Friday, September 30, 2011


I think I needed to cry today. I went to class, came home, and got straight back into bed. This is so unhealthy. This is so not me. So, I went digging and found the adoption book that Arianna's adoptive parents put together for prospective birth moms (my agency let me keep it, and if any don't, I highly recommend that they start). I've been half-heartedly looking for it for a while now, because sometimes I like to be reassured about my decision. I don't necessarily need that reassurance, but there have been times when I want to see if what went through my head last year will go through my head again this year. I've never been able to find it, though. It wouldn't fit in her memory box so I tucked it 'somewhere' for safe keeping...which you all know means 'the place things go with the best intentions, but end up getting lost.' Hahaha. Anyways, I found it. I read it again, and after the first three sentences I was in tears and couldn't make out the words anymore, so I skipped to the pictures. I vaguely remembered the apple picking picture, which I think I mentioned in one of my last posts, but that was really the only one I remembered. Well, lo and behold, the waterworks began when I saw a picture of her adoptive mom, with their adopted son, feeding the goats at the apple picking farm. One of the pictures she sent me this past Monday was identical - only minus their son and plus their daughter. I think they were even the same freaking goats. How long do goats live? Because I'm 99.9% sure all six of them were the same as last year. To top it off, she dated the picture in the adoption book and that photo was taken on the very same day that I first made the call to the agency to look into adoption. How weird is that?

Needless to say, I got my fill of re-reading and looking at that book, and it's going away for a while again now. It was a little hard, because the last time I saw or read it, she was in my belly...I still had a choice. Granted, I would make the same one again for her, especially now that I know the outcome, I know her family has fulfilled all of their promises thus far, and I know her smile is no less than ear-to-eat in almost every picture.

I just needed to release some of what's been swirling around in my head (and heart) for a while now...and now I know a surefire way to do it.

Thursday, September 29, 2011


With tomorrow being what would have been our 4th 'anniversary,' and me feeling like I've missed him more than usual today purely because of this, I've decided to make a list of things I am grateful for and lucky to have! His name has been scratched off the list this year, never to be put on it again (although last I heard, he seems to think we will be together again sometime in the future. RIGHT. I made the same mistake a few times, but I'm not dumb enough to make it again).

I am grateful, above almost everything else, for my parents. I may not say it a lot, or even show it a lot, but I truly am. I am equally grateful for the open adoption I have with my daughter's family; I am so blessed to not only be able to know their last name, but to have an address and phone numbers. I am honored that they trust me with this information, and while I know that there are obvious legalities holding me back, I feel so comforted knowing that they don't think so low of me that I would try to come 'see' her uninvited or anything like that. The trust that they have in me means more than the world. I am lucky to have had a healthy, uneventful pregnancy and a beautiful, healthy, alert 8 pound baby. (I am even more lucky that she was a girl ;) which is what I would have chosen, if anyone ever had a choice in the matter).

Although her biological father and I aren't on speaking terms at the moment, and I am not his biggest fan(and he has acted like a 12 year old at times, and he says things without get the idea), I am still grateful for the fact that he does care about her. He can say hateful things to me, hell, he can even hate me, but I know he loves and cares about her. It's just a feeling I have, and he has shown it...I don't say a lot about it on here, because of course it's easier to complain than it is to praise someone. But he has and does. I am thankful that he wants to get her birthday gifts and that he has written to her and that he can't wait for the day he gets to see her again. That means more to me than my own relationship with him ever did. It's easy to see him as the 'bad guy,' and I should apologize for that, for what it's worth. I know he doesn't read this, but still. Yes, I do feel anger towards him and I was hurt by him, but at the end of the day, I care more about how he treats his daughter (by 'treats' I mean the way he talks about her, the way he is eager for pictures, the way he talks about contacting her and meeting her again, etc.) than I do about how he treats me (like shit, for the most part).

Moving on! I am thankful that I am able to continue my education; I am thankful for my parents so willingly helping me pay for it, also.

