Each day is a mixture of bliss and dread. I’m standing at the fence I’ve been on the other side of for years and waiting for someone I don’t know to unlock the gate…and hoping they show up as planned to do it.
And yeah, I’m still getting ignorant comments about infertility. Someone who just learned EXACTLY what we’ve been through over the years AND that I’m going through early menopause AND who knows we are excitedly waiting for this placement to materialize – literally sent me an email about her friend (who is 15 years younger than me) who “tried for years” and then – I shit you not – “took this combination of seeds” and got pregnant…and that MAYBE I SHOULD TRY THAT.
Infertility sisters and brothers, you know how fucking textbook irritating this is. And it was like are you fucking kidding me, you’re telling me how you think we should get back on the train to try to get pregnant when we are 3 1/2 weeks away from the birth of this child? What the living fuck goes on in people’s brains where they think this kind of shit is okay to say? As I told my husband, I should have asked her if she tried those seeds on her sick parent, because no one seems to think that infertility is a real medical condition and that their friend/sister/neighbor must be in the exact same situation, but we’d NEVER say that shit to our friends and relatives with cancer or other diagnoses. I was so stunned at this comment that I have not even replied back. Maybe because I’ve been dealing with this for so long and have been out of DEIVF-land for 2 years now so don’t get exposed to that crap on forums, blogs, etc. like I used to.
So there’s that. Oh and guess what? Adoption Avenues, who was our agency when we waited two years for our little girl in Ethiopia and the country closed their doors and we did not get A DIME back? They’ve now gone out of business. And with that, the social worker there (the wife of the director) who had updated and renewed our domestic home study each year? As they lost their accreditation, she is no longer able to do our post-adoption reports once (knock on wood) our adoption goes through so we’ll be adding that to our list of expenses beyond the $21,000 coming due very soon. This is where we get to borrow from my 401k, the only account besides Dan’s untouchable-for-10-more-years pension in Australia we have savings in because infertility and Ethiopia drained all of our savings. I’ll do it, of course, but I do get to grumble…especially since tax law does not allow us to use the credit for international adoptions that fail (“If your attempt to adopt a U.S. child proves unsuccessful, you may still claim the full adoption tax credit. You do so the year after the adoption failed. On the other hand, expenses for a foreign adoption (where the child was not a U.S. citizen or resident at the time the adoption process began) qualify only if you finalize the adoption.” How fucked up is that?).
Dan and I are both trying to be in “don’t think about it” mode and just focus on the remodeling projects we are madly trying to finish up in the meantime. But we have to plan for all types of things, like:
- Booking a hotel in the high season on the coast for an undetermined length of time because it’s never sure if it will take 3 days or 2 weeks (she may have the baby in the state she just moved to or in our state as it’s near the border) because of inter-state approvals and waiting periods (adoption placement is irrevocable where we are but in the other state it’s a 10 day waiting period). Will we need a place to settle in for a while and cocoon or just a place to hang our hat and then hit the road back home with little one in tow?
- Or how today the birth mother called to say the baby has dropped and she’s feeling things so is headed to the hospital to see if this kid is coming early…which means an immediate drop-everything-and-get-our-animals-taken-care-of and haul ass down the freeway…? We shall see. A neighbor friend is swinging by tomorrow morning to help me with what I call a “baby audit” – tell me what those cloth diapers are that we have a donated box of, so we know if we have enough because for the life of me I have no damn idea of what this stuff is. Did I mention I literally have never changed a diaper in my entire life? I’m leaving my husband as the instructor on that, as he managed a group home for 16 years and hey, if you can change an adult diaper, you can change an infant’s 🙂
- Or how about, unrelated to potential parenting but still trying to make a living to afford adoption fees, dealing with a new client who signed the contract 2 weeks ago yet I still have no payment in hand? What the living fuck.
But then there is all that is possible lying in front of us should this all work out…
- Taking the pup on a walk and thinking about how we hopefully will be doing this soon with a little one all curled up against one of our chests.
- Watching the veggies and fruits starting to grow in our garden and looking forward to showing this little one how to make things from just a tiny seed.
- Reading the books we have been collecting over the past four years to this little soul and seeing him/her looking up at us.
And all the while, remembering what I just read today that I needed to hear so very much from the website adopttogether.org:
Be kind to yourself. You will not get it all right. You will mess-up a whole bunch of times. You will lose your patience. You will yell. You will feel inadequate. You will be inconsistent. It’s all normal. If your child’s first lesson is trust, your first lesson as a parent is self-forgiveness. Parenting is crazy hard. It just is. That is true for everyone, but especially a new, adoptive parent. When you blow it, remind yourself that you are doing a hard thing and that mistakes are normal. Let yourself know you are forgiven. Give yourself the freedom to start fresh. There is always tomorrow.