see those decorations as burden, but now that they are on my mantle, I feel an uncanny sense of relief.  I suppose they were a burden I wasn't consciously aware of.

Finally, one of the most interesting "tells" is an intimate detail that hopefully won't be too weird for you to read -- it was recently when that time of the month came around...  I think I can say without exaggeration, that this past month was the first time in three years that I did not wonder, not for one second, during the days preceding, if I might be pregnant.  It just never crossed my mind. 

What a liberty.  I am free. 

Among the countless things I'm grateful for this month, one of the greatest is this sense of weightlessness.  This new freedom - thank you, God.  Thank you, birthmother. 

As is true with all superstitions, I know this post won't directly impact our adoption's outcome either way.  Nevertheless, I'm not sure how much more I'll write as we prepare.  (Although I do have one more post in mind about the incredible courage a birthmother who chooses adoption must have in her heart.)  I suspect there won't be much to say as these last months pass.  But you can be certain, that while I wait, there's the hint of an easy smile on my face; and I'm so thankful for that.