Hmm...what else? It all comes back to my little one. I am thankful that she is here, period. Wherever she may be. I am thankful for her coming into my life, even if she was only part of it physically for a short time. Her short time with me has made an impact that will last forever.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Four walls

Children, adoption, babies, pregnancies, etc. seem to be everywhere I go lately. I feel like I'm surrounded by four walls with those four words painted all over them and they are slowly caving in on me. There's no ceiling, and I can still see the sky through the top, but I'm scared I'm never going to get out. I couldn't count on my two hands the number of times Arianna's biological dad said "when this is over..." and he'd fill it in with either 'we should take some time apart,' 'we'll always be family in a way,' 'I'm going to do better for myself,' etc. These were all valid points and good ideas, but I always countered it by saying "this will never just be over.'" He didn't seem to undersand that. He'd say "Well, I know, but you know what I mean." What he meant was simply 'after we sign the papers,' which to me was never really the end, but the beginning. Yes, I knew it was the end of my legal rights to call myself her mom, I knew it was the last time I'd see her for a long time, but I also knew that didn't mean anything was over. I just didn't know, at that time, how right I really was. I think, in a way, he was looking at it as if I was getting an abortion. I know it sounds crazy, but that's how I think he was seeing it (at least in the very beginning). He only saw this sequence of events - she has the baby, she gives the baby up, we move on. Now, I'm not downplaying the emotional impact of abortion on a girl (or guy), and especially never having had one myself, I don't know the emotional repercussions of that procedure. I'm also not downplaying miscarriage or death (of any age) in any way, either, but I do believe there is more of a sense of it being 'over' after an abortion. There's nothing more to work with - you were pregnant one day, the next you were not (by your own voluntary choice). I know there are emotional consequences and some are very similar to those of a woman who chooses adoption...the thoughts of never wanting to be around a baby again, the depression, the grief, that 'I can't get out of bed' feeling...they're both in the middle of a venn diagram between abortion and adoption. But adoption will never be as concrete, as black and white, as final as abortion. I see both sides of the argument between adoption and abortion, I really do. Adoption has its pros, of course - for one, your child is still living, and if you're lucky, you get to see that child grow up, even if only through pictures...and there are SO many more pros. It also has it's cons - you always know that there's a piece of you out there, calling someone else "mommy." You have so much time (essentially that child's entire lifetime) to wonder if you did the right thing, to worry that your child will never love you, to worry that he or she will want nothing to do with you. Abortion is the same way - pros and cons. I don't want to get into the whole "abortion debate," because I don't want to seem judgemental, and personally I don't know if I'm pro-choice or pro-life. As I've said before, I always said that if I got pregnant I would never be able to have an adortion...but I also said I could never lay eyes on my own baby and hand him or her over to someone else, either. I would never pass judgement on someone who did have an abortion, but the minute I heard my daughter cry and saw her little chest moving up and down I was in such awe that I created something that was breathing on it's own, that I decided right then and there that no matter what, I would always choose life (although I hope I'm not in the position to have to choose again - I hope that if and when I ever am pregnant again that it's because I planned it!).

There are words that still sting me, even though it's been almost eleven months. People that have nothing to do with me will say innocent things and they go through me like a knife. Today in my psych class, we had 7 minutes to write down things that we are committed to. I wrote down that I was committed to not only finishing school, but excelling in it, being financially stable, my relationships with my friends and family, and most importantly, I am committed to maintaining the healthy relationship I have with my daughter's adoptive family. He called on some people to share their ideas with the class, and thankfully, I wasn't one of them. Most people said they are committed to finishing school and a few said they are committed to making their children's lives better than their own. After the discussion was essentially over, one girl raised her hand and said "I agree with the part about being committed to kids, because I just found out this morning that I'm pregnant." It felt like my heart tore in half, and I can't even explain why. She wasn't happy about it, either. Someone said 'congratulations!,' and she replied with 'UGHH!!!' I don't know why it hit me so hard, it just did. I was jealous, deep down. I never thought pregnancy was such a beautiful thing til I went through it, but I think that's the way it goes with a lot of things. I was jealous because there's a part of me that wishes I could experience some parts of it again - like seeing her move around on the ultrasound screen, feeling her kick my hips in the middle of the night, anticipating the morning that I got to find out if she was a boy or a girl (granted, I only had to wait one night, since I was so far along when I found out, but still), choosing a name for her, holding her for the first time, etc. I would love to do all of that again, but when the time is right. I've read a lot of statistics that state that girls who have abortions or lose a child to adoption try to 'fill the void' by becoming pregnant soon after - I would never do that. At least not for those reasons. I know that no one will ever fill that void of my firstborn, my little girl. She will always be my first child, my first girl, and the one and only Arianna. I could have eleven more babies in my lifetime, and none will ever take her place in my heart. That's just the way it is. I'm sure all other firstmoms would agree.

People sometimes ask me if I am happy with the way things are. My daughter is safe, loved, and will want for nothing (except maybe answers when she is older). How could I not be happy about that? If I think only of her, I am so happy I can't even tell you. On the flip side, when I think only about myself, and how my child is not in my arms, there's no carseat in my car, I don't get to take her to dance... no, that doesn't make me happy. It's hard to answer that. I might not be a mommy that buys her diapers, takes her to the playground or goes to parent-teacher conferences, but the aspect of motherhood that implies that you put your child first, above all else, still thrives in me. That's why I say I'm happy when people ask, because I'm happy for her. In a perfect world, would I wish she were here with me? Of course. Had my circumstances been different, she'd be in her crib in my house right now. But they weren't. And it wasn't just one thing - it wasn't just money, it wasn't just who her father was, it wasn't just my schooling, it was all of those rolled into one, and then some. I know deep down that she is where she should be, I just don't think I'm where I should be yet.

I'm working on it, though. I contacted a therapist last night and she emailed me back and told me to leave her a voicemail and she would call back to set up an appointment. I've exhausted all of my ideas of 'self-help,' and they have gotten me nowhere, so I'm turning to therapy and my anti-depressants once again. I hate to be medicated, but sometimes, a little boost is all you need. By this time next year I plan and hope to be in a much better place than I am now. (I said that last year, too, but I had no idea what the year had in store for me. Now, I have a bit more of a better idea, although I've learned to never say never and I've especially learned that adoption itself can take twists and turns).

Monday morning I woke up to an unexpected email from my little one's adoptive mom! She already sent me a very long update filled with tons of pictures on September 5th, so I wasn't expecting another update until at least the beginning of October. In it, she updated me on the theme for her first birthday and told me that she and four other interior designers were already starting to plan the party, and told me what she is going to be for Halloween! She also told me that she loves her music class, loves singing and 'dancing' and shaking the rattle. She promised to get pictures or videos of it for me soon. In the email, there were some pictures of her apple-picking, pumpkin picking, and at a petting-zoo. Those were hard to see, because I remember last fall when I was looking through their adoption booklet, one of the pictures was of C and C and their adopted son in front of a bunch of corn stalks - and one of the pictures she sent me was identical to that photo - only plus one curly-haired little girl.

I definitely think she was meant to be their daughter. She fits right in so perfectly, and I remember looking at their book last year and I could vividly imagine her being in the pictures, too. Now, I'm seeing it for real and while it hurts to see also reassures me. I did the right thing for her, for me, for them, for all involved.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

'In the end, all you think about is the beginning.'

My day in New York went very well. We went to the fundraiser and did get to meet Shorty and (most importantly) Hercules! I love that dog. All in all, it was a good experience, although the weather was a little dreary. Now it's back to the real world, and tomorrow is my first 8a.m. class of this semester. What on earth was I thinking, signing up for an 8a.m. class on a Monday? I'm already dreading the alarm clock going off, and I haven't even gotten into bed yet.

I'm trying to keep my spirits up this upcoming week, because I already feel overwhelmed and it's not even Monday yet. I know I've said it about a hundred times, but this fall is going to be one that I'm just going to have to keep my eyes on the future and plow my way through. If you haven't already noticed by now, I remember dates more than anything. I've always been good with numbers like that, but I can't do math worth a crap (go figure, I can't remember numbers when it counts). I've always been good at remembering license plates, times, and leave it to me to know about all of the little 'anniversaries' that take place in the fall. This coming Friday, which is the 30th, marks the day that my daughter's bio father kissed me for the first time, in the mountains (as we called them), which was really just a big forest with a huge pond in the middle. Who remembers the first time someone kissed them? Maybe a lot of people do, maybe not many do, but I know I do. I remember it like it was yesterday. Hell, I even remember what I was wearing that night. Sometimes my memory is a curse (this being one of those times). I bet he doesn't even remember the year it happened, let alone the date. That's just the way I am, though. I remember the day my rabbit had her babies when I was in 8th grade even though they've all been long gone now, I remember the date that we left for a vacation to Florida on when I was in 3rd grade, etc. Anyways, I'm not looking forward to Friday. This should be a new beginning for me, I should be embracing the amount of stress that walked out of my life the moment that he did, but instead I'm caught up reminiscing about things that I don't really want to happen again; I just can't let go of them.

I have to start thinking more about what I'm doing to do and/or how I'm going to celebrate my little one's birthday in November. I can't believe it's already almost October. Maybe that will bring my spirits up a bit...I love everything about October and Halloween.

I have a lot more on my mind, but I'm still exhausted from spending 10+ hours out of 24 in the car, so I'm going to try to go to sleep now. Must be up bright and early in the morning for class (insert excited face here)!

P.S. I was in Old Navy the other day, and saw the cutest Halloween costume...

I got sad for a nanosecond when I thought "I HAVE to get this for Arianna," and then realized that I don't get to choose her outfit - not now, not in 5 years, not ever. But, still, it was so cute that I just had to post it! I do wonder what she'll be, though... :(

Friday, September 23, 2011

I'm writing from New York tonight, as tomorrow I am going to the Paws for a Cause fundraiser in Rome (New York, that is!). It's a fundraiser and a walk-a-thon and I know I could use the walk, plus Shorty from Pit Boss and his adorable pit bull Hercules are hosting it and I'm not one to get all star-struck BUT I would love to give Hercules a big hug in person, provided I get the chance :)

I don't know why I always get flustered about being away from home. I was never really into sleepovers when I was younger, and if my friends and I did have one, I pushed for it to be at my house. The funny thing is, when I'm home, sometimes the last place I want to be is here. I dream of traveling and moving and just getting away from here...I'm 23 years old and I have lived in the same house for 23 years. The biggest move I've ever had was moving my bedroom from the front room to the back. I think I just really don't like change, to the extent that I don't even like sleeping away from my own bed. I don't know, though, because the several times I spent away with Arianna's birthdad, I had the most fun. Ironic, isn't it?

I came to New York last summer, too, to visit my best friend while she was living in the bronx. The circumstances were completely different; I took the Megabus as opposed to driving like I did this time, I stayed in her apartment vs. the hotel I'm in right now, I stayed for two nights rather than just one...but one giant difference keeps slapping me in the face: I had my little princess with me last summer when I was here. And, (not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing), things weren't 100% officially done between her father and I. I remember being on the bus on the way home and he called and we had a long talk about it (I had almost four hours to waste and the bus was next to empty), and now it just seems as if it was all for nothing. I'm in a better place in my life right now, I know it somewhere deep down, I just need to really start believing it.

I'm getting so off-topic. I'm happy to be here and I'm excited for tomorrow, so now more sadness here! I just miss her...

Thursday, September 22, 2011

A picture today . . .

I know, I know, I was two in the picture and she is only 10 months in the picture! I still thought it was adorable :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Dreams, again

I had the weirdest of weird dreams last night. The above is a note to myself, because the last time I had an extremely bizarre dream was immediately after I drank hot cocoa right before bed. Such a weird correlation, I know....I've heard that eating ice cream before bed can make your dreams weird, or drinking coffee or something like that. But hot cocoa? I definitely know that this dream was a byproduct of some of the things I had been talking about earlier that day. I was texting my friend nearly all day and we were talking about both of us doing better for ourselves, etc., and she said told me to 'always make today better than yesterday.' I told her she was absolutely right, but said that I am starting to freak out a little bit with fall approaching so quickly. More specifically, October and November, because those are the months that were so jam-packed with everything regarding my pregnancy, the adoption agency, leaving school, just everything. Then, coincidentally, another friend said she couldn't believe her first birthday was coming so quickly. Needless to say, my little girl, her birthday, the time in the hospital, (a.k.a. everything about her) was on my mind even more than usual all day long. In my dream, I was riding in the backseat of some guy's car (not sure who it was at the time) and looking through a photo album of pictures from the day Arianna was born. For whatever reason, we were on our way to the hospital where I had her....we were going to the nursery to visit her, and in my mind, she was still only going to be a few days old. I remember looking at the clock in the car and it said 11:02 (not the time she was born at, but the date) and being terrified. I told whoever I was with that I was going to need some support at 11:03 and 11:04, too, (the other two days we were in the hospital) and I reached out to hold the person's hand and he kept saying "stop, I don't have time for this right now," and I felt the tears welling up in my eyes and next thing I knew, I was in a completely different car, watching the guy who had been driving the one I was in....speeding away without me in it. As I saw the type of car it was and the license plate, I realized it had been G driving it and suddenly it all made sense. Then I woke up.

I guess I shouldn't call it a 'strange' dream, because I'm 99% sure similar events have happened between us, only under different circumstances. I see it as my subconscious telling me that I know he isn't there for me and hasn't been for a LONG time, and I need to accept it on the surface. Who knows, but that's how I'm interpreting it. It was eerie, though, when I woke up, how close to home it hit me.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Past few days . . .

It's been a rough past couple of days, I had an "altercation" with Arianna's birthdad which did not start or end well. I won't go into details, but in short, I basically told him that he's on his own and does not deserve pictures of his little girl right now - this was after he told me that I never do or did anything nice for him and that he 'never wants to see me again in his life.' Okay, fine. So he gives me an email address to give to C and says 'tell her she can email me, or you can forward the pictures to me. That way, you'll never have to see me or speak to me again which is obviously what you want.' Why YES, that is what I want! Maybe not forever but for a long, long time. I went on to tell him that I didn't have to do as much as I have done for him in the past ten months...I did not have to make doubles of all the photos (and therefore spend more of my own $$), I did not have to meet up with him to give him copies of the emails that let us know how our daughter is doing. I asked him if he would write back to C, and he flat out said no. This sent me through the roof. How dare you let this woman who is raising your child take time out of her day to write 6, 7, 8, 10 paragraphs about YOUR child to you and send 20 - 30 pictures at a time (which she by no means has to do), and then say "No, I won't write back. Why? Because I don't want to." Immaturity at it's finest.

More was said, more was done, more tears were exchanged but that's done. I've said it before and that's even what I said to him - "we've said 'we are done' and gone our separate ways 'for good' about five times since she's been born" and he said that this time, he knows it's different. He knows he's hurting me by even being in my presence or even by my hearing his voice. According to him, he lashes out and gets to upset because he still cares, wants to be around me, and still loves me but knows that I can't be around him and that hurts him. Well, buddy, had you not hurt me so much in the past and even still up to two days ago, maybe I wouldn't feel so much like I couldn't be around you.

On to better things! I had some time last night to do another page for my scrapbook. I like to incorporate pink into every page (duh!) and also when I make a background to put the pictures on, I like to match the colors that are in the picture...the color is wearing, etc. For whatever reason, I photographed the steps I took to make one of my backgrounds last night. I like to think I'm creative (hahaha) although this is something extremely simple and that I'm sure people who scrapbook do all the time.

First, I picked out a base color and cut out little random strips of the other colors that match her outfit... then covered the back in strips of scotch tape (so much easier than taping the individual pieces!)
 Here it is, flipped over.
 I glued it to the pink background paper, then cut out the shape I want (while making sure that I don't cut a piece larger than the shortest strip of paper)
Voila! Done.
And here's the page, completely finished. I hope you like :)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


I had one of those strange dreams last night where you are half awake, half asleep, and fully aware of what you are doing and thinking...but when you wake up, there is no evidence or clear thought of what it is that happened. I went to bed around midnight and distinctly remember getting a text from someone I work with at my e/o Saturday job. (This is someone who never texts me, let alone at midnight), so I read it and then went to "sleep," although I'm pretty sure I was still awake. My thoughts were all-consuming and the end result was me realizing that I need to suck it up and get over my "you don't need to be drugged to get through life" mentality and just take my anti-depressants again. Why I thought I could self-medicate and just stop taking them cold turkey last February, I'll never know. Anyways, this is what was on my mind - I started off thinking about the Fall of four years ago and how happy I was at this very time back then. How it was a week before he would kiss me for the first time, a month before the first time we slept together. (I don't know why I torture myself with these thoughts because he and I have never been more done and I have never wanted less to do with him than I do at this very moment). In fact, you would think him telling me last October that "now is not our time, we can't stay together in the long term" because he "felt he needed to be with the mother of his child" while I was sitting there eight months pregnant with his daughter would have been enough for me to tell him to go F himself once and for all. I'm glad I woke up the day that she was born and told him myself that I wanted nothing to do with him. I'm blaming the fact that I put up with that shit on my hormones, but sadly, I'm not sure if that's the case. 

Anyways, that lead me to thinking about this past fall and him taking me into Boston to the agency and I re-lived all of those feelings I had all over again. It was like I was really sitting with my feet across the seat in the backseat of his car, with the leaves by the sidewalk crunching under us...I saw, as clear as day, him getting out and coming around and opening my door for me, helping me out, and walking across the street into the agency with me. I remember how anxious I was, how terrified I was, and how I kept thinking, "this isn't really happening. You aren't really going to give your baby up, you're just going through the motions." It all hit me like a ton of bricks, and I felt worse last night than I even did then. I realized, fully, maybe for the first time, the magnitude of what is gone. I realized that I lost more than just my baby through those agency doors, I lost a toddler, a preschooler, a child, a teen, a woman, maybe a future wife and future mother, too. I've realized that I try to fix things in my head until I get an outcome I can "live" with. I spent so much time doing it with G. If he didn't call me back one night and I secretly assumed it was because he was with someone else or out doing something he didn't want me to know about, I wouldn't be able to fall asleep until I convinced myself that he must have fallen asleep early, or he must have left his phone in the car or something. Had I not convinced myself of that outcome, I would have tossed and turned with anxiety all night. That is so unhealthy. I feel stupid even saying it out loud, I feel like a fool even admitting it to the public (you never know who reads these). Well, it's true, and I did it. Good thing it's over, right? Well, last night I tried to do the same. I tried to convince myself that I already got over the biggest hurdle; I already put my newborn child in another man's arms and walked away from her for an indefinite amount of time...I already trusted another man and woman to raise my daughter and put her above themselves even more than I myself would have been able I got over the tough stuff, right? But that's just one teeny chapter. Yes, walking out of the hospital, and then a week later walking away from them and leaving her with them were probably the two hardest things I will ever have to do in my life (I hope), but it's not like it's a cakewalk from here. When I realized this last night, it felt like my heart literally, physically fell and landed in my ankles. At this very moment, I'm still not sure if I dreamed all of this or if I was awake, but either way, it was in my mind at some point - consciously or subconsciously.

I guess I really do just have to take it one day at a time. Things will always change; she will always change. Humans are ever-changing, so why would I think of my daughter as staying a baby forever? I worry that I will feel it all over again for each milestone in her life. Last fall I 'lost' a baby. When she turns three, will I feel like I'm 'losing' a toddler? Will I feel like I'm 'losing' a kindergartener? I hope not. I'm not entirely sure anything I've even said in this post will even make sense, so I apologize.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A different "10 month" milestone

Being the 11th, today marks ten months since I've held my little princess and seen her in person. It's also a horrible anniversary for the U.S. and especially for the families affected by the tragedies that struck ten years ago on this day. Not only have the past ten months flown by, but the past ten years have flown by, too. Ten years ago on this day, I was in the 8th grade, on the 3rd floor of my school, in Algebra class. I remember it like it was yesterday, so how could I fear that I will ever forget any little detail about my daughter? Her smell, watching her little chest breathing...up and down, up and down, her eyelashes, the suckling noises she made at night...I fear that I will forget it, but how could I? If I can remember the scribbles that were on top of the wooden desk and the twizzler I was eating when my teacher's cell phone rang to tell her about the plane crashing, how could I ever forget how soft my baby's skin was when she was a day old? I worry incessantly. It hit me hard today because my mom and dad asked me if I wanted to go out to breakfast. I said yes and then a few minutes later, asked where they wanted to go. She said the name of a place down the street and as soon as she said it this awful memory hit me like a ton of bricks. We went there towards the end of November...I can't remember when, exactly, but I think it was before Thanksgiving. It was within a week or two after I put my little girl in her new daddy's arms and walked away. I had been crying almost every day after that, but this day was an exception. I woke up in a good mood, and we went out to eat. For whatever reason, as soon as the waitress put my pancakes in front of me, I burst into tears. I felt sad because I missed her; I felt guilty because I felt like I didn't deserve to be eating "nice" food and enjoying myself when I had just "left" my baby with strangers. It hit me like a ton of bricks, and I was sobbing in the middle of the restaurant over my pancakes and a cup of tea. It was embarrassing and just awful. So, fast forward to this morning - my mother mentions the place and I immediately said NO. This damn near brought the Spanish Inquisition to my house...she must have asked me seven times why I didn't want to go. Nothing worked - I said I didn't like the food, she said it's the same everywhere. I said it'd be busy, she said it'd be busy get the idea. I didn't want to tell her because I was afraid she'd say "So you'll never set foot in there again because of that one little thing?," and it's questions like that where insensitivity takes the front burner and her compassion takes the back. So I avoided the explanation at all costs. So, that, on top of me walking into my room and seeing that today was the 11th, made today a little rough. I hope after her birthday, the meaningful dates will get a little easier. Not less meaningful, just less overwhelming. So far, I have spent the first year counting the months. She's 2 months, 5 months, etc., but I don't see myself thinking, "today she's a year and three months..." maybe I will, maybe I won't, I'll have to see. But I just don't imagine I will.

Oh, I forgot last time I wrote - she says "dada" now. I am so proud of her and at the same time SO wish it was me she was saying it to (not dada, of course, but you know). On the other hand, though, the man she is calling 'dada' fits the idea of the father I wanted her to have so much more than the one she was born to, and for that, its hard to be anything but happy.

Friday, September 9, 2011

I know I have been uncharacteristically quiet lately, I just don't have much to say, I guess. I've been preoccupied with school (a good thing) and my grandfather being in and out of the hospital (a bad thing). It seems like I miss little miss princess more than usual lately, but I've chalked it up to the fact that her first birthday will be here in the blink of an eye. Here is a picture that was taken just this past Labor Day . . .

I adore this one, and the giant pink bow in her hair :)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Tea Rooms, Tarot Cards, and an Uncanny Truth

Last Friday, I went with a group of friends from high school to go get our cards read. I was skeptical at first - no, actually, I was terrified. I was terrified that I would hear something I didn’t want to hear and somehow connect it to my daughter and fear that I’d never see her again. I was scared to have my ‘future’ laid out in front of me by some stranger, because lately I have to take it day by day just to get out of bed. I wouldn’t even commit to doing it until we actually got there and I saw that it was a relaxed, comfortable setting and I was reassured by my friends that I needed to just relax and have fun. For some reason, I was picturing a dark, smoky room with no windows and a velvet tablecloth, with a woman sitting in some crazy yoga position with a crystal ball in front of her. Needless to say, it was absolutely nothing like that. Once I saw that I could get up and run if need be, I was a-okay with having my cards read. I’m hesitant to write it all out, because I feel like it’s one of those touchy subjects (if you’re superstitious), like not saying a wish out loud because it makes it not come true. I do want to remember everything, though, and I also want to share, so here goes:

She started off by having me shuffle and then pick ten cards out of a pile, face-down. I forget what the pictures were on them or what they said, but I remember she pulled two more than once - one that meant ‘completion and wholeness,’ and another that meant ‘past efforts and hardships will reap future benefits.’ Of course I related that card to the adoption…all of the hard decision making and all of the pain would reap benefits for my little girl and eventually for me, too. The very first thing she said was that she saw that I was either having a lot of job troubles or I had just quit my job, and I explained that I had just left. She then told me that she saw someone whose name she thought started with a V and ended with an N and whom she thought may be my grandmother, watching over me. My grandma, who passed away in 2003, was named Evelyn. Pretty darn close, if you ask me. Then she hit one of the touchy subjects - my daughter’s bio father. She told me she felt a love interest who I still cared for and who still cared for me and loved me, but that there was a barrier there that he wasn’t yet willing to move from, or felt that he was unable to move from. She said that she believes that I am a dominant person, being an Aries, and that he is too (also being an Aries) and that that is why our relationship didn’t work out. She sensed that he would always be in my life, but not as a love interest, and that he would always care for me but that now is the time to work on myself and let him go. That was all I needed to hear - I mean, of course I know that I need to let him go. My parents tell me. My friends tell me. I tell myself. Having a woman who can apparently see my FUTURE (on some level) tell me to just give up and move on (because she can see that even I know that I should) was the last straw. What else? She mentioned one of my close friends names and the name of said friend’s grandmother (which I didn’t even know until I told my friend about it and she said that was her grandmother’s name, too).

Now, on to the important part. She kept pulling a card that meant “autumn” and telling me that she sensed that the fall season was very significant to me. She said it’s been a time of change, new beginnings, and life-alterations. Oddly enough, not only is fall when my little girl was born and when I “lost” her, but it’s also the season that I grew so close with and fell in love with her bio dad. And as I’ve said in previous posts, it’s my absolute favorite time of year, so I’m not surprised that she picked up on all of that. She told me she felt that I had suffered a loss, but that the person didn’t pass away, they were still on this earth just not directly in my life, but not to worry because this person and I will meet again and be the best of friends. MY HEART MELTED right then and there. I started crying and she kept saying “don’t cry, don’t cry, this is supposed to be fun!“ but as you can imagine, that was one of the most emotional statements I could have heard. I just knew she was talking about Arianna, and my heart was singing.
Then, after that, she told me she saw a young child, “probably a girl,” who would have a childhood worth envying that and I myself would be jealous of. She said this child would “want for nothing.” Then, she asked me to help her out a bit and tell her who this child was that she ‘saw.’ I told her it was probably my daughter and she said “ahhh, I see, and you, for some reason, feel as though when it comes to her that you have no control. But you do have control, you actually have more than you think.” (Not sure what that means…if I were to ask for visits at a younger age, I would get them? I’m lost on that one). As I was nodding my head in agreement she came out and asked me what the situation was, exactly…and I explained that I had given her up for adoption and that she was born in the fall. After that, she told me “generic” things that I absolutely hope are true as well, but are things that anyone could and has said to me, like that she sees that the family has money, that I am sad and probably always will be a little sad but that I “definitely” made the best decision I could with what I had, etc. Of course she isn’t my friend and doesn’t necessarily owe me anything, really, so I hope those are things she truly felt or “saw.” One thing she said that stuck with me, though, was “her family will never, ever close any doors on you and your daughter will always know who you are.” That, too, seems like a simple reassuring statement, BUT she did not know it was an open adoption. I get that that’s a much more common occurrence now, but still, for all she knew I could have signed the papers and never heard from them again, so it made me very happy when she said that. She said my little girl will be into physical activities and always into something; sports, music lessons, etc., which is funny because she is in a music class for babies right now. She then asked me if the love interest that I was sort of clinging onto that she had mentioned earlier was my daughter’s father, to which I told her yes. Finally, the most eerie part: she told me that my daughter will have a creative side and enjoy drawing and writing like me, but will have her father’s looks. She could not have been more spot on about any of that. She didn’t know I was into that sort of stuff (which I very much am) and had not seen a picture of my little princess.

It really gave me faith and I put my foot straight into my mouth immediately afterwards, because I was always one of those people who thought it was all a hoax and that no one can really “see” or know these things. I have a renewed belief in it all and I highly, highly recommend having it done. Much like myself, you may be terrified going into it (trust me, my hands were shaking and I had already nearly cried on the way just thinking about it) but if you get someone who can really connect with and read you the way this woman did for me, it can hopefully give you some hope (if you’re in a tough situation). I won’t take her word as if it’s written in stone, but it’s definitely guiding me a little. My mood has been a little better this past week since I’ve gotten it done. I used to have fears, questions, tiny tiny doubts…and I’m not saying they’re completely squashed, but I have definitely had a lot more faith instilled in myself since that night.

I started writing this entry on Monday evening, but I got sidetracked because my phone went off and it was an email from C!! In it was a long update and a 38 page PDF she put together or photos of our little princess. She apologized for being so quiet lately (which she absolutely doesn’t need to do) and said it’s because they were on their cross-country trip. My little girl has been to double as many states as I have and she’s only 10 months old. I mean, really been in, not just flown over or driven through. She’s now spent time around kittens, puppies, horses and birds at a farm in a state in the Midwest. The pictures melt my heart because I am so passionate about animals, and to see her cuddling up to a dog or patting a cat or gazing up at a horse with an ear-to-ear smile nearly brings tears to my eyes. She also got her hair done. By “done” I mean, her grandmother (African American) parted her hair in all these crazy ways and put it in little hair ties all around her head. I want to post a picture, I’m just hesitant because of the easy access through a google search to all the photos on here. I do have some on facebook, though, so if anyone does want to see, I can add you/you can add me. I know that’s still technically “showing people I don’t know,” but I trust my few readers (most who are in the same boat as me, or on the same side of the adoption triad) to take a look at some. It’s probably not very sound logic, but it seems safer than putting them here. At least with facebook, for the most part I know and have control over who sees what.

So, I guess that’s all for now (as if I didn’t write enough, right?) School has started up again full-swing and I am still on the hunt for a job, so I may not be as talkative as I was over the summer. I do still read everyone’s posts though, and usually with an empathetic smile. :)

Friday, September 2, 2011

September 2nd...already?

Although I'm not parenting, I can officially wholeheartedly say...they do grow up way too fast. How on earth is that little peanut with a head full of jet black hair that I held in the hospital already two short months away from being one? One sounds so young, but one also sounds so old. I remember thinking on her 4 month birthday that she was growing up so fast. Then I said to myself, "how will I feel when she's 5 months? Or even 8 months? Oh well, that's so far away..." WRONG again! It's almost like she's getting further and further away from being the baby I knew. The baby I held, the idea of her when she was tangible to me.

I had wanted to be finished with my first half of college, my associates, by the time she was one, but that looks like it will have to be pushed back a little bit. If I stay on track, I should be able to be done in December, so I will have *almost* made it. If I keep at it and transfer and continue taking my classes, I can have my bachelor's right after she turns three, and depending on the career path I choose, my master's around the time she's five. When I look at it that way, she's still so young. Right now, though, I feel like she's growing up way, way, way to fast. It's exciting, in a way, to see how much she is changing from update to update. Her face is no longer a 'baby face' and she is definitely taking after her birthdad. The bottom half of her face is shaped like mine, and she has my lips, but her hair, eyes, forehead, nose, even her hands look like his.

I love her to death. She has taught me so much in her ten months of life, I can only imagine how much I will learn from her as she grows.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Remembering Maddie on her Mommy's Birthday . . .

Today is my "blog friend," Kellie's, birthday. She asked for everyone to honor and remember her baby girl as a gift for her today. This is her beautiful baby girl, Madison . . .

. . . who she sadly lost to SIDS at only four months old. She has endured things that no mother should ever have to go through. I admire Kellie for her strength and that she gets out of bed everyday for her Maddie, because she knows this is the life she was given and is going to make the best of it! She is an inspiration to me, because if she can still smile though her heartbreak, so can I. She blogs @ Another Day Stronger.

Happy Birthday, Kellie!
I know your baby girl is watching over you today and every day.